If you’re a fan of tahini, you will LOVE these chewy vegan tahini cookies. I knew from the first bite that this recipe was a winner, but I couldn’t decide which version of these cookies I liked best: classic, coated in sesame seeds, or with chocolate chunks. So I figured why not share all three?
Option 1 – Classic Chewy Tahini Cookies
Made with just 6 simple ingredients: tahini, brown sugar, vanilla, flour, baking soda and salt. They’re chewy, melt-in-your-mouth, and caramelized. What more could you want in a cookie?
Option 2 – Coated in Sesame Seeds
Since tahini is just sesame seed butter, I figured I’d take it one step further and coat the cookies in more sesame. The result? AMAZING. They taste like sesame snaps in cookie form.
Option 3 – With Dark Chocolate Chunks
Simply because chocolate makes everything better! You may already know from my Salted Dark Chocolate Tahini Caramels that I love tahini combined with dark chocolate. If you’ve never tried it, I highly recommend you give it a go!
Can’t decide which option to go with? Try all three! Whenever I bake these, I leave some plain, roll a few in sesame seeds, and then chop up a bit of my favourite dark chocolate block to add to the rest!
Chewy Tahini Cookies – 3 Ways!
These vegan tahini cookies are made with just 6 simple ingredients. They’re chewy, melt-in-your-mouth, and caramelized. Try them plain, rolled in sesame seeds, or with dark chocolate chunks!
- 1/2 cup room temperature tahini* (see notes)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup flour (white all-purpose or whole wheat pastry flour)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1-1.5 Tbsp water
- sesame seeds (optional)
- dark chocolate (optional)
Preheat oven to 175C (350F). Line two baking sheets with parchement paper.
To a medium sized mixing bowl, add tahini, packed brown sugar and vanilla. Cream together until smooth.
Add flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir everything together until the dough is uniform but very crumbly. Add 1 tablespoon of water and mix well. If the dough is still too crumbly to roll into balls, add 1/2 tablespoon of water and mix again. (Optional: fold in dark chocolate into the dough).
Scoop the dough using a 1/2 tablespoon and gently roll into balls approximately 2 centimeters in diameter. Place the cookies dough balls onto the two lined baking sheets, making sure to leave plenty of space around each cookie as they spread quite a lot while baking. You do not need to flatten or shape them. (Optional: roll the cookie dough balls in sesame seeds before placing onto the baking tray).
Bake for 7-9 minutes, or until the edges are slightly golden. It is okay if they look underdone in the middle. Remove from oven and allow the cookies to set on the baking trays for at least 5 minutes before very gently transferring to a cooling rack. Enjoy!
- * For best results, make sure the tahini you’re using is creamy, runny and pourable. Certain brands of tahini, or tahini left at the bottom of a jar, can be dry and lacking the fats/oils needed to help these cookies spread.
- Nutritional information is approximate, and does not include the optional sesame seeds and dark chocolate.
Did you enjoy this recipe? Comment, share it with your friends, and don’t forget to snap a picture for Instagram and tag #plantifuleating so I can see your creations!
Craving more sweets? Check out these recipes !
I’ve never tried tahini cookies before so I was a little apprehensive to make these but it adds a lovely chewy texture. Will defo be making again!
So happy to hear that Oliver 🙂 I completely understand why you would be skeptical of adding tahini to cookies, but glad you gave it a try. Enjoy!
I want to attempt to make this gluten free with an all purpose gf flour!!
Let me know how you go!
I have made this recipe twice and the first time they stayed in balls and never flattened! The 2nd time, I got a brand new jar of organic tahini and added the full 1.5 tbsp of water and they still didn’t spread!!! They taste amazing, I just want them to spread like yours! Send help!!! I’m ready to try a third time!!
Oh no, sorry to hear these aren’t spreading for you Gabrielle, but I’m glad you’re loving the taste! I make these cookies regularly and have never experienced this issue, but my guess is it has to do with the consistency of the tahini you’re using. If it’s not pourable it probably doesn’t have enough fat/oil in it to help these spread. You could try mixing a neutral oil in with your tahini until it’s smooth and runny and then follow the recipe as usual. Let me know how it goes!
Thanks for responding! So I realized I was using all purpose flour and not pastry flour!! (Which I don’t have) So, I copied your recipe exactly again, except I subbed the pastry flour for 2 tbsp of gluten free all purpose flour and it worked!! They flattened like yours and they’re just as yummy as the first two times! Thank you so much for your recipe, it’s a keeper!
Same thing with my cookies. Never flattened and it’s a fresh jar of tahini. Just a tip: you should specify if a particular type of flour is needed so that the desired outcome is achieved.
