Vegan Gingerbread Biscuits
Gingerbread is one of our favourite things to eat at Christmas. This need for festive gingerbread probably started about 20 years ago, when we were first introduced to the German Lebkuchen-style. Since then, having a packet of gingerbreads in the cupboard at Christmas has been essential. But, I love to bake and try to create as much home-made as I can. And, as I seem to have well-stocked cupboards with plenty of baking ingredients, it seems silly to go out and spend money on something that I can easily make at home.
Cooking from scratch also means that I know exactly what we are eating and can therefore avoid any ingredients that don’t necessarily agree with my tummy – like eggs. So, I’ve developed this Vegan Christmas Gingerbread recipe which (if I say so myself) is so good, you wouldn’t know that the gingerbreads were vegan! You don’t miss the butter, nor the egg. It’s a lovely treacly, spiced biscuit that has a soft centre and spicy, crispy edges. Before deciding whether you want to make these easy Christmas Gingerbreads, have a read of our frequently asked questions below.
Before we get onto the recipe, here are the answers to any questions you may have before deciding to attempt this recipe for Vegan Christmas Gingerbread.
I’m not vegan, can I still use this Christmas Gingerbread recipe?
If you don’t have vegan butter in the fridge, then just use a standard, unsalted block butter. I would recommend using butter over a cooking spread. The taste will be so much better and the biscuits will keep better for longer.
What texture does the Vegan Christmas Gingerbread have?
The texture very much depends on the bake time. If you prefer a softer bake, then go for a bake time of around 8 minutes, for something a little more crunchy go for around 12 minutes.
How many biscuits does this Christmas Gingerbread recipe make?
Obviously, is all depends on the size of your cutter, but we made around 25 biscuits from the recipe which ranged from the largest size of 10cm to the smallest that was around 4cm.
How long will the Vegan Christmas Gingerbread keep?
The Vegan Gingerbread will keep nicely stored in a sealed tin in a cool, dark place for a good couple of weeks. Using butter will ensure the gingerbreads will keep longer.
Is this recipe for Christmas Gingerbread one that I can make-ahead and freeze?
Whilst I think there’s nothing nicer than straight-out-of-the-oven freshly baked gingerbreads, you can make ahead and freeze. Freeze baked gingerbreads once they have cooled. Flash-freeze the biscuits first in a single layer on a baking tray lined with baking (or greaseproof) paper. Once they’re frozen you can transport them to a bag or freezer safe container.
Can I make this recipe for Vegan Gingerbread gluten free?
We’ve not tried and tested a gluten free option, but normally it’s simple to convert standard self-raising flour by using the same amount of gluten free self-raising flour with a teaspoon of xanthan gum.
Will the Gingerbread be sturdy enough to hang on my Christmas tree?
When developing this Christmas Gingerbread recipe we were mindful that as well as ensuring they were really tasty, we wanted them to be robust enough to be used as decorations around the home. To make a decent hole to thread some string through we used the end of a straw which was the perfect size.
How can I make these Christmas Gingerbread special?
It’s easy to make our Vegan Christmas Gingerbread recipe really special. It’s all down to the decoration. For extra flavour, we recommend making the icing with the syrup from the jar of stem ginger. It actually tones down the sweetness of the icing. Using this method makes the icing the same consistency you need for perfect icing. You could also add some silver balls, edible glitter or shimmer spray to make the gingerbreads that little but special.
Vegan Gingerbread Recipe
- 150 g Vegan Butter diced
- 120 g Light Brown Sugar
- 2 tsp Ground Ginger
- 3 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp Ground Allspice
- 50 g Black Treacle
- 3 balls Stem Ginger in Syrup roughly chopped in food processor
- 3 tbsp Stem Ginger Syrup from the jar
- 380 g Plain Flour
- 3/4 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- Sieved Icing Sugar
- Stem Ginger Syrup
- Place all ingredients with the exception of the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a heavy weight bottomed saucepan.
- Heat gently to melt the butter and sugar. Stir well throughout.
- Add in the bicarbonate of soda and whisk until smooth. Don't be surprised if it fizzes up a little.
- Add the flour to the mixture and fold in until it is well combined.
- Wrap the dough into cling film (it may be quite soft at this point). Place in the fridge and chill for 2 hours until it is firm enough to roll out.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C /180°C Fan / Gas 5.
- Line baking trays with baking paper – this prevents the gingerbreads from sticking and saves washing up!
- Remove the dough from the fridge and roll out to around 5mm thick. Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes from the dough.
- Place the uncooked biscuits onto the trays,leaving a little space between each biscuit to allow for spreading.
- Place the baking trays and biscuits back in the fridge and chill for around 15 minutes.
- Bake in the oven for around 8 – 12 minutes. If you prefer a soft bake, reduce time to around 8 minutes, for more crunchy go for 12 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool on the trays for 5 minutes. Then, using a straw or skewer, pierce a hole at the top of the biscuits whilst still warm so that the ribbon can be threaded through later on. Don't leave doing the holes until they're cold as it's much easier to do whilst they're still warm. Place onto a wire rack so that they cool thoroughly.
- Once cooled, ice and decorate the biscuits then tie the ribbon through the holes so that they are ready to hang onto your Christmas tree.