Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

These chewy, ginger-molasses cookies are the epitome of holiday flavors, if you ask me. They taste like Christmas. They make your house smell like Christmas. Basically, it’s just not the Christmas season without them. I grew up eating these delightful little cookies and can’t live without them this time of year. Once the soft molasses cookies are baked – well, game on. It’s officially time to jingle the bells and trim the tree and blare the Christmas carols (except I’ve actually been playing Christmas music for weeks now – don’t sue me).

I shouldn’t know this, but I do: these cookies are still amazingly chewy, albeit slightly chilly, straight out of the freezer, which makes me think they’d be absolutely ridiculous (in a good way) with some pumpkin or vanilla or cinnamon ice cream sandwiched inside. Ok, so now that I’ve said that out loud, I’m not going to be able to sleep until I make that happen.

Random Friday Note: Speaking of Christmas music, we have been jamming out to a few new-to-us tunes this year. Here are a few of our favorites lately (along with a lot of old classics we’ve listened to for years) in case you are adding to your playlist, too: anything Pentatonix but especially the Winter Wonderland/Don’t Worry remix and Hark the Herald Angels Sing and That’s Christmas to Me (ah, I love that one), All is Well by Michael Smith and Carrie Underwood, Song for a Winter’s Night by Sarah McLachlan, Little Drummer Boy by Josh Groban, anything Anne Murray (she’s so classic and awesome), The First Noel by David Archuleta (and his song Glorious, too, which isn’t officially Christmas but we love oh, so much), Away in a Manger by Martina McBride. That’s a good start!

Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

One Year Ago: Homemade Peppermint Patties {Sugar Rush Gift Edition #3}
Two Years Ago: Killer Crunch Brownies
Three Years Ago: Sweet Berry Bruschetta

Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

Yield: Makes 2-3 dozen cookies, depending on the size

Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies


  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • Sugar for rolling


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a couple large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper, silpat liners or lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl (or in the bowl of an electric stand mixer), beat together the butter and granulated sugar, 2-3 minutes, until light and creamy. Add the molasses and eggs and mix until well-combined, another 2-3 minutes.
  4. Stir in the dry ingredients and mix until combined.
  5. The dough can be rolled and baked right away, but the cookies will be slightly thicker and chewier if refrigerated for a bit. If so, chill for 20-30 minutes (or up to several days) before rolling into balls.
  6. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls (you can make them smaller or larger, too) and then roll the cookie dough balls into granulated sugar. Space the cookies an inch or so apart on the lined cookie sheets and bake for 8-10 minutes (don't over bake if you want a soft, chewy cookie). Adjust the baking time, more or less, if the cookies are overly small or large.
  7. Remove the cookies to a cooling rack and let cool completely. These cookies stay soft and chewy well-covered for several days at room temperature and the baked cookies also freeze very well.

Recipe Source: from this recipe (same as the one my mom made growing up, come to find out) at Meadowbrook Farm

71 Responses to Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

  1. […] the full recipe head on over to: I always like to add in a tiny bit more molasses because I like them very chewy. The recipe also […]

  2. Nicky says:

    Mine turned out very cakey and not thin like yours?? What did i do wrong??

  3. Dorothy says:

    Was looking for a chewy gingerbread recipe. Found this one, made it and it was delicious. Excellent chewy texture and I didn’t refrigerate before rolling. (no problem, just a bit more work) I did mix the sugars and added some brown to the 1 and a half cups. Definitely will be going into my fav. cookie recipe cook book. Thank you for sharing this with all of us.

  4. Dan says:

    Made these last night, turned out excellent. Adding these to our cookie rotation.

  5. Lori Powlell says:

    Made these cookies tonight and they are delicious!

  6. Pam says:

    One of my husband’s favorite childhood memories is the molasses cookie baked by a neighbor. I baked your Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies last night and he said those are the cookies! Thank you so much! Your instructions were so clear and the cookies were (and still are) perfect. Music? Little Drummer Boy sung by Jose Carreras.

  7. Stacy Morrow says:

    Would these work to freeze as dough balls? I am making cookie dough balls ( instead of actual cookies so people can bake at their own convenience.)

