Vegan Pfeffernusse Cookies

Vegan pfeffernusse cookies

The Spruce

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 24 servings

Pfeffernusse cookies are a spicy, fragrant cookie perfect for Christmas. The essential ingredient is, surprisingly, the black pepper, which combines with the rest of the spices and the molasses for a truly unique taste. It may look like a lot of spices when you're baking these up, but the combination is, we promise, perfect. And, since they are vegan, you can feel extra good about treating yourself and the environment well for the holidays when you make your vegan Christmas cookies

This version of pfeffernusse cookies is made with no eggs and dairy, but with vegan margarine and an egg replacer making it dairy-free and egg-free. 


  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup vegan margarine (room temperature)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (gently packed)
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • Egg replacer for 1 egg (I like Ener-g or Bob's Red Mill brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup confectioner's sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for vegan pfeffernusse cookies
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  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease two baking sheets. 

    Oil on baking tray
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  3. Combine the flour with the baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, and pepper. Set aside.

    Flour in a bowl
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  4. Using an electric mixer, beat together the vegan margarine, brown sugar, and molasses until well combined and as light and fluffy as you can get it.

    Beating in eggs
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  5. Add in the prepared egg replacer and vanilla, again beating until well combined and as fluffy as possible.

    Add the egg replacer
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  6. Gradually beat in the dry ingredients, mixing until well combined. The dough should be a bit more dry and crumbly.

    Add dry ingredients
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  7. Roll the cookie dough into 1-inch balls and place them on prepared cookie sheets. Do not flatten. If the dough is too crumbly, you can moisten your hands a bit when rolling the dough to get it to stick together.

    Roll into balls
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  8. Bake the cookies for 13 to 15 minutes, until just starting to crack; do not over-bake.

    Bake the cookies
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  9. Allow the cookies to cool, then gently roll in powdered sugar until completely coated. You can also place the sugar in a bag or a bowl and gently roll the cookies around. 

    Allow the cookies to cool
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  10. Serve and enjoy!