These Vegan Ginger Cookies are soft and chewy inside with perfectly crispy edges. Everyone’s favorite holiday cookie takes 20 minutes to make and tastes incredible. Vegan Ginger Molasses Cookies are sure to be a hit at your annual holiday cookie swap and make perfect gifts for friends and family.
This post has been updated from the original posted on December 3, 2021 .
I know you’re going to want to share this AMAZING Vegan Ginger Cookie Recipe with friends and family…but don’t forget to load up your own cookie jar! Guys…these Vegan Ginger Cookies, made with tahini and topped with chocolate are OVER THE TOP….in the best possible way!
Vegan Holiday Cookies that are full of warm spices, rich molasses flavor and come out with crinkles in all the right spots. Need I say more? Oh, you’re going to crave these year round…cuz the best molasses cookies are great for an annual cookie exchange, but they’re also good year round!
Classic molasses crinkle cookies are dipped in coarse sugar before baking, but I like to think outside of the box when developing healthy recipes. Plus, I adore a bit of dark chocolate, don’t you?
Instead of straight out sugar, I dip these vegan molasses cookies in finely chopped dark chocolate. OMG…the crinkles still appear and the chocolate melts right in! Genius.
What is Molasses?
Molasses is a dark, thick syrup extracted during the process of making sugar from the sugar beet and sugar cane. A common question is whether Molasses is better for you than white sugar. It’s a bit of a more healthful option since it contains several important nutrients like calcium and magnesium. However, be aware that molasses should be consumed in moderation because it still contains high levels of sugar.
Blackstrap Molasses is the product leftover after the sugarose has been removed from the sugar cane. It has a darker, almost inky color and has a salty bitter taste. It is somewhat sweet with a moderate glycemic load and also contains vitamin B6, manganese, magnesium, potassium iron and selenium. Blackstrap molasses is often used in recipes for baked beans, barbeque sauces or in marinades for fish or veggies.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Flour: I used whole wheat flour in these photos. I also tested the recipe with King Arthur measure for measure gluten-free flour and they came out great. Any all purpose flour will work, including whole wheat pastry flour. I would NOT recommend replacing the flour with almond flour, the moisture content will not be equal.
- Tahini: An awesome choice for oil-free and dairy-free cookies, rather than vegan butter. I adore the subtle sesame flavor the tahini imparts on these cookies, but if sesame allergies are an issue, replace the tahini with a drippy almond butter.
- Molasses: These are molasses cookies and their flavor and texture depends on unsulphured molasses. You could substitute additional maple syrup but it doesn’t have quite the same caramel-like flavor.
- Maple syrup: Pure maple syrup…either grade A or B is fine for this recipe. You can also use a lighter amber colored syrup or a deeper colored syrup. The cookies will be a bit dark already because of the molasses.
- Spices: Ground ginger, cinnamon and allspice give these cookies their gingerbread cookie taste. I love the rich, cozy spice profile and sometimes add an extra pinch of cloves as well.
- Baking powder and soda: This is what makes these vegan cookies rise and become soft and chewy. If you’re looking for a crisper cookie, just leave in the oven a bit longer, but don’t skimp on the leavening.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- They’re full of warm spices…they taste incredible. Seriously addictive.
- 20 minutes…and DONE!
- The most popular holiday cookie for christmas cookie exchanges, unless you’re counting thumbprint cookies.
- Soft and chewy….absolute perfect texture.
- Egg-free and dairy-free cookies means everyone can enjoy them!
- Easy to make and wrap to gift to family and friends during the holiday season.
- If you need a gluten-free gingersnap cookie, these work with all purpose gluten-free flour.
- A dusting of chocolate for my fellow chocolate lovers…Mmmm.
- BONUS: Your house will smell divine with a batch of these chewy vegan ginger spice cookies in the oven.
How to make Vegan Ginger MolCookies
Preheat your oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper. These cookies won’t take long to prep, so your oven will be ready just in time.
Step 1: You’ll want to begin by taking 1-oz. of dark chocolate and chopping it. Some very small chunks and some dust is the texture you’re looking for. Grab a shallow bowl and set aside the chocolate.
Looking for an alternative? Dip in just a bit of cocoa powder.
Step 2: Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a medium bowl. Use a fork to mix thoroughly, making sure baking soda is evenly dispersed.
Step 3: In a small bowl, mix together the tahini, molasses, maple syrup and vanilla extract until well combined.
Step 4: Transfer the wet Ingredients into the flour mixture and stir well.
Mix until just combined. You’ll have a tacky, kinda sticky cookie dough.
