Sugar cookies.. that even I can eat. Its a Christmas miracle.
Sugar cookies usually require 1 key ingredient.. SUGAR. Sugar is a no can do for me. I bake often with xylitol and erythritol. Knowing how they work and how they affect the texture of baked goods.. I was at a loss at putting together a recipe concept that might work. These sugar alcohols though wonderful tend to make cookies really chewy- which isn't always a bad thing.. but I knew the texture would not be right for this cookie. Then.. I remembered that my husband had brought home to me SUGAR FREE Maple syrup from Whole Foods during a trip to Atlanta. This syrup is made of a sugar alcohol just as xylitol is.. but considering that its in a liquid form I decided to give it a go. What resulted was magic. PURE MAGIC. These cookes are REALLY good.
Now- if you can have sugar- I have some additional options for you. Instead of using the Joseph's All Natural Maple Flavor Syrup Feel free to use Honey, Coconut Nectar, Real Maple Syrup or Agave. All will work great. If using any of these sweeteners, you can leave out the liquid stevia. Give your dough a taste test.. if you want it sweeter go ahead and add that stevia- if not, leave it out!
Can't have almonds? Make your own nut or seed flour using any other nut/seed of choice. I suspect that Hazelnut, Macadamias, Cashews or Sunflower seeds turned into flour would all taste great! To do this simply run the nut or seed in a high powdered blender or coffee grinder until you have a super fine flour. (If the flour is course- the recipe might not work as well.)
PLEASE NOTE: coconut flour WILL NOT work. (It never ever works as a replacement for Almond Flour!) And any of the grain based flours will NOT work. Stick to the nuts and seeds. I have another cut out sugar cookie recipe in my Essential Gluten Free Baking Guide Part 2 that uses Rice flour and is free of nuts/seeds.
- 2 Packed Cups of Blanched Almond Flour
- 1/4 Tsp. Baking Powder (I use double acting)
- 3 Tbs Liquid Sugar Syrup (Sugar Free Maple, Regular Maple, Honey, Coconut Nectar or Agave).
- 1 Tbs Vanilla Extract
- 1/4 Tsp Salt
- 1/8-1/4 Tsp. Nunaturals Liquid Stevia. (optional and to taste).
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line 1 baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a bowl combine the flour, baking powder, Syrup, Vanilla and Salt. Stir for a moment and then use your hands to kneed the dough together. (It will not seem like its going to come together at first). Give the dough a taste test- want it sweeter? Add the stevia to taste. If after kneading the dough for a minute and it still feels crumbly (and its still this way after adding stevia) you may add 1/8 tsp of water. (Be careful as a little bit goes a long way, if you add to much your dough will quickly become a sticky mess!). This dough should be firm, hold together and be super easy to roll out.
- Roll the dough out between two sheets of parchment paper- and cut into cookies. If at any point the dough starts to stick- dust with a little almond flour. (Note: I found that as the dough sat, it got stickier- as long as you roll out and cut the cookies right away you should not need any extra flour for dusting.)
- Place cookies on the parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 19-21 minutes for a crisp cookie very much like shortbread. OR 15-17 minutes for a softer/ chewy cookie. (PLEASE NOTE: Baking times may vary pending the sweetener you select. The above baking times are to be used when working with Sugar Free Maple Syrup. You may need less time with the other sugars. Keep an eye on your cookies- the moment they start to get a little golden on the edges remove them immediately.)
- Allow to cool and frost.