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My Perfect Gingerbread Cookies Recipe – How to Make it in 22 Simple Steps

A set of gingerbread man cookies on display at a store.

Gingerbread cookies and cinnamon candies? This puzzled reaction is typical of those who try this recipe. However, once they try it, they’re hooked. This unconventional pairing makes for a spicy, delicious, fall, and winter treat that everyone will enjoy.

Kids love rolling out cookie dough and cutting them with cookie cutters. This process is kind of like playing with play dough, but the results are a sweet, delicious snack. If you have an empty, chilly afternoon and the kids need something to do, why not stir up a batch of these Gingerbread Cookies to fill the day? Yes, this recipe does make a mess, but rather than focusing on the mess, try to focus on the memories you will make with the kids.

A set of gingerbread man cookies on display at a store.

My Perfect Gingerbread Cookies Recipe

April Freeman
This recipe creates a soft, tender Gingerbread Cookie with a delicate texture. This is due to the use of real butter in the dough. You can substitute with other fats like margarine, but to truly have the best texture and taste in the final product, use real butter in the mixture. Of course, rolling out all-butter cookie doughs can be a little tricky.

Video Version

Prep Time 50 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Chilling Time 2 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 2 mins
Cuisine American
Servings 16 Cookies


  • Medium-Sized Bowl
  • Large bowl
  • Electric Mixer
  • Rolling Pin
  • Cookie Cutter


  • 3 1/4 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoon Ground Ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • 1 cup Softened Butter or 2 sticks
  • 3/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 pc Egg
  • 1/2 cup Molasses
  • 1 package Cinnamon Candies


  • In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves.
  • In a separate large bowl, combine the sugar and the butter, creaming them together.
  • Add an egg to this mixture and stir well.
    An egg is then mixed into the dry ingredients.
  • Add the molasses, and thoroughly combine the mixture. Stir the flour mixture into the butter and sugar mixture, stirring just until combined.
  • You can use an electric mixer if needed because the dough will begin to get thick and more difficult to stir. Do not over mix the dough, however, or this will make the cookies tough. Just stir until the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
    The molasses are introduced into the mix.
  • Split the dough into two halves, shaping each half into a disk and wrap them individually in plastic wrap.
  • Then, refrigerate the dough for at least two hours. If you don’t have time right away to bake them, you can store the dough in the refrigerator for up to three days.
  • When you’re ready to roll out the cookies, preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  • Find several cookie sheets and have them ready for the cookies. You do not have to grease the pans.
  • Lightly flour your countertop or a pastry sheet.
  • Take half of the cookie dough from the refrigerator, leaving the other half in the fridge while you roll out and cut the first portion of the dough.
  • Shape the dough into a disk with lightly floured hands.
  • Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a large circle that is about ¼ inch in thickness.
  • Using cookie cutters, cut the dough into shapes.
  • You can use a spatula to transfer the shapes to your cookie sheet, keeping the cookies about a half-inch apart on the baking pan. Repeat this process until you can’t cut any more shapes.
  • Then, gently press together the scraps of dough and re-roll them. If the dough starts to get too sticky to handle, return it to the refrigerator for about 20 minutes to chill.
    The dough is flattened and cut with cookie cutters.
  • Repeat with the other half of the cookie dough from the refrigerator.
  • Press the cinnamon candies into the surface of the cookies, in whatever pattern you find attractive.
    The cookies are then placed in an oven.
  • Place the cookie sheets in the center of the preheated oven and bake for 10 to 11 minutes.
  • Do not over bake the cookies; they should just be set when you remove the sheets from the oven.
  • Transfer the cookies to wire racks for cooling with a spatula.
  • Cool completely before storing in an airtight container.


The butter gets pretty soft fairly quickly, and all of a sudden, you’re trying to roll out a sticky, gummy mess. That is why the chilling time is so essential to this recipe. You absolutely cannot skip that step or your cookie baking time will end in frustration. If the cookie dough begins to get too soft as you’re working with it, pop it back in the fridge for a few minutes to firm the dough back up.
Another thing to remember is to handle the dough carefully. You don’t want to pound and over-handle this dough or the cookies will turn out tough. Simply work quickly and confidently. Just mix up the cookie dough, refrigerate it for about two hours, and then roll out the dough for cutting.
If you’re working with kids, you may want to mix up the dough and refrigerate it before you call the kids into the kitchen, since they will probably be impatient about waiting for the full chilling time if they’ve been in on the mixing.
Press the cinnamon candies into the cookies before you bake them. This will help the candies stick in the cookies rather than falling off after you’ve baked the cookies. Don’t overbake these treats. You want them just set, not browned around the edges. Browning the cookies will make them too crisp and brittle.
Keyword Dessert, Gingerbread Cookies, Recipe

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