Some people think vegan shortbread is an oxymoron, because butter is the very essence of shortbread. But you’ll be changing minds all over the place with these little cookies. I made these and brought them to the Spud headquarters, where they were devoured by vegans and omnivores alike. One co-worker even asked if I was sure I didn`t use butter, which is the ultimate compliment for any plant-based baked good.
This recipe will give you basic vegan shortbread cookie, but you can (and should!) put your own spin on them. For my first batch, I tossed 2 tsp matcha powder in with the coconut oil and sugar, for cute green tea cookies. They were so quick and easy to make, I decided to start another batch as soon as the first was out of the oven. For the second batch, I added the zest of two mandarin oranges to the sugar and subbed out the water for an equal amount of mandarin orange juice. The flavours turn out fairly mild, so feel free to be a little heavy-handed!
1/2cup refined coconut oil (somewhat solid, but not hard)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp water
Add coconut oil, sugar, vanilla, and water to a bowl and beat using an electric or stand mixer on high until everything is creamed together and fluffy.
Stir in the flour with a large spoon or spatula. Use your hands to knead it together until the flour is fully mixed in. The dough will be pretty soft (depending on the softness of the coconut oil when you started), but if it’s too runny you can add a little more flour.
Sprinkle some flour onto a piece of parchment paper and place the dough on top. Using your hands, form the dough into a log about 1 – 2 inches in diameter. It will be too soft to roll. Wrap the paper tightly around the log, and gently transfer it to the fridge. Chill for about 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350
When the dough is firm enough to slice, remove it from the fridge and unwrap it. Slice it into 1/3 inch thick slices. Place them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet about an inch apart from each other.
Bake for about 16-18 minutes, or until the bottoms are golden brown.
Place cookies on a cooling rack and allow them to cool completely. Once cool, cookies may be stored in an airtight container.