Gingerbread Cookies

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookies, perfect for gifting and decorating. A must make holiday treat!

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Photos updated December 2015

Gingerbread cookies have always been one of my absolute favorite holiday treats to make, and eat! They’re a classic must make cookie, perfect for enjoying as is or decorating! No cookie platter is complete without a batch of soft and chewy gingerbread cookies. Prefer them crispy? Bake a little longer! This recipe is super easy to adjust to your personal preferences. Grab your favorite holiday cookie cutters and get baking! 

Below is the original post from November 2010. The pictures were in dire need of updating. What I find funny about this post is that I made mini cookies, by hand – no cutters involved. That isn’t something I would ever consider doing now. Cookie cutters make life so much easier. I’ve linked to two different cookie cutter sets below that are perfect for making mini cookies – whether you want them plain or with stamped decorations, as you see in the updated images.

Happy baking!

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Originally posted November 2010:
Gingerbread cookies are like the Christmas season sugar cookie to me. The special cookie that gets a lot of focus this time of year. They’re dipped, decorated, used in crafts of all kinds and of course eaten. Who doesn’t love gingerbread cookies? They’re light while still having wonderful flavor. I’ve yet to make a gingerbread house or use gingerbread cookies in a craft but I do have plans to, even if it isn’t this year.

Last week when I made gingerbread cupcakes I decided I wanted to top them off with mini gingerbread man cookies. I knew it’d be cute if the cookies turned out. The first task was to find an image of a gingerbread man and size it how I wanted, then print and cut out. Easier said than done. I did this because I don’t own any mini Christmas cookie cutters. After the fact, I did come across a Wilton kid that included a mini gingerbread man. It figures right? So if you want to recreate those cupcakes or just make mini gingerbread man cookies in general, do pick up that box of mini cookie cutters. It’ll save you so much time and hassle. I made two sizes of gingerbread man cookies, both of which are smaller than a key. Picture proof to show just how crazy I was, cutting each out by hand. Thankfully I only did a few of each size.

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Gingerbread Cookies

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookies, perfect for gifting and decorating. A must make holiday treat!
Prep Time2 hours 5 minutes
Cook Time8 minutes
Total Time2 hours 15 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Christmas, Cookie, Gingerbread


  • 1/2 C unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 C light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 C molasses
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp all spice
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder**
  • 3 C all purpose flour


  • In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Mix in egg and molasses, followed by spices, salt and baking powder. Scrap bowl as needed. Add flour in small batches, mixing and increasing speed as needed until dough comes together and no streaks remain. 
  • Divide dough in half. Shape into discs and wrap well in plastic. Chill for several hours or overnight. 
  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. 
  • Generously flour a silicone counter mat or work station. Place one disc on flour, dust well with flour and roll to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with desired cookie cutters. *Add different sized cookies to separate trays for proper baking; mini cookies to one tray and larger to another.
  • Freeze tray with cookies for 10-15 minutes.
  • Bake mini cookies for 7-8 minutes, larger cookies for 12-14 minutes. Allow cookies to rest for 1-2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 
  • Decorate cookies as desired. Store in an airtight container for up to a week. 


*The amount of cookies made from this dough will vary greatly depending on the size of the cookie cutters used.
**Omit baking powder if you don't want the dough to spread or puff up at all.
An original recipe from Baked by Rachel

Classic soft and chewy gingerbread cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Items used in this recipe:

This post contains affiliate links.

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29 Responses to “Gingerbread Cookies”

  1. #
    natalie (the sweets life) — November 22, 2010 at 11:14 am

    I cannot believe you did this by hand, super impressive! They are so cute and your cupcakes looked great too. I’m ready to bring on the gingerbread!

  2. #
    Paula — November 22, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    Your little gingerbread are so cute and so tiny! Great job, especially cutting them by hand.

  3. #
    Nam @ The Culinary Chronicles — November 22, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    SO CUTE!

  4. #
    Morgan — November 23, 2010 at 10:41 am

    Totally making these! Thanks for the recipe. :)

  5. #
    Unknown — December 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm

    Do you have to use molasses?

    • #
      Rachel — December 9, 2012 at 2:34 pm

      Yes, molasses is essential to this recipe.

