Grain-free Chinese Almond Cookies – Gluten-free, Paleo and Vegan

by Beth @ Tasty Yummies

I am so excited to introduce you guys to a super-sweet lady today, Erin, ofย Texanerin Baking! Erin shares amazingย healthy baked goods!! Though not all of her recipes are gluten-free, this girl sure knows her way around a mixer and an oven, because whenever she starts experimenting with almond flour and other gluten-free flours, the results are just incredible! You’d think she’s been doing this her whole life. I hope you enjoy this amazing grain-free cookie recipe she created today in honor of the Chinese New Year.



Grain-free Chinese Almond Cookies - Gluten-free and Vegan

Hi, everyone! I’m Erin and blog over at Texanerin Baking, which is all about healthier baked goods. I started off blogging about 100% whole grain recipes but then one day, I tried almond flour, just to see what it was like. Turns out that I love it and although I don’t have any dietary restrictions, I post quite a few grain-free recipes.

With the Chinese New Year coming up on the 31st, I thought it’d be fun to share these healthier grain-free Chinese almond cookies with you! Are they authentic? Probably not. But who really cares when they’re perfectly soft, chewy and awesomely delicious? ๐Ÿ™‚

One of my favorite cookies growing up was my mother’s almond cookies. The recipe calls for all-purpose flour, Crisco and a load of white sugar. I’m sure I’d still enjoy them (although I don’t know if I could handle the Crisco), but then I’d eat 19 of them only to be depressed about it afterwards. That’s just how I roll with this kind of stuff.

So I came up with a grain-free, dairy-free, vegan and Paleo version that I’m ridiculously happy with! I would much rather have these other the more traditional version. And even though these cookies taste amazing and have the best texture ever, I don’t have a compulsion to eat the entire batch.

Grain-free Chinese Almond Cookies - Gluten-free and Vegan

You could make these even if you don’t like almonds. Use all vanilla instead of almond extract and add dried berries. Or use coconut extract and roll them in some shredded coconut! It’s hard to mess these up. The dough is super versatile so really, feel free get creative with these!

I’ve included the metric measurements because I find them easier to work with and because almond flour creates such issues. Brands vary so wildy and it’s best to measure it in grams.

Thanks for having me today. If you’re ever in the mood for some more grain-free or dairy-free healthier sweets, I’d love for you to visit me over on Texanerin Baking! Keep in mind though that I sometimes post whole grain recipes as well. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Grain-free Chinese Almond Cookies - Gluten-free and Vegan

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jeanette | Jeanette's Healthy Living January 27, 2014 at 10:47 am

These look just like the almond cookies my mom used to make – great finding a healthier version!


2 Erin @ Texanerin Baking January 28, 2014 at 10:54 am

I’m sure they’re not all that traditional but they really are amazingly tasty! ๐Ÿ˜‰


3 Kathy January 27, 2014 at 12:10 pm

I am very grateful to you for sharing your lovely recipe, these sound perfect, these have always been a favorite of mine, but I haven’t been able to have these for many years. Sure will be a much desired treat especially with Chinese New Year coming soon. Thank you for your generosity.


4 Erin @ Texanerin Baking January 28, 2014 at 10:55 am

You are so welcome, Kathy! I’m very happy that you can enjoy Chinese almond cookies again. ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope that you’ll enjoy them and thank you so much for your kind comment!


5 Lou January 27, 2014 at 7:21 pm

Yum! Can’t wait to try!


6 Amber January 28, 2014 at 12:23 pm

Hi Beth,

I found your blog back in October and before I was able to add your blog to my favorites, my darn computer froze and I had to restart it, so I could not remember the name of your blog!! Today is a good day, I found you!

Thanks for awesome recipes!

Your new friend,
Amber ๐Ÿ™‚


7 Ev January 28, 2014 at 9:45 pm

Erin, I could not find coconut flour anywhere. Can I use substitute?


