Gingerbread Recipe

This recipe works for gingerbread houses and cookies. It’s tasty and sturdy. The quantity and combination of spices can be varied to suit your tastes. Feel free to add some ground allspice and a pinch of ground nutmeg. This recipe has been adapted from a recipe for Molasses Cookies in The Cookie Jar: Cookies from around the world by the Culinary Arts Institute, 1976.



1 cup butter (or plant-based butter/margarine)
1 ¼ cups molasses
¾ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 to 1/2 tsp ground cloves


  1. Melt butter in a saucepan; add molasses and brown sugar and heat until sugar is dissolved, stirring occasionally. Pour into a bowl and set aside to cool completely.
  2. Sift remaining ingredients together; add to cooled mixture in fourths, mixing until blended after each addition. Use an electric mixer if you have one, if not, use a wooden spoon and your muscles.
  3. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until easy to handle, using additional flour if necessary.
  4. Wrap in plastic wrap or parchment paper; refrigerate and allow dough to ripen one or two days (minimum 1 hour).
  5. For gingerbread cookies, split the ball of dough into four. Roll the dough on a piece of parchment paper that is the same size as the baking sheet. Roll the dough 1/8  inch thick and cut the shapes with the cookie cutter(s). Lift or slide the parchment paper with the cookies on it onto a baking sheet. Bake at 350 F for 5-10 minutes, until the edges of the cookies start to brown lightly. Baking time will vary, depending on the size of the cookie (less time for smaller cookies) and the thickness of the dough. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. For gingerbread houses, split the dough into three. Roll the dough on a piece of parchment paper so you can easily transfer the dough to the baking sheet. Roll the dough 1/4 inch thick and bake at 350 F until the edges start to brown lightly, about 13 minutes.


Making the Dough

Gather the ingredients and equipment.

Bake in 350 F oven until edges start to turn brown.
Cool for a few minutes on baking sheet.
Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.