How to Make Gingerbread Cookies

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Gingerbread cookies are a Christmas classic! Cut the cookies into any shape you want and decorate them with icing, pieces of candy, and even candy sprinkles! Even though it has a lot of ingredients, the following recipe is extremely easy to make.

Gingerbread Cookie Recipe

Adapted from Food Network

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup shortening or lard
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • Icing and decorations of choice

Directions:

Add the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, salt, and pepper to a sifter or sieve and sift the mixture into a medium bowl. Set the bowl aside.

Soften the butter and shortening (or lard) to room temperature. Add both to a large bowl and beat on medium speed with an electric mixer until well combined. This should take about 1 minute.

Add the brown sugar to the bowl and beat butter mixture and sugar together on medium speed. Beat until the mixture lightens slightly in color, which should take about 2-3 minutes. Add the molasses and egg to the mixture and beat them into the mixture until the ingredients are well combined. This should take about 1 minute. Remove the bowl from the mixer.

Gradually add the sifted flour mixture to the bowl, stirring gently with a wooden spoon as you do. After the dough is formed into a stiff ball, divide it into two smaller balls. Flatten the balls slightly to form a thick disc. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 3 hours, or until the dough is chilled all the way through. Note that you can prepare the dough up to 2 days in advance before you make the cookies.

When it’s time to make the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove one disk from the refrigerator at a time so that the other disk can remain chilled. Touch the dough slightly to determine if it’s sticky. If it is, lightly dust your work surface with flour to prevent the dough from sticking. Roll the disk out to about 1/8 inch thick for crispy cookies and ¼ inch if you like a softer cookie. Cut the dough with cookie cutters of choice. Place cookies 1 inch apart on nonstick cookie sheets. Repeat the process with the other disc.

Gather all the dough scraps in your hand and form another disc. Cover the disc with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 10 minutes before you roll out the dough and form more cookies.

Place the cookie sheets one at a time in the center of the oven and bake until golden brown. This should take about 10-12 minutes. Remove cookies from sheet after letting them rest in the pan and cool on wire racks. After cookies are completely cool, you can decorate them any way you want using icing, candy pieces, or sprinkles.

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