Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookie Recipe

By Alexandra Caspero on December 7, 2022
The best vegan lemon cookies! Perfect for holiday baking.
Makes 24 cookies

If you love lemons, then this lemon crinkle cookie recipe is for you! Naturally egg-free, these vegan lemon crinkle cookies are tender, chewy and bursting with lemon flavor.

Back with one final vegan Christmas cookie for you this year. In addition to my peppermint meltaway cookies, homemade oreos and chai sugar cookies, these vegan lemon crinkle cookies are a fun addition to any holiday cookie box.

This bright, lemon flavor is one of my favorites. I love citrus desserts. My vegan orange olive oil cake and lemon olive oil muffins are two of my favorites. There is something so refreshing about a sweet citrus dessert, and this lemon crinkle cookie recipe is no exception.

Here’s what you’ll need for this simple lemon cookie recipe:

  • Sugar
  • Lemon juice
  • Vegan butter
  • Lemon juice
  • Vanilla extract
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder & soda
  • Turmeric, for natural color!
  • Powdered sugar, for rolling

I really love the lemon flavor in these, but if you find that you want more of a subtle lemon flavor, then I recommend using only 4 tablespoons of the lemon juice. If you want even more lemon flavor, you can also use a lemon extract instead of vanilla extract.

Instead of lemon, you could also use orange juice– or even a mixture of lemon and lime for a margarita-inspired cookie.

The turmeric gives an extra punch of yellow color, but you can omit if desired. Just know that your cookies won’t be as yellow as these. Or you can use a natural yellow food coloring.

As with all of my Christmas cookies this year, these vegan lemon crinkle cookies use dairy-free butter. While I’m not vegan, I do like baking (and cooking!) plant-based foods often, and I think it’s fun to showcase how delicious cookies can be without the typical egg and butter.

That said, you can use whatever butter you want– I do not recommend trying to substitute with coconut oil as these cookies will flatten too much while cooking and become crisp. That’s the opposite of the texture we are looking for– you want a soft, chewy cookie!

Lemon zest and sugar

How to make these vegan lemon crinkle cookies

  1. Make the lemon sugar

    In order to really bring maximize the lemon flavor, you’ll want to rub the lemon zest into the sugar using your hands. This helps release the lemon oil and maximizes the lemon flavor!

  2. Make the batter

    Add in the butter and cream with the sugar, then add in the rest of the wet ingredients: vanilla and lemon juice. As mentioned below in the recipe card, I like the full 6T of fresh lemon juice but you can use a smaller amount if desired.

  3. Stir in the flour mixture

    Add in the rest of the dry ingredients until a dough forms.

  4. Roll in sugar

    Next, roll the dough into tablespoon balls, then roll in sugar and powdered sugar and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Repeat with the rest of the batter and bake for 12 minutes at 350 degrees F.

  5. Remove and cool

    Gently remove the cookies from the baking trays (they are delicate!) and place on a cooling rack to finish cooling.

Tips for success

To make these more uniform in size, I recommend using a cookie scoop. This is the 1 tablespoon one that I use. If you’ve got kids– then this is a great task for them! Both my 5 and 2 year old loved scooping and rolling the dough in the sugar.

The butter needs to be room temperature for best results. Cold butter won’t work the same way in this recipe.

I typically use my stand mixer to make these cookies as I find it easier than using a large bowl with a hand mixer, but that also works if you don’t have a stand mixer.

Lastly, I recommend lining your cookie sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick silicone mat like a silpat for best results, but lightly sprayed will also work.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

How to store and freeze

These store best in an airtight container on the counter.

If you are like me and plan on making several cookies (and bourbon balls) for holiday boxes, then I recommend making the batter then rolling into the dough ball and flash-freeze. Then, place the frozen cookie dough balls in an airtight container and store for up to 3 months in the freezer.

Before baking, remove and roll in powdered sugar and then bake as directed. If you bake from mostly frozen, you will need to add 1-2 minutes onto your baking time.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

More Vegan Cookie Recipes

I hope you like this lemon crinkle cookie recipe! If you try them, make sure to leave a comment and a rating. Your feedback helps other readers and seeing you make my recipes makes my day.

Print
Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Vegan Lemon Crinkle Cookie Recipe

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 27 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookie, christmas cookie, holiday cookies, sugar cookies
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

If you love lemons, then this lemon crinkle cookie recipe is for you! Naturally egg-free, these vegan lemon crinkle cookies are tender, chewy and bursting with lemon flavor.


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 27 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookie, christmas cookie, holiday cookies, sugar cookies
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 27 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookie, christmas cookie, holiday cookies, sugar cookies
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large lemons, zested
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter at room temperature*
  • 6 tablespoons lemon juice**
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar, for rolling
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, for rolling

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the lemon zest into the sugar, until it is fully incorporated and the oils from the zest have been released into the sugar.
  3. Add in the butter and mix until pale yellow then in the vanilla and lemon juice, mixing until just combined.
  4. Next, add in the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, baking soda, turmeric and salt. Mix until well combined, stopping to scrape down the side as needed.
  5. Roll the batter into 1-tablespoon balls, then roll into the sugar and then into the powdered sugar. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet, then remove from the pan and enjoy.

Notes

*Room temperature is best for these cookies. You can also use regular butter if you don’t want them to be vegan.
**I love the lemon flavor in this, but if you want them to be less lemony, then only use 4 tablespoons of lemon juice.

did you make this?

Tag @delishknowledge on Instagram and hashtag it #delishknowledge

The Ultimate Plant-Based Protein Cookbook + Course

(Includes 40+ recipes!)

FREE 7-DAY COURSE + COOKBOOK

Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

(3 comments) leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    1. Natalie
      December 21, 2022 AT 2:46 pm

      These are phenomenal! I made them exactly as written and they were wonderful, then I made a second batch subbing half the lemon zest/juice for orange zest/juice and those were also delicious. I will definitely be making these again 🙂

    2. Jane
      December 14, 2022 AT 1:26 pm

      Can these be made with gluten free flour?

      1. Alex
        December 22, 2022 AT 11:44 am

        I would recommend using a gluten-free 1:1 baking blend for best results