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Gluten free vegan shortbread recipe

Gluten free vegan shortbread recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Biscuits and cookies
  • Shortbread

Very nice vegan, gluten free shortbread biscuits that you would never guess are not made with real butter. They also hold their shape very nicely.

21 people made this

IngredientsServes: 60

  • 475g vegan margarine
  • 120g icing sugar
  • 400g gluten-free flour
  • 130g cornflour
  • 1 pinch salt

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:15min ›Ready in:30min

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
  2. Beat margarine and sugar together in a bowl using an electric mixer until creamy. Add flour, cornflour and salt; mix by hand until dough comes together in a ball.
  3. Place dough on a flat work surface and roll out to a 1cm thickness. Cut into triangles or desired shapes using cookie cutters. Place shortbread biscuits on a baking tray.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes.

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Vegan Gluten free Shortbread Cookies

These shortbread cookies are simple, not too sweet and great to snack on. Dress them up with frosting of choice or some chocolate for fancier cookies.

These cookies taste somewhat like the bakery biscuits from our local bakery in India.(Cookies are called biscuits). Oddly though they don’t share any main ingredients. These are gluten-free, they don’t use shortening, and have no preservatives and things. Just simple wholesome good stuff. Coconut sugar gives the cookies just the right sweetness.

Lightly crispy and lightly crunchy perfection. No palm oil! For regular vegan Shortbread, see these Coconut Oil Shortbread.

More cookies from the blog.

Make the dough, oat it down, then use cookie cutters of choice.

Bake until just about lightly golden. Cool and store or dress with sugar icing or melted chocolate.

Take your time

Since these cookies contain no eggs, there’s no moisture to coax the ingredients quickly into a dough. Once the dry ingredients are added to the butter and sugar paste, it takes a little while for a dough to form. At first the dough seems incredibly sandy–you might even worry that it’s not coming together&mdashdon’t fret like I did the first time I made a batch! The dough does come together after two or three minutes of mixing. Don’t rush it and don’t give up. The wait’s worth it.

Lemon Lavender Shortbread Cookies

  • Author: Audrey @ Unconventional Baker
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 24 - 26 1½" cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Dessert


A gluten-free shortbread cookie that’s so simple, super easy to make, and has a wonderfully sophisticated yet subtle flavor! Vegan and refined sugar-free.


  • ½ cup non-dairy butter, at room temperature OR coconut oil, softened
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp pure lemon extract
  • dash of salt
  • 2¼ cups gluten-free flour blend *see notes
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ tbsp dried lavender flowers


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Prepare a rolling area with two additional sheets of parchment paper for that, and have your cookie cutter(s) handy.
  2. Place butter in a large mixing bowl and whip it with a mixer until it’s creamy. Add sweetener, vanilla and lemon extracts, and salt and mix once again to combine. Add in flour, lemon zest, and lavender, and use a wooden spoon to mix. Then get in there with your hands and mix everything together by working the dough until you can shape it into a ball . Shape the dough into 2 balls and then flatten each into a disk.
  3. Roll out one of the dough balls between two sheets of parchment paper to ⅓” – ½” thickness. Use a cookie cutter to cut out the cookies. Carefully transfer to a prepared cookie sheets, spacing them ½” apart . Gather up any dough scraps and repeat until all dough is used up. Repeat the process with the second dough ball.
  4. Bake in a pre-heated oven for approximately 14-15 minutes, until the edges just begin to become golden. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. . Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes and enjoy!


As per comments, seems like flour blends like Bob’s Red Mill don’t work the best for this type of recipe. The blend I used uses glutinous rice flour which has a very fine consistency and gives a finer texture to the cookies. I’ve tested it out with Pamela’s blend as well — a brand I really like and which also uses glutinous rice flour — and it worked well too. I haven’t tried it with other brands. I recommend the two I suggested though because I know they work well.

Did you make this recipe?

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links to the gluten-free flour blend and dried lavender flowers used.

Vegan and Gluten-Free Shortbread Cookies

Try This Seasonal Favorite Made Healthier (And Just As Delicious!)

  • 3/4 cup melted vegan butter
  • 1 cup Purecane™ Baking Sweetener
  • 2 tbsp almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups gluten-free flour
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees fahrenheit
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, mix the melted vegan butter, Purecane Baking Sweetener™, almond milk, vanilla, and baking powder. Then, add the flour and mix until a thick dough forms. Form the dough into a mound and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate it for 30 minutes.
  3. Roll the cookie dough onto a floured surface, adding more flour as needed if the dough is sticky. Roll it into a 1/4 - 1/3 of an inch thick and use your cookie cutters to cut shapes. Place the shapes onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until they are lightly golden.
  4. You will still have plenty of dough left so roll the dough back into a mound and repeat the previous step until all of the dough is used. You should have about 40 cookies. Enjoy!

