“Not my gumdrop buttons!” Whenever I think of gingerbread men of course that line from Gingy (on Shrek) always comes to mind. Gingerbread cookies are such a Christmas classic and it’s about time I finally got around to sharing a recipe! I’ve always loved gingerbread cookies but I’m not so much of a fan of the cracker-like ones so I made these to be a slightly softer cookie (just be sure not to over-bake them). If you do prefer a crispier cookie just roll the dough a bit thinner than listed and even bake a little longer if needed.
I hope these make it to your holiday cookie tray! The are such a delicious tradition and we all need a good, reliable Gingy recipe!
- 3 cups (425g) all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup (165g) packed dark brown sugar
- 10 Tbsp (142g) butter, softened about halfway (it should still hold it’s shape pretty well and be cool)
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup (172g) molasses (not blackstrap)
- 1 – 2 Tbsp milk
- 3 (420g) cups powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 Tbsp (15g) meringue powder
- 4 – 6 Tbsp water
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
For the cookies:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda and salt for 20 seconds, set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream together sugar and butter until well combined, occasionally stopping and scraping down bowl. Mix egg yolk and vanilla. Mix in molasses and 1 Tbsp milk. With mixer set on low speed slowly add in dry ingredients and mix until combined, while adding additional milk as needed just to bring dough together. Divide dough into two equal portions then roll each portion out evenly to 1/4-inch thickness (into more of a oblong or rectangular shape so it will fit on a cookie sheet) between two sheets of parchment paper. Chill on a cookie sheet in freezer 10 minutes or until firm then cut into shapes using cookie cutters. Remove from paper using a thin metal spatula or pastry scraper if needed then transfer to a cookie sheet, spacing cookies about 1-inch apart, and bake in preheated oven 8 minutes or until slightly set (they should leave a slight indentation when touched). Repeat process with remaining cookies. Remove from oven and cool on baking sheet 2 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool pipe icing over cookies to decorate and add sprinkles if desired. Let icing set at room temperature and store in an airtight container (note that these cookies are even better and softer the second day).
For the icing:
- Add powdered sugar and meringue powder to the bowl of an electric stand mixer. Fit mixer with paddle attachment, add in 4 Tbsp water and the vanilla them mix on low speed until combined. Add more water to thin as needed and increase speed and whip mixture until it is glossy and thickens up. Tint with food coloring if desired. Transfer to piping bags fitted with tiny round tips.
Yield: About 2 dozen cookie