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What makes a Lofthouse cookie a Lofthouse cookie?
You know the iconic cookie I’m talking about: the grocery store classic cake cookie that’s thick, cream-colored, and lathered in a layer of colored frosting and sprinkles. The flavor is so specific to the Lofthouse cookie too that there’s nothing like it.
It’s absolutely synthetic, yet so addictive; almost like a sweet tang that makes you just want to keep going for more! Plus, the soft, melt-in-your-mouth cake like texture to the cookies just renders them absolutely irresistible.
Yes, I did say that these cookies are naturally eggless, dairy free, vegan, and there’s even an option for gluten free! But don’t worry- none of these have taken away the iconic taste of the Lofthouse cookie.
Ingredients and substitutions:
Sugar, Enriched Bleached Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Margarine (Palm Oil, Water, Soybean Oil, Salt, Contains 2% or Less of: Mono- and Diglycerides, Calcium Disodium EDTA [Preservative], Artificial Flavor, Annatto [Color], Vitamin A Palmitate, Eggs, Water, Contains 2% or Less of: Corn Starch, Palm Kernel Oil, Palm Oil, Leavening (Baking Soda, Sodium Aluminum Sulfate, Monocalcium Phosphate), Modified Corn Starch, Polysorbate 60, Dextrin, Sunflower Lecithin (Emulsifier), Nonfat Milk, Soy Lecithin (Emulsifier), Colors (Blue 1 Lake, Red 3, Red 40 Lake, Yellow 6 Lake, Carmine), Natural and Artificial Flavors, Confectioner’s Glaze, Sodium Propionate (Preservative), Carnauba Wax.Found via Instacart website
- Baking soda
- Corn starch
- Synthetic flavors
- Sugar: I used organic granulated sugar (Florida Crystals sugar to be specific).
- Vegan butter: Specifically Miyoko’s vegan butter, as they are palm oil free. However, nut-free options include Earth Balance STICKS (not tub) and Flora Plant Butter.
- Vegan sour cream: I used Forager Projects, but swapping in a creamy dairy free yogurt also works.
- Applesauce: This helps to replace the eggs.
- Cornstarch: I used Edward & Sons organic cornstarch; however, for corn-free, use arrowroot starch. Do not skip this, as the starch helps to yield that super soft, silky texture that’s associated with a Lofthouse Cookie.
- Almond extract AND cream of tartar: this is KEY- using a combination of cream of tartar and almond extract creates that irresistible Lofthouse cookie flavor that’s so specific to this type of cookie! Cream of tartar is in fact vegan, so not to worry! No dairy there!
- Vegan buttercream: We’re using my classic vegan buttercream tinted pink! And Sweetapolita vegan sprinkles of course!
The reason why we make this many swaps yet still yield the most perfect Lofthouse cookie is for a few reasons:
- Cornstarch: This is absolutely key to a soft Lofthouse cookie, and even more important for a vegan Lofthouse cookie. Don’t miss this! Cornstarch helps to create the tender crumb of the Lofthouse cookie.
- Almond extract: Just a touch will help yield a perfectly identical yet entirely vegan Lofthouse cookie recipe. However, if you’re nut-free, simply omit, and add an additional 1/4 tsp of cream of tartar!
- Make the dough: If you’ve ever made my vegan sugar cookies, then you’ll see how similar they are to that!
- Chill: This is imperative in order to help these cookies not spread.
- Shape the dough: To get a look closest to the store bought Lofthouse cookie, use a round cookie cutter. And be generous with the flour, as this dough is sticky!
- Chill again: Because the dough is so soft, I’ve found it’s best to chill the dough once more while the oven is preheating.
- Bake: Bake the cookies until just lightly golden on the bottom of the cookie.
- Make the frosting: For the pink color, I recommend Pitaya powder, rose powder, or a vegan liquid food coloring (you can use just 2-3 drops of red to create the look!)
- Decorate: I recommend piping the frosting onto the cookie for a must easier smoothing of the frosting. Then take an offset spatula and spread the frosting to the edges. Sprinkle and serve!
Pro baking trips for making these vegan cookies:
- Use a large (3-4″) round or scalloped cookie cutter. I actually used my large Linzer cookie cutter.
- You definitely need to chill the dough! The longer you chill the dough, the easier it is to work with.
- This is a wetter dough than traditional cookie recipes so don’t panic- it does work! You’ll use a decent amount of flour to keep the dough from sticking, but the cookies turn out perfectly!
- Don’t skip the chilling in the freezer step! That helps the cookies to not spread as much!
- Check to see that your baking powder and baking soda are still active. You can do a quick kitchen test with this easy method.
Want to save this recipe for later? Add it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest!
If you make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and a rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below. This helps others to find the recipes! As always, I absolutely love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there as well!Print
Vegan Lofthouse Sugar Cookies:
- 1 3/4 cup (200 g) store bought or homemade oat flour
- 3/4 (105 g) cup cassava flour
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 cup (113 g) vegan butter, room tempearture
- 1 cup (200 g) organic granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup (80 g) unsweetened applesauce, room temperature
- 1/3 cup (80 g) vegan sour cream or dairy free yogurt, room tempearture
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp almond extract, optional but recommended
Vegan Buttercream Frosting:
- 1/2 cup (113 g) vegan butter, room temperature
- 2 cups (240 g) vegan powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp vegan pink/red food coloring (I recommend beet powder, rose powder, hibiscus powder, or a liquid red food coloring, used sparingly)
- Vegan Sprinkles to top
- Prep: Measure out all ingredients before beginning.
- Whisk: In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, cassava flour, cornstarch, cream of tartar, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
- Cream: In a large bowl with a hand mixer or in a stand mixer with paddle attachment, cream together the vegan butter and sugar until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Then add in the applesauce, sour cream, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Mix again until combined. Be sure to scrape the bowl down as needed to ensure all ingredients are mixed together.
- Make the dough: Sift in the dry ingredients to the creamed butter mixture, and use a silicone spatula to fold the flour mixture into the wet ingredients JUST until combined. Be careful not to over mix the dough.
- Chill the dough: Form the dough into a flat disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or overnight.
- Shape the cookies: Preheat the oven to 375F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. On a clean, generously floured surface, roll out the dough to be about 1/2″ thick. Use a 3″ or 4″ round cookie cutter, and cut as many cookies as you can, transferring them to the baking sheets afterwards. Use more flour as needed to prevent sticking. Collect the dough scraps, and re-roll to shape more cookies until you have no more dough. Make sure that the cookies are spaced about 1″ from each other.
- Bake: Place the cookies into the freezer to chill for 5 minutes. Then place them into the oven to bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges just about to turn a light golden color. Remove from the oven.
- Cool: Transfer the cookies to cool on a cooling rack completely before making the frosting.
- Make the frosting: Make the buttercream frosting by creaming together the vegan butter and powdered sugar with a hand mixer in large bowl. Add in the vanilla extract and food coloring to the desired color, along with an additional tablespoon of dairy free milk if needed for a fluffy consistency. Spoon the frosting into a piping bag or plastic bag, and snip the end of the piping bag.
- Frost: Pipe the frosting directly onto each cookie (see photos for reference), and use a butter knife to spread the frosting around. Sprinkle with vegan sprinkles if desired.
- Serve and enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge.
Not gluten-free? Sub in 2 1/3 cups (290 g) all purpose flour for both the oat flour and the cassava flour.
Applesauce substitution: If you don’t want to use applesauce, you can sub in extra dairy free yogurt or vegan sour cream.
Nut-free: Omit the almond extract, and swap in 1/4 tsp more of cream of tartar