Chewy Gingerbread Cookies (vegan option)

These chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best gingerbread cookies ever!

I know a lot or even most of my readers are gluten-free but these cookies are just too darn delicious that I felt like I had to post them for my original audience – the ones here for the whole grain recipes!

For a grain-free and paleo version, try these equally amazing paleo gingerbread cookies. These grain-free chewy ginger sandwich cookies (with lemon filling!) are also amazing. If you can have grains, these gluten-free gingersnaps also look delicious.

These chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best ginger cookies ever!

I’ve tried making these cookies gluten-free many, many times throughout the years. It doesn’t work using my usual mixes. I don’t recommend trying! They’re dry and a bit gritty. Definitely go with one of the linked above recipes. :)

Back to these wheat-based ginger cookies! I make these chewy gingerbread cookies throughout the year, but nobody wants ginger cookies in July, so here they are now. They’re one of my favorite cookies ever.

Crystallized ginger is really expensive here, so when I went back to Texas last Thanksgiving, I brought back over six pounds of the stuff just so that I could make loads of these cookies.

These amazing chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best ginger cookies ever!

If you dislike crystallized ginger, use chocolate chips! Or chunks.

These gingerbread cookies are perfectly chewy. And awesome. I know this person who ate one of my cookies and now every time I see her, I get asked when I’m making chewy gingerbread cookies again.

And that is seriously the only thing this person ever says to me. I’m not exaggerating. “Hello, when are you making ginger cookies? Can I have? Gingerbread cookies? When are they coming?”

These awesome chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best ginger cookies ever!

And I don’t know if this will help convince you but they’re adapted from an Ina Garten recipe. All I did was make it whole grain, use olive oil instead of vegetable oil, and reduce the sugar a little. And add orange zest to the sugar coating because orange zest makes everything better.

I followed the original recipe the first time and kept adding more and more whole wheat until they were 100%. And they taste just the same.

And the same thing with olive oil and less sugar. These cookies are seriously just as amazing as the original!

These chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best ginger cookies ever! Naturally dairy-free.

You can also use a chia egg for a vegan version. I imagine a flax egg would also work.

For some less spicy but still gingery Christmas cookies, try these molasses cookies or these pepparkakor (Swedish ginger cookies, wihch are also made whole wheat).

If you try these chewy gingerbread cookies out, I’d love to hear what you think!

These easy chewy gingerbread cookies are 100% whole grain (but can also be made with all-purpose flour) and have a vegan option. Seriously the best ginger cookies ever!

Chewy Gingerbread Cookies (vegan option)

Rated 5.0 by 4 readers
Chewy Gingerbread Cookies (vegan option)
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 16 cookies


  • 2 1/4 cups (292 grams) whole spelt, whole wheat pastry, whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup (133 grams) unrefined sugar (brown sugar is also okay)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) olive oil (extra-virgin is fine or any neutral-tasting liquid oil)
  • 1/3 cup (117 grams) molasses (blackstrap is fine)
  • 1 large egg (50 grams, out of shell), room temperature or 1 chia egg for vegan
  • 1 1/4 cups (170 grams) chopped crystallized ginger
  • Unrefined or granulated sugar, for rolling the cookies
  • Orange zest from two oranges, optional


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C. In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.
  2. With an electric mixer, beat the sugar, olive oil, and molasses on medium for 5 minutes. Add the egg, and beat for 1 minute on low. Scrape the sides of the bowl and then beat for another minute. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix on medium for 2 minutes. Add the crystallized ginger and mix until combined.
  3. Roll each cookie into a 1 3/4-inch ball and flatten them slightly with your fingers. Press each side of the cookie in sugar, which has been mixed with the orange zest, if using, and place them on a Silpat or a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Bake for exactly 13 minutes. As soon as they’re crackly, I take them out. If they’re not crackly, they’re not ready. Cool the cookies on the sheets for 1 to 2 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Adapted from Ultimate Ginger Cookies from Ina Garten

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25 comments on “Chewy Gingerbread Cookies (vegan option)” — Add one!

  • Barb McCulloch
    August 25, 2019 @ 9:23 am

    I made these recently – they were divine! I would like to make them again, however, I am now on a calorie-controlled diet & would like to know how many calories there are in each cookie, please?

    • Erin replies to Barb McCulloch
      September 6, 2019 @ 8:05 pm

      I’m sorry for just now answering your question! I just got back from vacation. I don’t have the calories but you could use this recipe analyzer for the nutritional profile. :) I’m glad you liked the cookies!

  • Lan
    December 25, 2017 @ 6:27 am

    These were very tasty cookies. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Erin replies to Lan
      December 29, 2017 @ 2:40 pm

      You’re welcome! So happy you liked them. Thanks a bunch for your comment and sorry for my slow reply (Christmas chaos got in the way!).

