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Vegan Holiday Sweet Treats: 10 Ingredients, 8 Tools, and 41 Recipes You Need to Sleigh the Holiday Season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year—

time for vegan baking! 

So crank up the holiday music, don your favorite apron, and get your mixing bowls out…

Because it’s time to create your favorite vegan holiday sweet treats. 

The holiday season is a great time to mix in old traditions with the new, 

And guess what?

Baking is the best way to do it. 

If you want to make this holiday season the best yet, then stick around!

Here’s what we’ll be going over: 

  • Holiday Baking Tradition: Why Baking is Magical 
  • Baking 101: 10 Vegan Ingredients To Stock Up On
  • Your Baking Toolkit: 8 Tools You’ll Need to Get Started
  • 41 Vegan Holiday Sweet Treats to Bake This Season

Ready? 

Let’s go! 

Holiday Baking Tradition: Why Baking is Magical

There is a reason that baking during the holiday season feels so nostalgic and magical—

This tradition has stretched across hundreds of years!

In the present day, it’s pretty common to eat some treats and cookies all year round. 

However—

this wasn’t always the case. 

In many cultures, people would only bake sweet treats around the holidays as a delicious way to mark the holiday season. 

Since many of the unique ingredients used in baking were expensive— 

this was the one time a year when families would spring for them, 

making it extra special. 

Across all traditions—

it isn’t common to find a holiday recipe that is also vegan. 

But don’t worry!

After reading this article, you’ll be able to veganize any recipe so that you can indulge this holiday season. 

Baking 101: 10 Vegan Ingredients To Stock Up On

If you are new to baking—

Welcome to the community!

Be warned: 

Once you start whipping up vegan dessert recipes, it may be impossible to stop experimenting in the kitchen. 

Here are the best ingredients to stock up on: 

All-Purpose Flour

If you are gluten-free, try stocking up on Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 flour

Store your flour in your pantry where it can stay both cool and dry. 

Baking Soda

You probably already have this ingredient lurking on your shelves!

Baking soda acts as a powerful rising agent for your recipes. 

Baking Powder

Make sure not to confuse this with your baking soda, they serve a different purpose. 

Baking powder will help increase the volume of your dish, as well as give it a light and fluffy texture.

Cocoa Powder

If you’re a chocolate-fiend—

Then you won’t want to miss out on this ingredient! 

This brand of cocoa powder is naturally vegan and gluten-free. 

Butter Substitute

For baking, you may want to use different vegan butter substitutes than you would in cooking. 

Here are few options to have on hand: 

  • Vegan butter
  • Applesauce
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive oil
  • Mashed banana
  • Mashed Avocado

These ingredients will help lock in the moisture for your dessert. 

Apple Cider Vinegar

This tangy ingredient not only adds flavor to your dish, but will help activate the baking soda in your recipe. 

Plant Milk

For vegan baking, you’ll want to have extra plant milk on hand. 

Choose your favorite from the variety of options: 

  • Coconut milk
  • Cashew milk (great for creamy recipes!)
  • Oat milk
  • Soy milk
  • Almond milk

Sugar, Sugar, Sugar!

To add a little sweetness to your baking, you’ll need sugar. 

Here are the different types you will need: 

  • Powdered sugar (also known as confectioners sugar)
  • Brown sugar
  • Granulated sugar 

While most sugar does not use animal-derived ingredients, some brands still use bone char when refining the sugar. 

Here are a few brands that you can purchase from that are vegan-friendly: 

Other Sweeteners 

For an additional sweetener option that will help maintain the moisture in your baking, try these vegan friendly options: 

  • Maple syrup
  • Agave nectar

Vanilla Extract

This tried-and-true ingredient stands the test of time!

Use this extract to transform the flavor of your vegan cakes and cookies. 

Your Baking Toolkit: 8 Tools You’ll Need to Get Started

Now that your pantry and fridge are fully stocked—

You’ll need the essential baking tools!

Having the right tools can really make or break a recipe, so invest in quality items to start out. 

Measuring Cups

As they say, “Cooking is an art and baking is a science.” 

This phrase couldn’t be more true!

Whether or not your vegan chocolate cake is fluffy and delicious or a hardened rock all comes down to measuring out your ingredients. 

Make sure you have liquid and dry measuring cups ready to go in your kitchen. 

