I’m so excited to announce that I have a new man in my life!
He’s sweet, has a spicy personality, and always smells amazing…
Fine, fine, fine – it’s a gingerbread man cookie. But I’ve never been happier than when I’m eating one of these sweets during the holidays!
Making this recipe will immediately transform your kitchen into a festive winter wonderland. And you’ll be just as head-over-heels in love as I am!
You get to enjoy the fun of rolling and cutting out the dough, smelling the warm spices baking in the oven (better than any $12 candle!), and piping those cute little faces and buttons onto each one.
How can you not smile and giggle, giddy with happiness?
It’s the time of year to be as cliche as you possibly can, with absolutely no judgment from the rest of the world.
Blast that cheesy Michael Buble Christmas album, turn on all the Christmas lights, wear that ugly Christmas sweater, and decorate some delicious treats.
Shout it from the snow-covered mountaintops – we’re in love with the holidays, and these perfect gingerbread cookies!Print
Gingerbread Men Cut-Out Cookies
- Total Time: 1 hour, 50 minutes
- Yield: 2 1/2 dozen
Christmas is the time of year to bake all your favorite holiday treats, like the perfect gingerbread man cookie.
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/3 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Royal Icing, for decorating
- Assorted sprinkles, for decorating
- Line two baking sheet pans with parchment paper or silicone mats. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, stir together the melted butter, brown sugar, and molasses. Stir in the egg until completely incorporated.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt. With a heavy spoon, stir the dry mixture into the molasses mixture until a soft dough forms.
- Divide the dough in half, and pat each half into a thick rectangle. Wrap tightly in cellophane, and refrigerate for about one hour.
- Lightly flour a clean work surface. Working with one dough rectangle at a time, roll the dough between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick, flouring the dough and rolling pin if it starts to stick.
- Cut out shapes with a floured gingerbread man cookie cutter, re-rolling the scraps only once.
- Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheet pans. Chill in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
- While the dough is chilling, preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Place trays in the oven and bake just until they’re slightly puffed and lightly browned around the edges, 8-10 minutes.
- Let the cookies cool on the pans for several minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
- Decorate as you wish and serve!
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Dessert
Keywords: Christmas, gingerbread men, cookies, holiday baking, molasses
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Mix Together Wet Ingredients
Melt the unsalted butter and allow to cool slightly before mixing with the brown sugar and molasses. The butter should not be hot, or else you’ll end up with scrambled eggs!
Step 2 – Add the Egg
Add the egg to the wet mixture, and stir until completely incorporated.
Step 3 – Whisk Together Dry Ingredients
In a separate bowl, whisk together the salt, spices, baking powder, baking soda, and all-purpose flour.
You can learn more about warming spices and how they are perfect for the cooler months in our article on the topic.
As a flavoring alternative, swap out the spices called for in the ingredients list for two teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice!
Step 4 – Combine
With a heavy spoon, stir the dry mixture into the molasses mixture until a soft, slightly sticky dough forms.
Mixing by hand not your thing? Your stand mixer can’t wait to help you this holiday season.
Step 5 – Chill
Divide the dough in half with a knife or bench scraper, and form each half into a thick rectangle. If it is too sticky to handle, dust the dough and your hands with some flour.
Wrap the dough rectangles in cellophane, and refrigerate for about one hour.
While the dough is chilling, prepare two baking sheet pans. Line them with parchment paper or silicone mats.
Step 6 – Roll Out
Lightly flour a clean work surface. Working with one dough rectangle at a time, roll the dough between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick, flouring the dough and rolling pin if it starts to stick.
The thinner the dough, the crispier it will be once it is baked. If you like a softer, chewier cookie, roll out the dough closer to 1/4 inch thick.
Step 7 – Cut Out
Cut out shapes with a floured gingerbread man cookie cutter, re-rolling the scraps only once.
You don’t want to re-roll the dough any more than just once. Overworking the dough will develop gluten, and will lead to cookies that are brittle, hard, chewy, and dry.
Step 8 – Chill (Again!)
Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheet pans. Chill on the pans in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
Thoroughly chilling the shaped dough before placing the trays in the oven to bake will help keep the shape of each individual cookie.
Step 9 – Bake
Once the cookies are chilled, bake just until they’re slightly puffed and lightly browned around the edges, 8-10 minutes.
Step 10 – Decorate and Serve
After the cookies have chilled, it’s time for the best part… decorating!
Use Foodal’s recipe for royal icing to make intricate designs, or try American-style buttercream for an extra sweet, extra fluffy topping on top.
If you need any help with piping tools, read my review on the best cake decorating tools every baker should own.
A Christmas Love Connection
The perfect man for me… he’s classy, he’s sweet, he’s spicy – he’s the classic gingerbread man cookie!
I love the festive combination of spices, sugar, and molasses. And how can anyone resist those adorable little smiley faces?!
So cute, you just wanna bite it!
I hope you enjoy this cute recipe for the holidays – don’t forget to rate it below when you try it. I’d love to know how you like to decorate your own cookies too! Let me know in the comment section below.
And you might as well save a few more delicious goodies from our collection of Christmas recipes to make alongside these, like Tri-Color Christmas Cookies and Vanilla Spice Cut-Outs!
To add even more fuel to the fire, try some of Foodal’s other gingery recipes for your holiday desserts this year:
- Chocolate Gingerbread Bars
- Gluten-Free Soft Ginger Cookies
- Homemade Chewy Ginger Candies
- Big and Soft Ginger Cookies
- Buckwheat Ginger Cookies
Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Nikki Cervone
Nikki Cervone is an ACS Certified Cheese Professional and cheesemonger living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.