These gluten free vegan Samoa cookies are heavenly. A shortbread base, topped with homemade vegan caramel, toasted coconut and a dark chocolate drizzle…what more could you ask for? We’re all about healthier Girl Scout cookies that everyone can enjoy!
Our Samoas vs. the Original
I can’t even remember the last time I had Girl Scout cookies. It’s probably been at least 10 years, maybe more! My all-time favorite was Tagalongs, but Samoas were a close second. I love the chocolate + caramel + coconut combination!
I just took a quick look at the ingredient list for Samoas, and yikes. The first few ingredients are sugar, vegetable oil, enriched flour and corn syrup. Later on in the list, we get glycerin, invert sugar, caramel color, dextrose, and something called sorbitan tristearate.
Look, I’m all for food freedom. I think it’s perfectly fine to indulge in “unhealthy” foods. However, isn’t it just so much better to make things homemade? No weird ingredients, no artificial flavors/colors, and you certainly don’t need 4 variations of sugar. I’d so much rather enjoy a cookie (or two…or five) made from home or a great bakery!
Assembling the cookies
This gluten free & vegan take on the classic Samoa cookie definitely strays from the original concept, but it’s equally delicious. We start with a buttery, crispy cookie base dipped in dark chocolate, followed by a layer of our 4 ingredient homemade caramel. (Side note – we added a few extra ingredients to this version to help thicken the caramel.) Then, we sprinkle toasted coconut and finish with more dark chocolate and a pinch of flaky salt.
Skip the hole – save your dough!
We decided to keep the vegan gluten free cookies whole (instead of cutting a hole in the center like a classic Samoa). It’s just easier, and you don’t have to waste any precious dough! The shortbread base is delicious and versatile. We’ve used the same recipe in these Chocolate Pecan Caramel Shortbread Cookie Bars – they make for the perfect sturdy base.
Looking for more gluten free & vegan cookie recipes? Here are a few of our favorites:
- Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Tahini Thumbprint Cookies with Date Caramel Filling
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie
- Double Chocolate Shortbread Cookies
We hope you enjoy these gluten free vegan Samoa cookies – tag us on Instagram @crowded_kitchen if you give them a try!Print
These gluten free vegan Samoa cookies are heavenly. A shortbread base, topped with homemade vegan caramel, toasted coconut and a dark chocolate drizzle…what more could you ask for?
- 3/4 cup coconut oil (solid, but softened)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 1/4 cups gluten free all purpose flour
- 1 cup coconut cream (don’t use any of the liquid in the can – just the solid layer of cream)
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp arrowroot powder
- 1/2 cup coconut flakes (unsweetened)
- 8 oz dark chocolate, melted
- Optional: flaky salt
- Add all ingredients to a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk well and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, whisking often. Remove from heat and let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to another container to cool completely. It will thicken as it cools.
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- In a medium bowl, cream coconut oil and sugar with hand mixer or stand mixer. Add maple syrup and vanilla and mix until well combined.
- Add flour and mix for 10-15 seconds, or until a crumb texture forms.
- Knead dough until it forms into a ball and you can pinch the dough without it crumbling.
- Roll out the dough to between 1/8-1/4 inch thick. Cut cookies using a small circular cookie cutter. Repeat until all dough is used. Place cookies on parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until slightly browned. Let cool completely.
- Reduce oven heat to 325 F. Spread coconut flakes on a sheet pan in an even layer.
- Bake for 5-10 minutes, stirring once, until toasted and browned. Be careful – it burns easily!
- To assemble cookies, dip shortbread base in melted dark chocolate. Let harden for a few minutes, then spread a layer of caramel on top of cookie. Sprinkle with a layer of coconut, then drizzle with more dark chocolate. Let the chocolate set before eating.