Classic Gingerbread Recipe

Perfect for turning into either gingerbread men or the walls of a house, this recipe has just the right amount of spice. The texture is moister than an animal cracker but decidedly denser and more biscuit-like than a typical cookie. For a simple decorating idea, make cookies that look like brown paper packages tied up in string. Simply cut the rolled dough into squares, bake and cool, then pipe on thin lines for the crossed string and bow.

HGTV shows you how to make classic gingerbread

Classic Gingerbread

Learn how to make classic gingerbread

Photo by: Sam Henderson

Sam Henderson

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Cookie Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

Icing Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


For the cookies:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Add syrup, molasses, sugar and spices to a heatproof bowl. Place the bowl over a small pot of simmering water and stir until sugar is dissolved and the mixture is melted and smooth. Add baking soda and combine well.
  3. Cut butter into pieces and place in a large mixing bowl. Pour warmed sugar/syrup mixture over butter. Stir until butter is completely melted. Cool slightly.
  4. Add egg and stir until completely combined. Add one cup of flour and beat on medium speed until fully combined.
  5. With the mixer on the lowest speed, add remaining flour a little at a time and mix just until it's mixed in. Do not overmix.
  6. Roll dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently to form a consistent ball of dough.
  7. Roll the dough out between two sheets of parchment paper to about 1/4-inch thick. Dust lightly with flour as needed.
  8. Turn the sheet of dough over and remove the top layer of parchment paper. Use a ruler and a pizza cutter to cut out 2-1/2 inch squares, or use cookie cutters of your choice.
  9. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the edges are very lightly browned. Allow the cookies to cool completely on baking sheets before transferring to wire racks for decorating.

For the Icing:

  1. Combine ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. Mix until thoroughly combined.
  3. Add icing to piping cone made from parchment paper or a piping bag with a very small tip.
HGTV shows you how to make classic gingerbread

Classic Gingerbread

Learn how to make classic gingerbread

Photo by: Sam Henderson

Sam Henderson

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