  8. Melinda says:

    These cookies are amazing! I have been searching for a recipe like this for years! Thanks for posting the recipe! They are a hit with my family!

  9. Emily says:

    Seriously. I just ate waaaaay too many of these cookies for breakfast. They are amazing. I’m a long time Mel fan. Love your recipes, your blog, and everything I know about you! Thank you for all the good you share and do. You are amazing!

  10. WrayLynn says:

    I know this recipe was posted awhile ago but I tried them and wanted to say – these are the best cookies I’ve every had. I think my taste buds have changed over the years since I don’t like chocolate as much any longer. These cookies are my new favorite. So yummy.

  11. Sarah says:

    LOVE THESE!!! I have been dipping them in white chocolate and adding some sprinkles. People LOVE THEM!!! Question – how do you recommend storing them? If I’m baking 2-3 days ahead – freezer. fridge, room temp, or not at all? I want to try to preserve the crispy edges and chewy center!

  12. MaryJ says:

    I made a double recipe of these this week and I love them! I got wide variation in the crackle on top as they baked; the first round in the oven had lots of cracks, subsequent rounds were almost completely flat. Do you think this is due to the dough warming up as I worked? Or any other thoughts on why that might have happened? Thanks!

  13. Lori says:

    Thank you!

  14. Lori says:

    Thanks! What about freezing the Easiest Brownies in the World?

  15. Lori says:

    I’m going to be having a pretty big party the end of April. Would it work okay to make these ahead of time and freeze? If so, what type of container would be best to use and for how long could they stay in the freezer? How long before would you recommend thawing them out? Any other suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      Yes, these freeze great. I usually freeze them in a large tupperware-type of container with a tight lid or in freezer ziploc bags. I would take them out the morning you are going to serve them (give them a few hours at room temperature and they’ll be great).

  16. Emily says:

    Question – what is the difference between these and your ginger crinkle cookies, as far as taste goes? I made those (without seeing this recipe).

  17. Emily F says:

    This is such a good recipe! I made a batch for Christmas, and they were a huge hit! Everyone said they were the best molasses cookies and wanted the recipe, so of course I directed them to your blog! 🙂 I just made another batch and stored them in my freezer and you are right – they are still sooo good! 🙂

  18. TIffiny says:

    Hi Mel! I made these cookies last week for a family Christmas party, and my Dad practically drooled while eating them. They are so super delicious, and I think very easy to make.
    I did notice two things when making them. The first is that I think the dough works best cold. I had one batch of cookies where the dough got pretty warm while I was working with it and forming it into balls. That batch of cookies still tasted good but they did not have the beautiful crack marks on the top of the cookie. I can’t confirm that it was caused by the warm dough but it’s my best guess. The second is that my cookies didn’t flatten out while baking. They were quite puffy when I took them out of the oven and then they flattened as they cooled. I got worried at first, but every batch did the same thing.
    Thanks for another great recipe! I think these will become a Christmas staple for me now!

  19. Kelli says:

    I was not a huge ginger fan until I tried these. Oh. My. Heavens! They are so addicting. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes. My family and I are recent followers and have yet to try something we did not like from you blog. I honestly have a little crush on you because of the amazing food your fill our home with.

  20. Jade says:

    These are fantastic! I have added them to my Christmas cookie repertoire for good! All the folks who get my tins of cookies got ’em this year. I love the molasses flavor and the chewiness! Just perfect! Thank you!

  21. Alison says:

    I make a similar recipe to this and they are always delicious. I recommend the addition of 3/4 cup chopped crystallized ginger. I makes them even more gingery delicious and extra special!

  22. Alicia Q. says:

    Yum, another hit! Merry Christmas, this is a great addition to our holiday treats.

  23. Chantel F says:

    Omgosh Mel. These. Are. So. Amaaaaaazing!! Seriously!! I refrigerated mine for about 40 minutes (I got sidetracked!) and they came out puffy and super fudgy on the inside. Absolutely the best I’ve ever had in my life! I had been using my old receipe for 10 years and it is now replaced by this amazing recipe. Best molasses cookie ever!

