Dairy-Free Sugar Cookies

Dairy-Free Sugar Cookies

I’ve mentioned before how my husband and I don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day, but that I love all the themed food. I’m that way with pretty much any holiday or event where you can create themed food. So in honor of Valentine’s day, I’ve made these dairy-free sugar cookies which I adapted from my favorite sugar cookie recipe of all time from Alton Brown. While they are very good with dairy, I wanted to try a dairy free recipe since I have family members and friends who need to steer clear of dairy. I also wanted to try out using coconut oil as a butter substitute in baking. (If you’re interested in learning more about the science behind what coconut oil can actually help as opposed to the many claims out there right now, read my post called The Truth About Coconut Oil.

As you’re reading the recipe, you can simply use butter and regular milk for the standard version of these cookies. For the dairy free version, I would go with either the plain almond, soy, or rice milk or the vanilla flavor of the soy or rice milk as these will better compliment the flavor of the cookies. If you are using coconut oil, the batter will take a bit longer to clump together and pull away from the sides in the mixer, but you won’t need to add any extra liquid. Also for those of you using coconut oil, you should let your dough rest at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes after pulling it out of the fridge as the coconut causes the dough to get harder than butter. However, the dough should still be a bit stiff to work with when you start rolling because otherwise it will warm up too quickly!

If you choose to make colored cookies, I would recommend powdered food dye. However, I also like the gel kind and liquid only if I have no other choice. But really, they should all work just fine! And one final note, as you may notice, these cookies do not have frosting. This is because when I have frosted them in the past, they were so incredibly sweet; take care when deciding whether or not to ice them!

Dairy-Free Sugar Cookies

Prep Time: 3 hours

Cook Time: 7 minutes

Total Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: 18 very large cookies

Dairy-Free Sugar Cookies


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup coconut oil (or unsalted butter)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon almond milk or soy milk or rice milk (or regular milk)
  • 1/8 tsp powdered food coloring (optional)
  • Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough


  1. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. Place butter and sugar in large bowl of electric stand mixer and beat until light in color. Add egg and milk and beat to combine.
  3. Put mixer on low speed, gradually add flour, and beat until mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl. If you are dyeing your cookies, now is the time to add the food coloring.
  4. Divide the dough in half, wrap in waxed paper, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  6. Sprinkle surface where you will roll out dough with powdered sugar.
  7. Remove 1 wrapped pack of dough from refrigerator at a time, sprinkle rolling pin with powdered sugar, and roll out dough to 1/4-inch thick. Move the dough around and check underneath frequently to make sure it is not sticking. If dough has warmed during rolling, place cold cookie sheet on top for 10 minutes to chill.
  8. Cut into desired shape, place at least 1-inch apart on greased baking sheet, parchment, or silicone baking mat, and bake for 7 to 9 minutes or until cookies are just beginning to turn brown around the edges, rotating cookie sheet halfway through baking time.
  9. Let sit on baking sheet for 2 minutes after removal from oven and then move to complete cooling on wire rack. Serve as is or ice as desired.
  10. Store in airtight container for up to 1 week.


This recipe is based on Alton Brown's sugar cookie recipe.


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2 Replies to “Dairy-Free Sugar Cookies”

  1. Thanks for posting a dairy free sugar cookie recipe using coconut oil! I made these today and they’re fabulous! I also used GF flour (brown rice, potato starch, tapioca). My husband has a severe cows milk protein allergy and its challenging steering clear of butter when it comes to baking so it was really great making a sugar cookie he could eat 🙂

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