Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies




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Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies ~ if you love baking holiday cookies I bet you’re always on the hunt for a new recipe, one that’s not too hard, but has that wow factor.  These easy stamped cookies are soft and plush, perfectly spiced, and lightly glazed to bring out their beautiful patterns ~ this could be your knockout cookie for the season!

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies on waxed paper

Is everybody jazzed for cookie baking season?  This week I lined up all my flour and sugar canisters front and center on my counter, and it seems like my oven never cools down.  I love to make the traditional lineup, but every year I try to breakout with something new.  I’ve been dying to make these gorgeous soft gingerbread cookies from chef Yotam Ottolenghi’s dessert cookbook,  Sweet.  I highly recommend any of his cookbooks, for you, or for gift giving, they’re all amazing and so inspirational.  You can see links to my favorites at the bottom of the post.

stamped and glazed gingerbread cookies

Gingerbread is one of my favorite holiday ‘flavors’, and I have lots of gingerbread inspired recipes already on the blog.  Gingerbread cookies can be crunchy or soft, spicy or mild, deep and dark, or more golden. I happen to love my gingerbread on the soft side, so these are just perfect for me.  These cookies stay soft, too, day after day (if they last that long.)

A stack of soft glazed gingerbread cookies on a marble board

Gingerbread is characterized by molasses along with a blend of spices, but every gingerbread cookie will be unique depending on the exact mixture of spices you use.  I don’t recommend using a premixed spice blend, it’s better to use individual spices. If you like you can make your own custom gingerbread spice blend at the start of the holiday season.  Then you’ll have it handy for spicing up cocoa, latte, pancakes, or anything that needs a holiday vibe.  Feel free to adjust the ratios of the ingredients to your particular taste.

How to make a homemade gingerbread spice mix ~

  • 1 Tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

 

A stack of soft glazed gingerbread cookies tied up with twine

As you can see these cookies are gorgeous, but what you might not guess is how simple they are to make.  I used my Nordicware Cookie Stamps, they make it so quick and easy to get that intricate patterning.

Making soft glazed gingerbread cookies

How to use a cookie stamp

Cookie stamps are fun and easy to use, and you get a fancy cookie effect in an instant.

  1. It’s essential to use the right dough ~ choose a recipe made for stamping, or choose a firm gingerbread, shortbread, or other type of non-spreading dough that will hold the shape of the stamp as it cooks.
  2. Chill your cookie stamps in the freezer for several minutes before using.  This helps insure a crisp imprint.
  3. Roll out your dough to a 1/4 inch thickness.
  4. Press down firmly with your stamp onto the dough.  If your stamp sticks to the dough, lightly flour it.
  5. Use a cookie cutter that is slightly larger or slightly smaller than the stamp itself to cut out your cookies (you can also cut the cookies by hand with a paring knife)  and transfer to a cookie sheet.  Bake as normal.
  6. If your imprints are not sharp after baking, try chilling the cookies before baking.  If they are still not sharp, try another recipe.

Using a cookie stamp to make soft glazed gingerbread cookies

My stamps have a folk/holiday theme but you can get cookie stamps in all kinds of shapes and designs for different occasions and seasons.

cutting out soft glazed gingerbread cookies

This dough is so beautiful all by itself, there’s nothing else that gets me in the holiday spirit quite like rolling out gingerbread dough.  (Did you know that I’ve got a gingerbread play dough recipe on the blog?)  This particular dough is easy to roll, and the scraps are easy to reform and re-roll because the dough is moist.  Kids love to help with stamped cookies, so let them join in the fun.

Stamped Gingerbread Cookies on a cooling rack

 

tvfgi recommends: Nordic Ware cookie stamps

The set I used is called Starry Night.  These sturdy cookie stamps are cast aluminum with wooden handles, I love how they give an instant ‘wow’ factor to a plain cookie.  Just like your favorite copper cookie cutters, these tools will become a treasured family heirlooms.  There are lots of designs to choose from.

 

Reader Rave ~

“The stamps worked like a charm but that dough? It too rolled like a dream and the cookies were simply delicious… The addition of the cocoa makes them taste more like a European ginger cookie to my husband and I. And the cookies looked fab too! Thanks again Sue for another keeper of a recipe..”  ~Noëlle

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies pin.


Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies
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3.42 from 334 votes

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies ~ if you love baking holiday cookies I bet you're always on the hunt for a new recipe, one that's not too hard, but has that wow factor.  These easy stamped cookies are soft and plush, perfectly spiced, and lightly glazed to bring out their beautiful patterns ~ this could be your knockout cookie for the season!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, British
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Yield 14 cookies
Calories 154kcal

Equipment

  • cookie stamps

Ingredients

wet ingredients

  • 6 tbsp 85 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 packed cup plus 2 tbsp (90 g dark brown sugar)
  • 1/3 cup 100 g molasses
  • 1 large egg yolk

dry ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups plus 2 tbsp (235 g all-purpose flour)
  • 1 tbsp Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

glaze

  • 1 cup sifted confectioner's sugar
  • 1 Tbs/15g unsalted butter melted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp warm water

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375F/190C Put your cookie stamps in the freezer to chill.
  • Cream together the butter, sugar, and molasses in a stand mixer or with electric beaters. Beat in the egg yolk.
  • Sift together the dry ingredients. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, beating on low until the dough comes together.
  • Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead it until all the floury crumbles are incorporated. Flatten the dough into a disk and then roll out to about 1/4 inch thickness. I did not have to chill my dough before rolling, but if yours is very soft, you may want to.
  • Press the cookie stamps firmly into the dough, and then use a round cookie cutter slightly larger or slightly smaller than the stamp itself to cut out the cookies.
  • Transfer the cookies to a lined baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. You don't want to over bake these cookies, so do a test cookie or two to figure out the best timing for your oven. The cookies will be soft when you remove them from the oven, but will firm up as they cool.
  • While the cookies are baking whisk the glaze ingredients together until they become a smooth thin glaze. Add more water if the glaze is too thick, it should have the consistency of maple syrup or a thin honey.
  • Put the cookies on a cooling rack and brush them with the glaze while still slightly warm. The glaze will dry in about 30 minutes.

Notes

These cookies will keep for up to a week at room temperature
*Recipe slightly tweaked from Yotam Ottolenghi's Sweet
 

Nutrition

Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 154kcal

 


Here are my favorite Ottolenghi cookbooks, in case you’re interested ~ click on any of the images below for more info.  I’ve got his newest release, Simple, on my wish list!

 

 

 

 

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71 Comments

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    Please rate this recipe!




  • Reply
    Molly
    October 18, 2020 at 7:06 am

    These look so pretty and tasty! Do you think the dough would freeze well for about a month or two in advance? We bake tons of cookies to give to neighbors at Christmas and I’m determined to pre-make as much dough as possible this year. Any tips for freezing and thawing would be appreciated. Thanks!

  • Reply
    Lisa
    August 15, 2020 at 8:06 am

    5 stars
    Hi there, does the glaze harden when dry?

    • Reply
      Sue
      August 15, 2020 at 8:17 am

      Yes.

  • Reply
    Erin
    January 1, 2020 at 12:10 pm

    5 stars
    Delicious cookies! However, I, too, had trouble with the stamp on the cookie showing up. Therefore, I made gingerbread men!! Love your site and your recipes.

  • Reply
    Anne
    December 24, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    This is delicious!!! Mine are not as pretty as yours as I had trouble with the stamps showing up. I think some of the cookies were too thick. They taste AMAZING!!! Thank you for your recipes.
    Merry Christmas

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 24, 2019 at 5:20 pm

      Thanks Anne, and Merry Christmas to you.

  • Reply
    Ayesha
    December 22, 2019 at 7:13 pm

    I see in his original recipe he calls for blackstrap molasses. Is that what you used or did you use unsulphered regular molasses?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 22, 2019 at 9:00 pm

      I use regular molasses, I think the blackstrap is way too intense.

  • Reply
    Amy Whipps
    December 17, 2019 at 1:52 pm

    5 stars
    One of the best cookies I have ever had! This will be one that will be made every year! My batches make about 40 cookies, not complaining though. 🙂 I increase the spices to about double what it calls for, just personal preference.

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 17, 2019 at 2:15 pm

      Thanks Amy!!