Vegan Gluten-Free Calendula Shortbread

These herb-infused shortbread bikkies, I must say, go so well with a warm cup of tea <3

You can substitute coconut oil in place of vegan butter for this recipe, as a more healthy option. However, the butter does add a creamy texture to the shortbread.

To make:

  • 1/2 cup vegan butter, at room temperature OR coconut oil, softened (as a healthier alternative)
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 1/4 cups gluten-free flour blend (I combined 1 1/2 cups plain gluten-free flour – but you can also use rice flour – 3/4 cup tapioca flour, and 1/2 tsp xanthan gum – but you can also use guar gum)
  • Dash of salt
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 3-4 tbsp calendula oil
  • 1 tbsp minced fresh thyme


  1. Preheat oven to 180˚C (350˚F). Line a baking tray with parchment paper (I used Agreena reusable silicon baking sheets).
  2. Prepare a rolling area with two additional sheets of parchment paper for that (again, I used my reusable sheets), and have a pizza cutter or dough cutter and a fork handy.
  3. Place butter (or coconut oil) in a large mixing bowl and whip it with a mixer until it’s creamy. Add maple syrup (or other sweetener of choice), salt, vanilla, lemon juice, lemon zest, calendula oil, and thyme and mix once again to combine.
  4. Add in flour and use a wooden spoon to mix. Then, knead a little with your hands to to mix everything together, and work the dough until you can shape it into a ball.
  5. Once the dough has been formed into a ball, flatten it into a disk.
  6. Roll out the dough between the two sheets of parchment paper to 1/2 inch thickness.
  7. Use a pizza or dough cutter to cut the dough into 1 inch x 3 inch rectangles (I only had cookie cutters available, so I made mine into heart shapes <3). Carefully transfer to a prepared cookie sheet, spacing them 1/2 inch apart (they won’t spread as they bake). Gather up any dough scraps and repeat the process until all dough is used up.
  8. Use a fork to carefully pierce some holes in each cookie (to prevent bubbling and excessive cracking).
  9. Bake for approximately 14-15 minutes, until the edges begin to become a little golden. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. (Note: cookies will harden a little within minutes of cooling, so don’t overbake).
  10. Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes and enjoy!! Store them in an airtight container.

Make sure to bring the shortbread out of the oven to cool as soon as you see the edges start to brown, as the shortbread will continue to bake when they’re cooling, and you don’t want to overbake them.

Have you used calendula in recipes before? What have you made? Share your story below!

Gluten-Free Shortbread Recipe

This recipe, adapted from one by Chef Dave DeCesare, makes shortbread cookies that are crumbly and buttery-sweet.


1 cup white rice flour
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon potato starch
¼ cup cornstarch
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup cold unsalted butter,* cut into 1-inch pieces
1 large egg or egg replacer
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
– Egg wash (1 egg, lightly beaten) or water Sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine rice flour, potato starch, cornstarch, sugar, xanthan gum and salt.
3. Add butter, egg and vanilla.
4. Mix by hand or with a mixer with paddle attachment until combined, about 3 minutes.
5. Wrap dough in plastic or wax paper and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.
6. Cut dough in half. Roll one half out to ¼-inch thickness and place on baking sheet. Repeat with second half.
7. Score dough into wedges or strips. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle generously with sugar.
8. Bake in preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

*TIP You can use non-dairy spread or margarine instead of butter. Cut it into pieces and freeze before adding it to the mixture.

Tips for the Best Healthy Shortbread Cookies:

  • Almond flour: This recipe uses almond flour instead of traditional wheat flour, which makes them gluten-free, grain-free, and higher in protein. But, since there isn’t any wheat flour to help roll them out, the dough is sticky. Be patient and keep the dough chilled to make it easier to work with.
  • Rolling out the dough: Roll it out between two sheets of parchment paper, then remove the top sheet and cut out your cookies. Leave them on that bottom layer of parchment paper (don’t try to transfer them) by sliding the ready-to-bake cookies onto a cookie sheet.
  • Roll them out to about 1/4-inch thick. Too thin and they will get too brown too fast.
  • The right oven temperature: Bake at 350ºF. I suggest getting an inexpensive oven thermometer that hangs on the inside of your oven. This actually helps all of your recipes turn out better. I have a new oven and when it says preheated to 350ºF, the $10 hanging thermometer reads about 330ºF. On the flip side, my sister has a new oven and when it reads 350ºF it’s at almost 370ºF. Old or new, ovens aren’t usually accurate. An internal thermometer is your friend here.
  • Binding the dough: Since there aren’t any eggs or other binders in this recipe, we rely on the maple or honey (liquids) to bind them. You could try it with coconut nectar as well, but you can’t replace the liquid sweetener with a dry sweetener.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: The tablespoon of oil also helps bind the cookies and prevents them from sticking to the parchment paper. I use a delicate tasting extra virgin olive oil because that’s what I have on hand and you can’t even taste it, but you could use organic grapeseed oil (neutral tasting) or even coconut oil. The coconut oil will give them a coconutty flavor. Avocado oil is a strong flavor, so not recommended. Vegetable, canola, or other low-quality oils are not recommended because they are not healthy.
  • Get creative! I cut these into hearts and dipped them in melted vegan dark chocolate chips for Valentine’s Day, but you can use any shape for any occasion.