Wooden Spoons

You’ll need wooden spoons to stir in ingredients. 

The more important reason you need spoons? 

Taste testing. 

Spatula

When looking for the perfect spatula for baking—

Try to get one with the thinnest metal so that it doesn’t crumble your baking goods. 

Whisk

Nothing beats a whisk when it comes to mixing up ingredients to perfection! 

Rolling Pin

If you are making anything with dough—

You’ll need a rolling pin

Knives

Investing in a quality knife set is going to transform your life!

For baking specifically—

Make sure you have a paring knife and a chef’s knife handy. 

Baking Pans

Before you start your recipe, make sure you have the baking pans to back it up!

Buying a bakeware set is all you’ll need. 

Parchment Paper

Having a grease-proof and heat resistant barrier between your treat and the pan is essential for not destroying the base of your dessert! 

You can buy regular parchment paper at any grocery store for this. 

For a zero-waste option, check out this non-stick baking mat from Earthsider. 

One-Bowl Vegan Sugar Cookies from Minimalist Baker

41 Vegan Holiday Sweet Treats to Bake This Season 

Just thinking about the classic flavors of the holiday season will make your mouth water… 

Spiced gingerbread, 

decadent chocolate, 

and refreshing peppermint! 

Whether you’re baking a classic recipe or using these flavors in a whole new way, your tastebuds will thank you. 

Here is the complete list of vegan holiday desserts to whip up for the holiday season. 

Classic Holiday Recipes: 

Most traditional holiday recipes are not vegan-friendly by nature. 

Thanks to the help of these vegan bakers and influencers, you can now enjoy all of your favorite holiday sweet treats with complete ease of mind! 

Just reading the names of these recipes will have you reminiscing about happy holiday memories. 

  1. To kick things off, we have to give out the best vegan hot chocolate recipe from the Vegan 8! Top it off with a bit of dairy-free whip cream and shaved dark chocolate for the perfect cup of cocoa. 
  2. Decorating gingerbread cookies has been a tradition for generations. This vegan recipe from Connoisseurus Veg is delectable. 
  3. This vegan snickerdoodle recipe is a cinnamon lover’s dream! 
  4. The minimalist baker keeps it simple with this one-bowl vegan sugar cookie recipe
  5. Rich and creamy molasses cookies are the perfect treat on a snowy afternoon. 
  6. Go Dairy Free has a scrumptious holiday fudge recipe that just happens to be vegan. 
  7. For anyone celebrating Hanukkah this year, these star spelt cookies will melt in your mouth. 
  8. You can’t celebrate Hanukkah without these jelly doughnuts! Tablet Mag has the perfect vegan recipe for traditional sufganiyot
  9. Who doesn’t love a glass of eggless eggnog? Create Mindfully has a rich, creamy, and spiced recipe to enjoy. 

Almond Shortbread Cookies from Natalie of Feasting on Fruit

Vegan Holiday Cookies: 

Baking and decorating holiday cookies is a beloved tradition by families across the world! 

It’s easy to understand why—

Cookies are basically little bites of happiness. 

They are versatile, and they taste just as good as they look. 

Here are the best holiday cookie recipes to try: 

  1. These jam-filled vegan thumbprint cookies by Vegan Huggs look like little ornaments on your table. 
  2. These classic crinkle cookies from Nora Cooks are rich, fudgy, and a total crowd pleaser. 
  3. If you want a slightly more festive cookie option for your dessert table, this red velvet crinkle cookie recipe by My Darling Vegan will add some flair! . 
  4. Filled with pecans and rolled in powdered sugar, these snowball cookies by Nora Cooks are too much fun. 
  5. Shortbread cookies are often overlooked, but once you try this delicious and simple recipe for almond shortbread cookies by Feasting on Fruit, you’ll never go back. 
  6. For a refreshing holiday treat, this quick and easy vegan white chocolate cranberry cookies from Wow It’s Veggie. 
  7. These almond butter blossoms by The Vegan 8 are an absolute classic that the whole family will love! 
  8. These butter cookies by I love vegan can be dipped and sprinkled with different ingredients like pistachios and candy cane for the perfect touch. 
  9. Vegan peppermint patties are the holiday cookie that no one can turn down. This recipe by Delightful Adventures keeps it simple with only 5 ingredients. 

Healthy Holiday Sweet Treats: 

If you are looking for a holiday treat to enjoy that is healthy for you—

then look no further. 

