A hamantash is an Ashkenazi Jewish filled triangular cookie. We've come to the rescue by giving these traditional Purim cookies a vegan makeover!
I like to make these Purim cookies with at least two - sometimes even three - types of jam for variety and color. My personal favorite fillings are apricot preserves, strawberry jam, and prune butter. But you'll find these tasty treats in all sorts of flavor combinations!
What is a hamantasch?
A hamantasch (also spelled hamantaschen) is a traditional pastry eaten during the Jewish holiday of Purim. The pastry is shaped like a triangle or a pocket, with a filling typically made from poppy seeds, fruit preserves, or chocolate.
The name "hamantasch" is Yiddish for "Haman's pockets" or "Haman's ears," which refers to the villainous character of Haman in the Purim story, who is said to have worn triangular-shaped hats.
The triangular shape of the pastry is meant to represent either Haman's hat, his ears, or his pockets, and the tradition of eating hamantaschen on Purim is meant to symbolize the triumph of good over evil.
Making Vegan Hamantaschen Cookies
Traditional purim cookies are made with a butter-laden pastry, but it's simple enough to swap the butter for a plant-based vegan margarine instead. I recommend the Earth's Best buttery spread for this recipe!
I also eliminated the eggs and replaced the milk with a dairy-free almond milk instead. You could use another plant based milk of your choice as well - cashew milk or soy milk would work just fine.
And while many traditional recipes utilize a whole wheat flour, I have found that a mix of all purpose and whole wheat flours gives the best texture!
The Best Hamantaschen Fillings
For my vegan hamantasch, I used three different flavor jams: strawberry, peach, and blueberry. But you can get as creative as you like.
Here are some fun and tasty hamantasch filling ideas:
- Fruit jams - strawberry, peach, apricot, blueberry, or raspberry
- Poppyseed (a traditional choice.)
- Lemon curd
- Nutella hazelnut spread (check out this homemade vegan Nutella)
- Salted Caramel
- Apple Pie Filling
- Prune preserves
What other flavors have you tried? Let me know in the comments!
Tips for Perfect Vegan Hamantaschen
Chill the dough: It's important to chill the cookie dough before rolling and cutting it. This will help the dough hold its shape when you fill and fold it.
Roll the dough evenly: Make sure to roll out the dough evenly to a thickness of about ⅛ inch. This will help ensure that the hamantaschen cookies bake evenly and hold their shape.
Don't overfill the cookies: Overfilling the hamantaschen can cause the filling to leak out during baking, while underfilling can result in a dry pastry. Use about a teaspoon of filling for each hamantaschen, and be sure to place it in the center of the dough round.
Fold the hamantaschen properly: To ensure that the hamantaschen hold their shape during baking, fold the edges of the dough up and over the filling to create a triangle, pinching the corners together firmly.
More Recipes for Purim
If you love these Purim cookies, be sure to check out these other delicious vegan recipes:
Vegan Hamantaschen (Traditional Purim Cookies)
- stand mixer
- Preheat oven to 350 F (176 C), line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mix together the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour and salt. Set aside
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the vegan butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy,
- Add in 3 tablespoons of almond milk, the orange zest, and the vanilla and mix well (it may not completely blend in and that is okay).
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until moistened.
- Add additional almond milk if necessary until the dough is easily workable.
- Cover the dough with plastic wrap and allow it to chill for at least two hours before proceeding.
- Roll out to roughly ⅛” thickness on a lightly floured surface, then cut the dough into 2 to 2 ½ inch circles and transfer to baking sheet.
- Add a small amount of jam (about 1 teaspoon) to the center of each circle, then fold the sides up and pinch to make a triangle shaped cookie. Pinch closed a bit more than you think needed, as they do open up while being baked. See the pictures for help with this part!
- Bake in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the hamantaschen are lightly golden