These easy Vegan Matcha Cookies are absolutely delicious little sugar cookies with a caffeinated twist with the addition of matcha (green tea powder). The matcha can also be left out for regular vegan sugar cookies (without changing the recipe!).
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Hey Internet, ever since I took a risk and published this incredibly random vegan matcha pound cake I made and it went crazy (it’s currently one of the most popular recipes on my site!), I’ve been itching to do another matcha recipe.
I'm kind of addicted to matcha. I'm a tea lover anyway, but matcha is just extra special.
If you don't know what matcha is, it's a type of green tea that's powdered, more caffeinated, and with a unique and delicious flavor.
I covered a whole lot about matcha with a special iced matcha latte on a previous blog post if you're interested.
So anyway, I wanted to make matcha cookies for… well, because I thought those of you celebrate Christmas might like them at Christmas time, hence the little trees.
But you can really make matcha cookies any time of the year.
If you're making these for kids or you’re not a fan of matcha, there's an easy way to modify the recipe to just make regular, delicious vegan sugar cookies… just omit the matcha powder! Yep, I tested the recipe and it works just fine without the matcha.
If, by some chance, your dough is a little wet, sprinkle in a bit more flour.
So I’m kinda getting into specifics so let’s just get into the recipe.
What You’ll Need
Obviously, this is a recipe for vegan matcha cookies, so you’ll need some matcha.
No need to use ceremonial grade which can be very expensive--there is a less expensive kind of matcha known as culinary grade. Ceremonial grade is more for drinking, anyway.
However, not all culinary grade matcha powders are created equal; some can be quite bitter. I used Aiya Culinary Grade Matcha Powder and did not notice any bitterness (you also must be careful to not use too much matcha in your recipe).
This recipe uses unbleached all-purpose flour, but you may be able to substitute it for a cup for cup gluten-free flour if you need to. I generally use Bob's Red Mill 1:1 Gluten-Free Flour if baking gluten-free.
I like to use coconut cream, the thick part of coconut milk instead of vegan butter, but you could absolutely use vegan butter 1:1 in this recipe. Just make sure it’s softened (room temperature, but not melted).
The other ingredients in my matcha cookies are pretty standard: baking powder, a pinch of salt, sugar (I use organic cane sugar for flavor, texture, and color here, but you can use coconut sugar if you like; your cookies might be less crispy and more soft), vanilla extract, a tiny amount of almond extract (provides a very nice classic sugar cookie flavor, omit if desired), and an egg replacer.
The egg replacer I used here is Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer, but I think any gel-like egg replacer should work, such as flax, chia, or another commercial brand. I like Bob's because it doesn’t change the color of my baked goods, otherwise I normally just use flax.
How to Properly Measure Flour
We want to measure our flour by weight, not by volume. When you scoop flour out of a bag or tin with a measuring cup, you're packing it in there and not necessarily getting the same amount each time.
What's better is to use a food scale with a tare function (allowing you to zero out the scale after you've put the bowl on it so your bowl isn't playing a factor in your equation).
Working in grams, put your bowl on the scale and zero it out. Scoop the flour into the bowl until you reach the desired measurement.
Tips for Making Vegan Matcha Cookies
The process for making these cookies is pretty simple and easy, but I’ve included few of my favorite tips for success!
- You’ll need some room (like a half sheet pan or so) in your fridge or freezer, so make that room if you can now.
- Start by mixing your dry ingredients in a bowl: flour, salt, baking powder, and matcha powder and set it aside.
- Now, “cream” together the room temp. coconut cream (or room temp. vegan butter) and sugar. You can use a stand mixer for this like I did, a hand mixer, or just use a strong wooden spoon.
- Cream for about 2 minutes, then add the mixed egg replacer and the extract(s). Mix again.
- Add in the dry mix and mix until you have a nice soft dough, trying not to overmix.
- I highly recommend lining your work surface with wax paper or parchment paper to protect it from the green of the matcha (which can stain). I also recommend placing a sheet of wax paper or parchment paper on top of the dough you’re rolling to protect your rolling pin.
- Also prep 1-2 baking trays with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat (remember the matcha may stain, so you may want to use parchment paper like I did here.
- Split the dough in half and roll out the first half into any shape as long as it’s evenly about ¼” thick.
- Use a cookie cutter or a cup to cut out cookies, trying to fit as many in as possible. Transfer each cookie carefully to the lined baking sheet, leaving a little space in between each cookie.
- Reroll your dough scraps or combine them with the remaining half your dough and repeat the process until you’ve used all the dough. I was able to get about 32 cookies out of mine, but it will depend on the size of your cookie cutters. The last little bit you can flatten into a ¼” thick blob and use that as your test cookie (i.e., bake it and test it by eating it!).
- Now, this step is important to keeping your cookies from spreading too much: Cover the baking tray in plastic, foil, or a large kitchen towel and freeze for about 30 minutes or refrigerate for around 2 hours. Your choice--whichever space has room for your tray… but I used my freezer. It forced me to clean it so that’s good, right? Impromptu smoothie!
- I’d recommend freezing only one tray at a time. Or you can do what I did, which is put another layer of parchment on top and lay the cookies out, but they do get a little stuck to it, so when you take them out you’ll need to carefully unstick them and transfer to your other tray.
- When the timer is almost up you can preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (or 177 degrees Celsius) and place the cookies in the preheated oven.
- Bake for about 8-14 minutes, it will depend on how hot your oven is. The edges of your cookies should only start turning the lightest brown, and then you should take them out. Note that your cookies will be just a little soft, but not mushy. They will firm up as they cool.
- You can try your leftover dough blob cookie now! But leave the rest to cool completely before icing.
- For icing, either use a store bought cookie icing (there are some vegan ones) or you can make your own. My icing recipe is included in the recipe card below (basically just organic powdered sugar, vanilla extract, water, and a little agave for shine).
- Let the icing set completely on the cookies (may take up to 2 hours depending on how thickly you spread or iced) before storing in an airtight container on the counter. They should stay fresh for at least 5 days, but we always eat them before we know how long they really last. They also freeze well in a freezer-safe container!
More Easy Vegan Desserts
Like easy desserts? Me too. A little too much. Check out some of my other easy vegan dessert recipes below.
- Matcha Pound Cake
- Smores Cookie Bake
- Apple Cake
- Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies (no chill)
- Banana Bread
- Apple Butter Thumbprint Cookies
- Coconut Almond Butter Cookies
- Chocolate Chip Scones
I really hope you like this recipe! I know I do and so does Mr. Zardyplants, who was happy to eat up all the extra cookies we had from testing. The same night.
These Vegan Matcha Cookies are:
- Crispy yet chewy and soft in the middle
- Energy sources (hah)
- And really easy to make! Also super fun for kids to get involved!
Let me know in the comments below if you make this recipe or tag me @Zardyplants on Instagram so I can see your beautiful recreations! If you tag me on IG, I will share your post in my stories :)
Also, one quick request: if you love how this recipe looks or tastes, please leave me a 5-star rating and a nice comment–ratings help more people find my recipes which helps me keep providing them! Thank you!