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The Most Wonderful Gingerbread Cookies


Ingredients:

  • 3cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1⁄2teaspoons baking powder
  • 3⁄4teaspoon baking soda
  • 1⁄4teaspoon salt
  • 1tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 3⁄4teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄4teaspoon ground cloves
  • 6tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3⁄4cup dark brown sugar
  • 1large egg
  • 1⁄2cup molasses
  • 2teaspoons vanilla
  • 1teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (optional)

Directions:

  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves until well blended.
  • In a large bowl (KitchenAid’s great for this) beat butter, brown sugar, and egg on medium speed until well blended.
  • Add molasses, vanilla, and lemon zest and continue to mix until well blended.
  • Gradually stir in dry ingredients until blended and smooth.
  • Divide dough in half and wrap each half in plastic and let stand at room temperature for at least 2 hours or up to 8 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 375 deg. Prepare baking sheets by lining with parchment paper.
  • (Dough can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, but in this case it should be refrigerated. Return to room temp before using.) Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Grease or line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place 1 portion of the dough on a lightly floured surface.
  • Sprinkle flour over dough and rolling pin.
  • Roll dough to a scant 1/4-inch thick.
  • Use additional flour to avoid sticking.
  • Cut out cookies with desired cutter– the ginger bread man is our favorite of course.
  • Space cookies 1 1/2-inches apart.
  • Bake 1 sheet at a time for 7-10 minutes (the lower time will give you softer cookies– very good!).
  • Remove cookie sheet from oven and allow the cookies to stand until the cookies are firm enough to move to a wire rack.
  • After cookies are cool you may decorate them any way you like.
  • I usually brush them with a powdered sugar glaze when I am in a hurry, but they look wonderful decorated with Royal icing.

Reviews:

  • GreenzBeanz

    These were very easy to make, and my family gobbled them up. I only give 4 stars because I prefer a much spicier cookie. Next time I’ll try doubling the cloves and adding chunks of crystalized ginger. Great recipe!

  • JungleLove

    These cookies came out great! Made substituting in 1C. ww pastry flour and didn’t use the lemon because I forgot to buy one at the store. I made the dough and kept it in the fridge for 3 days before baking on Christmas Eve. The dough was easy to work with and after two rounds in the oven I decided 6 minutes was the best cooking time. These cookies are definitely strongly spiced and are sure to please die hard gingerbread lovers. Used vanilla royal icing and red and green gel frosting to named cookies for seats at the dinner table…. brilliant!!

  • xxsimplysweetxx

    My first attempt at making gingerbread cookies. I, like other reviewers had an issue with dry, crumbly dough, even after 2 hours of rest. But that was remedied with a few tablespoons of water while kneading to bring it all together. I made 1-inch gingerbread men and baked them for 6 minutes. They were a hit! Absolutely delicious; initial bite is firm/ crisp, and the inside is moist and chewy. Used royal icing to decorate. Will absolutely make again!

  • Madonna 66

    I haven’t made this yet but want to save it with the ‘handy hints’ from Rnam. These are:ROLL THE CHILLED DOUGH BETWEEN WAXED PAPER
    *TAKE OFF THE TOP PAPER and CUT OUT THE SHAPES (puzzle like) WITHOUT MOVING OR HANDLING THE DOUGH AT ALL
    *~PUT THE PAPER & DOUGH ON A BAKING SHEET IN THE FREEZER
    *TAKE OUT AFTER 10 min AND THE SHAPES ARE SO EASY TO REMOVE WO BREAKING! ONTO A BAKING SHEET STRAIGHT INTO THE OVEN!

    They sound so good, can’t wait to make them with my girls for Christmas!!