  24. Cristina says:

    Do you flatten them on the baking sheet or leave them round before baking?

  25. Valerie A. H. says:

    I made these today. Soooo good! Everything you said about them is right on! 🙂
    Mine came out perfect even at high altitude. Thanks for the great recipe!

  26. Julie Ann says:

    I have taken these to a couple of Christmas events so far and I can’t even get to the dessert table to set them down before suspecting people pop out and ask if they can have one. I have had rave reviews! I made a double batch and froze them, then take out what I need for a certain event, so I don’t constantly need to be making cookies to take places at this busy time of year.

  27. Megan says:

    Ah, Mel. You never disappoint! I made these this weekend with my 8-year-old and we both loved them. You really hit it out of the park with this one. Thanks!

  28. Heather says:

    I had to come back and say how much I LOVE these! They are in my top 3 favorite cookies now. Thank you!

  29. Brandie says:

    Absolutely Amazing!!!!! Sooo soft and sooo chewy even after several days!!!

  30. Danielle H. says:

    Be still my heart! This is the same ginger cookie recipe I settled upon after a quest for the perfect SOFT ginger cookie! It is wonderful, and works with wheat flour too. It is also scrumptious with a drizzle of white chocolate. As for Christmas tunes, this year I am loving “I Need a Silent Night” and “Counting My Blessings” by Amy Grant and CDs by Sarah McLaughlan and Mary Chapin Carpenter. I really am NOT loving the Christmas duet by Dolly Parton and Rod Stewart. It’s awkward in so many ways.

  31. Debbie says:

    About the ground ginger, I feel like maybe you’ve talked about it before, but do you use the ground ginger found in the spice jars in the baking isle of the grocery store? My husband’s trying to convince me that we should use fresh grated ginger that we keep in the fridge (we love Asian food!). I’m not sure this will work as it doesn’t grate very fine. He says the powdered stuff has no taste and doesn’t last. (If he only knew how long I keep certain spices!)
    I’m only making a few batches of cookies this year, but these are on the short list!

    • Mel says:

      Good question, Debbie – I think fresh ginger is the only way to go in savory dishes (like stir-fries and Asian dishes) but in cookies like this, ground ginger works perfectly in my opinion. Now if that ground ginger has been in your cupboard for a couple years, you might want to trade it out for a newer bottle. 🙂

      • Zeak Rice says:

        I use a small food processor to make fresh ginger bits [1/8th” or so] for my cookies and it’s great! For all those that love fresh Ginger it’s the way to go.

  32. Michelle says:

    Can you please tell me which type of molasses you use? There are a few different types and I’m not sure which one to use I.e. Blackstrap

    Thank you

  33. Diane says:

    I’m so disappointed that I don’t have molasses, I want to make these! Will have to wait a few days. Thanks for the Christmas song recommendations, I’m listening to them right now along with some of the suggestions by other commenters. My addition is Mindy Gledhill! You have to listen to her album Winter Moon, I absolutely love it. Especially the songs Winter Moon, Little Soldier and Christmas Waltz. And Patapan/Oh Come Emmanuel. Ok pretty much the whole album. =) I’m also loving the new version of Baby it’s Cold Outside by Idina Menzel and Michael Buble. And Carol of the Bells by Straight No Chaser. I love a cappella.

  34. Lori in ND says:

    Mel, you timed this post perfectly! I whipped up a double batch of these for my cookie exchange party tomorrow. I got 6 dozen for the exchange plus 9 extra for my family to fight over. They are exactly what I had in mind. Thank you!

  35. Laurel says:

    How do these differ from your ginger crinkle cookies? Because those are one of my all time favorites, and I’m not sure if I’m brave enough to try another version and risk disappointment. 🙂

  36. Kim in MD says:

    Yum! I am going to a cookie exchange party soon, and I am going to bake these. I’m sure everyone will love them!

  37. Jane says:

    I sell a very similar cookie at our local farmers’ market and I can honestly say that I haven’t tired of it. That being said, the most wonderful way to enjoy one (or more!) is by placing a hot from the oven cookie over a dish of good vanilla ice cream. Heaven – pure and simple.

