Perfecting the Vegan Cookie

by Sarah on February 21, 2012 · 22 comments

I think I’m getting close to making the perfect vegan cookie.

 When Mama Smart ate one over the weekend, followed it up with a sampling of (local chocolatier) Gearhart’s amazing chocolate truffles, and concluded that “the cookie was better,” I knew I was on to something.

It all started after Lauren sent me those Cherry Almond Cookies made from a recipe in Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. Considering that after they spent two (or more) weeks traveling around the east coast via the US Postal Service they were still some of the best cookies I’d ever eaten, you know they were good. I tried once to replicate the deliciousness–with the standard Smart Kitchen “can’t leave well enough alone” substitutions–and while the Strawberry Pancake Cookies were good….they weren’t great.

But these? These are great.

The inspiration for these (Vegan) Fig & Walnut Cookies came from my February Blogger Pen Pal, Karen. As soon as she admitted that her secret celebrity crush was Will Smith, I knew I had to help her “get figgy with it.”*

*And yes, that probably would have been the title of this post…if I hadn’t already used it before. :)I don’t know what it was about this go ’round that made my vegan cookie adaptation so much the better. Perhaps I whisked the oil-flax-sugar-almond milk combo just that much harder with my fork?Or maybe it was adding the subtle hint of cardamom* to the whole-wheat pastry flour that did it?

*a spice which I have, by the way, decided is incredibly underrated for its abilities to elevate a baked goodI guess it could have been the chunky texture of the walnuts–chosen solely for their current status as the cheapest nut to by in bulk (and available even more inexpensively when already chopped…a bonus for this lazy baker).But really, it probably just came down to the fact that this time I didn’t accidentally dump 1/3 of the remaining contents of my maple extract into the batter.Whatever it was…these babies turned from dough* to delicious in a matter of (about 12 to 15) minutes.

*Not that the dough wasn’t good on it’s own…They even had the honor of christening the legitimate cooling rack I finally gave in and purchased.You might think that a cookie has to have chocolate to be considered the pinnacle of perfection. But I disagree. [Although don’t think I won’t try numerous variations on these in the future. Y’all know me better than that by now. :)]

I’m not saying these are perfect. But I’m getting pretty darn close.


(Vegan) Fig & Walnut Cookies

  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. ground golden flax
  • 3 Tbsp. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 tsp. vanila extract
  • 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 3/4 cup walnut halves and pieces
  • 3/4 dried Turkish figs, chopped (about 10 whole)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together oil, sugars, flax, extract, and almond milk.
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, salt, baking powder, and spices.
  4. Mix together dry ingredients with sugar/oil mixture until you have a thick dough.
  5. Stir in walnuts and figs.
  6. Roll dough into 18-20 balls and place onto parchment-paper lined baking sheets.
  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until bottoms are browned and tops are slightly golden.
  8. Cool completely on wire racks before storing. [Please note, I didn’t say anything about cooling completely before eating.]


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