So, if you haven’t guessed it already, orange-chocolate is pretty much my favorite flavor combination. I’m not really sure why it works or who thought of it first but it is absolutely incredible. These Vegan Orange Chocolate Cookies were born out of this very obsession. Chewy, chocolate cookie loaded with dark chocolate chunks and fresh orange flavor – perfection!
Love what you love…
If I have learned anything in my life it is that we should never let anyone let us feel uncomfortable over the things we enjoy showing enthusiasm for. I have experienced this and I fear I have also dimmed the joy of others at one point or another. NO MORE! I will not let my love of baking or my enthusiasm for cookies be diminished for anything. If it seems odd that I am making this statement in a recipe post for Vegan Orange Chocolate Cookies I promise you it is not. I think people who bake are viewed in a kind of specific way and the same goes for people who enjoy more “out there” flavors. Bottom line? Love what you love!
Vegan Orange Chocolate Cookie Ingredients
- All Purpose Flour: All purpose flour has a moderate/average amount of protein when compared to other flours. It will give your cookies sturdiness and a nice chewy quality without compromising the lightness you desire.
- Cocoa Powder: Cocoa powder has a high water absorption rate which contributes to moistness in baked goods. It will also deliver rich, chocolatey flavor and a deep, brownish color to our cookies.
- Baking Soda: Baking soda is a leavener that requires an acidic and liquid ingredient to activate. In this recipe, the leavener will help the cookie dough base rise and firm up as it bakes.
- Sea Salt: Salt is a known flavor enhancer and baked goods are no exception. This is especially true where flour and butter are concerned. In addition to amplifying flavor, salt works to strengthen doughs/batters and provide texture.
- Vegan Butter: Vegan butter is a simple alternative to dairy butter. Non-dairy butter is made up of different vegetable oils and is solid at room temperature. The flavors are nearly identical to normal butter.
- Light Brown Sugar: Light brown sugar has less molasses per total volume of sugar than dark brown sugar. This comes out to about 3.5%. Light brown sugar provides a subtle sweetness to your baked goods. It has a light color and a flavor that is less sweet than white sugar.
- Sugar: Granulated sugar is great for baking because the bond that it forms with water/liquid has a moisture-locking effect. This gives us incredible texture and moistness in our cookies. Where we rely on sugar to give delicious sweetness to our desserts, it also brings out the more delicate flavors (orange) in our bakes giving them the level of prominence we desire.
- Orange Juice: For this recipe any OJ will do. You can pick up a carton at the grocery store or you can use the juice in the orange you will be purchasing to use for zest. Totally up to you.
- Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract is the most common extract in baked goods. It adds a beautiful dimension and flavor profile to our bakes. Vanilla chemically adds more flavor to desserts without covering up the other flavors you would still like to shine through.
- Zest: Using citrus zest in recipes is a great way to strengthen the flavor of whatever kind of fruit you are using. When you add zest to a recipe, you are including the natural oils that exist within the fruit straight into your dessert without having to turn to artificial flavoring.
- Chopped Dark Chocolate (50-70%): When talking about dark chocolate, 50-70% cacao refers to the amount of the chocolate bar that is made up completely of ingredients derived from the cocoa bean. The remainder of the chocolate will be made up of sugar or other flavor enhancers like vanilla. If you would prefer a milder dark chocolate, keep your percentage closer to 50%. If you like a less-sweet chocolate, 70% is the way to go. You can also sub any nondairy chocolate chips you can find!
Tips for Making Vegan Orange Chocolate Cookies
- This cookie dough can absolutely be made in advance! It will survive unbaked in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1-2 days or you can freeze it for up to 1 month.
- If you want to go rogue you can totally make this recipe in a single bowl instead of separating wet and dry ingredients. Beat your wet ingredients together first with an electric hand mixer or stand mixer and then follow it up with the baking soda and salt before following with the cocoa powder and flour. Just know that if you go this route it is possible the salt and leavener will not distribute evenly. Proceed at your own risk.
- Do not overcrowd your baking sheet! I like to make 3-inchers when I make cookies and when I do this I typically only place 6 on the sheet at a time. I know this means more batches and time for you but I promise it is worth it!
- Want your cookies to look perfectly circular? When they come out of the oven, immediately begin to circle them with a wide mouth cup/mug. I have a large glass mug that I will place rim-side down over the cookie and then gently swirl until my cookie reaches the desired shape. Allow cookies to cool for about 4-5 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a wire cooling rack.
Please remember if you make this recipe to snap a pic and share with @censoredbaker on instagram!Print
Vegan Orange Chocolate Cookies
Vegan chocolate cookies loaded with dark chocolate chunks and fresh, orange flavor.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 16 3-inch Cookies 1x
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
2 1/4 c all purpose flour
1/2 c cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 c vegan butter
3/4 c light brown sugar
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c orange juice
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp orange zest
1 1/2 c chopped dark chocolate or nondairy chocolate chips
1. In a small bowl, whisk together all purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and sea salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat together vegan butter, light brown sugar, sugar, orange juice, vanilla extract and orange zest using an electric stand or hand mixer. Do this for about a minute or until light and fluffy.
2. Slowly begin to beat flour mixture into butter mixture until cookie dough comes together and there are no longer any dry ingredients visible. Do not over-mix. Stir in chocolate chips. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set in fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill.
3. While dough is chilling, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Take dough out of the fridge and begin to form cookies taking about two tablespoons of dough at a time. Roll into a ball between your hands and place on prepared baking sheet about 2 inches apart. You should be able to fit about six to eight at a time.
4. Place baking sheet on center rack of preheated oven and bake for 12-14 minutes. Remove from oven and allow cookies to set on baking sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring to wire cooling rack.
*Cookies will keep in an airtight container stored at room temperature for 2-3 days or can be frozen for up to a month. Unbaked cookie dough will keep in the fridge for 24 hours or can be frozen for up to a month.
Keywords: vegan cookies, orange chocolate, orange chocolate cookies, orange cookies, vegan dessert