Grain-Free Cookie Cutter Cookies and Homemade Grain-Free Powdered Sugar!

Yesterday we were snowed in. We are still sort of snowed in today, but might be able to leave the house later on. We all have cabin fever, even the dog. I’d say even the cats, but they haven’t been outside since they were born and have no interest in it, so that’s doubtful.

If you haven’t noticed, Bill and I don’t have set work hours, which means we are working pretty much all the time… so when we are snowed in on a Saturday, it’s still a work day. Most Saturdays are work days for us, and today is Sunday and again a work day… but anyway… you get the point. Yesterday I was bored, and I didn’t feel like working. It was cold and snowing, so I decided to make cookies. Lets be real. I was bored and snowed in, so I wanted to eat a treat. So I made cookies. I’ve been wanting to work on a new recipe for cookie cutter cookies that are as close to sugar cookies as possible using grain-free flours. Creating a grain-free sugar cookie is really challenging for one specific reason. You need less moisture in the batter for the grain-free dough roll out and not get sticky and messy, but that will often result in the texture of shortbread. Hard and dense. Not light and fluffy, like sugar cookies should be. Bummer, right?

paleo sugar cookies-1


If you follow our friend Brittany Angell, you may have seen that she recently posted an amazing recipe for sugar cookies using coconut flour. This amazed me. I don’t really like baking with coconut flour because I always feel so limited in what I can do with it (cupcakes, cakes, or muffins only), but Brittany has found a way to master the art of baking with coconut flour, being the gluten-free baking expert that she is. She has given me a few tips and tricks. Not a ton, but enough that I could try to create a new cookie recipe using coconut flour. I did add chestnut flour to this recipe (Brittany also turned me on to chestnut flour – thanks Britt!!), so that I wouldn’t feel like I was totally copying her sugar cookie recipe, even though I haven’t ever seen her sugar cookie recipe.


paleo sugar cookies-4



The cookies turned out great! I wasn’t so sure I loved them at first, but I just had one again today (I’m telling myself I had to for all of you), and I feel like they are even better than yesterday! I’m really surprised. They do have a bit of a maple flavor to them, which is expected when using maple sugar to sweeten, but it’s pretty mild. For frosting, I used a new recipe for dairy-free buttercream frosting. I recently made homemade powdered sugar with coconut sugar, and maple sugar (separately), and it turned out great! Powdered sugar is the key ingredient to making traditional buttercream frosting (besides the butter of course), and since real powdered sugar is not grain-free, I really wanted to take a shot at making it from scratch with an alternative sugar. I’m not so sure powdered maple sugar would work well for something like macaroons, but I definitely would like to try sometime.

I also used India Tree sprinkles to decorate the cookies. They were so cute. Perfect for a Paleo-friendly Valentines Day treat! This recipe would be great for Christmas tree cookies, Birthday cookies, or any other type of cut out cookie you’d like to make.



Grain-Free Cookie Cutter Cookies

These cookies cut beautifully to make any shape for any holiday or special occasion. They are light and fluffy, a great grain-free alternative to sugar cookies!

Serves: 12

Serves: 12decrease servingsincrease servings



Note, these instructions are written assuming the standard serving size, since you have modified the number of servings, these steps may need to be modified for best results
  1. Preheat the oven to bake at 350 degrees, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add the coconut flour, 3/4 cup of the arrowroot flour, chestnut flour, baking powder, sea salt, and granulated maple sugar. Stir to combine all ingredients evenly.
  3. In a small mixing bowl, blend the eggs and vanilla extract with a hand mixer.
  4. Pour the eggs and vanilla into the dry ingredients and blend with the hand mixer until smooth.
  5. Melt the palm shortening over medium-low heat until it is melted enough that it will blend evenly into the cookie batter. If it is extremely hot, allow it to cool slightly before adding it to the batter. Once it is added to the batter, blend again with the hand mixer until smooth.
  6. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the counter top, and dust with arrowroot flour.
  7. Form the cookie dough into a ball, dusting with the remaining 1/4 cup of arrowroot flour, until the dough is stiff enough to work with.
  8. Place the dough onto the flour dusted parchment, and press the ball of dough down to flatten it with your hands.
  9. Dust the top of the dough with a little more arrowroot, and place another sheet of parchment on top.
  10. Roll the dough into a thin layer, about 3/8 inch thick, and use your choice of cookie cutter shape for the cookies. You can also dust the cookie cutter with arrowroot to prevent sticking.
  11. Carefully peel away the extra dough after cutting, and reserve for the next batch.
  12. Using a spatula, carefully transfer the cookies to your parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat the cookie cutting process until you have enough cookies evenly spaced on the parchment lined baking sheet for baking.
  13. Bake for 10 minutes, and remove from the oven to cool. Repeat with remaining cookies.
  14. Once the cookies are cooled, frost and decorate as desired.


When I first made the dough, I used a 1/4 cup of coconut flour, and tried to make the dough "stiff enough" to work with, buy adding more arrowroot flour. Once I added the additional coconut flour, it worked perfectly. You may or may not need the extra 1/4 cup of arrowroot at the end to be able to roll the dough out well. Use your best judgement. Once I make this recipe again I will revise.

Dairy-Free Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (version 2)

This light and fluffy buttercream frosting is a great non-dairy alternative to traditional buttercream frosting. Enjoy it on cakes, cupcakes, or cookies!

Serves: 24

Serves: 24decrease servingsincrease servings



Note, these instructions are written assuming the standard serving size, since you have modified the number of servings, these steps may need to be modified for best results
  1. In a large mixing bowl, or standing kitchen mixer, whip powdered sugar into the palm shortening.
  2. Add the vanilla extract, and continue to whip until the frosting is light and fluffy. About 5 minutes.
  3. Use immediately, or refrigerate until use.


Palm shortening is a lot softer than butter, so this frosting will not work well for decorative piping, but works beautifully for regular frosting. You can add India Tree sprinkles for a cute and yummy look to your baked goods!


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    1. lesliew
      February 9, 2014

      I know I see this question often asked, but do you think there is a substitute for the nut flours? Or would that keep them from being able to be rolled out and cut? Thanks

    2. aimeechristian12607
      February 12, 2014

      How’d you get your frosting that pink color? When I’ve made my own powdered sugar using coconut flour, my frosting turned out a caramel color and I couldn’t get it to change to anything other than brown or rust. Any tips? đŸ™‚ Thank you!

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