Indulge in these incredibly gooey and fudgy vegan peppermint mocha cookies this holiday season! Grab a glass of milk and treat yourself to triple chocolatey goodness.
These vegan peppermint cookies have crispy edges and a soft, gooey center. The strong notes of peppermint are balanced with cacao, semi-sweet chocolate, and dairy-free white chocolate.
Ingredients & substitutions
Here's the list of ingredients you'll need to make vegan chocolate peppermint cookies, along with some helpful substitution ideas:
- Almond flour: use blanched almond flour for best results.
- (GF) Oat flour: use a certified gluten-free oat flour. It's also easy to make at home! Add GF rolled oats to a blender and blend until a fine texture is achieved.
- Cacao powder: cacao is slightly more rich in taste than cocoa powder, but both work in this recipe so feel free to use what you have on hand. Cocoa powder will result in a slightly sweeter cookie so be sure to use an unsweetened cocoa powder.
- Pure maple syrup: a natural sweetener that also helps the cookies stay together.
- Cane sugar: coconut sugar or brown sugar will work, but the taste isn't as great when combined with the rest of the ingredients.
- Avocado oil: adds healthy fats and moisture to the cookies. The use of oil also helps the cookies get those delicious crispy edges. Coconut oil and vegan butter will also work, start by using less than the recipe calls for and adjust as needed as they tend to add more moisture than avocado oil.
- Unsweetened almond milk: adds moisture and slightly cools off the richness of chocolate flavors.
- Espresso powder: enhances the chocolate flavors in the cookie. I used this espresso powder. If you don't have any on hand you can omit, but I do recommend using it for the full peppermint mocha experience! Do not substitute with instant coffee.
- Vanilla extract: adds flavor and balances the chocolate and peppermint flavors well.
- Baking soda: an essential leavening agent to help the cookies bake and rise.
- Himalayan pink salt: cookies are not complete without salt, as salt balances and adds flavors to the cookies. Swap for sea salt or kosher salt.
- Pure peppermint extract: use 100% pure peppermint extract. Do not substitute with peppermint essential oil.
- Double chocolate: vegan white chocolate chips and semi-sweet chocolate chunks are folded in (and create a triple chocolate peppermint cookie with the cacao powder). Dark chocolate chips can be used instead of semi-sweet (or whatever combination you prefer).
- Crushed candy canes: a peppermint cookie wouldn't be complete without crushed candy canes on top. YumEarth and Thrive Market make vegan candy canes with natural fruit and vegetable coloring instead of additives.
How to make peppermint mocha cookies
The cookie dough can be prepared in a large bowl or stand mixer. Both methods yield similar results, so use whatever works best for you.
First, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350F.
Secondly, add all wet ingredients to the bowl or mixer and whisk together until combined.
Thirdly, add dry ingredients directly to the wet and stir until combined.
Fourthly, fold in chocolate chunks and vegan white chocolate chips.
Finally, use a small cookie scoop (1.5 tablespoons) and drop cookies onto the prepared baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes on the center rack. Remove and immediately top with crushed candy canes. Let cool for 5 minutes before enjoying.
This results in crispy edges with a fudgy and chewy texture in the middle. For a crispier, thinner cookie, tap the cookie sheet on the countertop as soon as you remove it from the oven. Both options are delightful.
- Pack flour. Make sure to press the flour down into the measuring cup (just as you would do with brown sugar when making a standard cookie recipe). This will guarantee that the cookie dough has the correct balance of dry-to-wet ratios. Alternatively, you can use a kitchen scale to weigh the flour instead of measuring it in a cup to ensure accurate measurements.
- Toppings. After you've scooped the cookie dough onto the baking sheet, feel free to add chocolate chips or chunks where you see fit to make the cookie even more beautiful. Optional, but a great idea if you are preparing them for Santa or a holiday party.
- Peppermint candy canes. Add a peppermint candy cane to a reusable sandwich bag (or something similar) and press firmly with a jar. Continue until the candy cane is in small bits. Sprinkle over the cookies as soon as they come out of the oven (this helps them stick to the cookies and ooze a little more peppermint flavor).
- Cool. Let the cookies cool for five minutes on the pan after baking. This helps them set and be ready to devour. You can place them on a cooling rack to continue to cool, but I don't find it necessary. I just slide the parchment paper off the sheet and let the cookies cool at room temperature.
- Double chocolate peppermint cookies: if triple chocolate sounds like chocolate overload, omit the vegan white chocolate.
- Chocolate drizzle: melt dairy-free white or dark chocolate. Drizzle over cooled cookies, then top with crushed candy canes.
- Chocolate dipped: dip cooled cookies into melted chocolate.
- Hot cocoa cookies: swap white chocolate for mini marshmallows (Dandie's are my favorite vegan marshmallows and can be found at Thrive Market, Whole Foods, or Amazon).
- Candy cane crunch: add crushed candy cane pieces to the batter instead of adding after the cookies have baked for additional peppermint flavors.
More vegan gluten-free cookies to try
- Almond Flour Sugar Cookies
- Vegan Trail Mix Cookies
- Vegan White Chocolate Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies
- Vegan Monster Cookie Bars
I hope you enjoy these vegan peppermint mocha cookies! Let me know in the comments what other holiday/Christmas cookies you're enjoying this year. Wishing you the merriest holiday season filled with love, laughter, and lots of chocolate, xox.
Easy Vegan Peppermint Mocha Cookies (Gluten-Free)
- mixing bowl + whisk & spatula
- cookie sheet + parchment paper
- small cookie scoop (1.5 tablespoon)
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup cane sugar
- 3 tablespoons avocado oil
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk sub dairy-free milk of choice
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup almond flour, packed (121 grams)
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon GF oat flour, packed (60 grams)
- ¼ cup cacao powder (24 grams)
- 2 teaspoons espresso powder
- ½ teaspooon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon pink Himalayan salt
- ½ cup chocolate chunks or chips
- ¼ cup vegan white chocolate chips I used Enjoy Life
- 1 crushed candy cane
- Preheat oven to 350℉. Line a baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set aside.
- Wet ingredients: add all wet ingredients to a mixing bowl (or stand mixer) and whisk together until smooth.
- Dry ingredients: add all dry ingredients directly to the wet ingredients and stir until combined.
- Add chocolate: Fold in chocolate chunks and vegan white chocolate.
- Bake: use a small cookie scoop (1.5 tablespoons) and scoop cookie dough onto the prepared sheet, leaving about 2 inches of space between each. Place on the center rack and bake for 10 minutes or until the cookies have puffed, have a crackled top, and the edges are firm.While the cookies are baking, crush a candy cane into small pieces.
- Top: remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle the tops with the crushed candy cane. Let cool for 5 minutes (this helps the cookies set) and enjoy!