Award Winning Gingerbread Cookies

36 Servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

These Gingerbread Cookies are perfect for getting you in the Holiday spirit. An award winning recipe with warm spices and molasses.

These Award Winning Gingerbread Cookies will get you feeling festive and make your Christmas Cookie Exchange clamor for the recipe! Shared by a family friend, they have won three cookie competitions!

This Gingerbread Cookie Recipe will get you feeling festive and make your Christmas Cookie Exchange clamor for the recipe! Given to me by a family friend, they have won three cookie competitions in less than 10 years!


MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! Okay, okay it isn’t officially Christmas yet…technically it isn’t even December yet, but nothing can lessen the excitement for our favorite holiday of the year. Have you been counting down the days until Black Friday all month? I know you probably think it is because of the awesome deals but it isn’t. Black Friday is officially the start of Christmas, if not sooner! Wake up in the morning (at a normal time or go hit the sales early), enjoy some Santa Gingerbread Pancakes and get ready to go buy your Christmas tree! By early afternoon you can spend the afternoon decorating the tree, eating these Gingerbread Cookies, listening to Christmas music and making homemade ornaments. Black Friday is almost better than Christmas Day itself!

Best Best Gingerbread Cookies on serving plate Cookies 2

It is officially okay to be all about Christmas now right? Once Thanksgiving passes the Christmas floodgates burst open! These gingerbread cookies are based on a recipe shared by a family friend who has won THREE cookie contests with them! We’ve always loved gingerbread cookies but having never made them, it was easier to buy the gingerbread assortment with chocolate under them. They are the same kind my grandmother used to buy so the memories they would bring back were so special.

Family is all about making new traditions that when you find recipes like this one, you’ll want to make it part of a tradition they can count on each year. Maybe when your children are all grown and have kids of their own, they will ask you for the recipe to make for their own little ones. And because these are so fun for the little ones, go ahead and cave in just a few seconds when they declare they needed gingerbread men or other fun holiday sprinkles. It adds something, don’t you think? Ha.

Best Gingerbread Cookies Collage of cookie balls


Do you have to chill Gingerbread Cookie dough?

Sometimes when you make cookies you want them to be done in 20 minutes and having to wait makes you pretty unhappy. A word of warning, please put this dough in the fridge! 2-3 hours will work magic. If you don’t you will have a hot (literal, haha) mess of sticky dough on your hands. Forming them will be a nightmare and they will get FLAT. Chill the dough and you won’t regret it.

Can I substitute the orange juice in this recipe?

If you don’t have the orange juice feel free to use water, the orange juice really makes the flavor pop. It doesn’t taste like orange, it is similar to when you add coffee to a chocolate cake batter to intensify the chocolate flavor. It is like a secret ingredient that makes the cookie go from good to award winning!

How do I shape the cookie dough for baking?

When you form the dough into a ball and roll it into the sugar be sure you press it down a bit. Use a water glass bottom to press it down to about ½ the ball’s thickness.

Can these Gingerbread Cookies be mailed?

These cookies will travel well, if shipped with 1-2 day shipping. Make sure to package them securely in an airtight and well cushioned container. They’re also a favorite cookie and an anchor recipe of any Christmas Cookie Swap Plate.

Best Gingerbread Cookies on serving plate


  • Serve: Save Gingerbread Cookies in a ziploc bag or other airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
  • Store: Keep your cookies in the fridge in an airtight container and they’ll last for up to a week before getting stale. To get your cookies chewy again, microwave for about 15 seconds.
  • Freeze: Freeze prepared cookie dough or baked cookies for up to 2 months in an airtight container. Freeze cookie dough on a baking sheet for about an hour before transferring to a freezer bag.
Easy Gingerbread Cookies Recipe

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Best Gingerbread Cookies Recipe

These Gingerbread Cookies will get you feeling festive and make your Christmas Cookie Exchange clamor for the recipe! Shared by a family friend, they have won three cookie competitions in less than 10 years!
Yield 36 Servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter , softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup sugar


  • Sift together the dry ingredients (flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt.)
  • Cream the butter and 1 cup sugar.
  • Add the egg and beat until fully incorporated.
  • Add the orange juice and molasses (I use light molasses) until combined.
  • Add in the dry ingredients in small batches until just combined.
  • Refrigerate for 2-3 hours, if you can't at least put it in the freezer for a half an hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • In about 2 tablespoon balls, roll into the ¼ cup sugar and flatten so it looks like the thickness of a double stuff Oreo, really thick but clearly flattened.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes.



