Gingerbread Men – Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free & Egg-Free

by Maggie on December 5, 2010

Welcome to Day 5!  Are you inspired yet?

Here’s a look at what we have so far:

Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free’s Pistachio-Cranberry Biscotti
Adventures of a Gluten-Free Mom’s Dairy-Free Fudge
Gluten-Free Life With Jen’s Chocolate Peppermint Wafer Cookies
The Mommy Bowl’s Peanut Butter Peck Cookies

And now it’s my turn!

Gluten-Free and Vegan Gingerbread Cookies 2

This recipe for gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free gingerbread cookies comes from my friend Heather.  She’s been making gingerbread cookies since she was a little girl.  This is her family recipe (isn’t she awesome for sharing?), I just played with it so that I could make it gluten, egg, and dairy-free.

We’ve made it 4 times since the test-run and we just can’t seem to get enough of it.

To be honest, I am a little surprised that Callum likes gingerbread cookies. I didn’t like gingerbread as a kid, and he’s my picky little dessert eater (cupcakes and ice cream only Mommy). But both he and Liv love it.

By the way, we used this recipe to make our gingerbread house which I’ll be debuting later this month. We’re still in the decorating stage (despite Callum’s daily and hourly pleas).

Everyone needs a go-to gingerbread cookie recipe. And now you have one!

Gluten-Free and Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Egg-Free Gingerbread Men

  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 cup coconut sugar (or a sugar of your choice)
  • ½ cup maple syrup or agave or honey
  • 1 tbsp molasses
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 ½ tbsp ground flax mixed with 3 tbsp warm water (the applesauce and flax replace 2 eggs)
  • 1 ¼ cup teff flour
  • 1 ¼ cup sorghum flour (plus more for dusting)
  • 1 cup arrowroot flour (tapioca flour works too)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp xanthan gum
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ¼- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk (or the milk of your choice)

1. Combine oil, sugar, maple syrup, and molasses in a large bowl.
2. Add applesauce and flax-water mixture.
3. In a medium sized bowl, combine flours, baking soda, sea salt, xanthan gum, and spices.
4. Add half of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir.
5. Add 1/4 cup of milk and stir in remaining flour.  Add more milk only if necessary.
6. Your dough will be a little bit sticky at this point so use floured hands to roll into a ball and wrap in plastic, alternatively you could scrape down the sides of the bowl and chill the dough in the refrigerator in the bowl.  Refrigerate for at least 40 minutes.
7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking tray with parchment.
8. Remove dough from fridge and divide in half.  Roll each half on a floured surface to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into desired shapes.
9. Place shapes at least 1 inch apart and bake for 10-12 minutes (depending on your oven) at 350 degrees.  10 minutes will give you a slightly chewy gingerbread cookie, 12 minutes will give you a crispier cookie.

Yield: 1 Swedish-inspired gingerbread house and a few accessories,  Or 3 dozen cookies (depending on size).

Combine flour and spices – I just love this look

Wet ingredients – don’t you love the dark colour?

The dough before chilling – couldn’t you just dive in?

Chilled dough, ready to roll – I LOVE working with dough

Decorated by Callum and Livvie

A little peek at our gingerbread house


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{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

Kim - Cook It Allergy Free December 5, 2010 at 9:25 am

Holy Cow!! Maggie your house is adorable! And those cookies look so so good. No wonder you keep making them! 😉 I love your step-by-steps! So cool. And I too totally love playing with dough.
Thanks for sharing my contest. I cannot wait to see yours when it is finished!!


Sophie December 5, 2010 at 9:48 am

MMMMMMMMMMMM,…your gf gingerbread cookies look adorable & tasty too!


JT December 5, 2010 at 9:54 am

Inspired! yes, thanks Maggie


Shirley @ gfe December 5, 2010 at 12:07 pm

I was totally smitten with your gingerbread cookies, but then I saw your house … I agree with Kim–it’s totally adorable! Son and I never made a gingerbread house, but we did make gingerbread men and cookies several times. It was so much fun! You did such a great job on your vegan gingerbread recipe, Maggie. :-) Bravo!



