These heart-shaped Chocolate Sugar Cookies are the vegan sugar cookies that chocolate lovers have been dreaming about! Deliciously soft, chewy, and decorated with a simple icing, they’re a must for Valentine’s Day, Christmas, or any other holiday.
You can never go wrong with a classic vegan sugar cookie. They’re soft, chewy, and so much fun to decorate. But for the chocolate lovers in your life, turn to these easy Chocolate Sugar Cookies instead!
Vegan chocolate sugar cookies are easy to make in one bowl and are just as much fun to decorate as they are to eat. They’re the perfect vegan Valentine’s Day cookies, cut into heart shapes and decorated with the 4-ingredient vegan icing. But you can easily customize them for any holiday, like Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day, and more.
Why you’ll love these cookies
- The best Valentine’s Day dessert: Homemade chocolate sugar cookies always show your loved ones how much you care. They won’t be able to resist the heart shapes and pink sprinkles on top!
- A beginner-friendly recipe: The sugar cookie dough comes together easily in one bowl using simple, pantry-staple ingredients. Both beginner and advanced bakers will have an easy time with this recipe.
- Adult and kid-friendly: It doesn’t matter the age of your Valentine – these chocolate cookies are easy to love!
Ingredients needed (with substitutions)
- Vegan butter – Miyoko’s is my vegan butter of choice when baking vegan cookies, but Earth Balance is another great option, as well as my homemade vegan butter.
- Sugar – Granulated sugar is best, but coconut sugar should also work well.
- Soy milk – Or use the unsweetened dairy free milk of your choice, like oat milk, cashew milk, or almond milk.
- Cornstarch – This gives the cookies a soft and chewy texture that’s ideal for rolling and cutting into shapes.
- Vanilla extract
- All purpose flour – I always have the best results with all purpose flour, but a 1:1 gluten free flour blend, like King Arthur and Better Batter, should work if you need the cookies to be gluten free.
- Cocoa powder – You need unsweetened, natural cocoa powder for the dough and for dusting your work surface.
- Baking powder
- Powdered sugar – To make the icing.
- Light corn syrup – This gives the sugar cookie icing a remarkable shine. Feel free to leave it out if you don’t have any at home.
How to make chocolate sugar cookies
Find the complete recipe with measurements in the recipe card below.
To begin, use an electric mixer to beat the vegan butter until smooth. Add the sugar and beat again until it’s light and fluffy. Next, add the soy milk, cornstarch, and vanilla, and mix to combine.
Now add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. You can use your hands to help the dough come together – it should feel like play dough when it’s ready.
Divide the dough in half and form it into two balls.
Lay a sheet of parchment paper on a flat surface and sprinkle with cocoa. Place one of the dough balls on top, sprinkle with more cocoa, and roll it out with a rolling pin. Lay a second piece of parchment on top.
Repeat with the other dough half, then place both cookie dough sheets in the fridge to chill.
Afterward, cut out heart shapes from the chilled dough using a cookie cutter and place them on a lined baking sheet. Bake the chocolate sugar cookies until the edges appear slightly firm (they may look underdone, but will firm up as they cool).
Make the icing while you wait for the cookies to cool.
How to make vegan sugar cookie icing
Find more customization and decorating ideas below.
Whisk the powdered sugar, vanilla, light corn syrup, and soy milk in a bowl until smooth. If the icing seems too thick, whisk in a splash of soy milk. Or, if it looks runny, mix in more powdered sugar until thickened.
Spread the icing onto the cooled cookies and add any decorations or sprinkles you like on top. Set the sugar cookies aside to harden, then enjoy!
Decorating tips and ideas
The cookies must be completely cool before you start decorating or else the icing will melt and slide off. From there, you’re free to decorate them as you wish:
- Pipe the icing: Instead of spreading the vegan royal icing on top with a spoon, transfer the icing to a piping bag with a very fine tip. This way, your designs can be more intricate and detailed.
