Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies
December 24, 2010

Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies | The Full Helping

My blog this week seems to have vacillated rather dramatically between the intimate and the edible. I wrote about my career change on Monday, parsnip spread on Tuesday, my fondness for the publishing world yesterday, and today I’m writing about cookies. My favorite kind of cookies, actually: chewy vegan molasses ginger cookies.

To call something a favorite cookie is, I know, a big statement. There are so many wonderful types of cookies out there, and it’s not as though I don’t love chocolate chunk cookies, or oatmeal cookies, or snickerdoodles, or . . . well, you get the idea.

Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies | The Full Helping

But I have a very special fondness for the combination of ginger and molasses. Gingerbread might actually be my favorite dessert, or at least my favorite type of cake. These vegan molasses ginger cookies channel the spiciness and richness of gingerbread, but they cook in much less time than cake. Which means that you can whip up a batch at the last moment on Christmas eve, or anytime people stop by unexpectedly for a holiday gathering.

Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies | The Full Helping

Before I veganized these successfully, I came up with a number of not-so-successful versions. It was hard, at first, to get that perfect puffy rise, the crackled texture, and the right amount of chewiness in the center. What I found is that it’s key to melt the butter before mixing the dough (this is a trick for making chewy cookies in general, but it’s especially important here). And over time I came up with the right ratio of baking soda to powder, spices, and so on. I like the cookies to be very gingery, and I use blackstrap molasses, which has a deep and unmistakable flavor.

It’s Christmas eve, which means that many of you spent the nights working hard in your kitchens. Allow these cookies to be a sweet, and simple dessert for you tonight.

Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies | The Full Helping


Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies
Recipe Type: dessert
Cuisine: vegan, soy free, tree nut free
Author: Gena Hamshaw
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 28 cookies
  • 1 1/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light spelt flour or whole wheat pastry flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 8 tablespoons melted vegan buttery spread
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 3 tablespoons aquafaba (chickpea can water) or 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons warm water and allowed to thicken for a few minutes)
  • Demerara or turbinado sugar (or cane sugar), for rolling
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and allspice.
  3. Mix together the melted vegan buttery spread, sugars, molasses, and aquafaba. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and use a spatula to combine well. The dough will be wet and sticky. Cover it and transfer it to the fridge. Refrigerate the dough for at least two hours, or overnight.
  4. Shape the dough into two-inch balls and roll them in sugar. Place the dough 2 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the center of the cookies is puffed and cracked (I recommend checking them at 8 minutes, just in case they’ve cooked quickly). Allow the cookies to cool on a cooling rack before enjoying.
Allow cookies to cool entirely before storing. Cookies can be kept in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

 Vegan Molasses Ginger Cookies | The Full Helping

Most vegans know the experience of having to skip dessert at a holiday gathering because the sweet offering isn’t vegan friendly. This year, try making a batch of these soft, sweet, and super fragrant cookies to share with loved ones and friends. Watch and smile as they earn rave reviews–because, in my experience, they always do–and know that your edible gift to others is both delicious and animal-friendly.

From my cozy little room at my mother’s cozy little apartment, I wish you all a wonderful Christmas eve and morning.


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Categories: Baking, Cookies, Recipes, Holidays

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  1. Is there an alternative to the aquafaba? It’s not something I keep on hand. Is it supposed to be egg? Would a flax egg work?

    • Hey Deanna,

      Yup, it’s to replace egg. You can definitely use 1 flax egg: 1 tablespoon flax seeds + 3 tablespoons warm water (and it sounds as though you know that already!) 🙂



  2. This is almost identical to a recipe I used to make using 3 types of ginger (except when I used to make it years ago I used an egg and butter). This time I used your recipe, using flax seed instead of the egg and earth balance instead of butter and substituting powdered ginger, ginger root, and crystallized ginger for the cinnamon and nutmeg. They turned out great! Thanks.

  3. hi i really want to make these but have no clue what earth balance is and have not seen it in any of the South African stores. pls help.
    Thanx Mindy

  4. I love ginger cookies! I also enjoy the range you talked about in your blog posts. I am the same way on my blog – talking about very personal matters one day and posting photos of me decorating Christmas cookies with my nieces. In my opinion, it keeps things interesting!

  5. Mmmm–one of my favorite kinds of cookies, too! I love the molasses in them. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas celebration, Gena! Big hugs! Ricki xo 😀

  6. thank you for this, i’ve been having ginger cookie cravings ;). how might this taste with whole wheat flour? it’s the only flour i have at the moment.

  7. Merry Christmas! I love making cookies and not telling others they are vegan until after they have tried them. I love ginger everything so I will certainly try these. Hope you had a wonderful holiday!

  8. I love ginger in my stir-fry. I favor a chewy cookie over a crispy one too.

    I wanted to visit a vegetarian restaurant on the UWS today, but of course, it’s closed today. 🙁

    Merry Christmas!

  9. YUM. Wishing you the merriest of merry Christmases! And a big, huge belated congratulations to the exciting new year ahead. Take care xo

  10. those ginger cookies look great! I made some ginger vegan GF cookies and sent a batch to the family. hope they enjoy them. as i am sure your mom will love these.

    merry christmas gena!

  11. Merry XMAS Gena! I read your article with much interest — not because of the vegan ginger cookies, but because of the mention of the vegan shepherds pie. Growing up I was a big fan of shepherds pie and I am hoping you will share the recipe for yours!

    Speaking of recipes, may I challenge you as we head into 2011. Might you craft and share a recipe for a vegan version of stuffed cabbage rolls. That was another favorite and I’d love a quality vegan version. Thanks for considering my request.

    Regards & Happy New Year, Howard

  12. These cookies look fantastic. Stacked up beside gingerbread these would win me over for sure.

    I completely agree with your last paragraph. We are a gluten, corn and dairy free home and will be hosting dinner this year (in less than 12 hours – ah!). I’ve prepared the most amazing appetizer & dessert spread – all which worked out to be vegan too! A lot of the guests are skeptical and have said they’ll leave hungry.

    haha can’t wait to challenge them on that!

    • We also can not eat gluten, dairy, corn. Would love to hear what all you made & the recipes for them! 🙂

  13. Merry Xmas, Gena, to you and your family!

    The cookies look wonderful and I can’t believe your mom wanted a crisper cookie. For me, chewy, doughy, and half raw is the way I like cookies 🙂 I came up with a gingerbread dough ball that I really like.

    I love how you said these have some spiciness to them! Yum. I love putting quite a bit of ginger in my ginger/molasses cookies. Growing up, I could eat my grandma’s ginger molasses cookies by the dozen. If she was still with us, I probably would 🙂

    Great job on these. Because yes, what would a vegan eat otherwise at the holidays? (tongue-in-cheek per your last paragraph)

    Hope Santa was good to you!!! xoxo

  14. Agreed: those crunchy cookies are only good as ornaments! Ginger and molasses is one of my favorite combinations too. So sparkly!