Vegan Snowball Cookies

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Grab some extra napkins because these vegan snowball cookies are sweet, buttery, studded with pecans and covered in a delicate powdered sugar coating. Perfect for the holidays and easy to make with just 6 ingredients!

Full disclosure: regular old snowball cookies are almost vegan. These little powdered sugar coated shortbread cookies (which might also be referred to as Mexican wedding cookies or Russian tea cakes, depending on who you ask) are made with really simple ingredients, and eggs aren’t one of them.

It’s not that hard to find a basic recipe for snowballs and make it vegan with a few adjustments.

I put this out there because I know I’ll get at least one person commenting or emailing me asking why I bothered with this recipe. I have good reasons!

For one thing, it’s a delicious snowball recipe. Your grandma would agree. For another thing, maybe you didn’t realize snowballs are so easy to veganize. Now you do! And finally, not everyone will know what swaps need to be made and which ingredients to look out for in particular. There are two, and we’ll talk a bit about them below.

So, now that you’re armed all this knowledge, what are you going to do? Bake up some vegan snowballs, of course! They make excellent Christmas cookies.

Jump to:
  • Ingredients You’ll Need
  • How They’re Made
  • Leftovers & Storage
  • More Vegan Holiday Cookies
  • Vegan Snowball Cookies

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Vegan butter. Look for this near the regular butter at your supermarket. I used Earth Balance.
  • Organic powdered sugar. This is the ingredient you need to look out for! In many areas including the U.S. conventional sugar is processed using animal bone char, so it’s not considered vegan. For this reason we want to make sure to use organic powdered sugar, which is processed differently, without animal products.
  • Vanilla extract.
  • Flour. We’re using all-purpose flour, also known as wheat flour or white flour. I haven’t tested the recipe with other varieties, so I can’t say if they’ll work.
  • Salt.
  • Pecans. Feel free to leave these out if they’re not your thing, or substitute another type of nut, such as walnuts, almonds or hazelnuts.

How They’re Made

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you’d like to skip right to the recipe!

  • Start by using an electric mixer to cream room temperature vegan butter together with powdered sugar. Make sure your butter is at room temperature before you begin, and beat the mixture until it’s creamy. You can use a handheld mixer or stand mixer for this step — it’s up to you!
  • Now beat the vanilla into the mixture.
  • Begin beating flour into the mixture. Add the flour in 3 or 4 increments, beating each one in at low speed before adding the next.
  • Sprinkle the salt over the last addition of flour before you beat it in.

Tip: The cookie dough will look pretty crumbly at this point. This is okay! Test it by pressing some together with your hands. As long as it holds together, it’s fine!

  • Stir in finely chopped pecans by hand.
  • Roll the dough into balls, using about 1 tablespoon of dough for each ball.

Tip: A one-tablespoon cookie scoop is a great tool for getting nice rounded dough balls that are uniform in size.

  • Arrange the dough balls on parchment paper-lined baking sheets and bake the cookies until they darken ever so slightly.
  • Place the cookie sheets onto cooling racks once they come out of the oven. Let the cookies cool for five minutes, then roll them in powdered sugar and place them directly on the cooling racks.
  • Now let the cookies cool completely. Once they’re cool (which should take 30 to 40 minutes), roll them in powdered sugar for a second time.
  • Your vegan snowball cookies are now ready to enjoy!

Tip: The first coating of powdered sugar might not stick that great, and some of it will certainly melt into the cookies. Don’t worry! The second coating will hold up much better.

Leftovers & Storage

Vegan snowball cookies will keep in airtight container at room temperature for at least a week, or in the freezer for about 3 months.

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