- Add sprinkles: Customize the sprinkles you use for the time of year! Pink and white are perfect for Valentine’s Day, red and green for Christmas, and so on.
- Colorful icing: Fold in 2 to 3 drops of the vegan food coloring of your choice. Watkins brand is vegan-friendly, as are some of the Wilton gel-based colors.
- Let them harden: Remember, the icing will take several hours to harden completely, so wait to stack them in a storage container until then.
- Properly measure the flour by spooning it into the measuring cup and leveling off the top with the back of a knife. If you don’t correctly measure the flour, you can end up with too much and the dough will be dry!
- Only mix the dough until the ingredients are just starting to come together. If it looks crumbly in the bowl but feels like play dough in your hands, it’s perfect. If it’s too dry, mix in a splash of soy milk.
- Chilling the dough in the fridge for at least 1 hour is key to cutting clean shapes that don’t fall apart.
- Roll each dough half to an even ¼-inch thickness. This way, the cookies will be soft and pudgy with crisp, delicate edges. If you prefer crispier sugar cookies, roll the dough thinner.
Frequently asked questions
Yes! These chocolate sugar cookies aren’t limited to sugar cookie icing. Vegan vanilla buttercream is a classic, or you can double the chocolate with my chocolate buttercream. Find even more flavor ideas in my Vegan Buttercream Frosting recipe.
The decorated sugar cookies will last for up to 5 days when stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
The cookies can be frozen without any icing on top or with icing. Transfer the cookies to a freezer-safe container and freeze them for up to 3 months.
Want more Valentine’s Day desserts?
- Vegan Chocolate Cake
- Strawberry Cupcakes
- Vegan Chocolate Cookies
- Raspberry Brownies
- Vegan Strawberry Cake
Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Make the cookies
- In a large bowl either using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the vegan butter for about 1 minute until creamy and smooth. Add the sugar and beat on high speed for 2-3 minutes until fluffy and light.
- Now add in the soy milk, cornstarch and vanilla. Beat on high until it is all fully combined, about 1 minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Add the flour to the wet mixture. Sprinkle the cocoa, baking powder and salt on top of the flour. Mix on low speed, until just combined. The dough should feel similar to play dough when you work it in your hands, but it may look crumbly in the bowl. If it's really dry, add another tablespoon of two of milk.
- Using a spatula, scoop all of the dough out of the bowl; use your hands if needed to push it all together. Divide the dough in half and roll into two balls.
- On a flat surface, add a sheet of parchment paper. Sprinkle a little cocoa on it, then add half the dough. Sprinkle a little cocoa on top of the dough, and roll it out to about 1/4 inch thickness. Place a sheet of parchment paper on top. Repeat for the second ball of dough, and then stack them with parchment paper. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or overnight.
- Once the dough has been chilled, set it on the counter for 10-20 minutes while the oven is preheating to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Cut into desired shapes using a cookie cutter and place them on the prepared baking sheets. Continue re-rolling the dough until it is all used.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, in the middle rack of the oven. They will appear underdone, but they will firm up considerably as they cool. Let them cool for 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to let cool completely before icing.
Make the icing and decorate
- Whisk all icing ingredients in a bowl. If it seems too thick, add a little more almond milk. It should be smooth, glossy and not runny. If too runny, add more powdered sugar. Spread onto cookies.
- Decorate with sprinkles as desired. The icing will take several hours to harden completely. The cookies will stay soft for about 5 days at room temperature.
- Any dairy free milk can be used in place of soy milk.
- I haven’t tested them gluten free, but a quality gluten free mix may work.
- To correctly measure flour, make sure to spoon and level by scooping the flour into the measuring cup with a spoon and level it off with the back of a knife. If you don’t correctly measure the flour, you can end up with way too much flour and the dough will be dry!
- The cookies will keep at room temperature for 4-5 days and can also be frozen.