  • Allan Hunter says
    October 1, 2017 @ 12:46 am

    This recipe looks great and I’d like to try it. I was curious as to the yield. I’ve read and re-read this entire page, and I cannot find any reference to how many cookies this is supposed to make. Could you please add that to this page somewhere?

  • Elizabeth
    February 6, 2016 @ 1:10 am

    These are great cookies! My husband loves when I make them :) Thank you for creating a whole grain recipe.

    • Erin replies to Elizabeth
      February 6, 2016 @ 8:02 pm

      I’m so happy you and your husband enjoy them so much! I love them, too. :) Thanks a ton for your feedback!

  • Sindu says
    February 20, 2015 @ 12:08 pm

    recipe looks amazing. Any substitute for molasses.

    • Erin replies to Sindu
      February 20, 2015 @ 2:19 pm

      Thanks! The molasses (along with the spices) is what gives the cookies their gingerbread-like taste so I wouldn’t recommend using anything else. I think brown rice syrup may work, though I haven’t tried it and I think honey would just be too sweet. If you live in a country that has sugar beet syrup, I know that works. :)

  • vanessa says
    December 16, 2014 @ 2:58 pm

    Hello, Can I just omit the cristalized ginger or do I have to replace it with something?

    • Erin replies to vanessa
      December 16, 2014 @ 8:56 pm

      You can omit it. No need to replace it! :)

  • jenna
    April 13, 2014 @ 7:33 am

    These are great for ice cream sandwiches! I too love ginger cookies year-round, so a good vanilla is my choice to let the cookies’ flavor shine unencumbered. But for my brother, it’s chocolate. Also, butter pecan or dulce de leche is a great counterpoint to the ginger. Yum, yum, yum!

    Thanks for sharing! [PS: I find olive oil feels heavy in the mouth, so I use avocado oil, if it’s in the house, or canola oil. Just something light textured and flavored. Otherwise, exactly as written.]

    • Erin replies to jenna
      April 14, 2014 @ 8:13 pm

      I’m so happy that you enjoyed the cookies! :) I’m with you on the ice cream sandwich thing. Especially with vanilla! And avocado oil? I didn’t even know that was a thing. I’m off to check it out! Thanks for the tip and for the feedback. :)

  • Ashley says
    December 22, 2013 @ 6:22 am

    Do you think these could be rolled out for gingerbread men?

    • Erin replies to Ashley
      December 22, 2013 @ 5:07 pm

      I haven’t tried it so I’m not positive, but I think if you refrigerate the dough and flour the surface you roll the dough out it… it should be okay! Good luck. :) And remember to reduce the baking time!

  • jan says
    December 17, 2013 @ 1:44 pm

    I love the taste but had trouble with sugar and orange zest . It clumped together. Looked bad but tasted great. Any suggestions?

    • Erin replies to jan
      December 19, 2013 @ 10:06 am

      You mean for the rolling of the cookies? Make sure that you dry the orange before zesting! It shouldn’t be clumpy at all. But if it is, rub the orange zest and sugar together with your fingers. That should distribute the orange zest nicely. :) So happy that you liked the taste of the cookies! Thanks for the feedback. :)

  • Erin says
    December 16, 2011 @ 10:45 pm

    Yay! I'm just thrilled that you enjoyed them. And that you think they're better than regular ginger cookies! Thank you so much for taking the time to leave feedback. It made my day. :)

  • Heidi @ Food Doodles says
    December 16, 2011 @ 10:31 pm

    These were so yummy! I made a few changes but I just had to leave a comment to say that I loved these. I especially love the little spicy ginger pieces :D I'll be keeping this recipe for sure, I think these are better than the regular ginger cookie recipe I use!

  • Erin says
    December 5, 2011 @ 7:37 pm

    Warmvanillasugar – Try them! They really don't taste whole grain. They'll make you happy. :)

    Sonia – Thanks! You could definitely try leaving out all the sugar, but I imagine the texture would be quite different. I would at least add some honey or increase the amount of molasses, but you're not the sugar addict I am. :) Please let me know how the ultra reduced sugar works out! I'd be ecstatic if it worked.

  • Sonia The Healthy Foodie says
    December 5, 2011 @ 5:08 pm

    Oh my! These look spectacular! And what gorgeous pictures. I wonder if I could get away with not using any sugar at all? I think this is very worth the try. They look way too good to pass!

  • warmvanillasugar says
    December 5, 2011 @ 12:05 am

    These cookies sound so yummy! Your whole grain posts make me so happy. I can't wait to try these!

  • Erin says
    December 4, 2011 @ 8:34 pm

    Or you could try these. They won't let you down. :) The crystallized ginger adds a little kick! It makes them just a little more interesting.

  • says
    December 4, 2011 @ 7:57 pm

    Wow these really sound great with the cristalized ginger. I have not made my version in quite some time……maybe now I should :-)


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