8 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 9:30 am

I am so sorry for the slow reply, Ev! I didn’t see this comment until now. Unfortunately, there isn’t a good coconut flour sub. I recommend buying some online. It’s not cheap but it’ll last you a very, very long time! And if you bake grain-free, it’s an absolute must. ๐Ÿ˜‰


9 cheryl harris January 29, 2014 at 11:08 am

These are gorgeous. I’m excited to try them!


10 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:09 am

Thank you, Cheryl! I hope you’ll like them. ๐Ÿ™‚


11 Debbie January 30, 2014 at 5:52 am

Thank you so much for the metric measurements in the recipe, it’s makes all the difference!!


12 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:09 am

You’re so welcome, Debbie! And I agree. Grain-free baking without metric measurements is just scary. I’ve had cups of almond flour vary by up to 50 grams. Crazy, right? ๐Ÿ™‚


13 Sarah January 30, 2014 at 5:36 pm

I tried these out tonight. They tasted so yummy. However, mine broke apart in the oven. I believe I needed more liquid in mine (unfortunately, don’t have a scale, so I had to just go by a measuring cup). Would you recommend adding a little more coconut oil or maple syrup (or a mix of both) if the batter is still crumbly?


14 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 9:34 am

So sorry for the slow reply, Sarah! Didn’t see this comment until now. I’m happy that the cookies were yummy but that stinks that they broke apart! I’m thinking that you’re right about the measuring thing. Almond flour varies so much from brand to brand! If the dough is crumbly (which it definitely shouldn’t be) then add some more oil or maple syrup next time! I’d go with maple syrup, but then again, I have quite the sweet tooth. ๐Ÿ˜‰


15 Meg @ Beard and Bonnet January 30, 2014 at 8:04 pm

These look soooo YUMMY! I cant wait to try them.


16 Jessica January 31, 2014 at 10:36 pm

I made two batches of these tonight. They are excellent and so easy!! The first batch I made too big as apparently I couldn’t tell what 1 inch was (I am challenged that way). The dough was also probably too warm so they spread quite a bit and are large, but still really tasty. They are buttery, which makes no sense at all, but they are. The second batch I left in the fridge for about 20 minutes, then rolled into balls and put back in the fridge for another 15 minutes. Then I sprinkled sliced almonds over them and pushed them in a bit. Much rounder and softer. Great recipe, thank you!


17 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 9:59 am

Haha. I’m sure you’re not challenged that way. ๐Ÿ˜‰ And buttery cookies sounds good! I know what you mean. These taste way better than you’d think just looking at the ingredients, right? ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m happy that chilling the dough worked out for you! Thanks a ton for the feedback. ๐Ÿ™‚


18 Jessica February 2, 2014 at 9:35 pm

I forgot to mention that this recipe did not make 18 cookies. My first batch only made 9 (granted, I noted above I clearly made them too large). But the second batch, which I tried very hard to make into about 1 inch balls, only made 14. I can’t imagine making them smaller.

That said I took them to a dinner party last night and they were a huge hit! They were deemed better than the girl scout cookies someone brought and every single person, non-vegans and non-gluten-free people alike, absolutely loved them. What a winner recipe, especially since they’re so easy to make. Thanks again!


19 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:02 am

What?! Better than Girl Scout cookies? No way. What an amazing compliment (I really love Girl Scout cookies). ๐Ÿ˜‰ So happy that your non-vegan and non-gluten-free friends liked them! Thanks again for your feedback. And I’ll have to test them again to see about the size / yield. Thanks for the tip! ๐Ÿ™‚


20 Jan H February 1, 2015 at 9:07 pm

Delicious!! And so, so simple!!! Like Jessica, this only yielded exactly 12 and I used a 1″ cookie scoop. No big deal…will probably make mine a little smaller next time. Thank you!


21 Alana February 4, 2014 at 12:31 pm

These look awesome! I have been trying to go sugar free (or low glycemic at least), any thoughts or concerns about trying this with agave “maple” syrup? Or maybe some other low-glycemic natural sweetener?