  • Toots70

    This is a great recipe for gingerbread cookie lovers; great ginger taste (a tablespoon had me sneezing for about a minute) which is the main reason why it gets my 4 stars. However on the second batch of cookie dough I did a little tinkering. The first batch I followed the recipe to the letter, but I think there is an issue of word usage in the directions. It says after adding the last bit of the dry ingredients to mix until dough is smooth. This dough will not be smooth but more like pie crust, so make sure you mix until well incorporated. It will be pretty much a heavy chunk of heavenly smelling dough that can easily divided to chill. Also with as much ginger this recipe calls for, keep in mind even after baking these cookies will have a strong ginger flavor which is great for gingerbread cookie lovers like myself, but be prepared for the non-fans. A nice coating of Royal Icing can help in this regaurd, or the traditional raisins. My second batch I reduced the amount of flour to 2 1/2 cups, and reduced the ginger by half. Since gingerbread is used for cut out cookies there is the risk of the dough becoming tough using the dusting of flour to keep it from sticking. There is already quite a bit of flour in the dough itself so you will need even less flour dusting than say with sugar cookie dough, however after repeated dusting and handling, reducing the cooking time won’t help having a rather hard cookie after cooling. Using a half cup less flour there is room for dusting and handling no problem, but make sure you chill at the very least 3-4 hours and keep dough you’re not using in the frige. Reducing the amount of ginger by half gives the cookie a more mild ginger flavor which appeals to children far better as well as those finicky “big kids” who want a more sweet cookie. Otherwise it’s a great recipe for a traditional Christmas cookie making it well worth your time and love.

  • DebS #2

    These cookies are wonderful – just like it says. I didn’t have to change a thing – I thought the recipe is perfect as written. I used snowflake cookies cutters and piped royal icing on them and then dipped them in white sparkling sugar.

  • One Happy Woman

    Loved this – thank you for posting – this is a keeper!<br/><br/>Just one little change – a tip from my Grandmother who learned it from one of the DuPont household cooks about 90 years ago … when making gingerbread or gingerbread cookies, replace half of the regular shortening with bacon grease. And no, I am not kidding …. amaaaaazinnnnggggg.

  • DebS #2

    These cookies are wonderful – just like it says. I didn’t have to change a thing – I thought the recipe is perfect as written. I used snowflake cookies cutters and piped royal icing on them and then dipped them in white sparkling sugar.

  • klebbak

    This recipe helped me through my first gingerbread cookie attempt, and even with the gluten free and vegan substitutions I made (Pamela’s gluten-free baking mix for wheat flour, EarthBalance for butter, and Ener-G egg replacer for the egg), it was a definite winner! Perhaps it was the gluten-free flour I was using, but I had no problems with sticky dough, even though I waited less than two hours to prepare the cookies. The cookies came out soft, with perfectly puffed edges and crisp, golden bottoms.

  • Rnam

    Excellent recipe!!

    I followed it to the letter and no need to reduce the flour at all (I HARDLY TOUCHED THE DOUGH! ) thanks to THE BEST HINT i read from another user on food.com (either on this recipe or another one i am not sure):

    *ROLL THE CHILLED DOUGH BETWEEN WAXED PAPER
    *TAKE OFF THE TOP PAPER and CUT OUT THE SHAPES (puzzle like) WITHOUT MOVING OR HANDLING THE DOUGH AT ALL
    *~PUT THE PAPER & DOUGH ON A BAKING SHEET IN THE FREEZER
    *TAKE OUT AFTER 10 min AND THE SHAPES ARE SO EASY TO REMOVE WO BREAKING! ONTO A BAKING SHEET STRAIGHT INTO THE OVEN!

    I did all kind of shapes even the mini stars came out perfect!! The taste was delicious!!

    Many thanks for sharing this recipe!

  • GreenzBeanz

    These were very easy to make, and my family gobbled them up. I only give 4 stars because I prefer a much spicier cookie. Next time I’ll try doubling the cloves and adding chunks of crystalized ginger. Great recipe!

  • Rnam

    Excellent recipe!!

    I followed it to the letter and no need to reduce the flour at all (I HARDLY TOUCHED THE DOUGH! ) thanks to THE BEST HINT i read from another user on food.com (either on this recipe or another one i am not sure):

    *ROLL THE CHILLED DOUGH BETWEEN WAXED PAPER
    *TAKE OFF THE TOP PAPER and CUT OUT THE SHAPES (puzzle like) WITHOUT MOVING OR HANDLING THE DOUGH AT ALL
    *~PUT THE PAPER & DOUGH ON A BAKING SHEET IN THE FREEZER
    *TAKE OUT AFTER 10 min AND THE SHAPES ARE SO EASY TO REMOVE WO BREAKING! ONTO A BAKING SHEET STRAIGHT INTO THE OVEN!

    I did all kind of shapes even the mini stars came out perfect!! The taste was delicious!!

    Many thanks for sharing this recipe!

  • One Happy Woman

    Loved this – thank you for posting – this is a keeper!<br/><br/>Just one little change – a tip from my Grandmother who learned it from one of the DuPont household cooks about 90 years ago … when making gingerbread or gingerbread cookies, replace half of the regular shortening with bacon grease. And no, I am not kidding …. amaaaaazinnnnggggg.

