With chocolate chips stirred into a buttery sugar base, chocolate chip cookies are likely the most popular drop cookies in the US. But with one cup of butter and two eggs, the original Toll House recipe doesn’t work for vegans and alpha gals who cannot tolerate dairy. That’s where these 12 vegan chocolate chip cookie recipes come to your rescue!
The information provided on this site is based on my personal experience living with alpha-gal syndrome. I cite and link to expert sources as often as possible, but because I have an MBA (and not an MD), nothing published on this site should be perceived as medical advice as I’m clearly lacking the letters required on my diploma to be a physician.
Is there anything closer to a mother’s hug than a warm chocolate chip cookie and a tall glass of cold milk? These recipes for vegan chocolate chip cookies are every bit as delicious as the original Toll House recipe – you’ll never guess they’re dairy free!
In This Article
Chocolate Chip Cookie Ingredients
Stop any American on the street and ask them what standard they use to rate homemade chocolate chip cookies. Chances are they will mention the classic Toll House recipe. After all, it’s the recipe that New England innkeeper Ruth Wakefield created when she added Nestle chocolate chips to a butter drop cookie base and invented the iconic treat at the Toll House Inn in Whitman, Massachusetts, nearly a century ago.
In a kitchen free of food allergies and dietary restrictions, the standard chocolate chip cookie recipe includes:
- Unsalted butter
- Light brown sugar
- Granulated sugar
- Baking soda
- All-purpose flour
- Vanilla extract
- Chopped nuts
- Chocolate chips
While eggs are safe for people living with alpha-gal syndrome (and so one chocolate chip recipe below is dairy-free rather than vegan), many alpha gals cannot tolerate dairy products and adopt a vegan diet.
Substitutions that allow cooks to whip up a batch of vegan chocolate chip cookies include:
- An egg replacer like chia seeds or flaxseed soaked in water
- Applesauce, pumpkin puree, mashed banana, coconut oil, or vegan butter in lieu of regular butter
Is Chocolate Vegan?
There are three main categories of chocolate: dark, milk, and white. Let’s set white chocolate aside, because with no cocoa solids, it’s not real chocolate. Instead white chocolate is a confection made of sugar, cocoa butter, milk, and sometimes vanilla.
That leaves us with dark chocolate and milk chocolate.
Dark chocolate is made by blending cocoa solids with cocoa butter (natural fat from the cocoa bean that is dairy free) and sugar. As a general rule, dark chocolate doesn’t contain any milk. However, some brands may be up to 12% milk. And if the same machinery is used to make milk chocolate, it may leave behind trace amounts of milk, causing cross-contamination.
That leaves us with milk chocolate. With “milk” as its first name, it should be no surprise that milk chocolate contains at least 12% milk. Whether it’s in the form of liquid milk, condensed milk, or powdered milk, milk chocolate is generally not vegan. However, you can find vegan milk chocolate chips made with oat milk, almond milk, and other non-dairy milks.
Related Article: The Truth About Alpha-Gal and Chocolate: Is It Safe to Eat?
An Important Note About Vegan Chocolate
If you’re following a vegan diet for animal welfare or ecological reasons, you might be comfortable with any vegan chocolate chips on the market. But if you are allergic to dairy products or are an alpha gal with a life-threatening allergy to mammalian products – including traditional dairy – then you will need to be selective when choosing vegan chocolate chips for cookies.
There is currently no federal legal definition of “vegan” in the United States. Because the FDA hasn’t defined the term, chocolate chip manufacturers are free to use the designation as they like. However, when you find products that have been certified by Vegan.org, The Vegan Society, or VegeCert, you can be sure they are completely free of animal and dairy ingredients. All products with those stamps of approval have been certified to not contain any animal products or by-products.
Where Can I Buy Vegan Chocolate?
You can typically find vegan chocolate chips at health food stores like Natural Grocers and Whole Foods. Some regular grocery stores even offer a few options. Amazon also carries many vegan chocolate selections.
A Helpful Vegan Cookie Tip
To reduce your time in the kitchen, make a double or triple batch of your favorite vegan cookie dough and freeze a portion so it’s there for you when a chocolate craving hits.
Here’s what to do:
- Make an extra batch (or two) of your favorite vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe
- Roll the extra portion into 1” balls
- Freeze in an airtight container like a freezer-safe zipper bag for up to three months
- When you’re ready to bake, place the desired number of frozen cookie dough balls (no need to defrost) on a silicone mat or parchment paper-lined baking sheet per the directions on the recipe, adding an extra minute or two to the stated baking time
Best Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes
While alpha gals can safely consume eggs (unless they have an additional egg allergy), many people living with alpha-gal cannot tolerate cow’s milk. Because they exclude all animal products – eggs and milk – vegan cookies are a good fit for alpha gals with a sweet tooth. Here are some of my favorite vegan chocolate chip cookie recipes, from classic to cutting-edge.
Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies
1. Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
For a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe that is as close to the Toll House recipe as possible, try this dairy-free chocolate chip recipe from Summer Yule. You’ll still crack one large egg into the batter, so this cookie recipe is alpha-gal friendly but not vegan. However, you’ll replace the butter with vegan butter (and no one will even know)!
Sage Advice: To make this recipe vegan, use an egg replacement.
