Gluten Free Christmas Cookies: Gingerbread & Sugar Cookies

13 Dec

Sugar cookies and gingerbread make me feel 5 years old. We debated (very briefly) making them with wheat flour to give as gifts, but decided that yes, we would try making them gluten-free. If they didn’t turn out great, we’d try again. What a wonderful surprise when our first tries, for both, tasted exactly the way they should! We gave them as gifts (and ate a bunch ourselves), not even mentioning that they’re gluten-free. Everyone loved them.

While I imagine any rice-based flour mix would work for these, both of these recipes use “Featherlight Flour Mix” from Bette Hagman’s The Gluten Free Gourmet Bakes Bread: Equal parts rice flour (brown or white), cornstarch, and tapioca flour, with 1 Tablespoon potato flour (not potato starch) for each cup of rice flour used.

If you’ve got a different favorite cookie recipe, try adapting it to be gluten-free!

Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies (also egg free!)

Makes about 3 dozen 2″ cookies

  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 3 1/2 – 4 cups featherlight flour mix
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 2 tsp. egg replacer
  • 1/2 tsp. unflavored gelatin

Mix molasses, brown sugar, milk, and butter in a large bowl. Set aside.

In a smaller bowl, mix the remaining (dry) ingredients.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet, 1/2 at a time. Dough should be very stiff. The last bit of flour will be hard to work in.

Cover or wrap dough and refrigerate for about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 F.

On a lightly floured surface, use your hands to form the dough into a disk about 3/4 – 1″ thick (it may need to soften a bit from being in the fridge). Use a rolling pin to flatten it to about 1/4″ thick (not too thin!) and cut out with floured cookie cutters. Place cookies on a lightly greased cookie sheet.

Since there’s no gluten to make the cookies tough, you can re-form and re-roll the dough as many times as you like, as long as you don’t work in too much flour!

Bake about 12 minutes or until very slightly browned. Allow to cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheet before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Frost with a mixture of powdered sugar and water (add water to sugar a tiny bit at a time until it’s the desired consistency).

Gluten Free Sugar Cookies

makes about 3 dozen 2″ cookies

  • 1 cup softened (not melted) butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 1/2 cups featherlight flour mix
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 2 tsp egg replacer
  • 1/2 tsp unflavored gelatin

In a large bowl, work sugar into butter. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.

In a separate bowl, mix the remaining (dry) ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, half at a time. Dough should be stiff (but not quite as stiff as the gingerbread, if you made that already). Mix well, cover, and refrigerate for about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Divide dough into 2 parts to make it more manageable. On a lightly floured surface, roll the first part about 1/4″ thick (not too thin or the cookies will break) and cut out with floured cookie cutters. Add the “scraps” to the remaining dough, roll out, cut out, and continue until you’re finished.

Since there’s no gluten to toughen the cookies, you can re-roll as many times as you like, as long as you don’t work in too much flour!

Place cookies on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until very slightly browned. Allow to cool for several minutes on the cookie sheet before removing to a wire rack to cool completely (if the cookies break, let them cool some more before trying to remove them).

Frost with a mixture of powdered sugar and water (add water to sugar a tiny bit at a time until it’s the desired consistency).

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