vegan cookie dough ice cream sandwiches
desserts,  gluten free,  lactose free,  vegan

Basic vegan cookie dough and ice cream sandwiches (gf option, safe-to-eat-raw option)

I’m addicted to Ben&Jerry’s cookie dough ice cream and their cookie dough ice cream sandwiches. The availability of those products in the Netherlands was seriously one of the points I considered a pro when I decided to move here. But the fact that they are milk-based was really something that bothered me a lot as I started to move in more plant-based direction with my diet, and well, their ingredients list is not very appealing in general. This frustration made me test over and over cookie dough recipes that could serve as a basis for vegan alternative.

I wanted to make this recipe as versatile as possible. First, it can be made gluten free really easily just by swapping the flour for gf mix (I tested the AH own brand and Peak’s gluten free cake mix) and the baking powder for a gluten free one. And second, for an interesting dessert twist, you can make safe-to-eat-raw version by pre-baking the flour. There is a small place in Groningen that sells scoops of raw cookie dough and it’s a nice alternative for ice cream, especially for those of us who couldn’t resist raw dough as a child!

This is how the dough looks raw.

As for modifying the recipe, the possibilities are endless:

  • swap one tablespoon of flour for cocoa powder for chocolate cookies
  • add nuts or dried fruits (my favourite combination: dark chocolate, cranberries and walnuts, or little pieces of dried apricots and white chocolate)
  • mix different types of chocolate
  • add cinnamon
  • add icing after baking

You can put whatever ice cream you like best in the sandwiches and experiment with different tastes. Personally, I find the Alpro vanilla ice cream optimal for achieving the highest “Ben&Jerry’s similarity” factor.

Cookies (makes 8-10)

150g flour (or gf flour mix)
50g ground almonds
1 tsp baking powder (or gf baking powder)
50g neutral oil (canola or rice)
2 tablespoons flax seeds, ground + 4 tablespoons hot water
60g sugar
1 tbsp vanilla sugar
100g chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate
cold water

Cookie dough sandwiches (makes 5)

Vanilla ice cream
10 cookies

For safe-to-eat-raw cookie dough: place the flour into an oven safe dish and bake it for 30 minutes in 180 degrees. Stir every 10 minutes. Let cool and continue with the basic recipe.

Basic cookie dough

Mix flax seeds with hot water, set aside and stir every couple minutes to make sure that there are no clumps of flax seeds. The “flax egg” is ready to use in about 5 minutes. In large bowl mix all dry ingredients, except for chocolate, and add oil and flax mixture. Mix with your hands until reaching a crumbly texture and slowly add small amounts of cold water – tablespoon at a time – kneading the dough after each tablespoon, until it reaches the desired consistency. The dough should not crumble and not stick to your hand. Usually, it needs 3-4 tablespoons of water, but this amount can vary depending on the flour you use. Add the chocolate and mix it in with your hands until it’s evenly distributed. Store the dough in fridge for up to 3 days or freeze it.

If you used pre-baked flour, you can the cookie dough now! Take a scoop, put it in a bowl, add your favourite toppings (caramel sauce? speculoos? nuts? berries? whipped cream?) and enjoy. You can also make your own vegan/gf cookie dough ice cream: put the cookie dough in a freezer for 20 minutes, take vanilla ice cream out of the freezer for the same amount of time, cut the chilled cookie dough into bite-size pieces and mix with softened ice cream.

Baking (for cookies and cookie dough sandwiches)

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Divide the dough into pieces weighting approximately 40g (of course, you can make yours bigger or smaller; remember about adjusting baking time accordingly) and roll into balls. Flatten them with your hand – they won’t spread much, so make them about 1cm thick, unless you like really chunky cookies. Place the cookies on a parchment paper. For cookie dough sandwiches I prefer more chewy cookies, so I bake them for 8 minutes – don’t worry if they seem underbaked and too soft, they will harden in the freezer. For more crispy and thoroughly baked cookies, keep them in the oven for about 12 minutes. Allow cookies to cool for at least 30 minutes before eating.

Assembling cookie dough sandwiches

Put cooled cookies in the freezer. After 15 minutes take the vanilla ice cream out of the freezer and put in room temperature for 15 minutes to soften. Take cookies out of the freezer, put a scoop of ice cream on one cookie and press with the second. Store the sandwiches in a ziplock bag in the freezer.

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