23 December 2014

Vegan Christmas Wreath Cookies

Every family has holiday traditions. In my family, we have a LOT of holiday traditions. We have traditions for where we go when, who we see when, how to open presents, what we eat when, and of course, what cookies we make.

Mom making wreaths in 2012
One of our traditional holiday cookies we call "wreath cookies." They are the most simple cookies (essentially like rice-crispie treats), but my mom made them every year. When we would get together with various groups of people over the holidays, we would ALWAYS be told to bring wreath cookies. Although other people made them, most people said that my mom's were the best. I don't know why they were the best, but they always were. Maybe it was the deep green color (there's a lot of research telling us that color matters in food perceptions!), maybe it was simply that her making them was tradition, or maybe it was that she clearly loved that other people loved them. Although this is our first Christmas without her, she was too weak to make them last year, so my sister took up the mantle. For the past 5 years or so, I've also been making a batch of vegan wreath cookies, just so that I could have my own taste of tradition.

These cookies take only about 15 minutes to make, but then take a while to set. In addition, given the food coloring, expect green everywhere (your fingers as you make them, your tongue when you eat them, and anywhere else the food goes*). But, these are a quick and festive cookie, so I think the green is worth it.

Vegan Wreath Cookies
1/2 c. (one stick) vegan butter
1 bag Dandies vegan marshmallows
1/2 tsp. vanilla
green food coloring (to desired color, but see Helpful Hints)
3 c. cornflakes
cinnamon candies
small bowl of water (trust me)

1. Over medium-low (or lower) heat, slowly melt the butter and marshmallows.
2. When there are no remaining lumps, remove pan from heat and add vanilla and green food coloring.
3. Add the cornflakes, stirring for EVER to get them completely coated in the green marshmallow mixture.
4. Dip your fingers in the small bowl of water then use them to scoop out a cookie-sized ball out of the pan. Place the ball on a sheet of parchment paper and then shape it around one finger to make a wreath shape. Repeat until pan is empty, dipping your fingers each time.

5. Add two (or more) cinnamon candies to the tops of each wreath cookie.

6. Let set for at least a couple of hours.

Helpful Hints
  • The water is really a necessity. This stuff is sticky!
  • The little cinnamon candies are usually found with the sprinkles in the baking aisle. 
  • When you add green food coloring, the green gets slightly "diluted" as it spreads to cover the corn flakes. Thus, add more than you think you need, as it will appear a bit lighter when you're done. 
* Um, if you eat too many of these, your poo turns green too. Don't say I didn't warn you. 

The post "Vegan Christmas Wreath Cookies" originally appeared on Maggie's LesVegan Kitchen.


  1. Hi, I just wanted to share an issue that I ran into for this recipe and how I resolved it. I was unable to find cinnamon candies ("imperials") that did not have confectioner's glaze, which is made by insects and is thus not vegan by most definitions. I was having a lot of trouble at the store trying to find other small, red candies that are vegan. Finally I saw that there are holiday Nerds that are red, green, and white. I think I will try sorting the red ones out and sprinkle those onto the wreaths.

    The things we do for the animals! :)

    1. Great idea, John! Another option would be red sugar, lightly sprinkled on all or part of the cookies. In fact, I might have to do that the next time I make them!

    2. In fact, I wonder if I could find cinnamon-flavored sugar...?!