Lemon Shortbread Cookies – Gluten Free, Vegan

These gluten free and vegan Lemon Shortbread Cookies are SO tasty! They are super easy to make and they have the most delicious and fresh lemon flavor!

Lemon Shortbread Cookies that are gluten free, vegan, and dairy free

We love lemon everything in my house! Every time I cook or bake with lemon my daughter demands a slice so she can lick it.

She’s done this since she was two years old. It’s safe to say lemon is one of her all time favorite flavors.

I love lemon too, but my husband is definitely where she got her lemon obsession.

He’s not a huge sweets fan, but give him a lemon flavored dessert and he is all over it!

He’s actually the one that suggested I make these gluten free and vegan Lemon Shortbread Cookies and I’m so glad he did. They are amazing!

The shortbread cookie is the same recipe I use for my mini fruit pizzas, as well as my cut out cookies for the holidays.

The only difference of course is the fresh lemon zest added to the batter and the lemon glaze on top.

Lemon Shortbread Cookies that are gluten free, vegan, and dairy free

I also sprinkle some lemon zest on top of the glaze to make them taste even more lemony.

Don’t forget to grab an adjustable rolling pin if you don’t have one yet!

I just recently found out they existed and it is a life saver when you are trying to roll out even cut out cookies like these!

You will also need some cookie cutters for these lemon shortbread cookies.

I love these using these scalloped cookie cutters and they come with so many size options! I use the 3″ size for these cookies.

Let’s talk about how you make them!


For the Cookies:

  • Vegan butter: I use “Earth Balance Soy Free Vegan Buttery Sticks”.
  • Powdered sugar or substitute: I use “Swerve” brand sweetener.
  • Maple syrup: Adds sweetness to the cookies.
  • Gluten free all purpose flour: I use “Better Batter“.
  • Lemon zest: Adds a fresh lemon flavor to the shortbread cookies.
  • Vanilla
  • Dash of salt

For the Lemon Frosting:

  • Powdered sugar or substitute: I use “Swerve” brand sweetener.
  • Lemon juice 
Lemon Shortbread Cookies that are gluten free, vegan, and dairy free


  1. Preheat oven: to 350°F.
  2. Prepare the dough: In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the vegan butter until creamy.  Add in the maple syrup, vanilla, and powdered sugar and mix until smooth.  Add the flour, lemon zest, and salt to the mixer and mix until a dough is formed. 
  3. Refrigerate the dough: Wrap the dough in a piece of plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
  4. Roll out the dough: Unwrap the dough and transfer it to a piece of parchment paper. Roll out the dough to the desired thickness.  These cookies do not spread or rise so however thick you roll out the dough is how thick the cookies will be.  I typically roll mine out to about 1/2″.*
  5. Cut out the cookies: Use a 3″ circle cookie cutter to cut the dough.  Place the cookies on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper.
  6. Bake: for 15-18 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned.
  7. Prepare the frosting:  Add the powdered sugar/sweetener to a small bowl with the lemon juice and mix until thickened.*
  8. Frost the cookies: If you are dipping the cookies into the frosting, place a piece of parchment paper on a sheet tray and set a cooling wrack on top of it (to catch excess frosting that drips off).  Dip the cookies into the frosting and set on the cooling wrack.  Otherwise, pipe the frosting onto the cookies.

*The thinner you make the cookies, the crispier they will be.  You may need to adjust your cooking time depending on the thickness of the dough.

*You can make the frosting as thick or thin as you would like.  If you want to pipe it on, just add less lemon juice or add more powdered sugar until you reach the desired consistency.

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These gluten free and vegan Lemon Shortbread Cookies are SO tasty!  They are super easy to make and they have the most delicious and fresh lemon flavor! #glutenfree #dairyfree #vegan #cookies #lemon #dessert

Don’t forget to leave a comment below if you give this recipe a try!

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Lemon Shortbread Cookies that are gluten free, vegan, and dairy free

Lemon Shortbread Cookies – Gluten Free, Vegan

  • Author: Morgan | Just What We Eat
  • Prep Time: 40 min
  • Cook Time: 15 min
  • Total Time: 55 min
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x



  • Swerve
  • Better Batter
  • 1 Lemon, zested (about 2 tbsp)

For the Lemon Frosting:

  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 1/2 tbsp lemon juice 


  4. While the cookies are baking, prepare the frosting.  Add the powdered sugar/sweetener to a small bowl with the lemon juice and mix until thickened.*




© Just What We Eat. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post for the recipe.



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  1. Your dessert recipes are so much fun, and this one is no exception. They look so simple but must just have a burst of flavor. Hmmm… we don’t do Swerve, so will need to think how we could make a relatively low-sugar version.

    1. Thank you so much, Beth! You could use maple syrup or some other natural sweetener for the cookies (you will need to adjust the liquid a bit in the recipe) and just leave the lemon glaze off if you want to avoid using Swerve or powdered sugar.

  2. WOW, these are simply beautiful cookies! Lemon is a favorite here and I just love how bright and inviting these show!

      1. I have put part of a batch in an airtight container into the freezer as soon as I bake them and 2 weeks later, they are as good as the day I baked them.

  3. Hello, I’m new to your site. These cookies look/sound amazing. Question though; can I swap Earth B. for reg. butter? And secondly, sugar? Can I use an organic cane sugar….(they’re cookies for special occasions only? …my excuse???) Thoughts?

    1. Hi! Thank you so much! You should be able to use regular butter in this recipe. I’m not sure regular cane sugar would work in these. I think it might make the cookies spread a lot. You should be able to use regular powdered sugar in them though if that helps.

  4. I have made these 8 times since I found the recipe at the end of April. I prefer them on the thick side. I use Becel Vegan margarine and Bob’s 1 to 1 baking flour. We love these. Thanks for the recipe. (Canada)

  5. I did not use anything vegan. I put the dough in the fridge for 10 minutes and it stuck to the rolling pin. I now have it in the fridge for a lot longer. Sure hope this helps. My fault for not using the vegan ingredients.

    1. Hi Trish, I’m so sorry it was too sticky! I am allergic to dairy so I haven’t tried it any other way than with vegan butter. Hopefully refrigerating it longer will help. In the future, you could also try adding more powdered sugar and flour until you get the consistency you need.

  6. Made them, love them! But perhaps I rolled too thin cause I didn’t need to cook them that long.

    1. Hi Brooke, I have used the Earth Balance spread before and it works just fine. Just make sure you are really precise when measuring it so you don’t get too much which could cause the cookies to be a greasy mess. I hope you enjoy them!

  7. I made these today… they are absolutely delicious! Thank you Morgan for this, and all your wonderful recipes.

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