With this simple homemade cookie recipe you can bake the best vegan cinnamon stars (German Zimtsterne) for the Christmas holiday season! These cookies are perfect not only as a holiday snack, but also for decorating Christmas cakes and pies! They are flour-less, naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, and made without eggs and butter.
What are Cinnamon Stars?
These delightful star-shaped cookies are one of Germany’s traditional Christmas cookies called “Zimtsterne“. Every time the holiday season rolls in, you will see plenty of these in bakeries and grocery stores, among other Christmas treats, or in German “Weihnachtsgebäck”.
However, nothing beats the aroma of Grandma‘s freshly baked homemade cinnamon cookies! It will fill your home with warmth and cheer that one can only associate with the merriest time of the year!
A Vegan Christmas Cookie Recipe
Most of the Christmas cookies you will find require either the use of eggs or dairy to make them. Not to be left out of enjoying my favorite holiday cookies, I made this eggless and dairy-free version of Grandma’s Zimtsterne. They are sweet, nutty, and filled with cinnamon goodness in every bite! The lemon glaze adds a touch of brightness and tart that makes it even more addicting!
This recipe makes about 40 cute star cookies, depending on size of your cookie cutter. However, that is plenty enough to use some to decorate a Chocolate Cookie Butter Cake to serve on a cozy afternoon party and place the rest in your cookie jar to enjoy every time you are craving a sweet snack. Enjoy them with your favorite tea and coffee.
For the Cookies
- Ground hazelnuts and ground almonds: also known as hazelnut flour and almond flour – using this instead of wheat flour makes these cookies gluten-free and gives them a nutty flavor.
- Ground cinnamon: nothing brings the taste and aroma of Christmas better than this spice with its warm, woodsy, and citrusy blend of flavors.
- Powdered sugar: sweetens the cookies and gives them a tender and chewy texture.
- Sea salt: a sprinkling of salt will intensify the flavors of nuts and cinnamon.
- Lemon juice: adds a bright and citrusy flavor.
- Water: to bring the dough together.
For the Glaze
- Powdered sugar
- Lemon juice
How to make Cinnamon Stars
As always, I recommend checking out this step-by-step instruction and the recipe video first. Then you‘ll find the full recipe with exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Make the cookie dough
Start by whisking together ground hazelnuts, ground almonds, powdered sugar, ground cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. Then add the lemon juice, and water and knead with your hands (or use a food processor) into a sticky cookie dough. Form the dough to a disc, wrap tightly in cling foil and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Step 2: Cut out cinnamon stars
On a piece of cling foil, roll out the dough to be about ¼-inch (0,6 cm) thick. Use a star cookie cutter to cut out cookies. Transfer them to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400 °F (200 °C) for about 6-8 minutes, or until slightly crisp on the edges. Then allow to cool completely.
Step 3: Make the Lemon Glaze
In a measuring cup, stir together the powdered sugar, lemon juice and water to form a thick paste. Brush the cookies with the glaze and allow it to harden. Dust with powdered sugar or sprinkle with a pinch of cinnamon as desired and enjoy!
Tips when Making Cinnamon Stars
- If you can’t find ground hazelnuts or almonds, simply grind whole nuts in a food processor (or pulse the nuts in a blender) until you get the right consistency. Please take care not to over-blend the nuts, or you may end up with nut butter.
- Flatten the dough evenly as much as possible. Use a rolling pin to achieve this. You do not want cookies that are unevenly baked.
- The baking time depends on the power of your oven and the sizes of your stars. Make sure to adjust the baking time accordingly. You will know that they are done when the edges turn brown and crisp.
- Allow the cookies to rest on the baking sheet for a few minutes to set before transferring them to a cooling rack. They will still be soft and pliant right after baking. Moving might cause them to tear or be deformed.
- Make sure that the cookies are completely cooled before adding the glaze. Adding glaze to warm cookies will melt into the cookie instead of forming a layer on top.
- Decorate your vegan Christmas cookies with a sprinkling of cinnamon or some colorful sprinkles if you like.
How to store cookies
Homemade cinnamon stars will keep for up to a month! Once the cookies have cooled after baking, you can put them in an airtight jar or cookie jar and store them at room temperature. If they get too hard, you can do the “apple trick” by placing a piece of apple in the cookie tin. This will release moisture into the cookies, making them softer again. You can also freeze the cookies for 3 months.
These Cinnamon Star Cookies are:
- Naturally gluten-free
- Soft and chewy with crispy edges
- Easy to make
- Perfect for gift giving
- Perfect for cake decorating!
More easy vegan cookie recipe to try
- Vanilla Crescent Cookies
- Vegan Linzer Cookies
- Gingerbread Cookies
- Pecan Pie Bars
- Oatmeal Cookies
- Apple Hand Pies
- Vegan Almond Horns
- Vegan Nut Bars
- Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
- Peanut Butter Chickpea Cookie Dough Pretzel Bites
If you try this easy vegan cinnamon stars cookie recipe, feel free to leave me a comment and a star rating! And if you share a photo of your yummy Christmas cookies on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka because I love seeing your creations! Happy baking! 🙂
Vegan Cinnamon Star CookiesAuthor:
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- 1 cup (100 g) ground hazelnuts hazelnut flour
- ¾ cup (75 g) ground almonds almond flour
- ½ cup (60 g) powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch of sea salt
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp of water
- ½ cup (60 g) powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice or water
*Note: Check out the recipe video + step-by-step pictures as well as tips in the post above!
- In a bowl, whisk together ground hazelnuts, ground almonds, powdered sugar, ground cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. Add the lemon juice, and water. Knead with your hands (or use a food processor) to form a sticky cookie dough.
- Form the dough to a disc, wrap tightly in cling film and refrigerate for 1 hour, or until firm enough to work with.
- Preheat oven to 400 °F (200 °C).
- On a piece of cling film, roll out the dough to be about ¼-inch (0,6 cm) thick.
- Use a star cookie cutter to cut out cookies. Transfer them to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for about 6-8 minutes, or until slightly crisp on the edges.
- Once the cookies are done baking, allow to cool completely before adding the glaze.
- In a measuring cup, stir together the powdered sugar, lemon juice and water to form a thick paste.
- Brush the cookies with the glaze and allow it to harden. Dust with powdered sugar or sprinkle with a pinch of cinnamon as desired and enjoy!
- If you can’t find hazelnut and almond flour at a store, you can grind whole nuts in a food processor (or blender) into flour. However, please be careful not to over-blend the nuts or you may create nut butter.
- Depending on the size of your cookie cutter ,you get more or less cookies. I used a star cookie cutter with a diameter of 1.7-inch (4.2 cm) and got 40 cookies from the quantity.
- This recipe was first published here: Chocolate Cookie Butter Cake.
- More information about the recipe, including tips for storing and freezing are mentioned in the blog post above!
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