Gingerbread cookies are a year round treat for me. Molasses, ginger, and cinnamon give these cookies their warm winter flavor. The applesauce and sugar give them a sweet balance. These are big, soft, delicious gingerbread cookies.
Gingerbread in cake form was one of the first desserts I would bake in the kitchen. From scratch. I made brownies and yellow cakes from boxes, but for gingerbread I had a recipe and I found the ingredients. A neighbor wrote out the recipe for the cake that she served me around Christmas, and with some luck and two grocery stores, I found what I needed. Molasses and fresh ginger were the “exotic” ingredients and the key to that taste that I cake that I coveted.
Our first foray into the realm of gingerbread was a success, and I’ve been making gingerbread ever since. AS with most things I bake, it has a basic formula and then you riff on it with what you like or think might work. In the case of gingerbread, I often include apple, pears, pumpkin, citrus, and other favorite fall and winter flavors.
Certain I’ll post a few of my gingerbread desserts.
Gingersnaps came in a box. They were hard as a rock. But…if you let them dissolve in your mouth or dunked them in milk they were a different thing altogether. I don’t think I had a soft gingerbread cookie until I arrived in San Diego and bought one in a Pacific Beach bakery. I didn’t start baking them from scratch until years later.
How To Make These Gingerbread Cookies
These gingersnaps are quick and easy. Dark molasses and ground ginger provide the distinctive taste. This recipe creates a soft cookie three or four inches in diameter.
All-purpose flour, baking soda, ground ginger, ground cinnamon, and fine sea salt are added to a small bowl, whisked, and set aside.
Butter, applesauce, and sugar are added to a stand mixer or beaten with a hand mixer until well combined. An egg is added and beaten long enough to incorporate. Dark molasses is added and beaten until incorporated.
Half the reserved flour mix is added and folded in with a large spatula. The remaining flour is added and folded in until you no streaks of flour remain.
The dough is covered and chilled for an hour or overnight. The chilled dough is formed into small balls and rolled in cinnamon sugar. The cookie balls are placed on parchment lined cookie sheets and baked in a preheated oven. The cookies are cooled on the cookie sheets for a few minutes and then removed from the cookie sheets to cool completely. Store these gingerbread cookies in an airtight container for days.
Other Cookie Recipes You Might Enjoy
- 290 grams all-purpose flour (2-1/4 cups), sifted
- 5 grams ground ginger (1 tablespoon)
- 10 grams baking soda (2 teaspoons)
- 3 grams ground cinnamon (1 teaspoon)
- 2 grams fine sea salt (1/2 teaspoon)
- 86 grams unsalted butter (6 tablespoons)
- 80 grams applesauce (1/3 cup)
- 200 grams granulated sugar (1 cup)
- 50 grams egg (1 large)
- 80 grams dark molasses (1/4 cup)
- 50 grams granulated sugar (1/4 cup)
- 3 grams ground cinnamon (1 teaspoon)
- Add all-purpose flour, ground ginger, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and fine sea salt to small bowl. Whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Add the butter and applesauce to a stand mixer. Beat on medium for 1 minute. Add sugar about 1/2 cup at a time and beat on medium for about 30 seconds after each addition.
- Add the egg and beat on low until incorporated.
- Add the dark molasses and beat on low until incorporated.
- Remove bowl from stand mixer. Add about 1/2 flour mixture and fold into the applesauce mixture until no flour streaks. Do not over mix. Repeat with remaining flour mixture.
- Chill dough for 1 hour, or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Add granulated sugar and ground cinnamon to small bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside.
- Remove dough from refrigerator. Pinch off small amounts of dough and roll into 1-inch diameter dough balls between your hands. Roll dough balls in cinnamon sugar. Place on parchment lined cookie sheets.
- Bake gingersnap cookies in preheated oven 10 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheets for a few minutes. Remove cookies from cookie sheets and cool completely.