Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {vegan}

Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {vegan} | the pig & quillI will be the first to admit that I don’t like cakey cookies. A chewy cookie I can tolerate, and that’s something that’s only grown on me in the past 10 years or so. (College really forces you to get un-picky about the types of cookies that show up in your care packages. I mean, my mom was all over the crisp, crunchy cookie thing, but some of my dorm-mates mom’s weren’t as savvy. We made do.)

But every now and then you stumble on something that changes your point of view completely. Maybe it’s a YA novel that brings into question the existence of angel armies with hunky bods and smoldering, amber eyes. (Didn’t I tell you angels are the new vamps??). Maybe it’s a pair of zucchini pleading “eat us, we’re melting!” from the back of the crisper drawer.

If you’ve hit the weekend jackpot, maybe it’s both. Ka-ching.

It was those very zucchini, in fact, that inspired me to traipse into cakey-cookievile. And that lonely half-can of coconut cream left over from the last time I made coconut whip. Oh yeah, and one rebellious bag of sugar cookie mix that unfailingly jumps off the overcrowded pantry shelf every time I open the door, it’s own silent prayer for me — the unbaker — to put it out of its inevitable misery.

Can cookie mix be uppity? Cuz I was ready to smack a B.

Anyway, away I went. I knew I wanted a cookie-type treat so as not to let the sugary, caramelized-edge potential of the mix to go to waste — but I also wanted to afford the zucchini the opportunity to do their tender, fluffy, moistening thing. A cake (or muffin or quick bread) wouldn’t fill the first requirement. And let’s face it: crunchy zucchini cookies kinda sound like they have the potential to taste like a Duraflame log. So I went the route that seemed most natural.


Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {vegan} | the pig & quill

And jaknowhat? I kinda like them. I kinda really like them. I kinda ate at least 7 of them before I even had the chance to bring out the camera. And then, because they were THAT GOOD, I even had the patience to let my baking sheets cool and make three more batches of them. THREE MORE BATCHES. From the girl that doesn’t DO baking. (And therefore owns sugar cookie mix in the first place.)

I’m pretty stoked on myself right now, if we’re being honest.  The whole house smells like freaking caramelized sugar and (hunky) angel tears, and my counters are stacked with delicate, crisply-edged cookies that boast plenty of browned sugar flavor while simultaneously giving way to tender, madeline-esque centers that, quite frankly, taste a little like birthday cake. Birthday cake! FROM A ZUCCHINI COOKIE.

And just to top things off, these pretty little miracles of mine are actually vegan. 

I mean, is it weird that, given all of the above, I’m not wearing a crown or mind-melding with a dragon or something right now? Or like, napping with puppies in the sunshine, right?

Thought so. I’ma have to do something about that.

In the meantime, you should really listen to those zuchs hollering at you from the fridge. With a little coconut cream vegan love sauce and some Betty Crocker action, they could end up rocking your weekend’s world.

Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {vegan} | the pig & quill

Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {Vegan}
By Emily Stoffel
Cook time: 25 mins (plus extra for baking batches) | Makes about 36 cakies

Note: I like the zucchini to pretty much melt into these guys, which means a nice, fine shred. A hand grater works well — or, for quick work, use the shredder blade of your food processor and then pulse the resulting shreds a few times with the regular processor blade for an even finer texture. And for coconut cream, I get mine from Trader Joe’s. It’s a canned product that is substantially thicker and richer than coconut milk, but it looks like several other brands make the creamier version, as well. I would not sub coconut milk without testing the recipe first as it’s far…liquidier. (Ew.) Finally, the completed cakies tend to be a little on the tacky side, and they’ll stick together if stacked for too long. Solution? Eat them fresh! Or, if storing, separate layers with parchment.


  • 1.5 cups finely shredded zucchini (about 2 med zucchini, see note)
  • 3/4 cup coconut cream (see note)
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 4 cups sugar cookie mix (about 1 box or pouch, for most brands)


Preheat oven to 400F. Stir together zucchini and coconut oil, distributing oil through squash (no matter if it’s still somewhat solid, it mixes in pretty easily as it’s handled). Stir in coconut cream to combine. Add sugar cookie mix, one cup at a time, until mixture is smooth and all mix is incorporated. It’ll look like you have something halfway between cookie and cake batter going on. Perfect.

Load batter into a large, ziptop bag and seal, pressing out excess air. Force mix into one corner of the bag and twist up excess, creating a sort of piping situation. Snip off one 1/2″ corner and “pipe” batter onto parchment or silpat lined baking sheet, using about 1.5 tablespoons per cakie and aiming for 1.5″ diameter. Be sure to leave plenty of room between cakies as batter will spread. (I get about 6-8 per sheet depending on how carefully I’ve planned cakie placement.)

Bake on center rack of oven for 12-15 minutes or until edges are brown and centers feel springy. Allow to cool slightly on pan before removing to a cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

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2 Comments on “Coconut-Zucchini Sugar Cakies {vegan}”

  1. Just popped my first batch n the oven, but the batter seemed way more cake-like and runny than it should be. Probably because I used two of the snack-pack mixes instead of one larger box. And I had some extra liquid from the giant zucchini that I processed down tonight. “Piped” those puppies into my silicone cupcake wrappers and they’re rising nicely in the oven! If there are any left on Sunday, you might get to try some!

    1. Can’t wait to hear how they turn out. The batter IS definitely thinner than cookie dough, so it doesn’t necessarily sound like you were that far off, but I’m sure the cupcake (cookcake?) route worked out just fine. Not sure that the cookie mix contains enough rising agents to get them bug and fluffy, but at the very least, I bet they’ll be kind of madeline-y, which sounds pretty delicious!

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