These gingerbread cookies are about to become your holiday MVP (Most Valuable Pastry). Combining timeless flavors with a touch of baking magic, this recipe promises cookies that are not just delicious but also Instagram-worthy. Dive into the world of ginger, molasses, and sweet memories – it’s time to bake up a storm and let those heartwarming holiday aromas fill your kitchen!
I have 80+ Must-Make Cookie Recipes that are perfect for Christmas! You will love browsing the dozens of flavor options!
Why You’ll Love These Holiday Cookies
- Flavor Flexibility: Making your own gingerbread cookies means YOU call the shots. Want them spicier? Add extra ginger. Dreaming of a softer, chewier cookie? Adjust the baking time. Your kitchen, your rules!
- Memories in the Making: Baking these cookies isn’t just about the final treat. It’s about the laughter, the delightful mess of flour everywhere, and the joy of crafting shapes with loved ones. That cookie-cutter reindeer? It’s not just dessert, it’s a cherished memory.
- Nothing Beats Fresh: Let’s face it, store-bought can’t hold a candle to the tantalizing aroma of freshly baked gingerbread cookies wafting through your home. And that first bite of a still-warm cookie? Pure, unparalleled bliss.
These easy gingerbread cookies are crunchy on the exterior but have a wonderful soft and chewy center. Both high on my list for the perfect cookie. In fact, I’d venture to say it IS my favorite cookie. It’s the classic ginger flavor that screams “Christmas,” along with sugar cookies. The molasses and cinnamon flavors have my heart and are easily a favorite among family and friends.
Bonus? I love the smell that fills our home while these are in the oven. It smells like Christmas. The combination of all of those great spices is one that you just ca not replicate any other way.
Gingerbread Cookie Ingredients
Most of the ingredients for these super easy gingerbread cookies, with the exception of molasses, should be pantry staples. Which means they are already on hand! For a full list of ingredients and instructions see the recipe card below.
- Flours: Both all-purpose and wheat. These flours add depth to the flavor profile, giving your gingerbread a richer, more rustic taste.
- Leavening Agents: Both baking soda and baking powder. They make your gingerbread puff up. Without them, you’d end up with flat, hard slabs instead of delightful, slightly raised cookies
- Spices: Specifically, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and nutmeg
- Butter: I like to use unsalted butter when baking. It helps me control how much salt is added into the recipe. However, you can use salted butter. Simply omit the added salt called for in the dry ingredients.
- Sugar: Just a touch for added sweetness.
- Molasses: Molasses brings a rich, deep, caramelized sweetness to gingerbread. It’s this unique flavor that makes gingerbread instantly recognizable.
- Egg: This works as a glue and helps bind all of the ingredients together.
How To Make Soft And Chewy Gingerbread Cookies
Once you have let your gingerbread men recipe cool it is time for frosting! I am not super great at this part but I have found that it does not matter how perfect they are. A simple piped smile is all you need!
- PREP: Add the flours, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium sized bowl (affiliate). Whisk until fully combined and set aside.
- DOUGH: Cream the butter with the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer (affiliate). Stir in the molasses and egg. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until the dough pulls from the side.
- CHILL: Divide into two equal portions, wrap in plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
- BAKE: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking trays with parchment or a silicone baking mat (affiliate). Roll your dough 1/4 inch thick and cut with desired cookie cutter (affiliate). Bake 10-12 minutes or until the edges start to brown.
These soft gingerbread cookies with icing seem to disappear quick enough that no one will notice their mismatched eyes or the crazy buttons. A close flavor competition between these and Gingerbread Cupcakes with Eggnog Frosting.
- Rolling Pin (affiliate): Essential for getting that dough to the right thickness. Want an upgrade? Go for adjustable rolling pins that ensure even thickness throughout.
- Cookie Cutters (affiliate): From classic gingerbread men to festive snowflakes and reindeers, these shape your dough into fun designs. The more, the merrier!
- Silicone Baking Mat (affiliate) or Parchment Paper: These ensure your cookies don’t stick to the baking sheet. Plus, they make for super easy cleanup.
Yes! While molasses gives that classic gingerbread flavor, you can substitute it with dark corn syrup, honey, or maple syrup. However, each will bring a slightly different flavor profile to the cookies.
To achieve softer cookies, try reducing the baking time slightly. Also, consider adding a touch more moisture to the dough, either with a tad more egg or molasses.
Absolutely! Roll your dough into a log, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and then store in a freezer bag. When you’re ready to bake, just thaw, slice, and pop them in the oven!
Store them in an airtight container at room temperature. To prevent them from getting soft, avoid storing with moist baked goods. They should stay fresh for about 4-6 weeks.
Of course! While royal icing is a popular choice for gingerbread because it hardens smoothly, you can use any favorite icing or even embellish with sprinkles, candies, and chocolates!
Gingerbread Men Cookies
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1½ teaspoons ground cloves
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 cup butter soft
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
- Add the flours, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium sized bowl. Whisk until fully combined and set aside.
- Cream the butter with the sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer. Stir in the molasses and egg. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until the dough pulls from the side. Divide into two equal portions, wrap in plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking trays with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
- Roll your dough 1/4 inch thick and cut with desired cookie cutter. Bake 10-12 minutes or until the edges start to brown.
More Cookies To Try
- Ginger Drop Cookies
- Christmas Wreath Cookies
- Melted Snowman Cookie Recipe
- Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies
- Easy Reindeer Cookies
- Caramel Pecan Thumbprint Cookies