I am so excited to share today's chewy vegan lemon crinkle cookies with you all! These vegan lemon cookies are the perfect twist on the classic lemon crinkle cookies! Making whole foods plant based cookies has been a struggle for me in the past, but these crinkle cookies came out so soft and chewy. If you're looking to switch up your Spring baking with something fun and healthy these pink lemonade cookies are for you!
I was inspired to make these vegan lemon crinkle cookies after stumbling upon pink lemons at Whole Foods. To be completely honest with you all I had no idea that pink lemons were actually real. Pink lemonade may be the one flavor that reminds me of my childhood the most. The pink lemonade I am reminded of I am sure is far from healthy. However these vegan lemon cookies are super healthy!
How To Make Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookies Healthy:
Even with my giant sweet tooth, I tend to crave lighter desserts in the Spring. I love baking and I love sweets, so finding a way to make healthy Spring treats like these vegan lemon crinkle cookies are key! Now, there are plenty of lemon crinkle cookie recipes out there, however many of these are loaded with butters, oils, sugars, etc.
The good news is that all of my recipes are free of these ingredients so you have nothing to worry about! How did I make these pink lemon crinkle cookies free of all these ingredients? There's actually a couple things that I did.
First, I made sure to use natural sweeteners. My favorite natural sweetener to use when making vegan cookies is Maple Crystals. I've talked about Maple Crystals a lot here, and I am obsessed! They are a whole foods plant based sweetener with fiber that works just like cane sugar - melts and everything!
I find that it works best for cookies, because it allows the cookie to spread. This gives you a cookie and not a fluffy ball in the oven (been there done that!). As always my code "VEGAN10" gets you $10 off your purchase at Wilderness Poets.
The second thing I did to make these vegan lemon crinkle cookies healthy is replacing the oil. I did this by using coconut milk powder and plant based cream cheese. It's important to use a plant based cream cheese that is made without oil, and is made with simple clean. ingredients. My go-to is always Kite Hill. These two ingredients add healthy fats without the oil!
How To Naturally Color These Pink Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
Another important factor to making these vegan lemon crinkle cookies healthy is using a natural sweetener. I could go on and on about all the reasons artificial colors are bad for you. However instead I want to focus on why you should color your vegan treats with natural colors.
By using natural food colorings you are actively avoiding using toxic colors, and you are adding nutrients to your diet. The color in food helps us to determine how nutrient dense the food is. Therefore foods that have more vibrant colors are more nutrient dense.
My favorite place to get my superfood plant based food colorings is from Rawnice. They have all types of superfood colorings that work beautifully. I used the pink pitaya powder to make these pink lemon crinkle cookies.
This powder helps to give these lemon crinkle cookies the perfect naturally bright color as well as adding additional nutrients. Therefore you can eat cookies to boost your health! I have a code that will get you 15% off your Rawnice order as well: "NATURALVEGAN15".
Best Gluten-Free Flour For These Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
These vegan lemon crinkle cookies are special because they are also gluten-free! I've touched on my feeling towards gluten-free flour mixes before. Typical gluten-free flours are a blend of highly processed flours that contain few nutrients. I avoid using most gluten-free flour blends for this reason.
However recently I have stumbled upon a gluten-free flour mix that is excellent! I used the All Purpose Baking Flour from Bob's Red Mill . I prefer this over the 1:1 mix because it contains 4g of fiber and 3g of protein per serving. This is important to look for when choosing a gluten-free flour because it's not just empty calories.
The best part is these gluten-free lemon crinkle cookies come out so fluffy that you won't even realize they're gluten-free! If you're interested in more gluten-free vegan cookie recipes, check out some of my other favorites.
More Gluten-Free Vegan Cookie Recipes:
What Are Pink Lemons:
It's no secret that I am a lover of all things weird and exotic fruits (be sure to check out #weirdfruitwednesday on Instagram). It was through this love that I discover pink lemons! I was so inspired by them I whipped up this vegan lemon crinkle cookie recipe right away! Depending on where you live, or what season it is you may not be able to find pink lemons.
No worries though, because these gluten-free lemon crinkle cookies can be made with regular lemons too! I personally did not find that the pink lemons had a dramatically different taste than regular lemons, but they sure were fun!
What Makes These Lemon Cookies Crinkle?
These vegan lemon crinkle cookies achieve the perfect soft crinkle without any artificial ingredients. Many lemon crinkle cookie recipes use weird ingredients to achieve the crinkle, but this vegan lemon crinkle cookie recipe is made using whole foods plant based ingredients.
What gives them the crinkle? It's a mixture of the acidic ingredients and baking soda. Most of the time when you're baking with acidic ingredients it helps the food rise, but since these cookies have a base of vegan cream cheese and coconut milk powder it actually helps the cookies crinkle!
Ingredients For These Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
- Maple crystals - "VEGAN10" for $10 off your Wilderness Poets Purchase!
- Coconut milk powder - "VEGAN10" for $10 off your Wilderness Poets Purchase!
- Gluten-free flour - Remember to look for a gluten-free flour mix that is high in fiber, and not super refined.
- Baking soda - This is what works to give these cookies the perfect natural crinkle!
- Pink pitaya powder - "NATURALVEGAN15" for 15% off your Rawnice purchase!
- Vegan Cream Cheese - I recommend using the Kite Hill or Miyokos brand cream cheese for this recipe.
- Pink Lemons - You can totally substitute regular lemons (they taste the exact same), but when life gives you pink lemons you make pink lemon crinkle cookies!
- Vanilla Extract - I always recommend Mexican Vanilla, because the flavor us superior!
How To Make These Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
These Pink Lemon Crinkle Cookies are super easy and fun to make. First things first, cream together the vegan cream cheese, maple crystals, vanilla extract, and coconut milk powder.
Next add the lemon juice and zest and mix. Sift in remaining ingredients. Scoop out 12 balls and place on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why Is Adding Lemon Zest To Baked Goods Impoortant?
Adding lemon zest is in my opinion the best way to achieve an authentic lemon flavor in baked goods. Many lemon desserts call for lemon extract. I prefer to stay away from this and just use lemon zest/lemon juice, because it is the pure form. Lemon extract is essentially just lemon infused alcohol. A little goes a long way with lemon zest, so just be sure to not add too much.
How To Store These Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookies:
These vegan lemon crinkle cookies are soft and chewy, so it's important to keep them that way. Whenever storing cookies it's important to do it right, or else they'll dry up. You can store these in an air tight container in the freezer for weeks! To defrost them, place them on the countertop sealed until soft. This helps the moisture stay in the cookies and keeps them from drying out.
You can also keep them in the fridge for a couple days. Again the air tight container is key!
Pink Lemon Crinkle Cookies
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Begin by creaming together the vegan cream cheese, maple crystals, coconut milk powder, and vanilla extract.
- Add in the juice from the lemons and lemon zest and mix.
- Add the gluten-free flour, pink pitaya, and baking soda and mix until dough forms.
- Scoop out 12 balls and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool on baking tray for 5-10 minutes before placing on a cooling rack. Serve and enjoy!