Vegan & Gluten-Free Cheezy Drop Biscuits

by Valerie on January 24, 2013 · 14 comments


Between my husband and I, we go through a lot of kale in our household.  To the tune of 3 to 4 bunches a week, depending on what other greens we buy.  I am always trying to find uses for kale stems. Yes, I put them in green juice, and also in “impromptu purée” soups, and I tried turning them into kale stem fries (no joke – it is amazing how coconut oil and salt and a trip through the oven can so improve on kale stems). The kale stem fries are fine, but very chewy, and I have not had the inclination to juice that much in the cold weather (preferring to have green smoothies instead, or pick up sweetpress).  As for soups, I think I had one bowl too many of  “impromptu purée” soup, and now am on a vegan cream of mushroom kick.


This is all to say that as I was staring at yet another bag of kale stems in the fridge, I decided to incorporate them into a chickpea biscuit recipe I had been toying with at the back of my mind. The result was far better than I had hoped – I have no idea if it is the kale’s fiber content, but somehow the puréeed kale gives the biscuits a nice softness.  I was very pleased with the texture considering there is no added tapioca, arrowroot or other starch.  The fact that these biscuits are high in protein and fiber is a nice bonus too.


Ultimately, though, let’s talk about how these biscuits taste.  They are delightfully cheese-flavored – they sort of remind me of parmesan biscuits. And of course, since smoked paprika works well with cheese, I had to add some to these biscuits. I will add that Gena approved of them, and that they pair beautifully with her latest recipe over at Food52, an amazing sweet potato and black bean chili that is replete with smoky sweet flavors.  I was very lucky that Gena shared some of her batch of chili with me, as it was amazing. The chili and these biscuits would make for a great Superbowl Sunday combination. 

Cheezy Drop Biscuits (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free)
Makes 10-13 biscuits

  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (I like this one)
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup chopped kale stems (tightly packed) – I used curly kale stems
  • 2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, melted (I like this one from Garden of Life)

Preheat oven to 375 F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine chickpea flour, nutritional yeast, smoked paprika and salt in a large bowl.  Blend or purée the water and chopped kale stems until you have a smooth liquid (I used a Vitamix, but I think any blender or food processor could take care of this step). You should end up with about 3/4 cup green liquid.  Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and, as you stir to combine, add the melted coconut oil.  You will end up with a sticky thick batter.  Using a tablespoon measure (grease it with additional coconut oil to make this step easier), drop  heaping tablespoons of batter onto the baking sheet.  Your batter should yield 10-13 biscuits.  Press each mound of batter lightly so the biscuits are about 2 inches in diameter. Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven, flip with a spatula and bake an additional 10 minutes. Store covered, outside the refrigerator, for up to three days (that’s the longest these biscuits have lasted for me).

I am submitting this recipe to Wellness Weekend over at Diet Dessert and Dogs and Slightly Indulgent Tuesday at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Johnna January 24, 2013 at 11:10 pm

Oh my goodness, these sound delicious! I’m always on the lookout for uses for kale stems and I love cheesy biscuit. I had braised kale stems recently at Cafe Gratitude but haven’t succeeded in replicating them at home.


2 amber January 25, 2013 at 12:16 am

Wow! What an awesome recipe! I just love garbanzo bean flour. It works so well in baked recipes. I’m pinning this recipe for another day…soon! :-)

Be Well,


3 Cheryl January 25, 2013 at 7:25 pm

anything with kale looks good to me, and these look amazing!


4 Veronica @ Veggie V's Vegan Adventure January 26, 2013 at 11:18 am

I’ve been searching for gluten free vegan biscuits all week. Given I also have a bunch of kale stems chillin’ in the fridge, this sounds perfect! I like how the recipe uses something that might otherwise get composted, and it’s very low in oil. Yea!


5 janet @ the taste space January 26, 2013 at 12:09 pm

What a neat idea for kale stems! I marvel at your ingenuity! :)
I usually chop mine up small and add to stirfries, but I don’t go through as much kale as you!


6 Laura R Segal January 26, 2013 at 12:20 pm

This looks so good! Do we need to use coconut oil, though? Would olive oil, for example, be ok? I haven’t been able to find coconut oil ANYWHERE around here! *sigh*
Thanks! :)
– Laura


7 Valerie January 27, 2013 at 11:13 am

I have not tried it with an oil other than coconut oil, but I think it would work to use just about any oil – olive oil plays well with the flavors of chickpea flour and nutritional yeast, or if you wanted a more neutral option there is also grapeseed oil. The only reason I used coconut oil as it tends to be make baked goods more “buttery” :) Let me know how substituting another oil works out :)


8 Elyse Sokoloff February 3, 2013 at 5:34 pm

How much smoked paprika did you add?


9 Valerie February 3, 2013 at 6:23 pm

1/2 a teaspoon. I will fix the recipe. :)


10 Elyse Sokoloff February 3, 2013 at 7:59 pm

We made these and they are good! My 18 month old loves them and my 3 year old had to be told to stop eating them, they were for dinner.


11 Gail February 19, 2013 at 9:52 pm

This is a brilliant idea! Made them last night & they turned out very well in spite of forgetting to add the smoked paprika…….next time for sure, so thank-you. These will be on the regular rotation.


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