Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies (Gluten-Free)

Rich and chocolatey Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies with a wholesome brownie-like cookie base, chocolate peanut butter cup nose and pretzel antlers. These are fun, gluten-free and delicious.

I just love taking bakes to the next festive level, and what better way to turn cookies into a Christmas treat than with these reindeer face cookies. They are packed with good-for-you ingredients, come together in one bowl with minimal ingredients and maximum satisfaction. Even if you make these without the reindeer faces, the rich and fudgy brownie-like cookies are delicious on their own or decorated with festive sprinkles and more chocolate.

Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies on a white backdrop
Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies

Why will I love these cookies?

These cookies are special, they are:

  • Rich, chocolatey and fudgy
  • Brownie-like in texture with a chewy middle and shiny crispy top
  • Decorated as reindeer with chocolate peanut butter cup noses
  • Topped with antlers, eyes and glacé cherries
  • Made with wholesome ingredients
  • Naturally vegan, gluten-free and easily nut-free
  • Great to make with little ones this holiday time
  • Delicious all year round as rich chocolatey bakes
  • Easy to make in one bowl

If you already love these Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies then skip ahead to the recipe card below. Or, first let’s discuss the recipe in more detail.

What ingredients do I need?

The ingredients for these cookies are simple and delicious:

  • Smooth runny almond butter: or you can use another nut or seed butter, making sure it’s smooth and runny for the best textured cookie dough. I like to use tahini for a nut-free option.
  • Thick coconut yoghurt: this adds moisture and a delicious fudgy texture to the middle of the cookies. I always use the natural or vanilla yoghurt from Cocos Organic so make sure that your yoghurt is thick and creamy, like a Greek-style dairy-free yoghurt.
  • Ground chia seeds: or ground flaxseeds to bind the batter and these replace the need for egg in the cookie dough.
  • Maple syrup: for stickiness and sweetness. You can use other syrups like agave, tapioca or vegan honey.
  • Coconut sugar: also for sweetness and I love the caramel-richness that coconut sugar adds although golden or white caster sugar will also work.
A bitten Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookie on a white board
Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies
  • Plain or GF plain flour: using plain flour keeps these cookies light, fdgy and crisp but I also like using spelt or buckwheat flour or use your preferred 1:1 baking flour blend that is gluten-free (one which also contains a thickener like xanthan gum).
  • Cocoa powder: for the chocolatey richness. You can also use cacao powder in these cookies.
  • Vegan chocolate protein powder: this adds texture, a boost of protein and more chocolate flavour to these delicious cookies. I love the chocolate hazelnut or deluxe chocolate protein from Macromike (save 10% on everything with my code AMB-AMY). Or you can also use the caramel popcorn protein which is a festive special over on Macromike’s website for Christmas 2022.
  • Oat flour: this adds some fibre and goodness to the cookie dough so we don’t need to use all plain flour. Grind your oats in a blender to a fine flour texture to make your own oat flour.
  • Baking powder and salt: for rise and flavour.
  • Mini chocolate peanut butter cups: press these into the cookies as soon as they come out of the oven so that they melt deliciously. I use the dark chocolate ones from KoRo or from Pip&Nut which are both delicious. If you don’t have these, use a big chocolate button.
  • Extra chocolate: this is the “glue” that holds together the antlers and eyes to the cookie.
  • Edible eyes, pretzels and glacé cherries: for the reindeer decoration. You can also improvise and use other reindeer-looking items, too.

How do I make them?

These cookies are similar to my Cherry Bakewell Cookies and come together in one bowl:

  • Whisk together the wet ingredients: to a sticky mix.
  • Add in the dry ingredients: and stir to a sticky cookie dough.
  • Shape into balls and press down on a baking tray: leave a little bit of room.
  • Bake for 9 minutes until crispy on the outside: and still fudgy in the middle. They will continue to bake as they cool down.
  • Press a chocolate cup or button onto the cookies: for the nose.
  • Allow to cool fully before moving: and then decorate with pretzel antlers, eyes, glacé cherry noses and more.

Are these gluten-free and nut-free?

Yes these cookies are naturally gluten-free as long as you use gluten-free flour in the cookie dough and please check that all your other ingredients are certified gluten-free (like oats, yoghurt, pretzels etc). To make these nut-free, use tahini or sunflower seed butter instead of almond butter and check that your yoghurt, protein powder and chocolate are all nut-free.

How long will they last?

These cookies will keep for 3-5 days in a sealed container or in the fridge in your house is warm. The eyes will start to “bleed” and the antlers will soften over time, so best to decorate them the day you plan to serve them to friends and family.

A bitten Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookie on a wire rack
Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies

What else can I bake this holiday season?

If you are looking for more fun and festive bakes, how about my:

A bitten Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookie on a white board

Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies

Yield: 7-8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 9 minutes
Total Time: 9 minutes

Rich and chocolatey Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies with a wholesome brownie-like cookie base, chocolate peanut butter cup nose and pretzel antlers. These are fun, gluten-free and delicious.


For the Cookies:

  • 50g smooth runny almond butter
  • 60g thick coconut yoghurt
  • 2 tsp ground chia seeds
  • 60ml maple syrup
  • 60g coconut sugar
  • 50g plain or GF plain flour
  • 30g cocoa powder
  • 20g vegan chocolate protein powder
  • 50g oat flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • A pinch of salt

To Decorate:

  • 7-8 mini peanut butter cups or chocolate buttons
  • Melted chocolate
  • Edible sugar eyes
  • Pretzels
  • 7-8 glacé cherries


  1. Preheat the oven to 160Fan/180ºC and line a large baking tray with parchment paper.
  2. For the cookies: whisk together the almond butter, yoghurt, chia seeds, maple syrup and coconut sugar till smooth. Sift in the plain flour, cocoa powder and protein powder. Add in the oat flour, baking powder and salt. Stir to a sticky cookie dough.
  3. To shape the cookies: divide into 7-8 cookies (about 50g each) and flatten onto the tray, leaving some room around them.
  4. To bake: bake the cookies for 9 minutes, until slightly cracked on top and firming at the edges.
  5. Once out the oven: immediately press a mini peanut butter cup into each cookie, near the bottom for the reindeer nose. Allow to cool fully on the tray.
  6. To decorate: using melted chocolate, “glue” the eyes, pretzel antlers and glacé cherry noses into place.
  7. To store: enjoy straight away or keep for 3-5 days in a sealed container (you can keep them in the fridge if your house is warm). The antlers will soften over time and the eyes will start to “bleed” so best to decorate on the day of eating the cookies. You can freeze the cookies (without the antlers and eyes) for up to 1 month, wrapped well, and allow to defrost at room temperature.

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I look forward to hearing what you think of these Vegan Chocolate Reindeer Cookies so please let me know in the comments below and leave a star review above. If you do make these, I’d love to see them so please tag me, I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. I’m also on TwitterFacebook and Pinterest  – please say hello!

With reindeer cookie love x

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