A classic holiday cookie, these simple gingersnaps are soft but crunchy, with that hint of burnt sweetness that makes them irresistible. Roll them in sugar, and they create a wonderful crackly surface while baking! They keep and travel well.
Cookie baking season is upon us, and ginger snaps are among the most popular.
Decades ago, I fell in love with these chewy gingersnaps the minute I made them.
I decided then and there that ginger with molasses was one of my top favorite flavor combinations. And that hasn't changed and translated to these fresh ginger cookies and gingerbread. That sweet spiciness is unparalleled, don't you agree with me?
But let's focus on these fantastic ginger cookies with a crackly top, crunchy texture and chewy middle.
- Molasses: one of the main ingredients, adds a slight bitterness that pair amazingly well with the spices and honey. Use unsulphured molasses (light or dark depending on how strong you want it). We don't recommend blackstrap molasses as it makes the cookies too bitter.
- Honey: I like to add a tablespoon of honey because it sweetens the cookies enough to balance the other sharp flavors. And it adds moisture.
- Spices: finding the right mix is essential for achieving the best ginger cookie. This recipe used ground ginger, cinnamon and allspice. For use it's the perfect cookie, but do adjust it to your personal taste if necessary.
- Brown sugar: light or dark.
- Baking soda: is used as leavener to help the scones rise, so make sure it isn't expired. Arm & Hammer baking soda is a popular one.
- Salt: I like using kosher salt or fine sea salt when baking. But regular table salt works just fine.
- All-purpose flour.
Variations & substitutions
- Flour amount: you can use a little more flour (it's all explained below and in the recipe card) and get a cookie with a crunchy texture all-around and soft center.
- Sugar: you can make these cookies with part white sugar.
- Spices: use other spices or add a new one to the ones in this recipe, like black pepper or cloves. Always adapt recipes to your palate. It might take some tries but it's worth it in my opinion.
- Extra ginger: add some chopped crystallized ginger to the dough. It adds a spicier bite.
How to make this gingersnap recipe
- Cookie dough: it's a one-bowl recipe, extremely easy, and you might want to use an electric mixer, but it can also be done by hand.
- Baking the cookies: the dough balls are coated in sugar and then placed with space in between them (1.5 to 2 inches) as they expand quite a lot during baking.
Flour amount variation
I made two sets of gingersnaps changing the amount of flour, not by much, but the results were different. The difference is not huge but enough to make a comment. You'll find both options in the recipe card at the end of the post.
- Largest amount of flour: the cookies are like the photos in this post. Thicker cookies with more crust and a chewy inside.
- Lesser amount of flour: the cookies are much moister as the crust is thinner. It's a more even cookie inside and out.
How to store gingersnaps
- Room temperature: they last several days in a cookie jar or tin.
- Refrigerator: you can make the balls of dough and keep them in the fridge, wrapped, for 2-3 days before baking. Roll them in sugar just before baking.
- Freezer: you can freeze the baked cookies in a zip loc bag or well-wrapped. For unbaked cookies, you can make the balls, put them in the freezer until solid, and then transfer to a bag so you fill less space in the freezer.
Related recipes you might like:
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- 6 tablespoons (90g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup (100g) regular white sugar
- ½ cup (100g) brown sugar
- 1 egg, at room temperature
- 3 tablespoons molasses
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 cups (270g) 0000 flour, (or 1 ¾ cups + 2 tablespoons, see Notes below)
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 to 2 teaspoons ground ginger, see Notes below
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- White sugar, about ⅓ cup, for rolling cookies
- Turn on the oven at 350°F / 180ºC.
- Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, beat butter adding sugar gradually until creamy.
- Add the egg and beat until smooth.
- Add molasses and honey and mix well.
- Add vanilla and spices and integrate.
- Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the butter mixture in 2 or 3 parts until it’s all well mixed. I do this part with a spatula because it’s a stiff dough and it’s easier to mix.
- Put the extra sugar in a shallow bowl.
- Take walnut sized portions of cookie dough and roll between your hands to make balls. A cookie scoop is great to make even sized cookies.
- Roll in the sugar, coating them completely, trying to maintain the round shape.
- Place on the baking sheets, separated by an inch or more.
- Bake for about 12 minutes, until puffed and cracked.
- Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack. (I also smack the cookie sheet on the counter as soon as it’s out of the oven so that the cookies flatten immediately and the bottoms are easier to remove. But it’s not mandatory).
- Let them cool completely on the rack before removing them with a spatula.
- Store in tins or cookie jars with tight fitting lids.
- If you like even sweeter cookies, use 2 tablespoons of each (4 in total). one of the main ingredients is molasses which adds a slight bitterness that goes amazingly well with the spices and honey. I like to add a tablespoon of honey because it sweetens the cookies enough to balance the other sharp flavors. And it adds moisture.
- Spices: finding the right mix is essential for achieving the best ginger cookie. This recipe for me is perfect, but do adjust it to your personal taste if necessary.
- Brown sugar: it adds moisture and a necessary caramel undertone that complements the rest of the ingredients. You can use white sugar if that's all you have.
- Prep Time: 10
- Cook Time: 15
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: gingersnaps, gingersnap cookies