  • Madonna 66

    I haven’t made this yet but want to save it with the ‘handy hints’ from Rnam. These are:ROLL THE CHILLED DOUGH BETWEEN WAXED PAPER
    *TAKE OFF THE TOP PAPER and CUT OUT THE SHAPES (puzzle like) WITHOUT MOVING OR HANDLING THE DOUGH AT ALL
    *~PUT THE PAPER & DOUGH ON A BAKING SHEET IN THE FREEZER
    *TAKE OUT AFTER 10 min AND THE SHAPES ARE SO EASY TO REMOVE WO BREAKING! ONTO A BAKING SHEET STRAIGHT INTO THE OVEN!

    They sound so good, can’t wait to make them with my girls for Christmas!!

  • JungleLove

    These cookies came out great! Made substituting in 1C. ww pastry flour and didn’t use the lemon because I forgot to buy one at the store. I made the dough and kept it in the fridge for 3 days before baking on Christmas Eve. The dough was easy to work with and after two rounds in the oven I decided 6 minutes was the best cooking time. These cookies are definitely strongly spiced and are sure to please die hard gingerbread lovers. Used vanilla royal icing and red and green gel frosting to named cookies for seats at the dinner table…. brilliant!!

  • xxsimplysweetxx

    My first attempt at making gingerbread cookies. I, like other reviewers had an issue with dry, crumbly dough, even after 2 hours of rest. But that was remedied with a few tablespoons of water while kneading to bring it all together. I made 1-inch gingerbread men and baked them for 6 minutes. They were a hit! Absolutely delicious; initial bite is firm/ crisp, and the inside is moist and chewy. Used royal icing to decorate. Will absolutely make again!

  • Toots70

    This is a great recipe for gingerbread cookie lovers; great ginger taste (a tablespoon had me sneezing for about a minute) which is the main reason why it gets my 4 stars. However on the second batch of cookie dough I did a little tinkering. The first batch I followed the recipe to the letter, but I think there is an issue of word usage in the directions. It says after adding the last bit of the dry ingredients to mix until dough is smooth. This dough will not be smooth but more like pie crust, so make sure you mix until well incorporated. It will be pretty much a heavy chunk of heavenly smelling dough that can easily divided to chill. Also with as much ginger this recipe calls for, keep in mind even after baking these cookies will have a strong ginger flavor which is great for gingerbread cookie lovers like myself, but be prepared for the non-fans. A nice coating of Royal Icing can help in this regaurd, or the traditional raisins. My second batch I reduced the amount of flour to 2 1/2 cups, and reduced the ginger by half. Since gingerbread is used for cut out cookies there is the risk of the dough becoming tough using the dusting of flour to keep it from sticking. There is already quite a bit of flour in the dough itself so you will need even less flour dusting than say with sugar cookie dough, however after repeated dusting and handling, reducing the cooking time won’t help having a rather hard cookie after cooling. Using a half cup less flour there is room for dusting and handling no problem, but make sure you chill at the very least 3-4 hours and keep dough you’re not using in the frige. Reducing the amount of ginger by half gives the cookie a more mild ginger flavor which appeals to children far better as well as those finicky “big kids” who want a more sweet cookie. Otherwise it’s a great recipe for a traditional Christmas cookie making it well worth your time and love.

  • gayle gerber

    I have made these cookies for our holiday trays for friends for the past two years. Everyone, including myself, seem to love them. I make batches of soft ones and then harder snappy ones. For the snappy ones, I just roll the dough a little thinner and bake two minutes longer. The little gingerbread men break right in half like a ginger snap. Very good for dipping in coffee too 🙂

  • klebbak

    This recipe helped me through my first gingerbread cookie attempt, and even with the gluten free and vegan substitutions I made (Pamela’s gluten-free baking mix for wheat flour, EarthBalance for butter, and Ener-G egg replacer for the egg), it was a definite winner! Perhaps it was the gluten-free flour I was using, but I had no problems with sticky dough, even though I waited less than two hours to prepare the cookies. The cookies came out soft, with perfectly puffed edges and crisp, golden bottoms.

  • gayle gerber

    I have made these cookies for our holiday trays for friends for the past two years. Everyone, including myself, seem to love them. I make batches of soft ones and then harder snappy ones. For the snappy ones, I just roll the dough a little thinner and bake two minutes longer. The little gingerbread men break right in half like a ginger snap. Very good for dipping in coffee too 🙂

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