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Oil-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies {vegan, grain-free}

With 1 bowl and 5 minutes prep, you can crank out a batch of these mouthwatering oil-free vegan chocolate chip cookies whenever a craving hits! Also grain-free & gluten-free, they are crunchy at the edges and soft at the center. YUM!
stack of 4 oil-free vegan chocolate chip cookies on a glass plate

Delicious, Nutritious Cookies that Love You Back

As a blogger who focuses on healthy eating, I am proud to say that I spend a considerable amount of time baking cookies.

Many, many cookies.

Because I love cookies, you love cookies, my husband loves cookies, and my 6-foot plus 14-year-old son loves cookies. I also love creating  cookies that are packed with wholesome, nourishing ingredients that make you feel satisfied, energized, and ready for whatever comes next.

My cookie philosophy is make cookies that love you back (can I get a hallelujah?!). 

I make batches of cookies every week for my son’s lunches (umm…and for me…and my husband). Chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and ginger cookies are his favorites, but he is open to my many interpretations on the themes. Inspired by my recent sunflower seed flour experiments, I decided to concoct a new riff on the first favorite:

Oil-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies! (I’ll take his eating of four cookies in rapid succession as a sign of approval.)

oil-free chocolate chip cookie on a

Healthy Highlights of these Cookies

  • Vegan (egg-free, dairy-free)
  • Grain-free
  • Gluten-free
  • Rich in healthy fats
  • Low-carb
  • Paleo

Most importantly, the cookies are free of empty calories and any other added junk. Instead of reserving them for dessert, grab one for a healthy snack, part of a healthy breakfast on the go, or pre- or post-workout fuel.

 Oil-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies Ingredient List

The exact amounts of each ingredient are indicated in the recipe card at the end of the post.

The ingredient list is both short and flexible. Here it is:

You will also need about 2 tablespoons of water. 

I wanted to use sunflower seed flour in this recipe, but any number of other flours will work, including almond flour, chickpea flour, oat flour or coconut flour. Use the same amount (1/4 cup), except in the case of coconut flour (you will use less; see the recipe notes).

How to Make Oil-Free Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

You can make the dough for the cookies in 1 bowl, in under 5 minutes. Fast + easy + minimal cleanup + delectable = cookie perfection.

Combine the wet ingredients first: the nut/seed butter, coconut sugar, lemon juice, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons  water. Stir in the sunflower seed flour and baking powder until blended and then in go the chocolate chips.

glass bowl filled with oil-free vegan chocolate chip cookie dough

I did not add any salt to the cookie dough itself because I used a salted natural peanut butter. If you are using a salt-free nut or seed butter, consider adding about 1/8 teaspoon of salt to the dough.

Regarding the lemon juice in the recipe: The lemon juice prevents the sunflower seed flour from creating any green specks (a natural chemical reaction, and perfectly harmless) in the cookies. If you do not use sunflower seed flour, feel free to leave it out.

Scoop, Roll and Flatten the Dough

Use a cookie scoop, or a tablespoon measure, to scoop out even portions of the dough. 

small cookie scoop filled with vegan chocolate chip cookie dough

Roll each dough into a ball and space 2 to 3 inches apart on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Flatten the Cookies Before Baking

The cookies do not spread much as they bake, so it is important to get them close to their finished shape as possible before baking.  

Flatten the dough into a circle (about 1/4 thick) using your palm or the bottom of a glass. Or, do as I do and use your fingertips for the flattening, creating an imperfect surface (a few dimples and divots). This results in a more like a traditional-looking cookie once baked,


Slide the cookies into a preheated 325F oven (low and slow is good for these untraditional sweets) and bake for 10 to 14 minutes until golden brown and the edges have a few cracks. The centers will still appear slightly underdone. 

Do not worry if your cookies do not match the color of mine! The cookies will vary in color depending on the type of sweetener, nut/seed butter, and flour you use.

oil-free chocolate chip cookies on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet

Cool Completely on the Baking Sheet

Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and place on a cooling rack. Next, do something else (anything; you will need some distraction, the cookies smell so tempting) while the cookies cool completely on the baking sheet.

