Vegan Biscuits

How to make vegan, dairy-free biscuits that are just as tender and flavorful as the real thing? Coconut oil and almond milk! Try these, and you won't be disappointed.

Shortcake Biscuits made with coconut oil and almond milk
Elise Bauer

Biscuits are usually rich with butter, eggs, and milk or cream, right? That's why we love them so, and why they are so perfect for treats like strawberry shortcake. All that tender, flaky, buttery goodness.

Friends, I'm here to tell you that you don't need any of those things—butter, eggs, or milk—to make a tender and flavorful biscuit! Sacrilege? Maybe, but hear me out.

This vegan biscuit, made with coconut oil and almond milk, is every bit as good as the classic. In fact, when I offered a taste test to my butter-loving, meat-and-potatoes father, not only did he prefer the coconut oil biscuits, he asked for a batch to take home.

shortcake biscuits made with coconut oil and almond milk
Elise Bauer

Tender Vegan Biscuits

The tricks to making these vegan biscuits tender?

  • Mix some coconut oil with the flour mixture before adding almond milk. The gluten in flour will strengthen and bind when it comes in contact with liquid, so to help keep that from happening, we whisk some coconut oil into the flour mixture first, before adding the almond milk. This is similar to the way in which you would typically mix butter with flour first, before adding milk, for a standard biscuit recipe.
  • Use a light touch when making the dough. The less you handle the dough, the better. The more you handle it, the more opportunity you give the gluten in the flour to strengthen. The dough should be shaggy, not smooth.

You can easily turn these vegan biscuits into scones if you want, just by changing the shape. Instead of dropping six biscuit shapes onto the baking sheet, form one ball of dough, flatten it into a disk, and cut it into wedges like the pieces of a pie. You can even add raisins or dried sweetened cranberries to the dough.

Best the Day They're Made

Like all biscuits, these are best when fresh out of the oven and served warm. That said, they will keep fine for a few hours, especially if you plan on serving them as the biscuit for strawberry shortcake.

Or Freeze for Later

If you don't plan on serving the biscuits within a few hours, I recommend letting them cool completely, then freezing them. They can be kept frozen for up to a month.

To thaw, just put one on a paper towel and heat it in the microwave for 30 to 4o seconds, or until warm. Add more time if you are defrosting more than one at a time.

Try These Other Vegan Treats

Vegan Biscuits

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 22 mins
Servings 6 biscuits

Gluten-Free Biscuits: You can make this recipe gluten-free by subbing in an all-purpose gluten-free flour, like Bob's 1-1 Baking Flour. The biscuits will be a little more crumbly, but still taste great.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (270 g) all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons (40 g) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons melted coconut oil, divided (use neutral tasting coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method

  1. Heat oven to 450°F
  2. Whisk dry ingredients:

    Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a mixing bowl.

  3. Prime flour with coconut oil:

    Add 2 tablespoons of the melted coconut oil to the flour mixture and whisk to distribute it evenly across the flour.

    add 2 tbsp of coconut oil to the flour mixture
    Elise Bauer
  4. Add wet ingredients:

    Stir together the almond milk, vinegar, and vanilla extract. Make a well in the center of the flour, and add the almond milk mixture and the remaining 3 tablespoons of melted coconut oil.

    Gently stir until the dough just comes together. Do not over-mix! (If the dough is too dry, sprinkle a few drops of water over it.)

    add almond milk, vinegar, coconut oil to flour mixture
    Elise Bauer
    mix until the shortcake biscuit dough just comes together
    Elise Bauer
  5. Shape the biscuits:

    Divide the dough into 6 somewhat equal parts and drop by spoonfuls onto a greased or parchment- or silicone-lined baking sheet, 2 inches apart.

    place dairy free vegan biscuit dough on baking sheet
    Elise Bauer
  6. Bake the biscuits:

    Bake for 11 to 13 minutes at 450°F until the tops of the biscuits are lightly browned and the biscuits do not give when you press down on them.

  7. Cool:

    Let cool for 5 minutes before eating. Best eaten while warm.

    Dairy Free Vegan shortcake biscuits cooling on rack
    Elise Bauer

    If you want to freeze, let cool to room temperature, then place in a freezer bag to freeze.