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Vegan & Delicious Mandarin Coconut Cookies

Vegan & Delicious Mandarin Coconut Cookies

Our friend Karen who is the innkeeper at the lovely Woodstock Inn on the Millstream, had made a batch of these the last time we stopped by for a visit.

Karen was very generous with her cookies, and we sat around in the inn’s kitchen enjoying them. When I asked for the recipe, she told me that it was from Whole Foods. So I Googled “Whole Foods mandarin coconut cookies” when we got home and, sure enough, there it was.

I’ve adapted the Whole Foods recipe slightly below as there were a couple of silly and inefficient things in their version. For example, instead of removing the skin of the tangerines with a vegetable peeler and then chopping it to obtain enough zest, I’ve changed it to just zesting the tangerines. Time is precious, after all…

Tangerine Zest for Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

We happened to have a small pile of tangerines that were not getting any younger sitting on the counter, so the timing was perfect. And I had the rest of the ingredients – coconut oil (which is great to cook and bake with!), flour, sugar, baking powder, vanilla, salt and coconut flakes, too.

Ingredients for Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

My almost four-year-old son “helped” me make them. His favorite part was drinking the freshly squeezed tangerine juice and eating the sweetened coconut – and eating the cookies, of course. He told me recently in a very solemn and proud little voice, “Mama, I can eat SO much sweet things.” Which is true.

Tangerine Juice for Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

Since we usually use eggs in our cookie dough (this vegan cookie recipe is a bit out of the norm for me), he assumed that this dough was also off-limits for eating. And I saw no reason to tell him otherwise…

Dough for Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

The dough is kind of fun to handle – the texture is soft and marzipan-like with a delicious sweet smell from the coconut oil and the tangerine juice.

Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies (pre-pressing) by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

I also enjoyed smooshing the cookies with the bottom of a glass dipped first in water and then in the coconut flakes to flatten them out for baking.

Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

I think the cookies end up looking a little bit like flowers, which seems fitting now that it’s spring and the warmer weather is on its way. Enjoy!

Vegan Mandarin Coconut Cookies by Eve Fox, Garden of Eating blog, copyright 2013

Mandarin Coconut Cookies adapted from Whole Foods’ recipe
Makes roughly 3 dozen

Ingredients

* 2 mandarin oranges, such as satsumas or clementines
* 1 1/4 cup organic cane sugar
* 3/4 cup organic, virgin coconut oil, melted and cooled slightly
* 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
* 2 1/2 cups organic all-purpose flour
* 1 cup finely grated dried, sweetened, organic coconut, divided
* 3 Tbsps cornstarch
* 1 tsp baking powder
* 1/2 tsp fine sea salt

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Use a microplane zester to obtain 1 tablespoon zest. Juice the mandarins to obtain 1/4 cup juice. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, beat 1 1/4 cups sugar and oil on medium speed for 1 minute. Add the tangerine juice, zest and vanilla and beat again. Add flour, 1/2 cup coconut oil, cornstarch, baking powder and salt and beat again until combined.

3. Form the dough into 1 1/2-inch balls. Arrange the balls two inches apart on a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet (I used my Silpat but it’s worth noting that both parchment paper and Silpat contain silicon so, if you’re concerned about that, my guess is you could also just grease a cookie sheet with equally good results.)

4. Dip a flat-bottomed glass in water and then in the sweetened coconut flakes. Press down firmly on each cookie, re-dipping the glass as needed. Bake until golden brown and just firm, about 15 minutes.
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Related:
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Eve Fox

Eve is the creator of The Garden of Eating, a blog about food--cooking it, eating it, and growing it. She has a legendary love of aprons and can often be found salivating over the fruits and veggies at one of the many farmers’ markets near her home in Woodstock, NY. Want even more recipes, photos, giveaways, and food-related inspiration? "Like" the Garden of Eating on Facebook, or follow Eve on Twitter or Pinterest.

69 comments

+ add your own
1:29PM PST on Feb 11, 2014

I have to try this! Looks delicious!!!

6:02PM PDT on May 18, 2013

Yummy! Thanks!

2:16AM PDT on May 3, 2013

ty looks good

12:41PM PDT on Apr 27, 2013

very good!!!!thanks!

9:35AM PDT on Apr 26, 2013

These look great and sound just as good! Thanks 4 the recipe!

11:43AM PDT on Apr 20, 2013

yum

8:08AM PDT on Apr 19, 2013

This is a new one for me, thanks for sharing.

3:17PM PDT on Apr 18, 2013

These look pretty good!

3:43AM PDT on Apr 16, 2013

Sounds good! Thanks for sharing.

4:57AM PDT on Apr 13, 2013

Must try!

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