Jeanine December 5, 2010 at 1:07 pm

I can almost smell them from here. Mmm…fresh baked gingerbread is so great! Cute house too, I can’t wait to see it decorated!


Deanna December 5, 2010 at 1:31 pm

Excellent! Your house is so cute. The kiddo loves gingerbread and has been begging to eat our house, too. I told him today that it’s kind of a Christmas decoration and that we could bake more gingerbread as cookies if he wants to actually eat some. So, your recipe is very timely!


Nancy @ TheSensitivePantry December 5, 2010 at 2:10 pm

I love gingerbread houses! Your’s is adorable. Now to check out the other great cookie recipes. So much holiday fun.


Cindy December 5, 2010 at 3:48 pm

I love gingerbread. Can’t wait to try it!


Heidi @adventuresofaglutenfreemom December 5, 2010 at 4:51 pm

Too cute Maggie! Your gingerbread dough is gorgeous and looks like it would make a fun play dough (and edible to boot!).

Your house is adorable and am so so excited to see it all dazzled up, Callum and Liv style. I’ve been working on mine all day today, so after the vegan royal icing it hardens up a bit (fingers crossed), I will close my eyes and let my boys mess it all up, LOL!


Tia December 5, 2010 at 7:49 pm


Have to agree with everyone else. The house is adorable. I can’t wait to see it decorated. How did you do the windows? Too ambitious for me. Very cute!

I also like the step by step instructions for something that a picture works so much better than words. I can look and see right away if I’m right or need to fix something. Great job!



Ricki December 5, 2010 at 9:52 pm

I’ve been looking for a way to use up my teff flour and these sound just perfect! Love the house. :)


Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli December 6, 2010 at 11:41 am

Can’t wait!!! Thanks Maggie.


Erron December 6, 2010 at 3:16 pm

Maggie I love it, I can’t wait try it. We made really horrible GF gingerbread that no one would eat last year, so we decorated and hung them on the tree :) This looks lovely and the ingredients make more sense. I notice you use alternative natural sweeteners(Yay!), we are sugar free. But I wonder what you used to decorate? We have sensitivities to artificial colours, gluten, dairy, and soy? Have you found some mystical decorating stuff that I haven’t heard of, or are they standard cake decorating items?


Terry December 6, 2010 at 6:43 pm

I just love the ginger bread house…. the cookies look great too.

If you are interested I have a linky up to link all the Gluten Free Blogs to. Hope you can stop by and link up.


Julie December 7, 2010 at 3:00 am

I’m guessing the coconut oil is supposed to go in at the beginning with the wet ingredients? :-) Is it okay to use a different oil there or something like EarthBalance? I’m supposed to steer clear of coconut. Also, did you post a recipe for the frosting you used to glue the gingerbread house together? Is it just the standard stiff frosting? Thanks in advance! I’ve been looking for an excellent gluten free gingerbread! I’m excited to try yours :-)


Christine December 7, 2010 at 4:03 pm

Wow. I am definitely bookmarking this recipe as it is something that everyone in my family actually can eat! Thanks for sharing the recipe! :)


Zoe December 7, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Your gingerbread looks great, Maggie! And I love everything that you used the recipe…I’d make it right now if I had all of those ingredients on hand. I’ll need to make it. It looks so simple! I think it goes without saying that there’s an unanimous agreement that that gingerbread house is too cute. Positively smitten. :) (I love that word, too.)


Alisa Cooks December 8, 2010 at 12:19 pm

I’m always in awe of baked goodies that are free of dairy, eggs, AND gluten. Cookies do seem to turn out best though, and these look great!


autism symptoms December 8, 2010 at 4:02 pm

I’ve recently started a blog, the information you provide on this site has helped me tremendously. Thank you for all of your time & work.


Lauren December 10, 2010 at 9:24 am

We are going to attempt these this weekend. I am so excited! Thanks for sharing.


