These Vegan Coffee Sugar Cookies are filled with ground coffee and vanilla bean for the ultimate best espresso cookies. The perfect eggless & dairy-free cookie with a boost of caffeine!
I am SO excited to be bringing back SGTO's sugar cookie of the month. If you're not familiar, last year around April 2020 we made these Vegan Lemon Sugar Cookies that, needless to say, were a huge hit. It was clear with all the craziness going on in the world, we could all use some cookies made from scratch.
Hence, a monthly series dedicated to new sugar cookie flavors was born! There have been a lot of fun cookie recipes like Earl Grey cookies & Matcha Sugar Cookies, but this new vegan espresso cookie...simply AMAZING!
Ingredients & Substitutions
While you can find the full list of ingredients in the recipe card, here's a quick recap of what you need to make these cookies along with a few substitution notes!
- Vegan butter : I prefer using Earth Balance or Flora butter for baking. Country Crock is another good option!
- Organic Cane Sugar: I get asked all the time "Can I make these cookies refined sugar-free?" and the short answer is maybe, but they won't taste as good or spread properly. When it comes to sugar cookies, cane sugar is best.
- Espresso or ground coffee: Make sure to use HIGH quality ground coffee or espresso as the flavor really shines through. This is the time to splurge and use your favorite espresso!
- Vanilla bean paste: Vanilla Extract can be subbed 1:1 but the flavor will not be as intense.
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Organic powdered sugar: Totally optional, but this is for the vanilla bean glaze on top!
Tips for coffee sugar cookies
First, cream butter and sugar with coffee
Creaming the butter and sugar together helps to create a fluffier coffee cookie. When we cream the ground coffee/espresso into the fat, we are helping that flavor get the best distribution in the cookies.
Chill dough for at least 1 hour
Chilling the espresso sugar cookie dough for just 1 hour makes a HUGE difference. First of all, it helps to reduce the spread and leads to cookies that are crispier on the outside and chewy on the inside. Second, it actually leads to sweeter cookies as the sugar will absorb moisture during the chill time.
Roll cookies in sugar before baking
This is my go-to cookie hack to those perfect wrinkly crinkly cookie tops. First I like to roll the coffee cookie dough into a round ball. Then I swirl around in a bowl of sugar.
Adding sugar to the outside of cookies makes the outside dough cook faster in the oven and essentially "cracks" the dough.
Always slightly underbake sugar cookies
If you're having a problem getting chewy cookies it's usually due to baking cookies for too long. Cookies should come out slightly underbaked with still soft centers.
Remove from the oven and tap them onto the counter. Then, let the coffee cookies continue cooking on the tray for another 5 minutes out of the oven for that perfect chewy texture.
FAQ & Expert Tips
I haven't tried it personally, but many people say that a 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour like Bob's Red Mill works well in my cookie recipes. Unfortunately, subbing almond flour, coconut flour, or any other flour alternative 1:1 does not work in this recipe.
I actually do not recommend making sugar cookies refined sugar-free as subbing cane sugar affects the spread of the cookies. However, if you must substitute make sure to use granulated sugar like coconut sugar or maple sugar. Also, I recommend skipping the step of rolling the cookies in sugar unless using cane sugar.
I like using ground espresso for the best flavor. I personally used a local blend from a coffee shop in Seattle, but any high-quality espresso will work.
Cookies are always best enjoyed the day they are made, however, they can also be stored in a closed container at room temperature for 3-4 days or in the freezer for up to 1 month.
You can store them in the fridge for 1-2 weeks, however, I find it dries out the cookies so I do not recommend it. The freezer is actually my preferred storage method for the best quality!
My cookies spread too much: This can be caused by a few things including not letting the cookies chill in the fridge for a full hour, expired baking powder, not creaming the butter properly, or using too little flour.
My cookies are cakey and fluffy: This is usually due to too much flour or overbaking the cookies. The best way to prevent this is to measure flour in grams and always make sure to remove the cookies from the oven when they are still slightly undercooked.
I truly hope you love these caffeine-packed Vegan Coffee Cookies are this month's sugar cookie of the month! I'm currently working on a few exciting flavors for next month and can't wait to share them soon. Enjoy!
More vegan cookie recipes you will want to bake next:
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Vegan Coffee Sugar Cookies
Coffee Sugar Cookies
- ½ cup vegan butter
- ½ cup+ 2 Tablespoons sugar ½ cup for dough, 2 Tbsp for rolling before baking
- 3 tsp ground espresso make sure to use a high quality espresso
- 1 flax egg 1 Tablespoon (8 grams) ground flaxseed mixed with 3 Tbsp water
- 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
- 1 cup+ 3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt can increase to ½ tsp if using unsalted butter
Vanilla Bean Glaze:
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
- 1 Tbsp plant-based milk
- ½ cup powdered sugar must be sifted
- First add the butter, ½ cup of the sugar, and the ground espresso to a bowl and cream together until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Then, add in the flax egg and vanilla bean paste and whip together another 30 seconds.
- Next, add in the sifted flour, baking powder, and salt to the mixing bowl. Mix JUST until a smooth and thick cookie batter forms and no streaks of flour remain. Do not overmix or else you will form too much gluten and the cookies will not spread as much and be tough.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, add to the fridge, and let chill for about 1 hour.
- After 1 hour, cover a baking sheet in parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350F. Next, remove the dough from the fridge and use a 2 Tbsp cookie scoop to form your cookie dough (about 40 grams per cookie of dough).
- Roll into balls between your palms and then roll in the 2 Tbsp of sugar that was set aside so that each dough ball is coated in sugar.
- Place the coffee cookie dough balls onto the baking sheet at least 2 inches apart since they will spread while baking. Then, gently press down each cookie dough ball with your palm for flatter cookies.
- Bake for 9-11 minutes until bottoms are lightly browned and the cookie is cooked through but has slightly soft centers. The cookies will continue baking after they are removed from the oven so the centers should still be soft, but not glossy or raw, when they are removed from the oven.
- Remove the cookie tray from the oven and immediately tap the tray on the counter to produce a more “wrinkly” cookie. Then, let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for another 5 minutes. Then, move the cookies to a wire rack to finish cooling. Once cooled, make the glaze
- While the cookies are cooling, make the vanilla glaze by adding the vanilla bean paste and plant based milk to a small bowl and mixing together. Then, gradually add in the powdered sugar and whisk together until a thick glaze forms. Drizzle the glaze on completely cooled cookies and let sit about 5 minutes to harden. Serve and enjoy!