These soft iced vegan lemon swirl cookies have real lemon juice and lemon zest stirred in to the cookie dough, making them unbelievably fresh, zesty and perfect for summer. Topped with homemade vegan lemon curd and a delicious cream cheese swirl, they are sure to be a hit for whoever you make them for. This lemon cookie recipe is ready in less than 30 minutes, and is sure to impress! Vegan, dairy-free, egg-free, easy.
Vegan Lemon Swirl Cookies
Summer is officially here and the lemons are in abundance. This simple lemon cookie recipe is made from only a handful of ‘easy to find’ ingredients. You’ll be using basic cookie ingredients such as dairy-free butter, sugar, and flour along with fresh lemon juice and lemon zest fora citrus kick. These will be your go-to bake for Summer. They are fresh, fruity and fun! They remind me of a lemon meringue, but in cookie form!
Cookie : The cookie is crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. They melt in your mouth with the most delicious lemon butter flavour! Whoever you serve these to won’t believe you actually made them. They taste like they have come from a bakery, they’re THAT good! You will simply have to make them to find out.
Cream swirl : The cream swirl contains vegan butter and dairy-free cream cheese, giving the flavour of the cookies a delicious ‘lemon meringue’ vibe. They are truly scrumptious!
Lemon curd swirl : You can’t have a lemon cookie without the most delicious lemon curd to top them off! Simple. egg-free and made in minutes, this is the BEST EVER vegan lemon curd!
Ingredients you’ll need:
This recipe is super quick, easy with ingredients you might possibly already have in your kitchen / pantry! Find the full ingredients list and quantities in the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Dairy-free butter – You want it soft at room temperature, this makes it easier to cream. My favourite vegan butters are ‘Naturli Vegan Block’ or ‘Flora Plant Butter’.
Caster sugar – Use fine, white caster sugar.
Vanilla extract – You can use a splash of vanilla or seeds from a vanilla bean pod.
Dairy-free milk – Any dairy-free milk works for this recipe including oat, almond, soya or cashew.
Plain flour – Use plain flour / all purpose flour.
Baking powder + Baking soda – Helps to cookies to rise and adds a nice chew.
Fresh lemons – Make sure they are unwaxed!
Coconut milk – Use the thick white cream from a can of coconut milk. See notes at the bottom of the written recipe for further instruction.
Cornflour / cornstarch – This helps to thicken the lemon curd!
Turmeric – Helps to give the lemon curd a gorgeous sunny yellow colour. If you can’t have turmeric, you can use a dot of vegan friendly yellow food gel.
Dairy-free cream cheese – Use a good quality cream cheese, my favourite is Violife.
Icing sugar – Make sure to sift the icing sugar before use, this will remove any lumps making for a super smooth cream cheese frosting, and dusting on top.
How to make Vegan Lemon Swirl Cookies
Add all of the lemon curd ingredients into a saucepan over the hob. Heat and allow to bubble away until it thickens. Remove from the heat, transfer into a heat proof bowl and allow to cool down.
Mix the butter and sugar together in a bowl, then add in the rest of the ingredients until a thick cookie dough. Scoop into balls and place on a lined baking tray, coat with sugar and bake.
Cream the vegan butter and cream cheese, then add in the rest of the ingredients. Beat until thick and creamy, transfer into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip nozzle. Pipe a swirl on top of each cookie.
Transfer the lemon curd into a piping bag, snip off the tip and pipe in-between the cream cheese swirl.
Sprinkle some icing sugar over the cookies and finish them off with a slice of fresh lemon. You could even zest some lemon over the top.
If you make, and love this recipe, please leave a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ rating below. Thank you & happy baking! Make sure to tag me in your photos on Instagram and Facebook! And if you want to pin this recipe for later, you can use the button on the recipe card, above or below this post, or on any of the photos. Happy baking all!
Melt in the mouth lemon cookies are filled with fresh lemon, topped with a homemade vegan lemon curd and cream cheese swirl. The PERFECT cookie for the summer season! Vegan, egg-free, dairy-free, easy to make!
Ingredients for the lemon curd
80g of lemon juice (from fresh lemons)
125g of coconut milk (cream only)
125g of caster sugar
3 tablespoons of cornflour / cornstarch
Pinch of turmeric (or yellow food gel)
Ingredients for the cookies
115g of dairy-free butter (cubed / softened)
140g of caster sugar
Zest of 2 medium unwaxed lemons
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
30ml of dairy-free milk
210g of plain flour
3/4 teaspoon of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
Ingredients for the cream swirl
50g of dairy-free butter
20g of dairy-free cream cheese
250g of icing sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean pod (seeds only)
Dairy-free milk (if needed)
Method (lemon curd)
Drain the clear liquid from a can of coconut milk, as you only want to use the thick white cream. Add all of the lemon curd ingredients into a medium sized saucepan. Stir to combine.
Heat over a medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens (this will take around 5 minutes). Stirring with a heat proof spatula or whisk will prevent any sticking and burning, and will remove any clumps.
Once the mixture is thick and glossy, remove from the heat. Once cool, give it a rigorous stir and transfer into a piping bag. If the curd thickens too much, add a squeeze more lemon juice and whisk vigorously until creamy.
Preheat the oven to 180°C fan and line 2 baking trays with grease proof paper.
Add the butter, sugar and lemon zest into a mixing bowl or the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Whip with a hand mixer or the stand mixer until light and creamy.
Add the lemon juice and milk. Whip again until combined.
Sift in the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda. Mix until just combined.
Scoop the cookie dough into 6- 8 balls using spoons or an ice-cream scoop.
Optional step – Sprinkle some caster or granulated sugar over the cookies before baking.
Place the cookies on the lined tray (leave the dough in balls, don’t press them down!), leaving room in between as they will spread when baking.
Bake in the middle of the oven for 12-14 minutes, or until very lightly golden.
Once baked, remove the trays from the oven, use a round cookie cutter to help shape the cookies. Use the cookie cutter to scoot the cookies into a circle.
Allow the cookies to cool on the baking tray. While they’re cooling, make the buttercream.
Method (cream swirl)
Add the butter and cream cheese into a bowl and whip until smooth and creamy, either in a stand mixer with a balloon whisk attachment or using a hand held electric whisk.
Add in the icing sugar and vanilla, whip until creamy. If it’s too thin or if it ever splits, add in some more chunks of butter until it’s thick and creamy in consistency.
Transfer the frosting into a piping bag fitted with a large round tip nozzle.
Once the cookies are fully cool, pipe a swirl of the cream cheese frosting on top of each cookie.
Transfer the lemon curd into a piping bag, snip off the tip. Pipe a lemon curd swirl in-between the buttercream.
Decorate the tops of the cookies with a slice of fresh lemon and a dusting of icing sugar.
To store: Store the cookies in a sealed container in the fridge, allow to come to room temperature before serving. Best enjoyed 2 days of making.
It’s best to store the cookies un iced, then ice day of making to keep them crisp and fresh. The cream cheese can soften the cookie if left too long.
Lemon curd can be stored in a sealed / air tight container in the fridge. It might thicken, so you will need to give it a vigorous whisk to loosen it and bring it back to a smooth consistency. Even add in a splash more lemon juice to help loosen it.
How to use coconut cream : Chill a can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight, open it upside down (the liquid will be at the top and cream at the bottom of the can). Pour away the liquid and only use the thick, white cream.