We have the best ginger cookies to add to your holiday baking library. Soft and chewy and as big as your hand and filled with molasses and warm spices like ginger and cinnamon.
Need another recipe for chewy ginger cookies? Try these soft gingerbread cookies next time. Looking for more great recipes for Christmas time?
These giant ginger cookies are rolled in sugar and baked to perfection. You wind up with crispy edges and the perfect soft ginger cookie on the inside. They have just the right amount of spice and make the house smell incredible. My cookie love affair continues... It's one of my favorite cookies to make every holiday season.
Cookies are by far my favorite dessert to make, especially this time of year. Which is why this week I bring to you, a full week of Christmas cookies! Every day of cookie week, I'll be providing a new, festive recipe full of Christmas cheer.
These Christmas cookies are made for platters accompanied by milk destined for Santa's belly. Or shipped to family and friends near and far. Or frozen and saved for a late night filled with hot chocolate. Though I have no experience in that department...
And first up are these soft ginger cookies! One of my absolute favorite Christmas cookies are the chewy molasses cookies my friend's mom taught me in high school. These giant ginger cookies are a twist on that. It has the same tasty flavors like cinnamon, molasses, and ginger, but much (much) larger and very thick and chewy. Both are equally delicious in their own right.
Stay tuned every day this week for a new Christmas cookie recipe! And if you need more inspiration right now, check out all of the recipes from last year's extravaganza:
Three Ingredient Thin Mints, Monster Cookie Cups, Almond Shortbread Cookies, Chocolate Chip Pudding Cookies, Molasses Cookies, Peanut Butter Cup Cookies, Peanut Butter Blossoms, and Soft and Chewy Snickerdoodles
How to Make Ginger Cookies
The full printable recipe is below, but let’s walk through the steps with some photos and a video so you have a clear idea of what to expect. This ginger cookies recipe is really easy and these step-by-step instructions will make sure they turn out every time.
Combine dry ingredients. In a medium bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt and set aside.
Combine wet ingredients. In a large bowl with a hand mixer or bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the shortening on medium speed to soften, about 1 minute. Add both cups of sugar gradually and beat until mixed, about 2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs one at a time and then beat in the molasses until combined.
Mix all together and prepare cookie dough balls. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients gradually, beating well after each addition. Scoop the dough using a ¼ cup and roll it into balls. Roll them into the coarse sugar and place 3-4 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake cookies. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until the cookies are light brown and puffed, being careful not to overbake. Allow to cool on the sheet for a couple of minutes then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
What's the difference between gingerbread cookies and ginger cookies?
Gingerbread cookies are typically rolled out and cut into shapes and have a slightly longer baking time, giving them a snappier texture. Ginger cookies are rolled into balls and have a chewier texture when baked.
Why didn't my ginger cookies crack?
There could be a few reasons your cookies didn't crack on top. Make sure your dough is the right consistency by following the measurements properly, chill the dough for at least 3 hours before baking, ensure that your baking soda is not expired, that you don't overmix the dough, and that you follow instructions on temperature and bake time.
Expert Recipe Tips
There aren't any major tips or tricks in this recipe, which makes them that much better. But I did want to share a few pointers as we've tested and perfected this recipe for you.
- Weigh your ingredients for baking whenever possible (I like this particular food scale). It's the most accurate measurement! If using a measuring cup, be sure to level off the ingredients with a knife.
- Use room temperature ingredients for best results. Room temp ingredients trap air and blend together better, yielding a uniform and perfectly risen cookie.
- I recommend baking the cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- This no-fuss Christmas cookie recipe also requires no chilling! Straight from the bowl to the oven and into your belly.
- Do not skip out on the coarse sugar coating. It may be a little more difficult to find them but it makes a huge difference in the end! They're crunchy and look so pretty. That's a very important Christmas cookie factor. I tested them both ways and they both tasted outstanding, but there is just something so magical about the sugar-coated ginger cookie.
- Also, you may feel a little odd using an entire ¼ cup for each cookie, but trust me this is important. The larger the better. It'll make for a larger, chewier, more flavorful cookie.
Make-Ahead and Storage Tips
Make-ahead tip: Prepare dough and freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Baked cookies also freeze well with the same method.
Storing baked cookies: Allow the cookies to cool completely before storing. Store them in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-5 days.
Freezing baked cookies: Freeze the cookies for up to three months. Allow them to thaw before eating. Thaw overnight in the fridge or at room temperature for an hour or so and enjoy.
Freezing dough: You can freeze the prepared dough. Thaw overnight in the fridge and follow instructions to bake.
If you make this recipe, I’d love for you to give it a star rating ★ below. You can also tag me on Instagram so I can see it!
More Cookie Recipes
Be sure to check out some of our other favorite holiday cookies. Looking for a gingerbread cookie recipe? The best gingerbread cookies are these gingerbread snowflake cookies. The whole family can get in on icing and decorating them.
While you have the cookie cutters out, try these soft gingerbread cookies.
My favorite recipe when I need an easy, no-bake cookie for a cookie exchange are these homemade Ritz thin mints.
Chewy Ginger Cookies
- 4 ½ cups (531) all purpose flour gluten-free if needed (Note 1)
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 ¼ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups (285g) butter flavored shortening (regular works too)
- 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- ½ cup (118ml) molasses
- 1 cup (200g) coarse sugar for rolling
- Stand Mixer or Electric Mixer
- Large cookie sheet
- Parchment paper
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl stir together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer beat with an electric mixer on medium speed to soften, about 1 minute. Add both cups of sugar gradually and beat until mixed, about 2 minutes, scraping down the edges with a rubber spatula occasionally.
- Beat in eggs one at at time and then beat in the molasses until combined.
- With the mixer running on low speed, aadd the dry ingredients to wet ingredients gradually, beating well after each addition. Use a very large cookie scoop or ¼ cup measuring cup to scoop the dough and roll them into balls. Roll them in the coarse sugar and place 3-4 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet.
- Bake for 11-13 minutes or until the cookies are light brown and puffed and starging to crack on the tops. Be careful not to over bake. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for a couple of minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-5 days.