Have you hit that holiday wall yet? If you have *any* energy left, these Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies are worth it. Promise!
These Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies are so soft, chewy, and flavorful! They have a deep spiced flavor that you simply must try!
This recipe mostly uses pantry staples, so you likely have most of what you need already! Make sure to note the type of molasses to use so that you get the appropriate flavor!
- Flour - Provides structure for the cookies. I used all-purpose flour.
- Cocoa Powder - For color and slight flavor. You want to use unsweetened cocoa powder. If your cocoa is lumpy, sifting it will help it to better incorporate with the other ingredients.
- Spices - For flavor. So many spices! The recipe includes ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. I am a spice *wimp* and I still include the pepper--I strongly recommend it!
- Baking Powder - For leavening.
- Salt - To help balance and enhance the flavors of the gingerbread.
- Unsalted Butter - For moisture and richness. Unsalted butter so that you control the amount of salt in the recipe. You want the butter to be at room temperature.
- Sugar - For sweetness and keeping the cookies soft and moist.
- Egg - For moisture, richness, and a little leavening. You want your egg to be at room temperature.
- Dark Molasses - For color, flavor, and helping to keep the gingerbread soft. Make sure to use dark, unsulphured molasses and *not* blackstrap molasses. Blackstrap molasses is bitter and will not give the flavor you're looking for.
- Agave Syrup - To help keep the gingerbread soft. Also adds another layer of subtle sweetness. If you prefer, you can substitute with light corn syrup.
- Powdered Sugar - For sweetness, and because it dissolves and gives the glaze a smooth texture.
- Water - To thin the glaze to the appropriate consistency.
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Here is where I tell you the bad news: after making the dough, it should be refrigerated overnight before you bake it. I know!! You wanted the cookies today, and now I'm telling you to wait! Waiting overnight will give you the best flavor, because you've allowed the dough time for the flavors of aaaaall those spices to marry.
How to Make Gingerbread Cookies
- In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Set aside.
- Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add egg and mix well. Add molasses and agave syrup. Mix until combined.
- Gradually add dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
- Portion the dough out into balls and refrigerate overnight.
- Once the dough has chilled, press dough into the cookie pan.
- Bake until puffed and edges are slightly golden. Let cookies cool slightly before glazing.
- Combine sifted powdered sugar and water in a small bowl to make the glaze. Brush each cookie with glaze, allowing the glaze to set before serving.
Tip: There are many ways you could choose to prepare your gingerbread cookies. You can roll the dough out and cut into shapes, use a cookies stamp, or you could use a cookie pan, like I did here. These instructions are for making the cookies in a cookie pan. Notes are included in the recipe card for making this same recipe into cut-outs.
Large Cookie Scoop - While not absolutely necessary, a cookie scoop ensures that your cookies are all the same size, which helps them to bake more evenly. Your hands will stay much cleaner, too!
Pastry Brush - A brush makes glazing the cookies much easier. I like the pastry brush linked here because, since it's silicone, it doesn't leave bristles behind in your bakes like a traditional brush.
This cookie dough can be frozen (already portioned into balls) in an airtight container for up to three months. Just thaw and proceed with the rest of the recipe.
The baked, cooled, and glazed cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week, but they have the best texture in the first 2-3 days.
Baked and cooled cookies can be well wrapped in an airtight container and frozen for up to three months. Just thaw, then glaze. I don't suggest glazing the cookies prior to freezing.
I don't suggest using blackstrap molasses! Blackstrap is bitter, and will negatively alter the flavor of your gingerbread.
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Recipe adapted slightly from Tartine (link here).
Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies
- 3 ¾ cups flour (I used all-purpose flour)
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
- 4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1¼ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (2 sticks)
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 egg, at room temperature
- ½ cup dark molasses (see note)
- 2 tablespoon agave syrup (or light corn syrup)
- 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 tablespoon water
- In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, spices, baking soda, and salt). Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine butter and sugar. Cream until mixture is light and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- Add egg and mix well. Add molasses and agave syrup (or light corn syrup). Mix until combined.
- Gradually add dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
- Portion the dough out into balls using about 3 tablespoons of dough for each (mine weighed about 1.5 ounces). I used a large cookie scoop for this (see note). Wrap the dough tightly and refrigerate overnight (at least 8 hours; see note).If making cut-outs: form the dough into a disc, wrap tightly, and refrigerate overnight.
- Once the dough has chilled, preheat your oven to 350° F. Grease a cookie pan (see note) and set aside. If making cut-outs: line baking sheets with parchment and set aside.
- Press dough into the prepared pan. You may have to let the dough warm a bit to be pliable enough to accomplish this.If making cut-outs: roll the dough out to about ¼ inch thickness on a floured surface and cut out desired shapes. You want to introduce as little additional flour to the dough as possible. Place the cut-outs in the freezer for 10-20 minutes before baking to help them keep their shape.
- Bake cookies until puffed and edges are slightly golden, about 8-10 minutes.If making cut-outs: cookies will bake up in about 7-8 minutes, depending on the size of your cookies.
- Let cookies cool at least 10 minutes before glazing (see note).
- Combine sifted powdered sugar and water in a small bowl. Mix until combined and smooth. Using a pastry brush, brush the top of each cookie with glaze. Allow the glaze to set before serving.Enjoy!
Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is only an estimate.