This recipe for vegan and gluten-free lemon and white chocolate cookies are the fresh, zesty summer newcomer that’s sure to turn your head from chocolate chip!
These gluten-free vegan lemon and white chocolate cookies are about to disrupt the unbreakable bond you thought you had with chocolate chip cookies. Tart fresh lemon with rich, buttery white chocolate is a powerhouse pairing!
Chuck this flavour combo into a quick and easy cookie dough and finish the cookies with generous lashings of a simple lemon drizzle and before you know it, you’ll be shamelessly ghosting good old chocolate chip for this shiny new cookie flavour.
What do you need to know before you make this recipe?
This is a relatively straightforward cookie recipe but because they’re gluten-free I’ve used a few tricks to ensure they’re failsafe! I’ve added a touch of xanthan gum to help the cookies hold their shape and let the dough rest in the fridge for 30 minutes before baking to stop them from spreading (see the notes for a little more insight).
Oh and don’t forget to zest the lemons before you juice them 😉
I’ve included all the notes for these vegan lemon and white chocolate cookies at the bottom of the page with the hope of improving your experience here at blue border. If you found this useful, I’d love your support on Instagram, click here to follow.
- 115g / 4oz non-dairy margarine or butter
- 100g / 3.5oz caster sugar
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 200g / 7oz gluten-free flour, all-purpose
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. xanthan gum
- ¼ tsp. fine sea salt
- 150g non-dairy white chocolate chips or roughly chopped chocolate bar
Cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy and pale in colour. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix again to combine.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan and salt. Toss the chocolate with the flour to lightly coat, and then use a baking spatula to fold the flour mixture through the creamed butter and sugar.
Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and shape them into balls before placing them in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 160C and line a couple of baking trays with parchment paper.
Transfer the balls of cookie dough to the baking trays and gently flatten (these cookies spread out considerably so make sure they are well spaced apart).
Bake the cookies, one tray at a time, for 20 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool on the tray and wait until the cookies are completely cool before handling.
To make the lemon drizzle combine the sifted icing sugar with the lemon juice and zest. Mix to combine and drizzle generously over the cookies. Depending on the juiciness of your lemon you may need to add more icing sugar or lemon juice to get the desired consistency.
Store in an airtight container and eat within 2-3 days.
NOTES: Vegan Lemon and White Chocolate Cookies
What vegan white chocolate did you use?
I used the Happi White Chocolate for these cookies. If you’re in the UK I also highly recommend the Moser Roth Vegan Blonde chocolate from Aldi or try the Vegan Kind Supermarket, including the White Vanilla Chocolate from iChoc. If you’re in Australia, you should be able to find iChoc or look out for Loving Earth.
Xanthan gum is a binder made through the process of fermenting simple sugars. In this recipe, xanthan gum helps prevent spreading and holds the cookies together in the absence of natural binders like eggs and gluten.
Recipe Questions & Troubleshooting
Why are these cookies baked at 160C?
In general gluten-free bakes are baked at a lower oven temperature for longer. Low and slow baking aids the development of crumb structure in the absence of gluten, prevents crumbling and will stop your cookies from drying out.
Why are my gluten-free cookies falling apart?
You left out the xanthan gum. In this recipe (and many others), xanthan gum is standing in for gluten and eggs as a binder and, without it, GF bakes tend to crumble. If you’re opposed to xanthan gum, you can try a flax egg but note that I haven’t tried the recipe with a binder other than xanthan gum.
You didn’t let them cool completely before removing them from the tray. Gluten-free cookies are more fragile than their gluten-containing counterparts. Allowing them to cool on the baking tray allows them to ‘fully set’. If you skip this step, you may find they completely crumble when moved.
Why are my gluten-free cookies gritty?
Rice flour is to blame for a gritty texture. Try using a different all-purpose GF flour or make your own flour mix, I like this recipe for gluten-free flour by Minimalist Baker. For even better results, make it with superfine brown and white rice flour.
Why did my cookies spread so much in the oven?
You skipped the fridge step. Gluten-free cookie dough should always go in the fridge before baking as GF cookies tend to spread excessively in the oven.
In these small bakes, the butter/marg will melt quickly, and without gluten to hold them back you can end up with one giant cookie instead of one dozen. The overnight fridge step in this recipe helps to solidify the source of fat and temper spreading. This time in the fridge will also soften the flour and help prevent grittiness in cookies.