Step 5: Scoop batter into cookies. Tablespoon-sized balls will yield about 20 smaller cookies that are just under 2.5″ in diameter. If you want a larger cookie, simply use more dough per cookie. Drop each scoop of cookie dough into the chopped chocolate, then place on a parchment lined cookie sheet. You can use two teaspoons and drop the cookies, a measuring spoon to make them uniform in size, or even a cookie scoop to make things super easy.
Continue to scoop out cookies, touch into the chocolate and place on the prepared baking tray. Leave 2-3″ space between cookies so they have enough room to spread when they bake.
Step 6: Make sure to set the timer for 10 minutes, because that’s all they need for perfectly chewy cookies. You’ll know they’re done because they’ll spread out a bit, develop some signature crinkles and the chocolate will be melty and gooey and top.
Leave to set on the baking tray for about 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack. Enjoy warm, fresh from the oven, but make sure they are completely cool before storing.
Debra’s Pro Tips
- The key to baking with tahini is to be sure when you first open the jar you stir it until the consistency in the entire jar is uniform. I cannot stress this enough. Otherwise your measured tahini will be too runny or too dry.
- Make ahead: freeze dough in balls. Thaw, dip in chocolate and bake later.
- A pinch of flakey sea salt sprinkled on top before baking really brings out the chocolate on top.
- If you roll the dough balls into the chocolate, rather than dipping just the top into it, they will be chocolatey and delicious…and also kinda messy until the chocolate on the bottom sets. Not actually a problem IMHO!
- For chewy ginger cookies DO NOT OVERBAKE. With egg free gingerbread cookies you don’t have to worry about undercooking, so it’s easy to get a perfectly soft cookie.
- Molasses will attract moisture, keeping these cookies chewy. For a crisper cookie, flatten slightly with your hand and bake 2 minutes longer.
- Use a cookie scoop if you want your cookies to be uniform in size.
- Shh! Nobody has to know this is a healthy vegan cookie…I promise it will hold its own among all the delicious cookies this time of year.
MEAL PREP AND STORAGE:
- Serve: Enjoy them warm or at room temperature. A warm cup of tea, coffee or cocoa would be an added bonus.
- Prep ahead: Dough can be frozen before baking. Drop individual Tablespoons of dough onto parchment paper. Flash freeze for at least 1 hour and then transfer into freezer safe tip-top bag until ready to bake. Thaw to room temperature, dust in chopped chocolate and then bake as directed.
- Store: Make sure cookies are completely cooled before transferring to airtight container. Cookies will stay good at room temperature for 5 days. 2 weeks in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.
- Freeze: Make sure cookies are completely cool. Use freezer safe container or zip-top bag. Place parchment paper in between layers. Baked cookies or cookie dough will stay good in the freezer for up to 3 months. Baked cookies will thaw at room temperature in about 30 minutes.
The main difference is that gingersnap cookies have crispier edges than gingerbread cookies, and snap when you break them apart. Gingersnaps usually have a bit more sugar and bake for longer. Gingerbread cookies are softer with a chewy texture and often are cut into fun shapes and decorated.
Molasses helps keeps cookies soft and chewy, since it attracts moisture. It also imparts a rich caramel like brown sugar flavor without making them too sweet. Molasses also has nutrients like magnesium and calcium making it not just an empty calorie.
Molasses cookies were first served in Black Joe’s Tavern in Marblehead, Massachusetts in the late 18th century. They’re also called Joe Froggers, since a fisherman named Joe Brown who lived right by frog pond was reputed to make the best molasses cookies in town. Folklore says it was his wife Lucretia who made the cookies as big as the lily pads that frogs sat on in a pond outside their restaurant. Joe Froggers were popular with sailors because they keep well and could be taken on long voyages.
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Vegan Ginger Cookies
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup tahini
- ¼ cup molasses unsulphured
- 6 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 oz. dark chocolate finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.
- Finely chop chocolate and set aside in a shallow bowl.
- Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a medium sized bowl. Mix thoroughly. You'll want to make sure baking powder is evenly distributed throughout.
- In a small bowl, mix together wet ingredients (tahini, molasses, maple syrup and vanilla) until well combined.
- Pour wet ingredients into the dry and mix until just combined.
- Portion out cookies: Scoop* 1-2 Tablespoons of dough out and drop into bowl of chopped chocolate. Turn cookie over so chocolate is on top and place on prepared cookie sheet, leaving 2-3" between cookies so they have room to spread.
- Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.
- Let cookies cool for 5 minutes on tray, so chocolate isn't so gooey, and then transfer to a wire rack and allow cool completely before storing.
- Cookies will stay good at room temperature for up to a week, or in the freezer for 3 months.