The recipe says to use either white all-purpose flour or whole-wheat pastry flour for best results
I made these tonight, we are new to an extremely restrictive diet for my hubby. No dairy, grain, soy, eggs, fish, nuts, rice, corn, potato, chickpeas, avocado and a couple random fruit that are triggers. This throws out grain flours, nut milks, nut flours, etc! This was almost perfect for him, I subbed the flour with cavassa flour and they were delicious! They definitely did not flatten but still so so good! His first treat in over a month, thank you, thank you!
So glad that these cookies were suitable for your husband’s dietary restrictions and that you’re enjoying them!
I just can’t get mine to flatten! I have tried using spelt flour, rice flour, I’ve tried changing the sugar to coconut, caster etc. I’ve tried baking it at a slightly higher temperature. I’ve used three different types of tahini, all of which are runny. They are always tasty, but not the right consistency to turn out flat. I saw that someone said they uswd gluten-free flour, which I haven’t tried yet, but they also said they used 2 Tbs?!? Might try using less flour? Any other suggestions?
I admire your dedication to these cookies Jo! I would suggest sticking with all-purpose flour and brown sugar. You could try reducing the flour to 1/4 cup, and increasing the water to 2 Tbsp. Although I haven’t tested this out myself with gluten-free flour, 2 Tbsp seemed to work for another reader, so it’s worth a shot! Please let us know what ends up working for you if you give these another try!
Sooooooo yummy, thanks for the unique and super easy recipe!
Do you put your tahini in the fridge? The recipe worked for me before I put it in the fridge (it was brand new when I used it). Now that its been in the fridge the cookies won’t spread. I am wondering if I need to leave the tahini out of the fridge to be room temp to work..
I keep my tahini at room temperature, so maybe that’s the trick to getting them to spread like mine! Hope they work out for you again next time!
Can you freeze the dough?
I have never tried it, but I reckon if you let the frozen dough come to room temperature before baking it should work! Let us know!
My new favorite recipe! Thanks for sharing, these are dangerously delicious.
So happy to hear!!
Easiest and yummiest cookies to make! Super gooey in the centre yet still have a crunch on the outside. YUM!
So happy you loved them!! x
Okay guys, I made these Gluten Free and they turned out perfect (my second time haha).
Here’s what I learned:
1) the brown sugar needs to dissolve in the water to get the right texture, so i recommend combining the brown sugar, vanilla and 1.5 Tbsp water first, and stirring until it dissolves.
2) As per some other comments, I only used 2 Tbsp of Gluten Free All Purpose flour, and they flattened out nicely.
3) Stir stir stir! Once you’ve added the rest of the ingredients, stir the dough until it has the consistency of …almost toffee? (I tried some and it was super chewy). It kinda crumbles at first but as the oil from the tahini starts to separate out the dough comes together nicely.
4) I baked mine for only about 6 minutes because the edges were starting to turn a golden brown. When they cooled, the edges were crispy, the bottoms were like toffee and the centres were super soft and chewy.
Hope this helps 🙂 Thanks for the recipe!
Thanks so much for sharing your gluten-free modifications Brittney! I’m sure many others will find this very helpful. Enjoy!!
I followed your directions and my cookies definitely don’t look at all like yours in the picture. Smoke and mirrors, I guess. Basically, they tasted like halva (which is delicious). I remade them and added Oats to the mix and flattened them before baking and they came out sooo good. Thanks!
Sorry to hear they didn’t come out quite right the first time, but they sound delicious with the added oats! Enjoy!!
I also could not get my balls to flatten. I brought the tahini to room temperature and it was nice and runny but no luck. Second batch I added a bit more water but still no luck. Will try again another day and add some additional oil. I used whole wheat flour -perhaps this was too dense for the recipe. The consistency is dry and crumbly instead of chewy -darn !
Oh no! You should hopefully have better luck using all-purpose flour!
These are amazing! I subbed the brown sugar wait here maple syrup and they turned our thin and chewy! Also didn’t need the water bc of this. Going to try this with peanut butter!
Oh that’s so great!! Enjoy 🙂
Can replace oat flour? Not wheat flour
I’ve never tried it with oat flour. I imagine the consistency would be different, but should still taste great! Let us know how it goes!
Ohh my heavens… how could a cookie without butter taste this yummy ??!! So glad you shared this recipe— and the flatness is the photos for me to wanting to make them!! Thank you……!!!!
yay so happy you love them!!
These are delicious! I modified by using 1/4 cup maple syrup instead of brown sugar and between 1/8 and 1/4 cup coconut flour instead of regular flour. I rolled the balls in sesame seeds and, when I peeked in the oven and saw they weren’t spreading, flattened those with a fork mid-bake and the remainder with my hands before baking. They turned out as described – crispy edges and chewy centre.
Thanks Andrea! So happy these worked out so well for you with your modifications. Enjoy!