The cookies will continue to “bake” from the carryover heat of the pan and will firm up as they cool. 

It is worth the wait! Happy baking :).

stack of vegan and oil-free chocolate chip cookies on a glass plate with a white napkin underneath
stack of 4 oil-free vegan chocolate chip cookies on a glass plate

Oil-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies {vegan, grain-free}

Yield: 12 cookies
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes

With 1 bowl and 5 minutes prep, you can crank out a batch of these mouthwatering oil-free chocolate chip cookies! Vegan, grain-free & gluten-free, they are crunchy at the edges and soft at the center. YUM!


  • 1/2 cup smooth nut or seed butter (see notes for options)
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar (see notes for options)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice or cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seed flour or almond flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips (regular or miniature)
  • Optional: sea salt flakes (fleur de sel)


  1. Preheat oven to 325F (160C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the nut or seed butter, coconut sugar, water, lemon juice and vanilla, stirring until blended and smooth.
  3. Add the sunflower seed flour and baking powder to the bowl; stir until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  4. Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon measure, scoop out tablespoon portions of cookie dough. Roll each portion into a ball and place 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.5 cm) apart on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. With fingertips or palm, flatten each cookie into a round cookie shape about 1/4 inch thick (the cookies do not spread much as they bake). If desired, add a few sprinkles of sea salt flakes.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes until golden brown and edges have a few cracks (the centers will still appear slightly underdone).
  7. Cool the cookies completely on the baking sheet before removing (they continue to bake--carryover heat--on the baking sheet; also, they can fall apart if moved while still warm).


Storage: Store the cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1 week or the freezer for up to 6 months.

Nut butter and seed butter options: consider using peanut butter, cashew butter, almond butter, or seed butters, such as my DIY pepita butter or sunflower seed butter. Note: If using sunflower seed butter, add an extra 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice to prevent the greening effect that can occur with sunflower seeds.

Flour options: An equal amount (1/4 cup) of chickpea flour or oat flour can be used in place of the sunflower seed flour. 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of coconut flour can also be used. If you do not need the cookies to be gluten-free or grain-free, 1/4 cup of whole wheat, spelt, or all-purpose flour can be used.

Coconut sugar options: An equal amount of brown sugar or natural cane sugar can be used in place of the coconut sugar.

Nutrition Information
Yield 12 Serving Size 1 cookie
Amount Per Serving Calories 122Total Fat 7.9gSaturated Fat 1.7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 63.8mgCarbohydrates 11.6gFiber 1.7gSugar 10.4gProtein 2.9g

Did you make this recipe?

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Thursday 19th of January 2023

Can I sub honey for the coconut sugar?


Wednesday 25th of January 2023

That should be fine, Lola. Just be sure to reduce the amount of added water a little bit.

Laurie Hoffman

Friday 24th of June 2022

Oh so yummy! I used applesauce instead of sugar.


Saturday 25th of June 2022

Yum, thanks for sharing, Laurie. I’m going to have to try the applesauce sub ?


Monday 18th of April 2022

Hello. Is it possible to use coconut flour instead?


Tuesday 19th of April 2022

Hi Jackie,

Not for this recipe— but I have an oil-free coconut flour chocolate chip cookie recipe ? Here is the link:

Deb M

Saturday 26th of June 2021

I just made this recipe using Trader Joes creamy Almond Butter for the nut/seed butter, the lemon juice (vs. cider vinegar), and the almond flour (vs. sunflower seed flour) and the cookies turned out really nicely. Using a 1 Tablespoon scoop leveled off, the recipe made 16 small cookies. The oven temp/timing were good too. Thanks for another good recipe!


Monday 12th of July 2021

You are so welcome, Deb! :)

G Park

Friday 12th of February 2021

These are my go-to chocolate chip cookies. I love them and so do my littles! Love all of your simple cookies, great for busy families!

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