Vegan Pepparkakor (Ginger Cookies)

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Christmas is here, and it’s time to pull out the cookie cutters and make pepparkakor, a traditional Swedish ginger cookie! My husband, Peter, has fond memories of his mom making home-made pepparkakor as a child, and now he’s instilling those memories in our boys. Every year we collect all of the ingredients together, with a quick run to IKEA for any missing items, and then we create a massive mound of pepparkakor dough that will chill overnight before we start rolling out dozens and dozens of ginger cookies. The secret of pepparkakor is their thin, crispness. While Americans like a thick, cakey gingerbread cookie, the Swedes favor thin, crisp little ginger wafers with no decorations or icing. Now days, you can buy prepared pepparkakor dough in Sweden, but our family still does it the old-fashioned way. This recipe is based on an old, classic recipe, with only one edit—vegan butter instead of regular butter.

Vegan Pepparkakor

In Sweden, hosts set out dishes of pepparkakor during the holidays for a little treat, and they’re especially good served with glögg, a traditional hot spiced wine. All during the month of December, the Swedes celebrate the holidays with glögg gatherings, during which they serve tiny, steaming cups of spicy red wine with raisins and almonds. And it’s essential to serve this festive drink with a tray of pepparkakor.

Here’s our family’s vegan version of this traditional Pepparkakor. I hope you enjoy the holidays!

Step-by-Step Guide

Vegan Pepparkakor
Prepare dough and chill.
Vegan Pepparkakor
Roll out dough very thinly on floured surface.
Vegan Pepparkakor
Use floured cookie cutters to shape cookies.
Place on baking sheets and bake until golden and crisp.
Vegan Pepparkakor
Peter in the kitchen making our family’s traditional pepparkakor.

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Vegan Pepparkakor (Ginger Cookies)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (15 votes, average: 4.73 out of 5)
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4.7 from 15 reviews

  • Author: The Plant-Powered Dietitian
  • Total Time: 24 hours (including chill time)
  • Yield: 6 dozen cookies
  • Diet: Vegan

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Description

This classic, generations-old recipe handed down through our family for classic Pepparkakor—Swedish Ginger Cookies—is made vegan with an easy swap. Thin and crispy, pepparkakor are a tradition during the Christmas holidays in Sweden.

Ingredients

  • 11 ounces (1 1/3 cup) vegan butter sticks (i.e., Miyoko’s)
  • 2 cups organic sugar
  • 1/3 cup light syrup*
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon cloves
  • 2 teaspoons cardamom
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons water
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour

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Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine room temperature vegan butter with sugar and syrup with an electric mixer until smooth.
  2. Mix in ginger, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and baking soda.
  3. Add water and most of the flour. Mix gently.
  4. Remove the dough from the bowl and mix in the rest of the flour by hand on the counter top. Wrap the dough in foil and let it rest for 24 hours in the refrigerator.
  5. Pinch off a small amount of the dough at a time, rolling it out very thin with a pastry roller on a lightly floured surface. Use floured cookie cutters to cut out shapes as desired.
  6. Preheat oven to 400 F. Spray baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray. Place cookies on baking sheets, leaving room between each cookie.
  7. Place the sheets in the middle of the oven and bake for about 5 minutes, or until the cookies are light brown in color.
  8. Remove from oven, and allow to cool on pan for a few minutes. Store in air-tight containers.

Notes

*Swedish light syrup isn’t maple syrup, it’s a sweet, cooking syrup. You can buy this at a Swedish food store, online, or even IKEA. If you can’t find it, the closest thing you can find in the U.S. is light corn syrup.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: Swedish

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 serving
  • Calories: 97
  • Sugar: 5 g
  • Sodium: 54 mg
  • Fat: 4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2 g
  • Carbohydrates: 14 g
  • Protein: 1 g

Keywords: holiday cookies, gingerbread, pepparkakor, ginger cookies

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Look for other vegan Swedish classic recipes here:

Swedish Vegan Waffles
Jansson’s Temptation (Swedish Potato Casserole)
Swedish Saffron Rolls
Swedish Beet Potato Apple Salad
Vegan Swedish Meatballs with Sauce

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Publisher: Sharon Palmer