The air is chilly, and inside, our fireplace has it’s first blaze of the season. It feels like the Holidays are nearing. That means Holiday Cookie Time begins now! Yes, it gets a title of it’s own. Holiday Cookie Time is that important! But you all know that! Saturdays are my bake days. Grant asked, more like pleaded, for soft and chewy ginger cookies. Since I’m a sucker for making that man smile and I absolutely adore spicy molasses and ginger cookies, his idea seemed like the perfect choice to kick off Holiday Cookie Time. Warning, as these cookies bake, they will fill your home with all of the cozy holiday aromas you dream of!
When I baked these cookies, I did some experimenting. I made a batch with all dark brown sugar and one with equal parts of dark brown and granulated sugars. The result of all dark brown sugar yielded a rich, spicier cookie with more depth. When using equal parts granulated and dark brown, the results yielded a cookie reminiscent in flavor of holiday gingerbread men cutout cookies. We decided that we enjoyed the latter version, mostly because children tend to prefer less spice and a tad more sweetness. Remember that brown sugar contains traces of molasses.
The first step in these soft and chewy ginger cookies is similar to most, where you cream your dark brown sugar and your softened butter first. To give you an idea on how to know if your butter is soft, press a fingerprint against it.
Besides my strange looking fingerprints, notice how you can tell that this butter is soft and ready to cream. So go for it!
Then in a separate bowl, put your eggs, vanilla, and molasses. A tip for getting out all of your molasses is to give your measuring tool a gentle spray with cooking spray. Do this anytime you use a sticky substance like honey, corn syrup, and so on.
Then just whisk this mixture together before adding it to your creamed butter and sugars.
Once it is beat in, it will look like this.
So whipped and mousse like!
In a separate bowl whisk together your dry ingredients – the flour, baking soda, salt, and spices. You want to give this a thorough mix. This will eliminate any clumps. This will also ensure that your cookies have an even distribution of each warm spice and the coziness they deliver into every bite. Notice that this recipe uses a pinch of cardamom. This gives these cookies a little extra kick of intensity and some extra sass! And who doesn’t love that?!
Looks pretty amazing, right? Fluffy, smooth, and begging to be rolled in sugar. About now is when you smell all that ginger and spice. Take a moment to let that holiday warmth spread through!
And this is where you get to make a decision! Do you roll these soft and chewy ginger cookies in granulated sugar or powdered sugar? I did a batch of each. You are so welcome!
To roll in the sugar without chilling your dough, which is what I did, just put powdered or granulated sugar into a bowl. Take two spoons and roll around your dough ball before placing on the parchment lined cookie sheet.
The results of using different sugars to coat these cookies are equally delicious, however, there are some differences. Rolling your soft and chewy ginger cookie dough balls in granulated sugar will result in a crisper outer edged cookie that has the slightest crunch from the sugar crystals. They also look like a true ginger cookie that you are used to seeing.
The batch rolled in powdered sugar yielded a slightly softer outer shell with a tad more sweetness and moisture. These are the “crinkle” style of cookies, and my household’s favorite of the two styles.
So, which ginger cookie style are you? Crinkle or Traditional? Let me know!
Soft & Chewy Ginger Cookies Recipe
- 2 sticks softened butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- pinch of ground cloves (if able, measure 1/16 teaspoon)
- pinch of cardamom (if able, measure 1/16 teaspoon)
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Directions – Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer to beat your butter and brown sugar. In a small bowl, whisk together your molasses, vanilla extract, and eggs. Then add to butter mixture and beat until it resembles a whipped and fluffy mousse.
In a separate bowl whisk together your dry ingredients- flour, spices, salt, and baking soda. Then incorporate into your other mixture until you have a lovely dough. You may chill this dough prior to rolling. If you do, adjust your baking time to accommodate colder dough.
Scoop out balls and roll into granulated OR powdered sugar. Bake for approximately 9-11 minutes. For a softer cookie remember to slightly under-bake then let cool completely.
I got 24 large cookies from this recipe. 12 were already gone by the time I wrote this post!
Interested in some of the items I used?
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