Vegan Baking

I’ve known many a vegan in my life, and even more vegetarians. Up until recently, however, I hadn’t ever experienced vegan baking. A good friend of mine was once a vegan herself and just so happens to be the delicious mastermind behind Serial Baker. So, every now and then she makes vegan treats since she has quite a few friends that are vegans. After sampling yet another amazing cupcake from her (recipe and drool-worthy pictures here), I decided to give vegan baking a try.

I don’t remember how I stumbled upon this recipe from Namely Marly, but I was excited to see that I had almost all of the ingredients on hand. I had been given a generously sized jar of Tropical Tradition’s Coconut Oil awhile back to sample, and was pleased to see the recipe called for coconut oil. It had never occured to me that coconut oil is a great substitue for butter because of it’s not quite liquid, not quite solid state. Using the coconut oil as well as some apple sauce made the cookies super moist and chewy, which happens to be my favorite qualities of a good cookie.

Now that I’m aware of coconut oil’s versatility, I’m looking forward to incorporating it more into my baking. Though I do really need to work on my presentation. These cookies blobbed together, as do most of my cookies. I realize that it isn’t always about looks (taste is much more important), but I do want my baked goods to look pretty, too! I suppose that will come with practice, and I certainly haven’t made enough cookies in my life to even think for a second I’ve had practice. I’m also hoping some new baking and cookie sheets will help do the trick (along with all of the other awesome kitchen gadgets on my wedding registry).

So what’s the bottom line here? Vegan baking can be absolutely delicious (for all you skeptics out there), coconut oil is awesome, and you should go make these cookies. Okay, so that was more than one line.

Coconut Oil and No Bake Goodies

After seeing Foodie Fresh’s awesome month of coconut giveaways from Tropical Traditions, I decided to head over to their site to check everything out – I was totally intrigued by their coconut peanut butter. I stumbled upon a section where you could sign up to review a product of theirs, and I jumped at the potential offer. I love coconut, and seriously would have been happy with anything they sent. So, when I received an e-mail that I was selected and would be receiving a 32oz. jar of their Virgin Coconut Oil, I was psyched.

This recipe comes from Oh She Glows, and it looked absolutely amazing. When I first saw it, I didn’t have coconut oil, so I was a bit disappointed I wouldn’t be able to make it, since she explicitly noted that other oils might change the flavor. As soon as I got the Virgin Coconut Oil from Tropical Traditions, though, I knew I could make these delicious coconut macaroons.

The coconut oil is delicious. Like I said, I’m a huge coconut fan, and even though I’ve never knowingly had anything with coconut oil in it, it really adds a nice hint of coconut flavor. As soon as I opened the jar I could smell coconut, and couldn’t wait to get it into liquid form (only needed about 20 seconds in the microwave) to devour it. I’m so excited I have such a large jar, because I’m definitely going to use it in more baked goods in the future!

And the best part about this recipe? The whole thing took me about 5 minutes, and they were ready. If I didn’t have the little bit of self-control I do possess, they would have been devoured even faster. The only change up I did was instead of using almond milk, I went with coconut milk for added flavor, and also that it was the only milk in the house. I wonder if I could somehow turn these into peanut butter, coconut, and chocolate macaroons…

Disclaimer: Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review in return for the free product.