Aren’t these gingerbread cookies adorable?!? I’ve mentioned before how much the kids like to cook and bake, so it was really hard for me to resist these adorable star wars cookie cutters. Yes, Star Wars is way over commercialized and I got suckered in – but they are so cute!! When Cal realized what these were, he was pretty excited, so I figured it was worth it. 🙂
We could have made plain sugar cookies, but figured Gingerbread cookies would be more interesting. This is my classic gingerbread cookie recipe for making rolled and cut out cookies. Up until now, I’ve only made the classic gingerbread man shape. I have a feeling going forward, we’ll be making more Yoda, Chewie, Darth Vader, Storm Trooper, C3PO, and Boba Fett. 🙂 We really had a lot of fun making these and Cal had fun bringing some in to school the next day for his friends.
I think this recipe is fairly easy as far as rolled cookies go. The dough is easy to work with and doesn’t need to chill before rolling. I’ve rolled it multiple times and it never gets too stiff to work with.
Start by creaming the butter and brown sugar.Add in the egg, molasses, and vanilla extract. Mix well on medium speed.
Next, add the dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves.
Mix this on low speed until fully incorporated. It will look like it’s too dry, but keep mixing and it will come together nicely.
Now the fun part! Take the dough out of the bowl and kind of mush it together into a ball. Sprinkle a little flour on the counter and then place the ball of dough onto the flour.
Flip the dough over or sprinkle more flour on the top so that there is flour on both the bottom and top of the dough. Flatten it a bit with your hands. Then, roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Be careful not to roll super thin because the cookies won’t hold up well when cutting them out. If in doubt, go with a little thicker to make them easier to handle, especially if you are first learning to roll and cut cookies. Let the weight of the rolling pin do the work for you. Start in the middle and roll out in all directions. This should give you a nice flat piece of rolled dough.
This next step is optional, but a nice touch to get the extra flour off the top of the dough. Just rub your hand lightly, but quickly over the top of the dough, to “shine” it. You’ll see what I mean when you do it – it rubs in the extra flour and makes the dough kind of shine.
Dip the cookie cutter in flour and cut out the cookies.
The cookie cutters were really cool – you cut the shape with one side, then flip it over and press it in just a bit for the imprint to mark the top.
Place the gingerbread cookies on a cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees. I like to use these airbake cookie sheets because they keep the cookies from burning and consistently produce the best cookies in my opinion. They do take a bit longer to cook, so when a recipe calls for 8-10 minutes, I usually bake them about 12 minutes if using the airbake sheets.
Mush the scraps of dough together trying not to get too much flour in there. Form into a ball and re-roll for more cookies. Keep doing this until there is no dough left.
Cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!
- 6 Tbsp. butter (always use real butter for baking, especially rolled and cut cookies)
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- ½ cup molasses
- 1 tsp. lemon zest (optional - I usually do not take the time to add this, but it does add nice flavor)
- 3 cups flour
- 1½ tsp. baking powder
- ¾ tsp. baking soda
- 1 Tbsp. ginger (dried powdered)
- 1¾ tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. cloves
- With a mixer, cream the butter and brown sugar.
- Add the egg, vanilla extract, molasses, and lemon zest if using.
- Mix well.
- Add all the dry ingredients.
- Mix on low until well combined - this takes a while but eventually comes together.
- Do NOT chill the dough.
- Roll on a floured surface until about ¼ inch thick.
- Cut out the cookies with cookie cutters.
- Place the cookies on a baking sheet.
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes.
- Cool on a wire rack.