  • Reply
    Tammy
    December 16, 2019 at 11:10 am

    I really want to try this yummy -looking recipe, but don’t want to invest in cookie stamps right now. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 16, 2019 at 11:51 am

      It’s hard to say since cookie stamps are kind of a unique object. Sometimes people use the bottom of crystal glasses as a kind of cookie stamp, if you have any glassware that has a cut pattern on the bottom you could try that.

      • Reply
        Marc
        December 23, 2019 at 10:40 am

        5 stars
        The Nordicware presses were back ordered and I didn’t see others I liked, so I ordered an inexpensive plastic mooncake press – I found three of the included patterns worked for me. We had to pre-measure dough balls by weight and keep the press floured, but it worked perfectly and formed the edges in the same stroke.

        Thanks for the great recipe Sue! I’ve ordered the Sweet book, and my Nordicware presses just arrived. You’ve inspired my holiday baking!

        • Reply
          Sue
          December 23, 2019 at 10:51 am

          I love this because I bought mooncake molds a while back and haven’t tried them, you’ve inspired me!

    • Reply
      Amy Whipps
      December 17, 2019 at 1:52 pm

      Thrift stores!

    • Reply
      Tammy Flynt
      December 17, 2019 at 6:04 pm

      Thanks for both these suggestions!

  • Reply
    Leslie C
    December 14, 2019 at 10:03 am

    5 stars
    Hi Sue! I have a few questions. I’m going to be making a lot of cookies next week so I’m trying to make some of the dough’s beforehand. How soon can I make this dough ahead of time? If I can make the dough ahead of time should i refrigerate or freeze the dough. TIA!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 14, 2019 at 12:00 pm

      I’d say the dough should be fine for a couple of days beforehand, Leslie. Longer than that and you might want to freeze.

  • Reply
    Deb
    December 11, 2019 at 3:50 am

    4 stars
    Hey Sue. The recipe tasted great but for some reason my cookies expanded and the stamped design is barely visible. Any ideas what could have gone wrong?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 11, 2019 at 7:23 am

      Sounds like a little too much moisture in the dough, a little extra flour and chilling them well before baking will help. Also make sure you get a good strong impression on the cookie dough first. Another thought, make sure your oven is at temperature before you put them in, and make sure your oven is accurate, too low a heat and they may spread.

      • Reply
        Lesllie c
        December 15, 2019 at 1:11 pm

        5 stars
        Great, thank you so much!

    • Reply
      Amy Whipps
      December 17, 2019 at 1:54 pm

      Did you make sure you used baking soda, not baking powder. I’ve done that before and had similar results.

  • Reply
    Penny
    December 8, 2019 at 6:51 pm

    Can the recipe be doubled or tripled with good result?

  • Reply
    Kerri Morgan
    December 3, 2019 at 2:24 pm

    Love your little spool of twine in the picture..do you have a link to the supplier or can you tell me where to purchase? Thanks! Made your pumpkin yeast rolls for Thanksgiving…fab!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 3, 2019 at 4:05 pm

      Gosh Kerri, i don’t remember where I got that, i think maybe it was Cost Plus World Market. Glad you liked the rolls 🙂

  • Reply
    Tara
    December 3, 2019 at 8:16 am

    4 stars
    Noticed an error, possibly a typo? 100g is not 1/3 c and 90g is not 1/3 plus 2 tablespoons. Are those possibly flip flopped? Which should we follow the metric or the us measurements?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 3, 2019 at 8:25 am

      90 grams of dark brown sugar is .45 US cups, so that is correct, and 100 grams of molasses is 1/3 US cup, so the recipe should be correct Tara.

      • Reply
        Tara
        December 3, 2019 at 4:24 pm

        4 stars
        Thank you!

  • Reply
    Serena
    December 2, 2019 at 6:33 am

    never had any kind of luck with cookie stamps, or those intricate cookie cutters with all the nooks and crannies! the dough always sticks no matter how much I grease, flour, or what recipe I use. I gave up on cookie stamps a long time ago! I will try your gingerbread recipe though! Do you think these would work shaped as gingerbread men?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 2, 2019 at 6:39 am

      I would not use this recipe for cut out cookies, Serena, but I have an amazing gingerbread recipe just perfect for rolling and cutting, here. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    Lori Sherman
    November 26, 2019 at 4:08 pm

    I haven’t tried this recipe yet but had a question. The recipe doesn’t have all of the spices that your spice mix has. Does it matter? If the spice mixture can be substituted, how much should be used?

