These Gluten-Free Vegan Shortbread Cookies are crisp and crunchy, melt-in-your-mouth buttery and perfectly salty-sweet!
I experimented with so many different ways to make gluten-free vegan shortbread cookies, using different types of flours, and it was so hard to get the texture right.
I eventually discovered that the best combination was ground almonds (almond meal) and brown rice flour. The ground almonds create that essential crumbly, melt-in-your-mouth texture, whilst the brown rice flour creates a crispy, crunchy texture.
You need to use brown rice flour, not white rice flour, which creates a soft cookie (like my Sugar Cookies) rather than a crunchy one.
Where can I buy brown rice flour?
If you can’t find brown rice flour in your local supermarket, you’ll be able to find it in local health stores or online.
Why you’ll love these Gluten-Free Vegan Shortbread Cookies:
- they’re undetectably vegan and gluten-free
- they’re crunchy and have a “snapping” sound
- they’re crumbly and “buttery”
- they’re perfectly sweet with a hint of salt
- they’re easy to make
- they’re refined sugar free
- they’re made in one bowl
- they require just 6 ingredients to make!
How to make these Gluten-Free Vegan Shortbread Cookies
Scroll down to the bottom of the post for the full recipe.
- Mix together the ingredients for the cookie dough in a glass mixing bowl.
- Lay out a sheet of greaseproof baking paper on a counter.
- Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough until about 1 cm/1/2 inch thick.
- Use a circular cookie cutter to cut shapes out of the dough – you will probably have to roll the dough a few times until you use it all up.
Tip: You can use any other shape if you don’t want to use a circular one.
- Transfer the cookies onto a rectangular baking tray.
Tip: Line the baking tray with greased baking paper to make sure the cookies don’t stick.
- If you wish, use a skewer to poke decorative holes in the surface of the cookies.
- Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and firm to the touch (bearing in mind that they will firm up more once cooled and out of the oven).
- Leave to cool completely before putting away to store.
How long do these Gluten-Free Vegan Shortbread Cookies keep for?
These Cookies taste best eaten within the day but keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a few days – they do become softer the longer you leave them, though.
Substitutions you can make to this recipe:
- you can substitute the coconut oil with coconut butter
- you can use any type of liquid sweetener: maple syrup, agave syrup, brown rice syrup etc
- you can use any type of plant-based milk: almond milk, rice milk, soy milk, cashew milk, oat milk etc
- the ground almonds (almond meal) can be substituted with ground walnuts
- for a nut-free version, use ground sunflower seeds instead of ground almonds and use a nut-free milk
- you can flavour the shortbread with grated orange zest, grated lemon zest or matcha powder
- ingredients you can add to the dough: chopped pecan nuts, chopped macadamia nuts, chocolate chips, dried cranberries, desiccated coconut.
Tip: The brown rice flour CANNOT be substituted with white rice flour or any other gluten-free flour – it is essential for creating a crunchy shortbread texture.
More gluten-free vegan cookie recipes:
- Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Blueberry Breakfast Cookies
- Peanut Butter Cookies
- Sugar Cookies
- Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Carrot Cake Cookies
If you try out this recipe or anything else from my blog, I’d really love to hear any feedback! Please give it a rating, leave a comment, or tag a photo @rhiansrecipes #rhiansrecipes on Instagram! Thank you.
Gluten-Free Vegan Shortbread Cookies
- Preheat oven to 170 degrees Celsius (340 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Place the coconut oil in a large bowl and melt over a saucepan of boiling water or in the microwave
- Add the maple syrup, milk, ground almonds, brown rice flour and salt and mix well - add an extra splash of milk if it’s looking too dry to combine
- Lay out a sheet of greaseproof baking paper on a counter and roll out the dough until about 1cm or 1/2 inch thick
- Use a circular cookie cutter to cut shapes out of the dough - you will probably have to roll the dough a few times until you use it all up (you can use any other shape if you don't want to use a circular one)
- Transfer the cookies onto a baking tray lined with greased baking paper
- If you wish, use a skewer to poke decorative holes in the surface of the cookies
- Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes until firm to the touch (bearing in mind that they will firm up more once cooled and out of the oven)
- Best left to cool completely before eating as they crisp up as they cool
- Leave to cool completely before putting away to store
- Tastes best eaten within the day but keeps in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a few days (they do become softer the longer you leave them)
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