Calories: 98kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 46mg | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 125IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 8mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Keyword: Award Winning Gingerbread Cookies
The Best Gingerbread Cookie Recipe
Best Gingerbread Cookies Collage
These Gingerbread Cookies will get you feeling festive and make your Christmas Cookie Exchange clamor for the recipe! Given to me by a family friend, they have won three cookie competitions in less than 10 years!
How to make gingerbread cookies
These Gingerbread Cookies will get you feeling festive and make your Christmas Cookie Exchange clamor for the recipe! Given to me by a family friend, they have won three cookie competitions in less than 10 years!

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the upcoming cookbook: Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients which is being published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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  1. I make these every year and they are absolutely delicious! They are my family’s favorite Christmas cookie. The only change I make is I like to make them in a cute gingerbread man mold I have, which lets them get puffy and yummy!

  2. I’ve made these for the past two years and they’re always a huge hit! The schedule is crazier than normal the year, can the dough be refridgerated for a few days before baking?

    1. Just plain all-purpose flour. If we’re using self-rising or another specialty flour, we’ll note that in the recipe.

  3. 2 tablespoons size cookies is too big. I did 40g cookies and they are still too big. Very good cookies but 1 tablespoon size is plenty.

  4. I have discovered that these cookies are my family fav….I do out a bit of Cinnamon in the sugar that I rolled them in just because we like a little extra cinnamon…

    1. Do you have a recipe for the icing? Do you recommend using salted or unsalted butter? Also, you have both white sugar and sugar listed so I’m a bit confused on the amount? Sorry for the 21 questions lol

  5. I have made so many cookies throughout my life and I must say that this is one of the BEST cookie recipes by far! Did you ever bake a cookie that you couldn’t stop eating? This is THAT cookie. They are beyond delicious!!!

  6. I LOVE this recipe. The taste is so good with not to much sweetness but alot of different flavors. I have substituted the OJ for apple cider in the past when I didn’t have OJ it still tasted great!

  7. Best gingerbread cookies ever ! I roll mine in Demerara sugar before flattering and baking !! It’s our Christmas cookie

  8. Hi Sabrina,
    Looking forward to trying this recipe, and have some questions first:

    • what’s the function of the orange juice?
    • 1/2tsp grnd cloves, imho sounds like a lot, perhaps a bit tongue-numbing?:) I’ll likely cut back the amount, but I am curious if any others found the clove flavor and eugenol anesthetic affects to overpower at all?

    Love your blog; thanks very much great recipes!

    1. Hi Patricia! I promise you won’t hate the cloves in that amount. The orange juice balances the ginger and molasses. You won’t taste orange at all, it’s just a counterbalance to the bitterness.

    2. My best friends and I have a yearly Christmas get together where we bake a whole bunch of cookies. This recipe has been our tried and true every year for over 5 years now. I keep coming back to it and will do so forever. They’re the best ginger molasses cookies out there.

    3. They are fabulous as is. I made them for thanksgiving potlucks and have been requested to send more this time. Use the shorter baking time so they are less crispy.

  9. Sabrina, I now live in a country unfamiliar with Molassas. Any ideas for a substitute?

    Thanks, I would really love to try this recipe. It’s been years since I’ve had good gingerbread (or really any gingerbread).

  10. These are by far the best gingerbread cookies around. I even prefer it to my famous chocolate chip cookies! Can’t go wrong with this recipe!

      1. I made the cookies following the recipe exactly as far as ingredients. They taste great but don’t have the nice “cracked” appearance, they are rather smooth. What do I change to get them to look like yours?

  11. Can this dough be frozen ahead of time before cooking? If so, and I bake them from frozen? I was hoping to prep all my cookies and bake just before I gift them.

    1. Yes, it can be frozen. You can either add a few minutes to the bake time if you want to bake them from frozen or allow them to thaw in the refrigerator for a few hours before baking. Enjoy!

  12. Yummy! I’ve wanted to make homemade gingerbread for a while, and this was my trial recipe. I wasn’t sure if my husband, who’s not a huge gingerbread person, would like them, but he did!! My children, of course, devoured them!
    Super easy to mix up with my little kids, and they were easy to roll after chilling. Will definitely make again.
    Thanks for making my first gingerbread attempt a success!

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