Ginger Cookie Bars

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Ginger Bars are chewy cookie bars full of sweet, spiced gingerbread flavor. These rich molasses brown sugar brownie-like bars are perfect Christmas treats!

Chewy, flavorful Gingerbread Cookies meet Brown Sugar Brownies for an easy Cookie Bar Recipe that’s a dream come true for holiday parties and cookie exchanges!

Ginger Cookie Bars in stack

GINGER BARS

Gingerbread is one of those classic holiday flavors that you can’t imagine not being on a Christmas cookie platter. These delicious holiday bars have all the gingerbread flavor but without all the work. No need to chill, roll out the dough or get out the cookie cutters, to make the perfect holiday dessert.

These easy Ginger Cookie Bars come out so soft and chewy! The molasses along with brown sugar make the bars sweet and moist with the sweetness is balanced out with plenty of warm ginger. The addition of wheat flour makes these a little bit healthier but if you don’t have it on hand, feel free to use all white flour instead.

This recipe for Ginger Bars uses all ground ginger instead of a combination of wintery spices like cloves and cinnamon so the ginger flavor stands out. You can always reduce the ginger and add other warm spices to cut back on the bold ginger taste. If you want more ginger, add some chopped crystallized ginger pieces into your batter.

Ginger Cookie Bars in baking pan

If you want thinner, shaped Ginger Cookie Bars, bake your dough in a jelly roll pan for about 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting the soft bars with cookie cutters. Or cut the bars, cooked regularly, into triangles and drizzle with White Chocolate Ganache for an easy, beautiful holiday gift.

Ginger Bars are a simple, elegant dessert, but go so well with frosting or other dessert toppings. Serve these Ginger Bars warm with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream or Whipped Cream. Frost your Ginger Cookie Bars with a thick layer of Cream Cheese Frosting and decorate with nuts or red and green sprinkles.

What kind of molasses to use for Ginger Bars?

|Molasses important for the chewiness of these delicious Gingerbread Cookie Bars and the recipe calls for a 1/4 cup for maximum holiday flavor! You want to use dark, unsulfured molasses for the best taste and sticky, sweetness. If you don’t have molasses on hand, or want to cut it down, you can use honey. Simply replace all or some of the molasses with raw honey.

MORE HOLIDAY COOKIE CLASSICS:

Ginger Cookie Bars in stack, top view

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VARIATIONS ON GINGER BARS

  • Chocolate Chips: Chocolate and ginger are a tasty sweet combo. Fold in 1/2 cup chocolate chips like white chocolate chips, dark chocolate chips, or semi-sweet chocolate chips into the dough.
  • Nuts: Add some crunch to these Ginger Cookie Bars with a 1/2 cup chopped nuts like walnuts, pecan, hazelnuts, or almonds.
  • Pumpkin Spice: For fall flavored Pumpkin Molasses Bars, use 2 tablespoons Pumpkin Pie Spice instead of ginger in this recipe and add 1 can or 1 cup homemade Pumpkin Puree.
  • Flavors: Fold in 1/2 cup shredded carrots, sweetened coconut shreds, or chopped crystallized ginger for extra flavor and moisture in these Ginger Bars.
  • Chocolate: To make Chocolate Ginger Bars, replace 1/4 cup white flour with 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. 
  • Wheat: You can make these Ginger Cookie Bars a little healthier, use all wheat flour instead of half white flour. The bars will be a little denser but still very delicious and soft.

MORE HOLIDAY DESSERT RECIPES

 

HOW TO STORE GINGER BARS

  • Serve: You can keep Ginger Cookie Bars at room temperature, covered in a cool dry place, for up to 4 days.
  • Store: Refrigerate Ginger Bars in an airtight container for up to 1 week and serve at room temperature so they are soft and chewy.
  • Freeze: Cool Ginger Bars completely before freezing in a single layer for one hour. Transfer bars to a plastic bag or sealed container and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw at room temperature or in the refrigerator before serving.

Ginger Cookie Bars in stack

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Ginger Bars

5 from 6 votes
  • Yield: 24 servings
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Course: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
Ginger Bars are chewy cookie bars full of sweet, spiced gingerbread flavor. These rich molasses brown sugar brownie-like bars are perfect Christmas treats!

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter , softened
  • 1 3/4 cups brown sugar , packed
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons coarse sanding sugar

Instructions

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with baking spray.

  2. To your stand mixer add the butter and brown sugar on medium speed for 1 minute, until creamed together.

  3. Add in the molasses, eggs and vanilla until well combined.
  4. Sift together the flour, whole wheat flour, ginger, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  5. Lower the speed on the stand mixer to the lowest setting and add in the dry ingredients until just combined.
  6. Spread batter in to your baking pan evenly and sprinkle with sanding sugar.

  7. Bake for 35 minutes, let cool completely before cutting into squares.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 24 servings, Amount per serving: 163 calories, Calories: 163g, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 27mg, Sodium: 120mg, Potassium: 123mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 19g, Vitamin A: 177g, Calcium: 34g, Iron: 1g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keyword: Ginger Bars
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Comments

  1. I am by no means an expert baker, but these came out awesome for me! My brand new oven runs a little hot, so I took them out three minutes early. We all have a sweet tooth so I topped them with cream cheese frosting. They are dense and chewy – in a really good way! Great recipe, thanks!

  2. Really disappointed in these. I followed the recipe exactly and they came out super dry and much harder than I expected. Was really hoping this would be my new go to because I love soft gingerbread.

    1. Oh no! It sounds like there might have been too much flour added. Next time, make sure to measure the flour by spooning it into the measuring cup and leveling off vs possibly just scooping it.

  3. What a simple and delicious recipe! Perfect for the holidays. I love the focus on the gingerbread flavor with these. YUM!