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 26, 2019 at 6:05 pm

      Right, a classic pumpkin spice mix is a little different from the spices in this cookie recipes, and you can go either way with it, it’s your choice. You can substitute 2 teaspoons of the pumpkin spice mix.

  • Reply
    Martine
    November 7, 2019 at 12:12 pm

    5 stars
    Made these today, wonderful!! My kitchen smells so good.
    The recipe worked perfectly, down to the last spoonful of glaze, delish!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 7, 2019 at 2:05 pm

      I’m thrilled Martine…I’m actually working on a new version of these for holiday ’19!

  • Reply
    Deb Llewellyn
    November 6, 2019 at 8:08 pm

    So….I have just completed trying this recipe from the magazine 2X…both were a fail…so I came online to check to see if there were any comments about the recipe. It looks like butter was omitted in the magazine recipe! I don’t feel so crazy now….I’ll use the recipe here.

    • Reply
      Leslie C
      December 10, 2019 at 1:05 pm

      I made these awhile back and they tasted wonderful and the dough was so smooth and easy to work with. I wonder if a little bit of orange in the glaze would be good?

      • Reply
        Sue
        December 10, 2019 at 1:57 pm

        I think an orange version would be a great idea, very season appropriate.

  • Reply
    Steph
    December 20, 2018 at 2:15 am

    So gorgeous! I love how the glaze picks out the print even more!

    I recently won these beautiful cookie stamps as part of a Christmas hamper (I only entered because of the stamps! 😉 ) and I’m so excited to use them.
    I have other gingerbread recipes that work beautifully, but wanted to try something new.

    Do you think this recipe would work without egg? I’m allergic.

    Merry Christmas! x

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 20, 2018 at 8:25 am

      I don’t know about removing the egg, maybe you could use a flax egg? Or some other egg substitute? Have fun with your stamps!!

  • Reply
    Laurie
    December 19, 2018 at 1:37 pm

    Looks great. Thanks for sharing. Do you think this recipe will work with the rolling pin embossing? Thank you.

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 19, 2018 at 1:58 pm

      I’m not sure. I know that the stamps make a pretty deep impression, and I’m not sure the rolling pin does. I think the rolling pin is better for a firmer dough, but since I haven’t tried it, I can’t say for sure, sorry Laurie.

  • Reply
    Courtney
    December 14, 2018 at 10:10 am

    My dough won’t come together! It’s super crumbly! Help!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 14, 2018 at 10:38 am

      Don’t panic! The dough should be nice and moist, so check your measurements…it’s possible you have a bit too much flour (always use the Fluff/Scoop/Level method) It’s also possible your butter was cold and needs to warm up to incorporate.
      You can add a little milk or cream to the dough to bring it together, just be sure to add a LITTLE at a time, just enough to moisten it so it comes together.

    • Reply
      Deb Llewellyn
      November 6, 2019 at 8:09 pm

      If you used the recipe from the magazine, it omitted the butter in the recipe!

  • Reply
    Tarey
    December 13, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Can this dough be made a day or two ahead of time?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 13, 2018 at 1:51 pm

      Yes, just keep it well wrapped so it doesn’t dry out at all.

      • Reply
        Tarey Darling
        December 16, 2018 at 5:34 am

        Making this go right now and it is super crumbly all my measurements are perfect I am an everyday Baker

        • Reply
          Sue
          December 16, 2018 at 6:35 am

          Try adding a little moisture, like a little more molasses or some milk, to moisten the dough. Add just a little, it will come together quickly.

  • Reply
    Glenna
    December 6, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    Made these today. I liked that they were not overly sweet. I used my stamping up cookie presses and got about 20 cookies.

  • Reply
    Linda Leone
    December 4, 2018 at 11:57 pm

    I am so glad I found you!!! Can’t wait to try more of your recipes!!!! ?

