Girl Scout cookie season is rapidly approaching and with it comes childhood memories of biting into crunchy Thin Mint cookies and swooning over the pillowy layer of peanut butter in Tagalongs. When Girl Scout cookie season hit last year, I was on the cusp of transitioning from vegetarian to vegan. Yet of course those pesky Girl Scouts persuaded me to buy quite a few boxes of cookies. But after dipping my feet in the water of veganism, I started to loathe those cookies in my cabinet which tempted me with their not-so-vegan ingredients.
I was feeling far too good to give it up over a dairy-laden Tagalong so from then on decided I would go full-fledged vegan. I gave away those last boxes of cookies to my friends and boyfriend, ready to embark on a new way of living. Kicking my cookie habit was not going to happen though! Instead, I started to start stock up the pantry and fridge with vegan ingredients and cookbooks, ready to bake my own vegan cookies. Over the course of my vegan journey I’ve made a wide variety of vegan cookies including Double Chocolate Chip, Ginger Molasses, Oatmeal Raisin, and Peanut Butter cookies but I had never thought of veganizing any Girl Scout classics… Until I discovered Babycakes NYC‘s vegan and gluten-free version of Thin Mints.
Earlier this month, I visited Babycakes NYC’s LA bakery location and instantly spotted the Thin Mints. I was reminded of the joyous feeling Girl Scout cookie season would bring and knew I had to order at least one. The Thin Mints also caught the eye of my mom, who is a Thin Mint lover as well, and she agreed they were a must. We ended up walking away with 5 Thin Mints (among a box full of other delightful gluten-free vegan goodies). The Thin Mints did not fail to impress, they were crunchy, minty and addictive just like the originals! We devoured those cookies, exclaiming they were even better than the Girl Scout’s version!
After eating my very last Thin Mint out of that heavenly pink bakery box, I was ready to whip up my own batch. Naturally, I turned to my copy of Babycakes Covers The Classics to recreate the delectable Thin Mints. With a few small changes here and there, I had the perfect recipe for guilt-free indulgence. I swapped half of the unrefined cane sugar for coconut sugar to make them a little healthier and couldn’t even taste a difference. I think next time I will substitute the full amount of cane sugar with coconut sugar since it did such a great job sweetening this batch and has a lower glycemic index which keeps blood sugar spikes at bay.
These chocolaty minty cookies have had me hooked and I guarantee they will satisfy any Girl Scout cookie cravings! Make these and you’ll have no problem turning down those pesky Girl Scouts this Spring!
Thin Mints (Vegan and Gluten-Free)
Adapted from Babycakes Covers The Classics
1 1/2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour
1/2 cup vegan sugar*
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup arrowroot
1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup melted virgin coconut oil
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon peppermint extract
1 cup vegan chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 325 °F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl combine the flour, vegan sugar, coconut sugar, cocoa powder, arrowroot, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt and whisk together. Add the melted coconut oil, applesauce, and vanilla and continue mix with a rubber whisk until a thick dough forms.
3. Place a rounded tablespoon of dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. about 1-2 inches apart. Using your palm, gently flatten each mound of dough. Smooth the edges with your fingers if necessary.
4. Bake for 7 minutes, rotate the cookie sheets and bake for 7 minutes more. Let cool on tray or cooling rack for 15 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, combine the chocolate chips and peppermint extract in a double broiler or small saucepan and place over medium heat. Continue stirring until the chips are just melted and silky smooth. Remove from heat.
6. Dunk the top of each cookie into the melted chocolate and spread using a rubber spatula. Place the dipped cookies on a sheet of parchment paper to let cool and set. Let the cookies set in refrigerator for 20 minutes before serving.
*Note: You could omit the 1/2 cup cane sugar and simply use 1 cup of coconut sugar. Please note I have not tried it myself yet but I imagine it will taste just as sweet given given my past experience with coconut sugar!