a grey board with the best soft gingerbread cookies recipe decorated with royal icing.

The Best Soft Gingerbread Cookies

Prep Time: 3 hours
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 24
We've had our blog for over 10 years and this is the first time we've posted our recipe for the BEST soft gingerbread cookies ever!


  • 3 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour 
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • 2 1/2 Teaspoons Ground Ginger
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Allspice
  • 1 Tablespoon Cinnamon
  • 10 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened (1 stick plus 2 tablespoons)
  • 3/4 Cup Light Brown Sugar (dark works for even more flavor)
  • 2/3 cup Molasses*
  • 1 Large Egg at room temperature
  • 3/4 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Royal Icing

  • 1 1/2 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Light Corn Syrup
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla
  • 2-3 Tablespoons Room Temp Water


  • In a bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, allspice and cloves, whisking to completely combine.
  • In a large bowl using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and the brown sugar for 3 minutes on medium high speed. Add the molasses and beat on medium high speed until combined and creamy-looking.
  • Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Next, beat in egg and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the bowl. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined.
  • Divide the cookie dough in half and place each onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Wrap each dough up tightly and pat down to create a flat disc shape.
  • Chill the discs for at least 3 hours and up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Chilling is mandatory for gingerbread cookie dough.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F
  • Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (We  recommend these for cookies and never bake without them.)
  • Remove 1 disc of chilled cookie dough from the refrigerator.
  • Generously sprinkle a work surface, as well as your hands and the rolling pin with powdered sugar, not flour.
  • Roll out disc until 1/4-1/2"-inch thick. Cut into shapes. Place shapes 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets. Re-roll dough scraps until all the dough is shaped. Repeat with remaining disc of dough.
  • Bake cookies for about 9-10 minutes.
  • Allow cookies to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely. Once completely cool, decorate with royal icing!

Royal Icing

  • In a large bowl, mix together the powdered sugar, water, vanilla and corn syrup until smooth. When you lift your spoon you should see the icing ribbon down onto the remaining icing, staying in its ribbon for a few seconds before melting back into the rest. If it doesn't hold it's shape just add a little more powdered sugar. If it's incredibly thick and doesn't melt back within a few seconds add a little more water.


*We've had the best luck with Grandma's brand of molasses. 
Nutrition Facts
The Best Soft Gingerbread Cookies
Amount Per Serving (1 g)
Calories 119 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Cholesterol 10mg3%
Sodium 105mg5%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Sugar 20g22%
Protein 1g2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.