Brown Sugar Cookies


These black-eyed susans are in my mother’s garden. She worries about the weeds, but all I ever notice are the contrasting textures, the curves of the beds and the bursts of brilliant colour, like this one.

I was at my mother’s when I perfected this recipe. I had been trying to make a soft brown sugar cookie, and I got the texture right with this batch. The melted butter and the cornstarch help them stay soft. Chilling the dough helps develop its caramel flavour.


These cookies have gotten rave reviews from people who eat gluten. They are soft and chewy, and loaded with coconut. What’s not to like?


Brown Sugar Cookies
Makes about 40 cookies
Adapted from various sources

3/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon dark molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 cups gluten-free flour blend
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup quinoa flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut

Melt the butter in a saucepan on the stove or in the microwave. Add brown sugar, molasses and vanilla. Cool slightly, and beat in the egg. To the wet mixture, add the flour blend, quinoa flour, cornstarch and salt. Beat until the dry ingredients are blended in. Add the coconut and mix. Chill dough for 12 to 24 hours.

Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Drop spoonfuls of dough onto the cookie sheets. Bake at 350 F for 12-15 minutes. Using a spatula or lifter, gently remove cookies to a cooling rack and allow them to cool completely.


    • The flour blend I used here is 6 parts brown rice flour: 2 parts tapioca flour: 1 part potato starch.


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