2. Soft and Chewy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
If you want to avoid eggs and embrace a fully vegan cookie recipe, then try these chewy cookies from Earth to Veg. Rather than vegan butter, it uses one cup of vegetable shortening (like Crisco).
This vegan cookie recipe can be made in advance and stored in the fridge in a covered bowl for up to one week.
3. Gluten-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
For a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe that’s gluten free, use this vegan chocolate chip recipe from Strength and Sunshine. Rather than almond flour, it uses gluten-free flour so the texture and taste is as close to the classic flavor as possible. Another surprise ingredient is vegan cream cheese, which is used as an egg replacement.
Once baked, you can store these cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for four to five days (if they last that long) or for up to a week in the fridge.
4. Healthy Edible Cookie Dough
Do you ever feel like grabbing a spoon and digging into the cookie batter without heating up the oven? While you don’t want to eat raw cookie dough when baking the traditional recipe due to the eggs, Olena at iFoodReal has vegans and alpha girls covered. Not only is it safe to eat this vegan cookie dough before it’s baked (since there are no eggs in the batter), but it’s also free of gluten, dairy, and refined sugar.
5. Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
Although there is a virtual hug in a warm, classic-style chocolate chip cookie – especially when it’s dipped into a glass of your favorite milk – it’s sometimes fun to shake things up. This vegan chocolate chip cookie bar recipe from Strength and Sunshine pours the eggless cookie dough batter into a baking pan instead of rolling or dropping it onto a cookie sheet.
To make cleanup a snap, line the square 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper rather than pouring the batter directly into the pan.
Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies with a Twist
From time to time, you may want more variation than standard chocolate chip cookies and cookie bars. That’s where these next vegan recipes come in handy.
6. Sweet Potato Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars
With ¼ cup of coconut sugar and ¼ cup of maple syrup, these oatmeal chocolate chip bars from Avocado Skillet still fall in the dessert category and should be enjoyed in moderation. But with ½ cup of mashed sweet potato as a secret ingredient, this vegan recipe does produce a healthier cookie that includes plant-based fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants.
7. Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Speaking of pumpkin, another tasty sweet treat with health benefits is this pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe from Rainbow Nourishments.
If you want to add a little extra sizzle to these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, mix a few chopped nuts – like pecans or walnuts – into the batter or add a bit of fresh orange zest.
8. Vegan Brookie Pie with Espresso Crust
What do you get when you pour cookie batter into a brownie-like crust? A brookie! And this vegan brookie pie, baked in an espresso crust, from Earth to Veg is a perfect option for chocolate lovers who find traditional chocolate chip cookie bars a bit too rich or who want a little espresso kick baked into their dessert.
Vegan Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
What’s better than chocolate? More chocolate! That’s where these double chocolate chip cookies come in.
9. Vegan Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
This vegan double chocolate chip cookie recipe from the Cookie Dough Diaries is straightforwardly delicious, using ingredients you likely have on hand – vegan butter, brown sugar, all-purpose flour, unsweetened cocoa, and more. They deliver a batch of soft, gooey, fudgy treats in about 30 minutes.
This recipe replaces the egg with flaxseed that’s been soaked in water (also known as a flax egg). But because alpha gals can eat eggs, you can also easily substitute flaxseed with an egg.
10. Vegan Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
Not only are these double chocolate chip cookies from Hello Frozen Bananas alpha-gal friendly and vegan, but they’re also free of grain, gluten, and dairy. And with dark chocolate chips stirred into a cacao powder cookie base, they taste like a cross between a cookie and a brownie.
11. Oil-Free Vegan Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
If grains and gluten are no issue at your house, this delicious double chocolate chip cookie recipe from A Plantiful Path is made with whole wheat flour and ground flaxseed while remaining dairy free for vegans and alpha gals who cannot tolerate dairy.
12. Healthier Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
And for chocolate lovers that like their double chocolate chip cookies to be fudgy and chewy, try this double chocolate chip cookie recipe from Sunglow Kitchen. This recipe uses whole wheat flour, and with just ⅓ cup of brown sugar, they are lower in sugar than many other vegan cookie recipes.
Do You Like Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies?
What is your favorite way to enjoy chocolate chip cookies – as classic cookies, edible cookie batter, as a pie, some other way? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
13 thoughts on “12 Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes You Won’t Believe are Dairy Free”
One recipe is more inviting than the other. Thank you for all the suggestions
Ohh love all these ideas, especially the double chocolate chips ones!
Because what’s better than a chocolate chip cookie? A DOUBLE chocolate chip cookie!
I have to bookmark this page. So many delicious cookie recipes all in one spot. Thank you for sharing, Sage!
I love chocolate chip cookies. There are some useful ideas for variations here. Thank you for sharing.
They are such a classic cookie option!
These warm chocolate chip cookies are amazing! Nothing like a cookie with your coffee, or as a snack, or for dessert, or for…. Anytime is a great time!
Any time is a good time for a warm chocolate chip cookie, if you ask me!
Vegan chocolate chip cookie recipes are the best! Not only are they delicious, but they’re also good for you. Plus, they’re super easy to make. Thanks for sharing these recipes!
And I feel so much better when my daughter eats the uncooked dough! 🙂
A great selection of vegan chocolate chip cookies! I love the pumpkin chocolate chip cookie for a healthier but still so yummy treat!
I love them all! That edible cookie dough is my favorite!
Edible cookie dough is always a good choice, if you ask me!