Vegan Carrot Cake Cookies

One of the women at the entrepreneur retreat I co-hosted in Vermont this past weekend was vegan, so when I was putting together my menu, I wanted to make sure I had one egg-free, dairy-free, vegan dessert recipe up my sleeve. After hunting around, I came across a recipe for carrot oatmeal cookies by Heidi of the blog 101 Cookbooks. Using that recipe as a base, I tweaked it to create a kind of spiced carrot cake cookie. Soft, with just a little bit of crunch on top, it's a nice treat regardless of whether or not you're vegan!

I based the flavor of the cookie on the flavors I use in my favorite carrot cake recipe, adding plenty of fresh ginger, pure vanilla extract, orange zest, cardamom, cinnamon, and allspice. The fat in the cookie is virgin coconut oil, which also adds a hint of sweetness (though if you don't have any on hand, olive oil would also work very well in this).

Like Heidi, I used real maple syrup to sweeten these, which keeps them from being too sweet. All in all, it's a perfect cookie to enjoy with tea or perhaps some warm apple cider. Actually, this cookie is packed with so many wholesome ingredients, you could probably get away with having a couple for breakfast as a treat!

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Vegan Carrot Cake Cookies
Adapted from a recipe by 101 Cookbooks. Makes about 2 dozen cookies

Print this Recipe

Ingredients
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup rolled oats (not instant)
1 rounded tablespoon ground cinnamon (Vietnamese, if you have it)
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
Zest of 1/2 naval orange
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup real maple syrup
1/2 cup virgin coconut oil, melted (substitute olive oil, if desired)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a silpat.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom. Add the fresh ginger, orange zest, and grated carrots, and mix until evenly combined and distributed. Pour in the maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla extract, and stir just until completely combined.

Drop onto prepared baking sheets in about 2 tablespoon sized amounts, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely before serving.  

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