How do you make gingerbread cookies?


Quick Answer

Gingerbread cookies are made by combining flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, butter, shortening, eggs, brown sugar and molasses and then baking the mixture in a cookie mold at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 to 12 minutes. The cookies are often made in the shape of a man, with icing decorating the cookie to look like buttons, eyes and a smile.

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How do you make gingerbread cookies?
Credit: Glenn Fleishman CC-BY 2.0

Full Answer

The recipe below is for a basic gingerbread cookie. The level of cooking skill required is rated easy and the recipe makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Gingerbread Cookies

Prep Time: 30 min.

Inactive Time: 3 hr.

Cook Time: 10 min.

Ready In: 3 hr. 40 min.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh black pepper
  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 vegetable shortening, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2/3 cup molasses, unsulfured
  • 1 egg
  1. Preheat the oven
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Position the racks in the top and the bottom third of the oven.

  3. Combine dry ingredients
  4. Sift together the flour, baking soda, ginger, allspice, cinnamon, cloves, salt and pepper in a medium mixing bowl.

  5. Mix wet ingredients and sugar
  6. In a large bowl, combine the butter and shortening with an electric mixer on high until well blended. Continue beating while adding the brown sugar, egg and molasses.

  7. Combine ingredients
  8. Combine the flour mixture to the wet mixture slowly using a wooden spoon. Stir until a stiff dough forms.

  9. Divide the dough
  10. Divide the dough into two thick circles and wrap in plastic wrap. Place the dough in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours to chill. The dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.

  11. Roll out the cookies
  12. Allow the dough to come to room temperature before rolling, about 10 minutes. Roll the dough on a floured surface until it becomes about 1/8-inch thick.

  13. Cut out the cookies
  14. Use a cookie cutter to cut out the shapes in the dough.

  15. Bake the cookies
  16. Place the cookies on a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes on the bottom oven rack and then transfer to the top rack for the last 5 minutes' baking time.

  17. Cool and decorate
  18. Allow the cookies to cool for at least 5 minutes before decorating with a favorite icing recipe.

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