Soft & chewy cut out-style almond flour sugar cookies with crispy edges that actually keep their shape in the oven. The dough is durable, unlike most gluten free cookie doughs, making it easy to roll out and cut into practically any festive shape. Paired with an easy icing, they make the perfect gluten free Christmas cookies!
Gluten Free Cut Out Sugar Cookies
Is it really the holiday season with out a batch of cut-out sugar cookies? If you’re in club gluten free and dairy free, you know most cut out doughs that that are allergy friendly tend to be crumbly and dry. Well, good news! This almond flour based sugar cookie dough is changing up the gluten free cookie game. It’s soft yet pliable and easy to roll out again and again. The cookies hold their shape once baked and have a soft and chewy center with crispy edges. You won’t need another sugar cookie recipe every again!
What you'll need for Almond Flour Sugar Cookies
For the cookies
- Almond flour - The primary gluten free flour used in this recipe. It’s soft yet pliable making it perfect for gluten free cut. out sugar cookies.
- Tapioca flour - Just a little is used to soften the almond flour. Substitute with arrowroot starch if needed.
- Egg - Helps to bind everything together and give the cookies a little lift in the oven.
- Maple syrup - The sweetener used in this cookie recipe. It’s subtle enough to not overpower the cookies so a nice coat of icing can be smeared on top.
- Coconut oil - Adds moisture and fat to the cookies so they don’t crumble and hold their shape once baked.
For the royal icing
- Powdered sugar - Use a high quality powdered sugar and make sure to sift it to get a lump-free icing.
- Honey - This is the secret ingredient to help keep the icing stable at room temperature. You can also use maple syrup.
- Almond extract - I love added just a drop of this to further deepen the flavor of the cookies. Feel free to omit this entirely or swap with vanilla extract.
- Food dye - I prefer a gel food dye to maintain a thick consistency. This plant-based food coloring is a great "healthier option".
How to make Gluten Free Christmas Cookies
My favorite part about this recipe is by how easy it is to make. There's no chilling the dough (unless needed due to timing), you only need a few gluten-free pantry staples, and the dough is quite easy to roll out!
Step 1 : Prepare the dough. These almond flour sugar cookies are made just like your typical cookie recipe. Simply whisk together the wet ingredients and then add in the dry ingredients. You should be left with a big ball of cookie dough like above! If it's a little sticky, that's okay. It will lose some of that stickiness once it's rolled out.
Step 2 : Roll out the dough. Once the dough is made, roll it out on a piece of parchment paper. I have found the parchment paper to be KEY with gluten-free cookie dough. First, sprinkle a little extra tapioca flour onto your parchment paper. Then place the ball of dough on top and sprinkle with a little more tapioca flour. The tapioca flour is your friend in the rolling process.
Roll out the dough to about ½ inch in thickness with a rolling pin. To get nice chewy sugar cookies, you want a little bit of height to the dough. This leads to nice soft yet crispy almond flour sugar cookies!
Step 3 : Cut out shapes with cookie cutters. Next, use some festive cookie cutters to slice up the dough. I like to cut out as many cookies as I can with the first piece of rolled out dough and then peel the extra dough away.
Use a flat spatula to transfer the cookies to a baking sheet. These cookies won't spread too much so just leave a little space in between each.
Roll the excess dough out again to about ½ inch in thickness. You may need a little tapioca flour again to help with this and repeat the process until you're out of dough! If you find that you have a bunch of cut out cookies but a batch already in the oven, keep them in the fridge until they're ready to bake. This ensures they don't get too soft and maintain their shape!
Step 4 : Prepare the icing. Sift the powdered sugar if you haven't already. Then mix in the honey, almond extract, and water in 1 tablespoon increments until the consistency is that of glue. Add in a small drop of food dye (a little goes a long way) and mix to combine.
Step 5 : Decorate. Ahh, the best part! Once the cookies have cooled, it's time to decorate! Fill a piping bag fitted with a small round tip with the icing and pipe designs onto the cookies.
To make a "filled" design, trace the outer edges of the cookie with the icing then "flood" the center with the icing. Use a tooth pick if needed to pull the icing to the edges to fill it all in.
Gluten Free Sugar Cookies Recipe Tips
As with most recipes, there are a few little tips & tricks I’ve discovered to make sure every batch is the absolute best:
- Don’t over mix your dough. Once there are no more flour clumps in the batter, give the mixture one more big mix and then it's done.
- Some rolling tips. Use a generous amount of tapioca flour when handling the dough and a high quality rolling pin. When first rolling out your dough, sprinkle some extra flour on top of the dough and on your surface. Continue to sprinkle as you roll out the dough. I recommend dividing the dough in half as smaller sections are easier to handle. I have a marble rolling pin and absolutely love it! It definitely weighs a couple pounds but the added weight helps roll out the dough nice and smoothly.
- Finally, if you struggle with transferring the cut out cookie dough to your baking sheet here is a quick tip. Roll out your dough on a piece of parchment paper the size of your baking sheet. Cut your cookies on the sheet and peel off the excess dough around each cut out. Transfer the parchment paper to the baking sheet. And voila! You’ve successfully transferred the cookies to your baking sheet without having to struggle to lift them off your surface
Almond Flour Sugar Cookie Recipe FAQs
Yes, if you don't have tapioca flour, arrowroot starch/flour is a great alternative.
I have not tried this recipe with another flour other than almond flour. If needed, a gluten-free 1:1 flour will probably be the best option.
Yes, but make sure that it's a u0022liquidu0022 sweetener. Honey or agave syrup would be great substitutes.
These cookies are best stored in an air-tight container. Make sure the icing is completely dry before stacking them on top of one another though. They will keep fresh for about 5 days on the counter and up to a week in the fridge.
The best way to freeze the dough is once the cookies are already cut out. Because this dough is gluten-free, it may be a hard to roll out after it's frozen. I recommend rolling it out, cutting out the cookies, and then freezing the cookies. Simply thaw and bake when ready!
More festive cookie recipes you'll love!
Easy Gluten Free Sugar Cookies
For the Cookies
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil - melted and cooled
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups almond flour
- ¾ cup tapioca flour - plus more when rolling out the dough - at least ½ cup
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350 F. In a bowl, add the egg, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla and whisk to combine.1 egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, ¼ cup maple syrup, 2 tablespoon coconut oil
- Fold in the almond flour, tapioca flour, baking soda, and sea salt; set aside.2 cups almond flour, ¾ cup tapioca flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- Place a piece of parchment paper on a flat surface and sprinkle some tapioca flour on top. Place the dough on top and sprinkle a little more tapioca flour on top of the dough. Roll dough out to about ½ inch in thickness. Using cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or greased with oil. Bake for 8 - 10 minutes until they turn a golden brown color. Let cool before icing.
- For the icing, sift the powdered sugar if you haven't already. Then add in the honey, almond extract, and water in 1 tablespoon increments until the icing reaches a glue-like consistency.2 cups powdered sugar, ½ tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoon water, ⅛ teaspoon almond extract
- Split the icing into separate bowls if dyeing a different color. Fill a piping bag fitted with a small round tip with the icing and pipe designs on the cookies. While the icing is damp, add sprinkles if desired. Let the cookies set for at least 10 minutes and enjoy!food dye, Sprinkles