Crispy outsides, soft middles, and a big dose of fresh lemon flavor. These easy Lemon Crinkle Cookies are gluten free, egg free, dairy free, and vegan. Ready in about 30 minutes!
Fresh lemon flavor bursting in every crispy, fluffy bite!
These cookies have a nice crisp exterior and soft fluffy middles. It’s the perfect mix of textures.
Just a few simple ingredients are needed and it’s easily mixed by hand in a mixing bowl.
What are you waiting for? Go make a batch!
Ingredients you need
Ingredient notes and substitutions
Flour ~ These cookies are gluten free. Be sure to use a gluten free flour blend meant to replace wheat flour at a 1:1 ratio. My top choice is Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1:1 Baking Flour.
Sugar ~ White cane sugar is best for these cookies. The sweetness counteracts the tartness of the lemon juice and the white color makes the best looking cookies. Coconut sugar and brown sugar would create a much darker dough.
Note: not all sugar is vegan due to the way it is processed. Be sure to look for certified vegan on the label or choose organic, which is always vegan.
Lemon ~ Use fresh squeezed lemon juice for best flavor. Be sure to zest one of the lemons before juicing it.
If you love lemon, don’t miss these other delicious lemon recipes
- Strawberry Lemonade Ice Cream Cake
- Tart Cherry Sparkling Lemonade
- Lemon Artichoke Vegan Pasta Salad
- Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes
Oil ~ This recipe calls for melted coconut oil. Be sure all of the other ingredients, specifically the maple syrup and lemon juice. are at room temperature before proceeding. The coconut oil will seize up if it comes into contact with cold ingredients.
I have not tested this lemon crinkle cookies recipe as oil-free.
How To Make the recipe
With just 8 ingredients, these flavorful cookies are super easy.
First, make sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature. This recipe calls for melted coconut oil and it will seize up if it comes in contact with cold ingredients.
Whisk all the wet ingredients in a mixing bowl (1). Add the dry ingredients to the wet (2) and stir until a smooth dough forms (3).
Let the dough rest for 10 minutes to let it firm up.
Scoop 1 tablespoon of dough using a spoon or a cookie scoop and form it into a ball. Tossing the ball of dough into sugar to coat (4), if desired. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Place the balls of dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart (5). Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the tops start to crackle and the bottoms are slightly browned.
Transfer the cookies to a cooling rack to cool completly (6).
Be sure to cool the cookies completely before transferring them to a storage container.
When ready to store them, choose an air-tight container.
You can place sheets of parchment in between layers if you’re worried the cookies might stick to each other, but I don’t find it necessary with this particular recipe.
The cookies should last a week or more if stored properly.
You can also freeze these Lemon Crinkle Cookies. Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and place in the freezer for an hour or so until frozen. Transfer to a freezer safe container or plastic bag with sheets of parchment in between each one. They should keep well for up to 6 months.
Pro tips for success
~ Be sure to use a gluten free flour blend that is designed as a 1:1 replacement for all-purpose flour. I tested these cookies with both Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Flour Blend and Krusteaz 1:1 Gluten Free All-Purpose Flour and would recommend either of those with Bob’s Red Mill being my first choice. I also tested them with Trader Joe’s Gluten Free All Purpose Flour and I did NOT like the way they turned out, so don’t use that brand!
~ Use white cane sugar for a light, bright lemon cookie. Brown sugar or coconut sugar will make the dough much darker. Note: not all sugar is vegan due to the way it is processed. Be sure to look for certified vegan on the label or choose organic, which is always vegan.
~ Be sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature, specifically the maple syrup and lemon juice, before making the dough. The melted coconut oil may seize up if it comes in contact with cold ingredients.
~ An average lemon has about 2 tablespoons of juice inside. I have found some juicier lemons that give a bit more than this. You may need 2 to 3 lemons to get ⅓ cup juice.
~ Be sure to zest the lemon before juicing it.
~ These cookies taste great right out the oven, but the lemon flavor is more pronounced once they have completely cooled.
~ Be sure to cool the lemon crinkle cookies completely before storing.
Fresh lemon juice is important to get the best flavor for these cookies. You’ll also need the zest of one lemon, so be sure to zest the lemon before you juice it.
Just a touch of pure vanilla extract balances out the bitterness of the lemon nicely.
We also love rolling the cookie dough in extra sugar before placing them on the cookie sheets to bake. This, of course, was my kids’ favorite part!
I tested these cookies with several different gluten free flour blends.
You definitely want to use a blend that is designed to be a 1:1 replacement for traditional all-purpose flour. I found Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Baking Flour to be the best. It’s fine texture lent the best results for texture.
I also tested these Lemon Crinkle Cookies with Krusteaz Gluten Free All Purpose Flour. They turned out great, but we still preferred the Bob’s Red Mill version.
I do not recommend Trader Joe’s Gluten Free All Purpose Flour. The cookies using the Trader Joe’s flour were definitely grittier and crumbled easily.
The most likely answer is that there was too much flour. Be sure to measure your flour using the spoon and level method. Do not pack it into the measuring cup or you will end up with too much.
- Vegan Cinnamon Cookies
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- Vegan Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Vegan Thumbprint Cookies
- Soft Baked Frosted Pumpkin Cookies
I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you tried it, please use the rating system in the recipe card and leave a comment below with your feedback.
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For even more easy family recipes, be sure to check out my cookbook, The Meatless Monday Family Cookbook!
Lemon Crinkle Cookies
- Be sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature before beginning the recipe.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and coconut oil.
- Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until a smooth dough is formed.
- Let the dough sit for 10 minutes to stiffen up.
- Scoop out a heaping tablespoon of dough and mold it into a ball with your hands. Place onto the prepared baking sheet. Optional: roll the dough ball around in the extra sugar to coat before placing on the baking sheet.
- Leaving about 2 inches between each cookie dough ball on the baking sheet, repeat with the remaining dough.
- Bake 10 to 12 minutes until the cookies have spread a bit, the bottoms are lightly browned, and the tops have started to crackle.
- Transfer the cookies to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
Storage/Freezing Cool the cookies completely before transferring to an air-tight container for storage. They should last up to a week on the counter. You can also freeze these Lemon Crinkle Cookies. Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and place in the freezer for an hour or so until frozen. Transfer to a freezer safe container or plastic bag with sheets of parchment in between each one. They should keep well for up to 6 months.