Say hello to these healthy lemon cookies! This cookie recipe has a moist, pillowy soft base, and it’s topped with a sweet (yet sugar-free) lemon glaze! These cookies are made with almond flour making them a paleo and gluten-free option. They’re also sweetened with honey and glazed with powdered monk fruit sweetener, making them free of refined sugar too!
For my lemon lovers, check out this lemon bread recipe, too!
ingredients for these healthy lemon cookies:
Almond Flour: Almond flour is my personal favorite paleo baking flour. Which is why you see it in SO many of my recipes. The almond flour in this recipe makes these cookies fluffy and pillowy soft.
Arrowroot Flour: The arrowroot is to make the cookies bind properly and give them a bit of denseness. Baking science, what can I say!
Baking Soda: Typically, a recipe would call for more baking soda than only 1/8 teaspoon. But oftentimes with paleo cookies (using almond flour specifically), you can taste the baking soda strongly! I tested these a few times and that is what was happening. So the 1/8 teaspoon is so the cookies still slightly spread without being overpowering.
Ghee: My personal favorite healthier baking fat. You can always use coconut oil instead but I find that ghee gives these cookies a buttery flavor you won’t wanna miss!
Egg: For binding. A vegan egg (chia, flax) will work as well.
Honey: For natural sweetness.
Fresh Lemon Juice: It’s important to use fresh lemon juice instead of the bottled concentrate. Fresh lemon juice will give it that vibrant flavor.
Lemon Zest: Repeat after me: I will not skip the lemon zest! But really, the lemon zest is what gives it that true lemon taste.
Almond Extract: Optional, but almond extract is one of my favorite flavors and it combines perfectly with the lemon flavor.
Powdered Monk Fruit Sweetener: a powdered sugar substitute made with the zero-calorie monk fruit sweetener. This truthfully tastes as close to powdered sugar as you can get without being the real thing. If you don’t have this, just use powdered sugar!
Weigh your almond flour: I say this every time, but weighing your ingredients when baking is so important, but especially with paleo baking flours. The density of these flours greatly varies so there is a huge difference between one cup tightly packed and one cup spooned. If you ever make a recipe with paleo baking flours (like almond flour) and it doesn’t turn out right, I highly recommend weighing your ingredients with a small food scale like this one.
Chill your dough: This step is super important to get the right texture and density of your dough. When mixed initially, the dough will be too wet and sticky to form into balls. Once chilled, the dough will be easy to manipulate and you should be able to roll them into balls with ease. Chill for 1 hour (bare minimum 30 minutes if you’re really in a hurry) or up to overnight if needed. Most times, I make my cookie dough at night and chill it overnight to be freshly baked in the morning.
Use fresh lemon juice: I find that fresh lemon juice straight from the lemon gives a much better flavor than preserved lemon juice.
Use baking/parchment paper: To ensure your cookies do not stick to the pan.
Don’t over bake: Check your cookies at about the 5/6 minute mark to ensure you do not over bake them. Cookies will continue to bake on the hot pan as they sit out to cool. My rule of thumb is to always pull them from the oven when they’re almost golden brown. Everyone’s oven temperature varies, but mine were perfect at about 8.5 minutes!
healthy lemon cookies
- Sheet Pan
- Mixing Bowl
- 1½ cups almond flour ~144 grams
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot flour
- 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons ghee room temperature
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest thinly shaved
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup powdered monk fruit sweetener or powdered sugar
- 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice more if needed
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest for mixing and topping
- Start by zesting your lemon using a lemon zester or a cheese grater. Carefully shred off the yellow skin of the lemon. If you hit the fruit part of the lemon, you've zested too far.
- Next, mix your dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl. In a separate large bowl, mix your wet ingredients. Once both are throughly mixed, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until incorporated.
- Once all ingredients are mixed together in the large bowl, chill the dough in the refridgerator for 1 hour (or as long as overnight).
- Once sufficiently chilled, the dough should be firm enough to form into small, uniformly sized dough balls. Add each dough ball to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and gently flatten with the palm of your hand.
- Bake for about 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees F. Mine were perfect at 9 minutes. Remember they will continue to bake on the hot pan as they cool 🙂
- As your cookies cool, make your glaze. Mix together powdered monk fruit sweetener, lemon juice, and a small amount of lemon zest. Drizzle over cookies and sprinkle a little bit more zest. Enjoy!