CinnamonQuill/GlutenFreeFeed December 14, 2010 at 8:33 am

I have a love/hate relationship with gingerbread…I can never decide if I like it or not. But I can’t resist cute gingerbread people, that’s for sure! Plus, the way it makes the house smell so festive. :) Ok, guess I better make some and figure out how I feel about them, this year. :)


las vegas seo December 21, 2010 at 5:42 am

NUTS!I did a crazy long response to your post but my internet cut out and I lost it all! Oh well, just wanted to say that it was a great article! Nicely done!


Timothy Molinelli December 21, 2010 at 6:29 pm

Nice blog , thanks for the post!


James L Despain December 27, 2010 at 4:37 am

Thanks for the great post. Page Bookmarked


Wendy Gallagher December 1, 2011 at 12:17 am

I made my dough, it tastes incredible, and now it is chilling in the fridge until tomorrow… I’ll let you know how it goes… The flavor, and texture is perfect though, so I am pretty excited to taste and frost tomorrow. It is so great, that the teacher gives me only two days notice of need of a homemade gingerbread for school, and I had no trouble finding one for a GF/CF egg free child! Thank you!!


Wendy Gallagher December 1, 2011 at 8:55 pm

OK, Done! They were hard to roll out at first, too cold, but as the dough warmed up, it spread out really nice, with just a bit of flour so it did not stick, 10 minutes, and they are so yummy hot from the oven. The texture and flavour is better than the gluten variety! Trey was very happy to eat dough, and two cooked cookies. I’m going to try to frost eyes and noses with a lemon juice, powdered sugar recipe from another sight… :) Thank you!


Crystal Coleman December 2, 2011 at 9:04 am

Thanks Maggie! I was just starting to look around for some treat options for my son’s school party next week, and really wanted to do gingerbread. I just hope I can buy arrowroot flour from the only GF bakery section. (We have very few options within 100 miles)


Ermit December 11, 2011 at 6:59 pm

Hi Maggie —

Just wanted to let you know that I made this recipe… late at night and with a few modifications based on what I had available. I used agave, Bob’s Red Mill AP flour instead of teff and allspice instead of ginger and clove. Came out great! Thanks for posting!



Ermit December 11, 2011 at 7:02 pm

Actually… I used 1/2 cup brown rice flour and 3/4 cup GFAP!


Tracy December 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm

oops, maybe added too much milk. My dough isn’t rollable, any suggestions???Help…


Tracy December 17, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Oh man, I can’t form this into a “ball” just a round mound. I did it anyways, I wonder what I did wrong? maybe too much milk. yikes. we’ll see. thanks so much, tracy


Sarah December 21, 2011 at 5:16 pm

Tracy, did you let the bowl chill in the mixing bowl or in plastic wrap? I chilled mine in the bowl initially for two hours and had the same problem. I’ve wrapped it in plastic wrap now and have put in the fridge – tomorrow I will try again. I will report back and let you know if I have success. :)


Sarah December 21, 2011 at 8:40 pm

Oh thanks Maggie! I’m terribly worried – no subs, I think I did add too much milk. Though my dough looked like your pre-chilling… I’ll tackle it again tomorrow after it’s sat overnight. If it’s quite sticky, I’ll add more flour as per suggestion. I’ll let you know how it goes. Thanks!


Sarah December 22, 2011 at 12:51 am

Argh! darn iPad!! I meant, I’m NOT terribly worried. Yeesh. All will be well. I’ll confirm tomorrow. :)


Sarah December 22, 2011 at 2:14 pm

Okay, success!! The key for me was keeping the dough cool because I probably added too much milk. I found dividing the dough in thirds to be the key to success, and worked with one at a time while keeping the other two in the fridge. :)

They are so tasty! I chose the shorter oven time and got a fabulusly, festive chewy consistency. Thanks Maggie for your assistance! Merry merry to you and yours!


Salpy January 5, 2012 at 5:24 pm

These were great! They tasted WAY better than the “regular” gingerbread cookies I made for all the people who don’t have allergies. I would definitely go with the lesser amount of milk, though. It was more than enough.


Laura December 16, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Thank you for sharing this recipe. I am so impressed with the end result that I’m not sure I would ever want to make ‘normal’ gingerbread again. Very light and tasty. I did not sub anything and used 1/4cup milk, turned out perfect.


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