Gingerbread cookies recipe

December 2, 2012 Last updated: July 31, 2023
Gingerbread cookies recipe

Today I am sharing my favorite gingerbread cookie recipe to make the most delicious Christmas cookies. You can use this recipe to make gingerbread houses and decorated gingerbread cookies.

How to make gingerbread cookies

Gingerbread is becoming more and more popular in Holland, although speculaas is still the most popular spiced cookie. You can find gingerbread cookies in Holland a little better these days than a few years ago when I decided to make them myself.

These are the best gingerbread cookies I have ever had, much better than the ones you can buy in the store (here). The reason I think these cookies turned out so delicious is because the spicy flavor of the gingerbread spices did not become too overwhelming.

This has to do with the amount of spices I used in the recipe, but also because I like to make my own gingerbread spice mix.

This spice mix is tailored to my taste and you only need four types of spices: ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and gingerbread. In proportion, you need the most ginger and cinnamon, with the ginger tasting well above.

Gingerbread cookies recipe 2a

Decorating gingerbread cookies

If you want to make gingerbread cookies, you can choose from a variety of cookie cutters. The most popular is the gingerbread man cookie cutter. The jolly cookie man is a part of Christmas. But of course you have many more options. How about a cookie cutter shaped like a beautiful star, a Christmas tree, a Christmas sock, a bell or an oven mitt?

BAKING TIP: This Christmas cookie cutter set is ideal for making Christmas cookies.

Gingerbread cookies with royal icing

Aside from the different shapes you can give your cookie by choosing all kinds of Christmas cookie cutters, you can also vary how you decorate the cookies. I like to use white royal icing, which gives the cookies a classic look.

You can also choose different colors of icing and not only draw subtle lines on the cookie, but decorate the entire cookie.

An easy alternative to royal icing is melted white chocolate.

Snowflake gingerbread cookies

Like me, many of you like to decorate gingerbread cookies in the shape of a snowflake. I will of course give you more inspiration, but for now I would like to refer you to my Dutch blog, where I have a how to for gingerbread snowflakes with royal icing.

The pictures should be clear enough to get you started.

Gingerbread cookies recipe 3a

FAQ: Gingerbread cookies

How long can I keep the dough in the refrigerator?

About two days. Just keep in mind that you may have to take the dough out of the fridge a little earlier or it will be too hard to roll out immediately.

Can I freeze gingerbread cookie dough?

You can freeze cookie dough just fine, it will keep for up to 3 months. I would then freeze it in sheets, so it defrosts more easily.

Can I also replace the dark brown sugar with other sugar?

You can, but I wouldn’t. The dark brown sugar adds a lot of flavor.

Are these gingerbread sugar cookies?

You can call them that. They hold their shape in the oven which is most important for me.

How long should mini gingerbread cookies bake?

I bake my cookies for about 16 minutes. If you want to make them smaller, I would start with 10-12 minutes. It depends on the size, shape and oven how long they’ll need.


Gingerbread cookies recipe

Print recipe

4.76 from 25 votes

Gingerbread cookies recipe

Make your own gingerbread cookies with this recipe and decorate them with royal icing or melted white chocolate.
Servings: 40 cookies


Gingerbread cookies

  • 225 grams of unsalted butter
  • 160 grams of dark brown sugar
  • 160 grams of molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 500 grams of all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp gingerbread spice mix
  • Pinch of salt

Decoration options

  • Royal icing
  • White chocolate melted


  • Cream together butter, sugar, and molasses. Add the egg and extra yolk and stir well until incorporated.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, gingerbread spices, and salt. Add these to the other mixture, mixing well.
  • This dough is quite sticky because of the molasses. Divide the dough into 2 parts, make sheets and wrap in foil. The sheets will cool faster in the refrigerator, so you can get to work sooner. Let the dough rest for at least four hours before making cookies.
  • Roll out the dough on a flour dusted working surface to a thickness of up to 5 mm. Cut out your cookies and place on a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Bake the cookies for 16 minutes at 160 °C/320 ℉ (conventional).

Decorating gingerbread cookies

  • Feel like decorating? You can easily decorate the gingerbread cookies. I used white royal icing, but you can use any color royal icing or white chocolate.
  • Pipe all the details on the cookies with Wilton's piping tip #2.

Make the dough a day early so you can start right away.
How to store

You can store the cookies in a cookie jar for at least 3-4 weeks, and in the freezer for up to 3 months. You can store the dough itself in the refrigerator for a week and in the freezer for 3 months.

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