  6. #
    Krystine Timm — December 3, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    How many mini gingerbread men did this recipe yield?

    • #
      Rachel — December 4, 2014 at 7:25 am

      It will vary greatly depending on the cookie cutter size and shapes used.

  7. #
    Roxana — December 10, 2015 at 6:42 pm

    These are just too cute! They’d be great garnishes on hot chocolate, cupcake toppers, or just eaten by themselves – so many options! I kinda want to make some Dunkaroo dip and eat them that way! :D

    • #
      Rachel — December 11, 2015 at 7:36 am

      Thanks so much Roxana!

  8. #
    Medeja — December 11, 2015 at 9:23 am

    Since I am a big fan of everything gingerbread I will have to try these cookies :)

    • #
      Rachel — December 12, 2015 at 8:08 am

      You definitely need to! :)

  9. #
    Lynn | The Road to Honey — December 11, 2015 at 4:59 pm

    Oh my goodness. . .I can’t believe you actually cut out these little men by hand. I would have thought that surely you used a pie cutter. They came out absolutely adorable. I’m making up my gingerbread buys right now and can only hope they come out this cute. We shall see. :-)

    • #
      Rachel — December 12, 2015 at 8:10 am

      Haha! Only for that one session, not for the new images you see. Looking back, that was definitely crazy but it was still a lot of fun. :) Good luck with your cookies!

  10. #
    Thalia @ butter and brioche — December 11, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    These look so cute. I never have made gingerbread cookie men before!

    • #
      Rachel — December 12, 2015 at 8:10 am

      Thanks Thalia! You should make some :)

  11. #
    Heather Mason — December 12, 2015 at 12:04 am

    These are the cutest gingerbread cookies that I have ever seen! Love that they are soft too!

    • #
      Rachel — December 12, 2015 at 8:10 am

      Thanks so much Heather!

  12. #
    Pearse — December 12, 2015 at 1:36 pm

    If we omit baking powder, will it still be soft and chewy? Has anyone tried without baking powder?

    • #
      Rachel — December 12, 2015 at 2:02 pm

      The baking powder will primarily give lift. Typically you would want to remove the baking powder only if you’re planning on decorating them and don’t want the cookies to spread at all. If you bake for the minimum amount, they should still be soft. Also, even with the baking powder, this particular recipe doesn’t spread significantly. Be sure to freeze the dough well before baking.

  13. #
    Pearse — December 12, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    Thanks for the prompt reply ! Merry Xmas to you !

  14. #
    Denise — June 8, 2016 at 11:28 pm

    Hi. What did you use to shape the mouth ave to get the indention that goes around the cookie. These are so beautiful!!

    • #
      Rachel — June 9, 2016 at 7:28 am

      There is a link to where you can purchase the cookie cutters at the bottom of the post.

  15. #
    Colleen — December 14, 2016 at 3:04 pm

    Will the baking time change if the cookies are a different size/shape? I’d prefer to make them round with a 2-3″ diameter. Thanks!

    • #
      Rachel — December 14, 2016 at 5:03 pm

      Yes, the recipe notes that mini cookies are 7-8 minutes and larger cookies are roughly 12-14 minutes. Keep your eye on them, as the timing can vary depending on your oven and the cookie size you make. Good luck!

  16. #
    Jodie — January 21, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    Hi Rachel, I just love these adorable cookies!!!! I wish that I had seen this post before Christmas, but I will definitely be making these for next Christmas though! I know you said in your post that you have the link for the cutters, but that link is for mini cutters of just the shape. Do you have the link for the embellished shape cutters? Just by looking on Amazon, I think I found it, but not sure. Thank you so much!!!!! Love looking through all of your wonderful recipes…thank you for sharing them with us!

    • #
      Rachel — January 23, 2017 at 7:19 am

      I’ve updated the links at the bottom of the post. The one for those cutters had stopped working. Sorry about that! Here is the direct link: stamp cookie cutters

  17. #
    Kayla — October 16, 2023 at 2:42 pm

    These are adorable! Would the dough freeze well so I could make it ahead of time?

    • #
      Rachel — October 19, 2023 at 6:44 am

      Absolutely! Enjoy! :)

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