top of page
  • Writer's picturecupcakesandshit

Old-Fashioned Gingerbread Cookies

Spices of ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon combined with molasses give this traditional gingerbread its warm and familiar taste for the winter season.

Stacked gingerbread cookies in front of Christmas tree

I do not do well in the winter. It is a fact. I go into hibernation mode and anyone who knows me can confirm that I must've been a lizard in another life because I like it hot. So hot in fact that I love the feeling of getting-into-a-stifling- hot-car-in-the-summertime-and-it-feels-like-you-can't-breathe-because-the-air-is-like-a-hair-dryer type of hot. There was a reason I lived in Hawaii for so long and probably would still be there if it wasn't so darn expensive.

stacked gingerbread cookies in front of Christmas tree

We just recently bought a farmhouse built in 1840 that sits on just a bit over 43 acres of land. It's beautiful. I walk outside and I just see trees and land and I hear birds all around. The catch? It's way up north and we've already had 30 inches of snow and winter has only just begun. I am slightly concerned.

The one thing that gets me through winter? The Danish idea of "hygge". Hygge is difficult to describe as there is no direct English translation but in its simplest form, it is everything that makes you feel cozy. That is the most basic. Just as in Hawaiian "Aloha" means hello and goodbye, but it also means anything that is loving and warm and full of good and positivity. But that is the most basic. Anything could be hygge as it is both universal as well as personal. We can all agree that having a super comfy, soft blanket makes us cozy. But did you know lighting could be hygge? Think soft candlelight versus supermarket bright lights. Hygge could also just be the act of having friends over and playing a board game or even just having a long conversation. It could be going outside for a walk in nature. It is the things in life that make us forget the time. Denmark spends a lot of time in the dark so you can imagine how important the concept of hygge really is. This is not a post about hygge, however so honestly if you are intrigued there are books and posts that can go on and on!

stacked gingerbread cookies in front of Christmas tree

For me, it always comes back to food. What is hygge for me is cooking and baking and then sharing what I've made with others. I can't tell you how many times I will make gingerbread in winter. There is something so inviting about that warm ginger smell combined with nutmeg and cinnamon. And if there is no molasses then I don't want it! Ginger bread is just so traditional and I like to think back to all the history and how many generations of people have made gingerbread. It sounds so strange to some to put so much thought into something so simple as ginger bread (how many times can I write gingerbread in one paragraph?!) But truly, when I smell gingerbread it immediately takes me to a warm and cozy place. And if that isn't hygge than I don't know what is!

I love this recipe. It yields the best cookies. Slightly hard on the edges but good and chewy on the inside. For the holidays we cut out men (and women!) and other shapes like trees and stars but mostly I just grab a nice, big biscuit cutter and stamp away. Just get that cookie into the oven and into my tummy! And if you're interested, which you should be because it's amazing, here is my recipe for gingerbread cake with cream cheese frosting that I make every year for Christmas and sometimes I get crazy and make gingerbread cookies to decorate the top of the cake with! It's the best.


1 cup sugar

2 tsp ginger

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1 cup molasses

4 cups gluten-free all-purpose baking flour (I like Bob's Red Mill version with the blue label or click here for my recipe or if you are not a gluten-ite like me: use regular flour)


  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. To a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix sugar, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt and baking soda.

  3. Add the butter to the bowl and cream the butter with the sugar mixture for about 2 minutes until combined and fluffy.

  4. Add the molasses and evaporated milk on very low speed as there may be slight splashing.

  5. Add the flour one cup at a time, scraping the bowl as need. The dough should be stiff enough to handle without sticking to your hands. If it is still too sticky, add 1/2 cup of flour at a time until manageable.

  6. Flour your surface and turn the dough out onto it. Roll the dough about 1/4 inch thick and stamp out your shapes.

  7. Place onto baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes. Do not bake for too long or they will become hard, take them out when they are golden brown but you can still create a small dimple with your finger on top.

  8. Let the cookies rest so they can firm up and transfer to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page