Homemade Fig Newtons (paleo, vegan, gluten-free)

paleo gluten-free fig newtons

This was not an easy recipe to conquer.

I know, you’re thinking how hard it could possibly be to come up with some sort of cookie dough that can be filled with homemade fig butter. It doesn’t seem hard until you realize that you need a dough that is soft and pliable but not sticky, a dough that will hold its shape without spreading, and that will maybe puff up a little bit to balance the generous amount of fig filling.

That’s a lot of demands on a dough that can’t contain refined sugar, wheat, or grains of any kind. My first batch was sooo sticky that it stuck to everything and fell apart, leaving a lot of very soggy fig cookies cooling on my cookie sheets. They tasted amazing, but were a little sweeter than they needed to be. While I have just found the best recipe ever for Paleo cookie dough (which I will be using in a future post), it doesn’t hold up well to baking.

But I pressed on. The second time, I added coconut flour and was absolutely vigilant about keeping everything cold. I also developed a technique where I folded up the wax paper with the dough on it, pressed, and peeled off the paper to fold the dough into thirds.

paleo gluten-free fig newtons

They were delicious. Not like a normal Fig Newton, but somehow more delicate and just a little sweeter. The dough is held together with nothing more than coconut oil and honey, which probably accounts for the stickiness. As a result, keeping the dough cold makes the oil and the honey more solid, allowing the bars to hold their shape.

I’ve tried to note special techniques below. Please comment if anything is unclear.

Fig Newtons
  • 2 1/2 cups almond or other nut flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup honey (replace with agave if you are super-vegan)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 recipe homemade fig butter
  1. Place dry ingredients in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse briefly to combine. Add wet ingredients and pulse until smooth. Place dough in freezer for at least half an hour to chill through.
  2. Meanwhile, make your fig butter. Recipe link can be found in the body of this post.
  3. When fig butter is made, remove dough from freezer and cut into four equal pieces.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  5. Working quickly and placing the dough you’re not working with back in the freezer, roll out each piece between two pieces of wax paper into roughly a 3×10 inch rectangle. You want the thickness to be at least 1/4 inch, or it will stick. Once rolled out, place dough and wax paper back into freezer while you’re working on each piece.
  6. Starting with the first piece you rolled out, remove top half of wax paper. Spread roughly 1/4 of the fig butter down the center third of the dough rectangle. Using the wax paper, fold one third of the dough over the fig butter and press gently into center; peel back paper. Repeat with last third, then replace back into the freezer. Repeat with other three pieces of dough.
  7. Once you have four cylinders, gently transfer to lined cookie sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes. Remove from oven; let cool slightly, then cut into individual cookies. Store covered at room temperature.

8 thoughts on “Homemade Fig Newtons (paleo, vegan, gluten-free)

    • Thanks, Allison! They are delicious — not the same nostalgia factor as a packaged fig newton, but sooo yummy and almost guilt-free.

  1. Omg that looks incredible! Soooo gooey and really tempting! Can’t believe they’re healthy too, fig rolls in the supermarket are loaded with junk 😦

    Amrita @ mywifemakes.com

  2. Pingback: Best Recipes of 2014 – Almond Butter Binge

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