Shortbread Crust, Sable Breton Crust

This is a recipe for a basic shorbread crust that can be used as a crust for pies, cheesecakes, tarts, or cookie bars. This recipe will work in an 8x8" (20x20 cm) or 9x9" (23 x 23 cm) square baking dish, a 9" (23 cm) pie plate, or a spring form pan.


For an 8x8", 9x9", or a 9" round pan

  • 1 stick (112 gr) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (65 gr) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup + 2 TBSP (134 gr) all-purpose flour (*see note for gluten free substitution)

For a 9x13" Pan

  • 1 1/2 sticks (168 gr) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (98 gr) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • large pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cup + 3 TBSP (200 gr) all-purpose flour (*see note for gluten free substitution)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F (177 C). Prepare your pan by lightly oiling or lining with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl or a stand mixer fit with a paddle attachment, or a large bowl with a hand mixer, mix together all of the ingredients at once. The mixture will be very crumbly.
  3. Using damp hands, transfer the dough crumbs into the prepared dish and pat down evenly. Use a fork to dock the dough all over.
  4. Bake on the middle rack at 350 F (177 C). If the filling will need to be baked, par-bake the crust for 20-23 minutes until the edges are lightly browned. If the filling will not need to be baked, bake for 30-33 minutes until the crust is completely cooked and let cool completely.
  5. Use as the crust for lemon bars, cheesecake, ice box pie, fruit bars, etc.



  • Gluten Free Crust: This recipe works well with a gluten free blend such as Bob's Red Mill's Baking Blend or Cup 4 Cup Gluten Free Flour.
  • Chocolate Shortbread Crust: Substituted 2 TBSP flour with 2 TBSP cocoa powder.

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Nutrition Information:

  • 200 g FREEE Plain White Flour
  • 1 tsp FREEE Xanthan Gum
  • 75 g caster sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp water
  • 150 g butter
  • butter, for tray
  1. Pre-heat the oven.
  2. Rub some butter around the inside of a 15x20cm/6x8&rdquo baking tray or insert a baking liner.
  3. Put the flour and xanthan gum into a bowl, stir to combine and sieve into a kitchen blender.
  4. Add the sugar and salt and pulse to mix.
  5. Add the water and pulse again.
  6. Cover and leave it to rest for 20 minutes and pre-heat the oven.
  7. Chop the butter into cubes, add this to the bowl and pulse until the dough holds together.
  8. Tip the mixture into your prepared baking tray, pressing it into the corners and smoothing the top.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes.
  10. Remove the tray from the oven and carefully cut the shortbread into 12 rectangles.
  11. Press a fork into each rectangle slice three times.
  12. Return the shortbread to the oven and bake for a further 22-25 minutes.
  13. Leave the shortbread to cool in the baking tray.
  14. Store cold biscuits in an airtight tin.


Cooking time

Need a lot more flour than is stated. The water is not necessary. Overall a complete waste of time just use bero recipe and add xanthine gum.

Many thanks for your feedback. Having baked this recipe again, we found adding water gave the best results. With standard shortbread recipes, the addition of water is not normally required however, the addition of water to gluten free flour provides a much better consistency for this recipe. We hope this helps. Best wishes, Doves Farm.

In all my life I have never come across a baking tray 15 x 20 cm, and the photo of the shortbread in this recipe does not show such a baking tray. Consequently I would hesitate to recommend this recipe to anyone who did not have both a range of sizes of baking tray to choose from, and a good deal of cooking experience.

Many thanks for your feedback. We can confirm that the baking tray in the picture was purchased in a high-street shop. You can also find similarly sized foil trays in many stores or use any small baking tray. Alternatively. if you have a larger baking tray you could double the recipe. Best wishes, Doves Farm.