Gingerbread Men Cookies Recipe

In the bowl, stir together flour, sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt, and baking soda at low speed until combined. Add the butter and mix at medium-low speed until the mixture is sandy-like. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the molasses and milk. Mix until the dough is moistened. Increase the speed to medium and mix until thoroughly combined. Divide dough in half. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 cookie sheets with silpats or parchment paper.

When the dough is chilled enough to work with, flour surface, and roll out dough to about 1/4 of an inch between 2 pieces of parchment paper. The thinner the dough is, the less chewy and more crunchy the cookies will be.

Using gingerbread men-shaped cookie cutters, cut out cookies and place about 1 inch apart on cookie sheet. Bake for 8 to 11 minutes. Cool the cookies on sheets for 2 minutes. Remove the cookies with spatula to wire rack. Cool to room temperature.

Homemade Gingerbread Men

Christmas is all about COOKIES! And one of the most iconic cookies for the holidays have to be Homemade Gingerbread Men Cookies. This spiced cookie dough is so simple to make and the dough goes a very long way. You don’t have to be a pro to make the sweetest looking gingerbread men, with my recipe you’ll have all tips and trick to making these adorable Homemade Gingerbread Men!

Gingerbread Cookies

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  • 400g plain flour
  • ¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2tsp ground ginger
  • 2tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 180g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 125g soft dark brown sugar or dark muscovado sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 125g black treacle
  • 1 egg white
  • ½ tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 310g icing sugar, sifted
  • food colouring, optional
  • gingerbread biscuit cutters
  • a baking tray, lined with greaseproof paper

Recipe Tips for Perfect Dairy-Free Gingerbread Men Cookies

Picking the Best Dairy-Free Buttery Sticks

Formerly known as margarine, the new “buttery sticks” are usually non-hydrogenated. And there are actually several brands to choose from. Some vegan “buttery sticks” or dairy-free margarine brands for baking include Melt, select varieties of Blue Bonnet, and select varieties of Fleischmann’s.

Or you can use my Bakeable Butter Recipe if you have the 2nd Edition of my flagship book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook – it works great in cookies!

As a heads up, there have been some baking issues with Earth Balance Buttery Sticks this season. They’ve sworn that their formula hasn’t changed, but many people are experiencing very flat, greasy cookies with their product. I think it’s a bad batch where the oils haven’t been properly emulsified.

A couple of the brands mentioned above do have unsalted versions. If you use an unsalted variety of buttery sticks or margarine, increase the salt in the recipe by an 1/8 teaspoon.

Which Type of Molasses

Look for an unsulphured “cooking” molasses for the best results, like Grandma’s Molasses or Brer Rabbit. For a less intense molasses flavor, you can use a mild molasses. Blackstrap molasses will work, but it produces a darker color and might be too intense for some taste buds.

How to Color the Icing

Royal icing is a classic, dairy-free, egg-based icing that spreads and sets into a perfect sweet shell. The easy recipe included with these Gingerbread Men Cookies makes a pure white icing. To color it, place 1/2 cup of the icing in a bowl and stir in food coloring (start with 3 drops) until it reaches your desired color.

Alternative Icing Recipes

The icing recipe below using powdered egg whites. If you don’t have any on hand, this Decorator Icing Recipe uses egg whites. If you need an egg-free and vegan icing, then use this Perfect Icing Recipe.

This gingerbread men cookies recipe with photo was shared with us by McCormick.

  • 1½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ⅔ cup dark molasses
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Royal Icing, for decorating (optional)

In a medium bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add the egg, molasses, and vanilla, and mix until combined, being sure to scrape the sides of the bowl. Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt and mix until the dough is evenly combined.

Form the dough into a thin patty and wrap it in plastic wrap refrigerate for at least an hour before rolling.

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Generously flour a work surface, then place the unwrapped chilled dough on top. Roll out dough to a ¼-inch thickness. Using a gingerbread man-shaped cookie cutter, cut out cookies. Place on a baking sheet and bake until the edges have browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool completely before decorating.

To decorate the cookies, transfer the royal icing to a pastry bag fitted with a tip or to a plastic bag with a corner snipped off. Pipe icing onto the cooled cookies as desired, then let stand until icing has set.

Mom's Recipe Scrapbooks (c.1920s)

Bake Delicious Homemade Gingerbread Man Cookies
(Source: ©Scruggelgreen/Depositphotos.com)

Gingerbread Man Cookies

2 cups melted shortening
3 cups molasses
1 cup brown sugar
8 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups buttermilk or sour milk

Heat molasses and sugar together. When sugar is dissolved, add shortening and stir until melted. Remove from heat. Sift flour, salt, baking soda, and spices together.

Add dry ingredients alternately with buttermilk. Stir until a soft, smooth dough is formed. Work dough with hands five minutes.

Chill dough at least four hours in refrigerator, then turn onto lightly floured board and roll about 1/4-inch thick.

Cut gingerbread man shapes with cookie cutter, place cookies on greased cookie sheet. Glaze with beaten egg and bake at 350°F for 20 to 25 minutes until done.

