Many times, when people think about following a vegan diet, they think of deprivation. While the first thing that comes to mind about a vegan diet might be thoughts of what you “can’t” have, the reality is that there are many delicious vegan options that you can have — and yes, that includes vegan desserts!
I call myself a “chegan” — my term for a cheating vegan, which means I generally follow a plant-based vegan diet most of the time. I started for health reasons after I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, Sjogren’s syndrome, in 2011. When the disease began affecting my performance on the court — my ability to play the game that I love — I knew I had to make changes, and that included changing my diet.
Now I love fueling my body with the healthiest food possible — and I enjoy it! I believe that is absolutely essential to enjoy what you are eating. While I try to limit my sugar intake, I love sweet things, and I love to eat foods that are sweet but still healthy, like delicious smoothies. There are many ways to indulge and treat yourself while still sticking to a healthy — and yes, even a completely vegan — diet.
Cinnamon Snowball Cookies
Makes about 30 cookies
3/4 cup vegan margarine
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar, plus extra for dusting
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (dairy-free)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 or 3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpats.
- Using a stand or hand mixer, beat the margarine until fluffy. Add flour, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon, and beat until incorporated. Add chocolate chips.
- Scoop about 1 rounded tablespoon of dough at a time onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches between each scoop. Bake for about 12 minutes until lightly golden around the edges.
- Remove from oven and sift powdered sugar over hot cookies. Let cool and dust with powdered sugar again before serving.