Gluten Free Swirl Cookies

Gluten Free Swirl Cookies are so much fun! You can change the colour of the dough, and the colour of the sprinkles to suit any occasion. These crisp slice and bake cookies will become a favourite of everyone.

Gluten Free Swirl Cookies by The Baking Beauties


Yesterday was a major Christmas baking day at my house, and along with that came some experimenting. Each year I have the old favorites that everyone likes to enjoy, as well as all the wonderful recipes I see elsewhere that I want to try to convert to gluten-free. This recipe was one that I saw on Pinterest, and thought – huh, I think I can do that. And I did, quite successfully too, I might add. :)

You can use any colour for the second colour of cookie, I did a reddish colour, but you could do green, purple, orange – whatever floats your boat. You can also add any gluten-free extract to flavour the coloured dough. I used strawberry extract to give it a little flavour, but you can leave it as it is, if you would like.

The texture of this cookie is similar to a shortbread cookie. It is a dry, crisp, buttery cookie.

Gluten Free Swirl Cookies by The Baking Beauties

Chilled cookie dough, ready to be sliced.


Gluten Free Swirl Cookies
Serves: 45
  • 1 cup white rice flour
  • 2/3 cup potato starch (not flour)
  • 1/3 cup tapioca starch
  • 1/4 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar (icing sugar)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) softened unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon food colouring of your choice (or enough gel colouring to get the desired colour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon strawberry extract (or any other desired gluten-free extract)
  • 1 tablespoon white rice flour
  • 2/3 cup sprinkles or course sugar
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flours, starches, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt, confectioners' sugar, and granulated sugar.
  2. With the paddle attachment, slowly beat in the butter until the dough starts to come together. Add the beaten egg and vanilla and mix until the dough is evenly blended.
  3. Use a scale and weighed all the dough, then placed half of it back into the bowl (or eye ball it, but try to be accurate). To the dough in the bowl, add strawberry extract (or other extract, mint would be wonderful at Christmas as well) and colouring. Add 1 tablespoon rice flour and mix until well blended.
  4. Roll each colour of dough out between sheets of waxed paper, until the dough is a rectangle, measuring approximately 11" x 9", and about 1/4" thick. Remove the top sheet of waxed paper from each piece of dough.
  5. Carefully lift one rectangle, and using the waxed paper to help you, turn it over on top of the other rectangle of dough. Gently rub on the top of the waxed paper, to help the two layers stick together. Use a sharp knife to cut the edges of the dough to make a rectangle, this will make it easier to roll the dough into a log.
  6. If the dough feels too soft, refrigerate it on a baking sheet for 30 minutes. Remove from fridge and allow to become pliable again before attempting to roll up. Carefully roll the dough up along the long side, similar to a cinnamon roll. Try to keep the rolls as tight as possible, or you will have a hole in the middle of your cookies. Continue rolling & running your hands over the dough to ensure it is not cracking. Use the waxed paper to help you roll the dough into a circle.
  7. Place the sprinkles in a baking sheet, and roll the log of cookie dough in the sprinkles, until the entire outside of the dough is coated in the sprinkles.
  8. Tightly wrap cookie dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.
  9. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line your baking sheets with parchment paper.
  10. Remove your cookie dough from the fridge, unwrap, and using a sharp knife, cut into 1/4" slices. Place slices on prepared baking sheet, leaving 2" between cookies. Re-wrap and refrigerate dough until you are ready to prepare another pan for baking.
  11. Bake in preheated oven for 13-15 minutes, or until the edges are just slightly golden brown. Allow to cool on cookie sheets for a few minutes before transferring to cooling racks. Allow cookies to cool completely before storing in air-tight containers.



  1. Summer says

    These look amazing! I think this is one of the first gluten-free cookies that I have looked at and thought I HAD to make them.

  2. Karen says

    These look wonderful! Just wondering where I can get sweet rice flour. I don’t think I have ever come across it. If I can find it, I will definitely give these a try. My kids would love them.

    • Jeanine says

      Sweet rice flour also goes by the name “Glutinous Rice Flour”, it is made from a short grained, sticky rice. It can be found by the ethnic cooking aisles. If you can’t find it, I would suggest doing an additional 2 Tbsp rice flour, and 2 Tbsp tapioca starch in it’s place.

  3. Bonnie says

    I made these today and they were wonderful. I found the dough surprisingly easy to handle. I used raspberry extract instead of strawberry and it worked really well. The resulting cookie had a shortbread texture and I doubt that anyone could tell that they were gluten free.

  4. lone says

    made these for christmas, the only substitution I did was to add 1-2 tsp almond extract instead of the strwberry flavor, just had my last one tonite when I drove home from work, soooo good and so easy to make

  5. Jools says

    Very easy recipe, made these for the kids on New Years Eve and they were a big hit, not just for the kids! Made them into cookie-pops by the way.
    Thanks again Jeanine, happy New Year!

  6. Amanda says

    These cookies were so fun to make! I made a green swirl and then used clear and red sugars to roll them in so they’d look like peppermint on the outside. I didn’t use anything but vanilla to flavor them and they taste great!

  7. Anna says

    These tasted great, I made ‘Frozen’ coloured ones and they worked really well. Would the recipe work well if I used biscuit cutters to cut shapes out of the rolled out dough instead of rolling it together to make the sausage?


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