Being vegan doesn’t mean you have to endure bland cookies or miss out on desserts altogether. In fact, these Coffee Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies are the perfect vegan treat! They have just the right amount of sweetness, with deep caramel undertones from coconut sugar, and thanks to Miyoko’s Creamery, these cookies are delectably buttery while remaining vegan. Plus, these cookies will give you a little caffeine boost…what’s not to love?
At its most basic, a cookie is a simple combination of sugar, flour, and some type of fat. When a recipe calls for so few ingredients, quality is everything! As a vegan, the fat source is my main concern. These days, there are so many vegan butter alternatives on the market, with some much better than others. I highly recommend the Cultured Vegan Butter made by Miyoko’s Creamery. It’s a coconut oil-based butter that is actually fermented with live cultures, giving it a creamy tang reminiscent of European butters.
The coconut sugar is another unique feature of this recipe that brings a lot of flavor. Although regular sugar could be used, the coconut sugar in this recipe provides the cookies with a rich caramel undertone and a deep golden hue. The depth of flavor the coconut sugar provides make it so worth it to buy a bag and add it to your pantry arsenal.
Let’s Make Coffee Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies
Making the cookie dough in a food processor is a fast and convenient choice. Before you begin, use the food processor to grind the coffee granules and hazelnuts, then set them aside. Next, simply add the vegan butter and sugar into the food processor and begin pulsing. Since the vegan butter is softer than dairy butter, the two come together very quickly into a thick paste. Pause as needed to open the processor and scrape down the sides. Finally, add in the rest of the ingredients and pulse until everything is incorporated into a soft dough. It’s as simple as that!
Once you have the cookie dough prepared, divide them into 20 equal balls and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. Making sure that the dough is chilled at this stage will make it easier to work with when it comes time to press the cookies. Of course, you could simply form the cookie dough into a log and cut slices if you want a quicker option. However, I took this as an opportunity to use my new Nordic Ware cookie stamps for the first time to make an especially visually appealing cookie. While Nordic Ware has a plethora of cookie stamp designs available, these are my absolute favorites. Not only are they decorative and festive enough for the holiday season, but since the designs are neutral, you can use them year round.
I consider this to be a perfect adult cookie. They’re not too sweet, and have a delicious mix of complex flavors due to the coconut sugar, hazelnuts, coffee, and vanilla. For a vegan cookie, they are surprisingly buttery in the most perfect way!
These Coffee Hazelnut Shortbread Cookies are a perfect vegan treat that comes together quickly in a food processor. There are so many vegan butter alternatives on the market these days, but for a truly authentic taste and texture, I highly recommend the butter from Miyoko’s Creamery. The coconut oil-based product gives these cookies the ideal shortbread taste and texture typical of traditional dairy butter.
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- In a food processor, add butter and sugar. Pulse to combine, pausing to scrape down sides as needed, until fully combined and softened, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add flour, ground hazelnuts, ground coffee, and vanilla extract. Pulse until a dough is formed, about 30 seconds.
- Divide dough into 20 equal balls and refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes.
- Using a cookie stamp, press dough balls down to desired thickness, about ¼” to ½”.
- Place cookies onto two parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake until deep golden brown, about 20 to 25 minutes (see note).
- Remove from oven and place onto a cooling rack until thoroughly cooled.
Due to the coconut sugar, the cookies will have a darker appearance than a typical shortbread cookie.