New This Month

Molasses-Gingerbread Cookies


These cookies have a dark color and a pronounced molasses flavor. For the how-to on creating different shapes, read Shaped Gingerbread Cookies.

  • Yield: Makes about 2 dozen town houses, 4 dozen deer or trees, or 6 dozen men

Photography: Sang An

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2007


  • 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2 sticks (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup packed dark-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups unsulfured molasses
  • Royal Icing for Gingerbread Cookies


  1. Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and spices in a medium bowl.

  2. Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in molasses. Reduce speed to low. Gradually add flour mixture, and beat until just combined. Divide dough into 3 portions, and wrap each in plastic. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On a generously floured piece of parchment, roll dough to a scant 1/4 inch thick. Brush off excess flour. Slide dough and parchment onto baking sheets, and freeze for 15 minutes.

  4. Cut out desired shapes. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets, and freeze for 15 minutes.

  5. Bake cookies for 6 minutes. Remove sheets from oven, and tap them firmly on counter to flatten cookies. Return to oven, rotating sheets, and bake until crisp but not darkened, 6 to 8 minutes more. Let cool on sheets on wire racks.

  6. Spoon icing into a pastry bag fitted with a very small plain round tip (such as Ateco #0 or #1). Pipe designs on cookies. Let cookies stand at room temperature until set, at least 2 hours (preferably overnight).

Cook's Notes

Cookies can be stored between layers of parchment in airtight containers for up to 1 week.

Reviews Add a comment

  • Felix CQ
    18 DEC, 2013
    The recipe itself is calling for less flour and more molasses with the addition of nutmeg and exclusion of ground black pepper compared to a basic gingerbread recipe posted awhile back This recipe called for 6 cups of flour to 1 cup of molasses. Consistency and texture was perfect. So do take note. Add more ground ginger and optional freshly squeezed ginger juice and chilli powder for a kick
  • crafty-girl
    13 DEC, 2008
    Looks like a good recipe.... I am so glad I found one without shortening. Just I wish it would tell you how many gingerbread houses it would make... I am following instructions from a magazine to make a house and I want some extra dough to make men, etc. If anyone knows, please tell me!
  • thresuan
    1 NOV, 2008
    As of 5:52 PM November 1st there is no recipe with the Molasses-Gingerbread Cookies. Please, remedy this.
  • jimsqueeniechef
    20 JUN, 2008
    I'm now nervous about taking this recipe on as we live in Iowa and I have not, as yet, gotten used to the humidity vs. cooking--we are from California. I wish there was a way for "Dkaye" to share her recipe with me, although she posted her comment clear back in (Vicki Robles) Thank you.
  • Susanbelle
    15 JAN, 2008
    Sticky dough can be lightly packed into a loaf-shaped pan or plastic container, chilled, and sliced 1/2 " thick with a thin metal pancake turner. Roll out the slice gently on a floured pastry cloth and flour the top of the dough and the roller. This prevents the butter from melting in your hands and the flour from toughening! Good luck! Sue.
  • wendy14
    27 DEC, 2007
    these cookies were delicious. I added an extra half cup of flour(to compensate for south florida humidity) and chilled over night. then just roll out quickly cut and remove as you cut . if you wait until all cookies are cut they stick together
  • kimwylie0523
    27 DEC, 2007
    This molasses-gingerbread was great! I highly encourage that folks use the freshly grated nutmeg. It really does make a difference. :)
  • dee5280
    26 DEC, 2007
    I also had an extremely sticky gingerbread cookie dough! Very dissapointing! I made this for the gingerbread cheesecake and was barely able to salvage any for the crust and cookie decor. Martha really needs to test her recipes before publishing. I wasted money and two days of baking as well! See post for cheesecake.
  • luckymom
    20 DEC, 2007
    After reading others comment on stickiness, I thought it seemed like too much molasses, so I reduced it to 1 cup, and made the flour 5 cups. I kept all other measurements the same and they were perfect. Make sure to chill your dough well and keep flouring the board as you go. I usually roll several strokes then run my hand under it, lift and toss flour under and sprinkle some on top before rolling more. Also, I used brown sugar instead of white. We had a lot of fun making these.
  • sherryjackson
    20 DEC, 2007
    The previous reviews almost scared me out of making this delicious cookie, but as one reviewer stated, you only need to add a little extra flour until the mixture takes on a perferable dough quality. Maybe Martha created this recipe while in her Arizona house, because I needed to add almost an extra 1/2 cup of flour, but the recipe was easy to work with and looks and tastes great. I'm very happy I decided to take the adventure on.