  38. I love the fact that they stay chewy in the freezer…so many different ice cream sandwich ideas! I’m a little ginger/molasses’ed out from testing pancake recipes…but, by next week…I think I’ll be ready to give these a whirl! Chewy spicy goodness!

  39. Karen K says:

    Hello….. I just made a very similar recipe 2 weeks ago & they came out SO flat 🙁 VERY flavorful, but WAY too flat. Does anyone know why? I chilled the dough. Used a nonstick cookie sheet with parchment on top. I cannot seem to find cookie sheets that are not nonstick and/or non-insulated. I used all butter, but usually I use half butter/half shortening for my choc chip cookies, & they turn out fine. Please help before I give up on making cookies :P. Thank you.

    • Mel says:

      It could simply be the way you are measuring the flour. Also do you happen to live at high altitude? In either case try adding a few more tablespoons flour and see how that goes.

  40. Megan G says:

    This is almost exactly the gingersnap recipe I’ve been making for years. It’s SOOOO good. Another wintery song I love is Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson’s Winter Song. Their voices are so beautiful. Carpenter’s Christmas and Osmond Family Christmas are two more excellent albums! Christmas music is just the best…

  41. Char says:

    Oh yum…these look good! I have been thinking about trying a different recipe for molasses cookies and I think I’ve found it.

  42. lisa Clawson says:

    Love Gingies!! Now you’ve got me needing them today:) Nothing wrong with that. And we make giant ice cream sandwiches at the bakery during the summer months with Aggie Ice Cream to boot, and my favorite combo is a giant Gingersnap and Lemon Truffle ice cream yumminess! It’s like one of those lemon filled Carr brand gingersnaps. Heaven!! I’m going to give this recipe a go. Thanks my dear!!

  43. Lisa says:

    These are really good with a pumpkin spice hershey kiss in the middle. (If you saved some from autumn) Yumbo!

  44. Laurel says:

    I was at the store last night purchasing all the white chocolate brownie ingredients, now it looks like I need to make these as well. Good thing I already have everything for them. Ooh, they look so good. Mmm Mmm! We have almost all those Christmas songs in itunes. I’m going to switch them on and call it a sing and bake a long day with Mel! Woo Hoo Party!

  45. They look beautifully soft! I haven’t had ginger cookies in so long.

  46. Stacey says:

    The cookies sound amazing! All of Jewel’s Christmas songs are fantastic.

  47. Jan says:

    Mel, you’re a girl after my own heart. I have been wanting a recipe exactly like this every since the owner of the small business I worked for, had his wife bake them. I asked for the recipe several times to no avail. Now I have it, just in time to make snacks for the kids in the reading group.
    I also have to tell you I love how your recipes print out; never have seen any better.
    I’m going to check out your music selections that I don’t have already. ‘To Be With You’ by Sara Grove, is one of my favorites.

  48. Ooh, these look so good! A little more interesting than the standard (though also still delicious) chocolate chip cookies.

  49. Liz says:

    Mel, I’m with you on these cookies being the epitome of Christmas! I love everything about them from the scent to the taste.

    And Heather bell … I have to agree with the music pic although my most favorite rendition is a “Three Tenors” version.

    My “big” tree is going up this weekend and I’m as excited as a child. For one reason or another, the last 5 or 6 years I’ve had a little silk table top tree but not a real tree.

  50. Paula says:

    I’ve been wanting to make a ginger spice type cookie for some time now because they are my husband’s favorite. I do have a recipe that my mom got from the cafeteria ladies when I was in elementary school. It was back in the days that cafeteria workers actually cooked food! That recipe has shortening in it and I’ve been trying to use less of that. This seems like the perfect substitute. Here’s to hoping the the hubs and co like these!

    • Rhonda says:

      Paula ,I have been trying to find a cafeteria molasses cookie recipe for sometime now. Would you be willing to email it to me.

  51. Heather bell says:

    Looks like I’m the first person awake. Will give these a go especially after the ice cream sandwich commentary. And Christmas song: any o holy night rendition,

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