Orange Spiced Cashew Cookies {Jam Optional}

Orange Spiced Cashew Cookies // The Spicy RD #vegan #glutenfree #healthy Last year I was a Grinch, and didn’t make you any Christmas cookies.  Not even any super easy, perfect for last minute holiday cookie baking scrumptiously delicious Orange Spiced Cashew Cookies {Jam Optional}. Bah humbug to me!

Speaking of the Grinch, did any of my San Diego friends make it to this year’s production of The Grinch at The Old Globe?  If not, you should! What a fabulously mean and FUNNY Grinch! {Last show is December 26}

Ok, ok…back to these fabulous cookies, which are not only super EASY to make, but also, you guessed it, on the healthier side of cookies, plus they’re gluten-free and vegan to boot. Oh, and if you’re looking for a grain-free option, why not try them with a little coconut flour and let me know how they turn out!

See how nice I’m being to you this year? 🙂

Orange Spiced Cashew Cookies // The Spicy RD

Do you suppose I’ll get my angel wings???

Inspired by another super delicious {and kind of good for you} Lemony -Walnut Cinnamon Cookie from Ricki Heller’s gorgeous allergy friendly, gluten-free, vegan cookbook, Naturally Sweet and Gluten-Free {hint, hint…this would be a perfect last minute gift for one of the sweeties in your life}, these cookies are a mix of simple, wholesome ingredients including heart healthy cashew nuts and flax meal, good for you spices and orange zest, plus a smidgen of brown rice flour and pure maple syrup for a subtle sweetness.

I love these cookies {and Ricki’s walnut lemon version}, plain and unadorned, with a mid-morning cup of coffee, or an afternoon cup of tea.

Just perfect.

But, for those of you who want to add a little adornment to your holiday cookies, sans sprinkles and frosting, you might try adding a dollop of fruity preserves for some festive fun!

I made a batch with my favorite Jackie’s Jams preserves {a client of mine} which I love for their simple ingredients and lower sugar and calorie content than traditional preserves {8 g sugar and 35 calories vs. 12 g sugar and 50 calories per tablespoon}.

Oh, and they have some fabulous flavors to boot, including their special reserves Balsamic Fig, Plum Lavender, and Truffle Fig. Oh, boy, yum!

You can try wintery blood orange marmalade, or add a smidgen of summery goodness with triple berry or apricot preserves.

Jackies Jams // The Spicy RD

I wouldn’t recommend using the Zippy Jalapeno on top of the cookies, but just as an FYI wanted to let you know that goat cheese + crackers + Zippy Jalapeno makes a FABULOUS easy last minute appetizer.

Who wants the recipe???

For the orange spiced cashew cookies that is…

Orange Spiced Cashew Cookies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 15-20 cookies
  • 2 cups raw cashew nuts
  • ¼ cup flaxseed meal {or grind your own flaxseeds}
  • ¼ cup brown rice flour {or other gluten-free flour OR all-purpose flour}
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
  • 1¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • jam of choice for filling, optional
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine all ingredients, except maple syrup in a food processor bowl, and mix the ingredients together until you have a fine meal.
  3. Add the maple syrup to the dry mixture and process until the mixture is moist and starts to leave the sides of the processor bowl.
  4. Divide dough in to 15 to 20 balls and place on cookie sheets. Press down each dough ball with the back of a moistened spoon {or use your fingers} until about ¼ inch thick.
  5. Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes, or until cookies are lightly browned around the edges, then remove from oven and allow to cool while still on baking sheet.
  6. Enjoy as is, or top off cookies with a dollop of jam if desired.
These are vegan and gluten-free {when made with brown rice or other gluten-free flour} but feel free to experiment with all-purpose or whole wheat flour if not on a gluten-free diet.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cookie

Orange Spiced Cashew Cookie Ingredients Orange Spiced Cookies #holidaycookies #holidaygift #homemadeOf course you could eat these all yourself, but why not make a extra batch {or two} to give as a homemade holiday gifts to your friends? 🙂 

And now with these cookies checked off my list, I am off to spend some time with my family and friends, so for those of your who celebrate, have a very Merry Christmas, and Happy Healthy Holidays to all!!!

Holiday Gift Wrap // The Spicy RDP.S. I hope Santa leaves you something special under the tree 🙂

What are your favorite holiday cookies? Have you been doing lots of baking this year? How will you be spending the holidays this year? PS Have you been naughty, nice, or a little bit of both???

If this is your first time to The Spicy RD, WELCOME, and you can read more about me, learn about my nutrition counseling and consulting services, or hear what my clients have to say about working with me.  If you’re already a friend here at The Spicy RD, welcome back!!! And as always, I love hearing from you, so please join the conversation, and if you enjoyed the post, I’d love it {and truly appreciate it!} if you stumble, tweet, pin, or share the post.  And, if you haven’t done so already, be sure and sign up for my monthly newsletter, Delicious Newsand connect with me on PinterestTwitterFacebook, Instagram, and Google Plus for all things healthy and delicious!

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  1. Oh, my, these look SO good! I just love cashew-based cookies, too–so rich tasting! And I bet with the jam these are over-the-top good. Thanks so much for the shout-out!!

    Hope you have a wonderful holiday season! 🙂

    • Thanks Rciki! Happy to share your beautiful cookbook (I would ask for a copy for Christmas if I didn’t already own it :-). I hope you enjoy my version too 🙂 Wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season as well!

  2. Mmm…orange spice sounds nice!

  3. Ooh, glowing buttons of decadent deliciousness! Love the look of these x

    • Oh, my! Yours is the first ever “glowing buttons of decadent deliciousness” endorsement I have ever received Deena. Love it!! Happy holidays to you and your family xoxo

  4. Would agave work in place of maple..? I love this recipe but live so far out in the country to drive to the store for syrup I rarely use… Well you get my point. Do you have a suggestion that would help the agave syrup? Or maybe I should just go ahead and make them…

    Thanks for the simply delicious vegan recipe!.

    • Hi Renee!

      Yes, absolutely agave would work wonderfully in this recipe. Ricki’s lemony walnut cookies use agave, but I bake more with maple syrup so that is what I use. If you make them, I’d love to know how they turn out. Holiday cheers!

  5. The cookies sound delicious! I love cookies with jam! I’m pinning them to make soon!

  6. I am awfully fond of cashew in cookies and the ingredients for your ones sound especially good, and good for you. The coconut flour is a good idea. I’ve got a bag I have not yet touched so this might be a clever way to christen it. Have a super fabulous Christmas, Miss EA. Enjoy every single day xx

  7. I have a feeling I could eat these beauties by the batchful!!! My husband has in the last few weeks decided he’d eating vegan and these will fit right in. Loving them!
    Also loving our warm weather and here’s wishing you and your family a fabulous holiday!!

  8. I love these cookies looking so juicy and yummy…..Mmmmmmmmmmm.

  9. I am in love with your yummy cookies. I am a cookie lover, Big cookie lover. Also your gift is looking very nice with its simple decoration.

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