You can snack on these healthy holiday treats all season long: 

  1. Put this healthy dark chocolate bark with salted caramel, peanut butter, and pretzel out to graze on until New Years. 
  2. Protein and peppermint is going to be your new favorite combo! These no-bake chocolate peppermint protein balls by Veggies Don’t Bite are addictingly delicious.
  3. These coconut bliss balls by Cinnamon and Coriander are healthy, and they look like little snow balls. 
  4. 40 Aprons created a paleo turtle bar recipe that is the perfect bite of nutty sweetness. 

No-Churn Candy Cane Ice Cream from Emma of Plentyfull Vegan

Holiday Ice Cream and Puddings: 

Rich and creamy ice cream and pudding recipes are the stuff of dreams. 

These holiday treats are super creative! You’ll need to try a new one every night of the week. 

  1. You’ve heard of gingerbread cookies, but how about some gingerbread nice cream to end your evening? 
  2. Top this vegan eggnog pudding recipe by Go Dairy Free with some cinnamon and nutmeg for the perfect spiced treat. 
  3. Rabbit and Wolves recreates the traditional sticky toffee pudding recipe to taste out of this world. 
  4. You’ll have guests fighting over this no-churn candy cane ice cream by Plenty Full Vegan. 
  5. Perhaps the best kept secret this holiday season is this ginger switchel float recipe with cinnamon ice cream by Spabettie. 

Holiday Pies and Cakes: 

If you are looking to flex your baking muscles this year-- 

crafting a holiday pie or cake is the perfect way to challenge yourself!

Check out these vegan pie and cake recipes that will blow your guests away:

  1. There might not be a dessert that is cuter than these mini pecan pies by the Yummy Mummy Kitchen. 
  2. This vegan cheesecake recipe by Vegan Blueberry is positively picturesque with its dark chocolate and raspberry drizzle. 
  3. For a twist on classic flavors, try making these gingerbread cupcakes with eggnog frosting by The Baking Fairy. 
  4. A moist chocolate cake infused with peppermint and mocha? Say no more! 
  5. For a unique dessert that will stand apart, whip up this vegan cranberry orange loaf cake by Neurotic Mommy. 
  6. Traditionally served during Kwanzaa, this sweet potato pie from Yup, It’s Vegan hits the spot. 
  7. Pecans, caramel, and cashew cream cheese make this holiday cheesecake recipe by A Handful of Thyme absolutely to die for. 
  8. The Almond Eater has the perfect understated cake recipe for a vanilla cake with spiced chai icing

Holiday Recipes that Kids Will Love: 

The holidays are a perfect time to create special traditions and memories with your kids. 

Not only is it a way to spend some time with them, it also teaches them important life lessons. 

Here are just a few: 

  • Time management
  • Measuring skills
  • Fine motor skills
  • Encourages collaboration

Not only that, but it will boost your child’s self-esteem to move around the kitchen with confidence and have added responsibilities. 

These holiday recipes are all treats that your child will enjoy making, and eating:

  1. Rabbit and Wolves has the perfect recipe for Santa’s trash cookies
  2. Your kids will have endless fun decorating these gluten-free and oil-free sugar cookies by The Vegan 8.
  3. Who doesn’t love a bit of chocolate? These gluten-free holiday treats by Veggies Don’t Bite have ooey-gooey chocolate and a hint of peppermint. 
  4. Want the perfect cookie to go along with a cup of hot cocoa? Look no further than these vegan s’more cookies by Purely Kaylie. 
  5. For even the pickiest eater, give this peanut butter cookie recipe by A Virtual Vegan a try. 
  6. This holiday treat recipe list wouldn’t be complete without this fun reindeer hot chocolate bomb recipe from The Little Blog of Vegan. 

Vegan Holiday Sweet Treats for Everyone

Create a little joy this holiday season by trying out some of these holiday sweet treat recipes. 

Now you know everything you need to know about vegan baking to make the yummiest holiday treats: 

  • The ingredients to keep stocked in your pantry
  • The baking equipment you’ll need
  • Dozens of new recipes to try ASAP! 

Whether you want to keep it simple and traditional, or really challenge your baking skills, there is a vegan holiday recipe that everyone can enjoy. 

Want more vegan tips about the holiday season? 

Check out our complete vegan holiday gift guide!

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