22 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:06 am

I’m so very sorry for the slow reply to your question! I didn’t see it until now. I don’t see why agave maple syrup wouldn’t work (as long as the consistency is similar). As far as other sweeteners go… I’m not sure. It needs to be liquid since the cookies get quite a bit of their moisture from that. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’d recommend honey but I don’t think that’s low-GI. Let me know how it goes with the agave!


23 Ev February 5, 2014 at 7:09 am

I finally found all ingredients and made these exactly as written. My husband and I are eating them up as I speak. They are delicious and so lovely to look at!


24 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:07 am

Yay! SO happy that you were able to get your hands on the coconut flour! And awesome that you and your husband both liked them. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the feedback and sorry again for the slow response!


25 Lisa Olson February 5, 2014 at 4:50 pm

Just made these and they are really good! I love how easy they are.


26 Erin @ Texanerin Baking February 17, 2014 at 10:07 am

Woohoo! So happy that they worked out for you. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the feedback!


27 Therese February 20, 2014 at 2:36 pm

These were quick, easy and delish!! Thanks for providing the weight for the almond and coconut flour. I feel like so many people measure both those ingredients differently and that can drastically change the outcome.


28 Edel Elliott June 10, 2014 at 9:46 am

Hi Erin, just gone on a wheat free diet and found your lovely recipe.In fridge as we speak! I only saw after reading comments that it must be almond flour.I was advised in store that ground almond same thing so not very confident about this batch! Thank you and looking forward to trying more of your recipes.Edel


29 Cara December 18, 2015 at 1:43 pm

Just want to say thanks for posting a great recipe. My friend is on a severely restricted diet – no gluten, dairy, aged or fermented anything, soy, nuts except almonds, or even any sugar, and this page came to the rescue when I was making my Christmas cookie list. I made these with an equal amount xylitol instead of the syrup (and added a little unsweetened almond milk for moisture). She couldn’t have been more excited to have actually have a holiday treat that she loved! (and actually my whole work team loved them as well) I think this cookie would taste great with a little Chinese 5 spice in it, (and of course I need to make it again with the maple syrup for myself).


30 Mary Ingram May 20, 2016 at 8:03 am

Can you please tell me the nutrition value of these cookies? protein, fiber, fat, carbs


31 Beth @ Tasty Yummies May 20, 2016 at 11:44 am

Mary, I don’t calculate nutritional facts on my free recipes. You are welcome to plug the ingredients and ratios into one of the many free online nutritional calculators which would easily give you the answers you are looking for.


32 Lorain June 23, 2016 at 4:46 pm

I went to make these today, but when I hunted for the coconut flour I realized I had none. Everything else was mixed and I was not going to drive to the store so I improvised. I ground some coconut flakes and added a Tbsp. I then added a Tbsp of tapioca flour and a little more almond flour until I though got I had the right consistency (maybe another two Tbsp)
Rolled them into balls and topped with lots of almonds. They came out very flat but man are they good! A nice chew to them with a crisp outer layer. I got almost two dozen cookies.


33 Jeanne July 15, 2016 at 3:16 pm

I made these twice today. When I weighed the flour, I thought there was quite a difference between the weight and the cup measurement. It seemed like i needed more flour than that. But I made them and they turned out to be deliciously flat pancakes in shape – but also very greasy. Well, I tried them again and measured the flour then weighed it. My conclusion is that perhaps the 133 should be 313 and the numbers were just transposed accidentally. Anyone else discover this? I will make them again with my adjustment next time. They are very tasty!


34 Anita November 1, 2016 at 8:55 pm

I followed the recipe and instructions exactly, but my cookies came out really flat and thin and the texture is really light and airy, not like a cookie at all, almost like a wafer. I’m wondering if I’m missing anything? Did you mean baking powder instead of baking soda? Any help would be appreciated.


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