For years my mother in law made incredible sugar cookies. I attempted them several times and never could achieve the wonderful flavor, or the thickness of her cookies. I gave up for a time, and just enjoyed them at her house. She would bake the cut outs and put them in the freezer so that her grandchildren would have homemade sugar cookies to decorate when they came to visit. She was always trying new cookie recipes and her church got to enjoy them whenever she signed up to bring cookies for fellowship.
The recipe was passed on to me and I worked and worked until I could get them to come out perfect. I have made them all over the world and they have always been known as Grandma Long’s sugar cookies. One of my errors was rolling the dough out too thin. As you can see in the photo, I leave the dough pretty thick, which makes them moist and not crisp after baking. Don’t bake them too long, they need to come out just as they start to turn golden. Check to be sure your ingredients are fresh. If you haven’t baked anything for awhile, replace that flour, baking powder and baking soda. It is a sad moment to have gone through all the effort only to pull a flop out of the oven.
I like to use silicon mats on my cookie sheets when I am baking to prevent sticking. Parchment paper many times needs to be replaced with each new batch, and just became a hassle for me. Silicon mats are readily available at most any store that sells kitchen utensils.
Going vegan meant those cookies didn’t get made for quite a while. A nutritionalist from Cleveland Clinic suggested I try silken tofu as an egg substitute in baked goo. This was a game changer for vegan sugar cookie baking. I’ve made the recipe several times now, making slight changes each time. The taste and texture are now virtually the same as the ones my mother in law made. Puree the silken tofu and the baking powder and then set it aside, this is the egg substitute that works best for baking. I open the silken tofu container, scoop out what I need and then put it inside of a refrigerator container and store the remainder in the refrigerator. The open container of silken tofu lasts for about 5 days in the refrigerator.
These cookies can be frozen after they are baked and before they are frosted. I usually put them carefully into a zip lock freezer bag after they are cool. The longest I have had them in the freezer is a month. When I make St. Patricks Day cookies I usually do half of the batch with clover cutouts and the other half with Easter. Then we freeze the Easter cutouts to frost later and enjoy the St. Patricks Day ones. This recipe makes 6 dozen cookies, give or take a few depending on the size of your cutter.
*As a side note, this recipe is vegan and doesn’t follow the plant based whole food rules.
If you want to travel with them, wait for the frosting to set. Then they can be stacked in an easily transportable container with parchment paper in between the layers.
Grandma Long's Vegan Sugar Cookies
A soft, delicious cookie that will bring childhood memories racing back.
- 3/4 cup pureed silken tofu
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 pound of softened vegan butter
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 c. oat milk or plant milk
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- 7 cups flour
- 1 Tbsp baking soda
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 2 pounds powdered sugar
- 1 cup butter flavored Crisco
- 2/3 cup warm water
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- pinch of salt
- Puree silken tofu along with 1/2 tsp baking powder and set aside.
- Cream together butter and sugar
- Add plant milk and vanilla to the butter mixture, blend well.
- Add in the tofu mixture blend well
- Slowly add flour, baking soda and baking powder
- Cover and freeze dough for 15 min. or refrigerate for 30-45 minutes (or up to over night)
- Roll out dough in sections, not the whole batch at once. Roll it out to 1/4″ thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut into shapes.
- Place on prepared cookie sheets, use parchment paper or silicone mats.
- Bake at 350º for 10 minutes, don’t over bake, take out of the oven when they are beginning to brown.
- Prepare frosting – whip Crisco, vanilla and sugar. Slowly add powdered sugar intermittently with warm water. Use a stand or hand mixer. Stores well in the refrigerator for awhile.
- Allow cookies to cool and then decorate to you liking. Once the frosting has dried cookies can be stored with parchment paper between layers.