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+ servings
A group of decorated gingerbread cookies on a striped linen.

Gingerbread Men

Soft, spicy, and delicious gingerbread cookies that don't spread all over the place!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
chilling time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings 14
Calories 290kcal


For the Cookies:

  • 3 cups flour 360g
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger 4g
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon 2g
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda 6g
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg 1g
  • ¼ teaspoon salt 1g
  • ¾ cup butter 170g, room temp
  • ¾ cup firmly packed brown sugar 150g
  • ½ cup molasses 118mL
  • 1 egg room temp
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 5mL

For the Icing:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 lb confectioners sugar 454g
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar 1g
  • 1 tsp vanilla 5mL
  • 2-4 tsp water 10-20mL


For the Cookies:

  • In a large bowl, combine flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and salt.
    Gingerbread Cookies
  • Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter, and brown sugar on medium. Mix until fluffy.
    Gingerbread Cookies
  • Add in the molasses, then the egg and vanilla and mix until combined. Scrape the bowl down and mix once more.
  • Add in flour gradually while mixing on low until a nice dough form until combined.
  • Divide dough into two portions and roll into disks. Cover with plastic wrap. 
  • Refrigerate for about 4 hours or overnight. This step is important because the dough gets soft quickly and really needs to be thoroughly chilled.
  • Preheat to 350 degrees F. Roll out chilled dough to about ¼-inch in thickness.
  • Cut out gingerbread people/ shapes with a cookie cutter. Carefully transfer to a baking sheet. 
    Gingerbread Cookies
  • Bake cookies for 10 minutes. Let cool.

For the Icing and Decoration:

  • Sift the powdered sugar and cream or tartar into a bowl then whisk together.
  • Add the egg white in an mix together.
  • Once combined, mix in a teaspoon of vanilla and then add water until desired consistency is reached. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip or with the tip snipped off.
  • Pipe decorations onto the cooled cookies with the royal icing.
  • Attach sprinkles and or candies for added visual interest.
  • If you made any cookies with bend arms swap out the foil for peppermint balls.



Cut back on the molasses for a lighter cookie.
Alter spices at will, you might want less ginger and more cinnamon!
Remember that this recipe really needs dough that chills overnight or for at least a few hours.
If you'd like to make gingerbread people holding a candy cane ball, roll up a ball of aluminum foil and bend the arms around the ball before baking. 


Serving: 65g | Calories: 290kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 180mg | Sugar: 20g | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1.1mg