  • Reply
    Susan
    November 28, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    100g of molasses is equivalent to 1/2 cup NOT 1/4 cup. I also cut the black pepper down to 1/8 teaspoon but that is just personal preference. Instead of rolling out the dough I used a 1 T. Cookie scoop and then stamped the cookie right on the cookie sheet. This was my first time stamping cookies and they turned out great!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 28, 2018 at 4:18 pm

      I’ve used Ottolenghi’s recipe here, so that was his conversion. I used 1/4 cup and it was perfect. I rechecked online and I found that 100 grams of molasses is about 1/3 cup. The confusion is one of the reasons I don’t try to give conversions in my own recipes, there’s too much room for error! I’m glad these worked out for you, I thought they were such fun.

      • Reply
        Sue
        December 16, 2018 at 6:42 am

        I’ve adjusted the amount of molasses in the recipe from 1/4 to 1/3, which is think is more accurate. I think the original Ottolenghi conversion was slightly off.

  • Reply
    Jo
    November 27, 2018 at 5:33 am

    Ok, that does it! I am going to go to Nordic Ware for some cookie stamps! They are located here in the Twin Cities and they have a great company store! (Like I really need a reason) Thanks!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 27, 2018 at 6:40 am

      I would love to go to their store, what fun! Report back on what you get Jo 🙂

  • Reply
    Matt - The Bluenosers
    November 26, 2018 at 11:42 am

    I love those stamps, but also the cookies look very festive and moreish!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 27, 2018 at 7:38 pm

      Thanks Matt 🙂

  • Reply
    Emily
    November 13, 2018 at 6:46 pm

    I’m planning to bake these for a holiday cookie swap in December. Do you think that I could bake and freeze them so that I could have them made ahead? And if so, could I glaze them before freezing?

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 14, 2018 at 5:23 am

      I’m not sure how they’d freeze with the glaze so I can’t say for sure. If it were me I’d glaze them after, I think, Emily.

  • Reply
    Laura | Tutti Dolci
    October 26, 2018 at 1:37 pm

    Such pretty cookies! I just ordered that cookie stamp set and I can’t wait to use it this holiday season!

  • Reply
    Noëlle Perry-Earle
    October 25, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    I found these cookies stamps just last week after seeing this recipe and drooling over both the cookies AND the stamps. A couple of days after reading the recipe I went to my local Homesense store and can you believe it? There they were for $20 Canadian! So of course I brought them home, gave them a wash, chilled them and made these cookies. The best bit, both were brilliant! The stamps worked like a charm but that dough? It too rolled like a dream and the cookies were simply delicious… The addition of the cocoa makes them taste more like a European ginger cookie to my husband and I. And the cookies looked fab too! Thanks again Sue for another keeper of a recipe.

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 25, 2018 at 2:40 pm

      I’m grinning reading this comment Noelle ~ I can’t wait to use mine again, I’m thinking something chocolatey…

  • Reply
    Foodiewife
    October 16, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    the UPS truck just delivered these very cookie stamps today! I’m going to make a chocolate cookie recipe, but this one definitely grabbed my attention. Thank you for the tips on freezing the cookie stamps!

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 16, 2018 at 4:57 pm

      I’m going to do a chocolate version too Debbie, we can compare notes!

  • Reply
    Mary Ann | The Beach House Kitchen
    October 15, 2018 at 12:27 pm

    So pretty Sue and so perfect for the holidays ahead! On my baking list!

  • Reply
    Jennifer @ Seasons and Suppers
    October 15, 2018 at 7:37 am

    So, so beautiful! And so perfect for holiday cookie baking! Loving everything about these 🙂

  • Reply
    mary
    October 15, 2018 at 6:34 am

    these are simply beautiful! and sound delicious too!

  • Reply
    Chris Scheuer
    October 15, 2018 at 5:38 am

    I’m ready to start holiday celebration after seeing these amazing cookies! What a fun, pretty and delicious holiday treat!

  • Reply
    Tricia
    October 15, 2018 at 4:27 am

    Oh wow, these really speak to me Sue. I love gingerbread and these are absolutely gorgeous. I can’t think of a better holiday treat. I’ve always wanted some pretty stamps – and know I have a recipe to go with them!

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 15, 2018 at 5:12 am

      Thanks Tricia, I had fun doing these, and I’ve always wanted to do stamped cookies too. The recipe really is key, and now I’m on the lookout for another one (and another set of stamps!)

  • Reply
    angiesrecipes
    October 15, 2018 at 3:24 am

    Love those beautiful cookies and the stamps are outstanding! These are definitely a must during the cookie season.