I’ve made them twice. 1st time mis-measured the flour and they didn’t spread. They were super dry. Completely my fault. 2nd time followed recipe to a T and they still didn’t spread. Kinda disappointing.
There are plenty of comments here with helpful tips on getting them to spread nicely 🙂
I just made these for the first time, they came out of the oven literally 3 minutes ago, and they’re very delicious and very much gone already. I didn’t get them to flatten either, but it doesn’t matter since they were chewy and delicious anyway. Since I had meant to give them to a friend who’s very stressed out at the moment, I’m not afraid at all I’ll have to make another batch right away. Thanks so much for this fantastic recipe!
Don’t worry, these don’t last long in my house either. So happy you’re enjoying them !!
These didn’t work for me either y’all. I used a gorgeous, runny tahini and measured out the ingredients on a digital scale. The cookies boiled in the oven and came out with holes all over- I’m thinking the too high fat content is to blame. It’s really too bad because I love the combination of salt/ tahini/ dark chocolate
Definitely do NOT flatten on their own despite using the creamiest, runniest tahini so with the second batch I flattened by hand. Delicious cookies worth making but might be better to change the recipe and suggest flattening them. Especially given all the comments. Excellent cookies though ; )
My cousin is vegan and I’m doing low carb, so to meet in the middle I subbed oat flour and coconut sugar, and I actually used oat milk instead of water. I also added a little Lindt dark chocolate, and they turned out great! Really really good.
These are delicious! I didn’t have tahini but they looked sooo good i tried them with peanut butter and added about 3-4 TBS of olive oil. I also added some chunks of white chocolate to the centre and they turned out beautifully! They turned out a bit different but are sooo good!
First time trying these cookies, everyone loved them! I followed the recipe exactly and used tahini that poured like water, but they didn’t flatten at all 🙁 flavor is all there, tastes great but I want that gooey-ness of the flattened looking ones.
Probably would’ve been delicious but they didn’t spread at all 🙁 I followed the recipe to a tee (using room temp, pourable tahini and all-purpose white flour) but it still did not spread, my dough was not quite crumbly so maybe that’s why?
I tried adding more water and they flatten right out. The dough was quite wet though. I added lemon zest and ginger because I had no vanilla. They taste great!!! I’m eating one now…slurp! :p
Excellent recipe and so easy!
Gorgeous photos! Like other reviewers, my cookies did not flatten. I followed the recipe exactly using the option with whole wheat pastry flour. The tahini was room temp. The batter was too dry after adding the full amount of water. Following the suggestion to another reviewer to perhaps add a bit of oil in case the tahini was not runny enough, I used a bit of almond oil. The batter was still too dry so I added a splash of milk which made the batter crumbly but able to be rolled into 1/2 T balls, as directed. … The flavor of the cookies was YUM. It was only after the batter didn’t spread that I read all of the reviews which have various helpful hints for getting the cookies to flatten. It would be great to have these suggestions included in the text of the recipe. In retrospect, maybe I should have flattened the cookies before baking.
Didn’t spread at all. I followed the recipe exactly after reading the comments. I poured my tahini to measure, so that wasn’t the issue.
Just made these– I also didn’t get mine to spread out but WHO CARES??? The taste is fantastic! Thank you! These are a keeper.
Simple and amazing! So quick and easy and I love it doesn’t make a mountain of cookies. I made these for my daughter who is allergic to peanuts and we both loved them. Thank you!
I had the same issue as a lot of commenters – followed the recipe exactly, used room temperature (very) runny tahini, and added only enough water to make the doughs form into balls. They definitely did not spread which was disappointing as the appearance of the cookie makes them alluring. The taste was still yummy (hence the 3 stars) but looked very dull and lumpy.
These were absolutely delicious! I used oat flour in place of flour. Turn out perfect 😊
Love these!!! My new favorite!! I kept them in the oven longer than suggested, they spread out the longer they stayed in.
Love to hear it! They’re so good when they get nice and crisp after being in the oven for longer
This recipe is FIRE! Happy that it doesn’t take loads of flour either. I just finished eating a batch and I’m about to make another tomorrow!
Hand clap to you. Highly recommend this to others.
Happy you love these as much as I do! Thanks Marianne x
There were delicious, thank you! Great recipe.
YAY glad you loved!
OMG so good. Did half with sesame seed and the other half with chocolate just like you suggested.
Will do it again maybe with other nut or seed butter, just to rotate them in the fridge. Tksssss
I’ve made these twice, following the recipe exactly, with liquid, pourable tahini and both times the cookies didn’t spread. The cookies are definitely more of a sandy texture, not chewy. The taste is great but the texture wasn’t what I hoped for. I tried making the balls different sizes and adjusting the baking time but no luck.
Delicious but like others didn’t spread at all.