Old Fashioned Gingerbread Man

Traditional Gingerbread Man Decorated with Raisins
(Source: Vintage Magazine Clipping c.1940)

Decorated gingerbread men are a favorite cookie treat at any time of year, and they're so much fun to make.

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 cup molasses, warm
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons warm water

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup raisins for decorating

Cream together shortening, sugar, egg, and warm molasses. Dissolve baking soda in warm water, and then add to the egg mixture.

Next, add flour, spices, and salt mix it all up until well blended. Cover and allow to chill in refrigerator overnight.

Prepare a floured surface and roll cookie dough about 1/8- to 1/4-inch thick. Cut gingerbread men and place an inch or two apart on a greased cookie sheet for baking.

For a traditional decoration, use raisins for eyes, mouths, buttons, and so on. Bake in moderate oven (325°F) for about 10 minutes until done.

Gingerbread Man Cookie Recipe

Have Fun Making Traditional-Style Gingerbread Man Cookies
(Source: ©elenabs/Depositphotos.com)

Gingerbread Man

350 grams (2-1/2 cups approx.) all-purpose flour
Mixed spice of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg
1 pinch salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger
150 grams (1/2 cup) honey
1/2 tablespoon bicarbonate of soda
1 egg
160 grams (3/4 cup) brown sugar, packed
150 grams (1/2 cup) butter
Icing to decorate

Mix all dry ingredients, add liquid ingredients, put in the fridge for 2 hours. Press dough, cut gingerbread men shapes, put on baking paper on a tray. Cook in oven for 10 minutes at 80°C (175°F). Apply icing.

Gingerbread Man Serving Suggestion

Gingerbread Men Love Being Served in Hot Chocolate
(Source: ©Odelinde/Depositphotos.com)

My, doesn't he look relaxed while floating in hot chocolate? This is a sensational serving suggestion for gingerbread men that's certain to win you compliments.

Recipe Ingredients

  • All-purpose flour - the base for the dough.
  • Baking powder/baking soda - helps the cookie rise.
  • Ginger, cinnamon, cloves, salt - where the flavor comes from.
  • Unsalted butter - adds necessary fat.
  • Brown sugar - sweetens the cookie.
  • Egg - adds structure.
  • Molasses - adds a warm/smoky flavor.
  • Vanilla extract - enhances the flavor.
  • Orange zest - adds some brightness.
  • Powdered sugar - for the royal icing.
  • Meringue powder - adds structure for the icing.

Easy Gingerbread Men Cookies

Stop looking for any other gingerbread cookies recipe. You don't need to. This is the one and only recipe you need. It is easy to make, and you can watch every step in the video below.

Christmas is a blessed time a year. To make sure that you have a joyful season without any baking stress, I share with you a handpicked selection of my favorite Christmas recipes which are easy to make and super delicious.

Recipe No.1 was my Christmas Thumbprint Cookies recipe. They literally melt in your mouth and have an intense buttery flavor.

Recipe No.2 was this Chocolate Rum Truffles recipe. Boozy, creamy, chocolatey. 4 ingredients.

Recipe No.3 was Eggnog. Ultra creamy, spiked, and lots of flavors like vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

I highly recommend dunking these cookies with eggnog. Addictive!

As you can see in the video, they are really easy to make. Just mix all ingredients together in the described order and knead the dough a few times in the end. No big deal.

You could also replace ¼ cup of flour with cocoa powder. The chocolate taste fits wonderfully.

I divide the dough in half, form into discs, and wrap it up tightly. It's way easier to roll the dough when it is divided into two halves and have a disc form.

Chill the dough at least 3 hours before rolling and cutting. I chill mine overnight. You could make the dough up to 3 days in advance and store it in the fridge.

When you roll the dough keep it about ¼ inch (6mm) thick. They are super soft when you keep them thicker.

The next great thing about these gingerbread cookies is that they don't spread. They keep the form as you cut them. This is great for the eye because they don't lose their shape.

After cooling, you can decorate them as desired. Dunk in chocolate, decorate with royal icing, sprinkle with sprinkles or nuts. Make them traditional, modern, funny, or whatever you are in the mood for.

Sift together the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon and pour into the bowl of a food processor. Add the butter and blend until the mix looks like breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar.

Lightly beat the egg and golden syrup together, add to the food processor and pulse until the mixture clumps together. Tip the dough out, knead briefly until smooth, wrap in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Line two baking trays with greaseproof paper.

Roll the dough out to a 0.5cm/¼in thickness on a lightly floured surface. Using cutters, cut out the gingerbread men shapes and place on the baking tray, leaving a gap between them.

Bake for 12–15 minutes, or until lightly golden-brown. Leave on the tray for 10 minutes and then move to a wire rack to finish cooling. When cooled decorate with the writing icing and cake decorations, if using.

Recipe Tips

You can freeze the gingerbread dough, double wrapped in cling film, for up to 3 months.