Molasses Cookies are thick & chewy, with a crinkly exterior and crisp edges. They have incredible depth of flavor that comes from plenty of ginger, molasses, brown butter, and dark brown sugar. Dunk these in a quick maple glaze for a polished finish and watch them fly off the plate during the holiday season (or any time of year!)
It wouldn’t be the Christmas season without a plate of cookies brimming with the flavors of molasses and ginger! These ones are perfectly chewy with a crisp crackly top and edges. And, they couldn’t be easier to make – let’s dive in!
Why you’ll love these Ginger Molasses Cookies:
- Thick & Chewy Cookies – These delicious cookies have the perfect chewy texture with crisp, crinkly edges! The addition of brown butter and dark brown sugar takes the flavors to another level.
- Easy Cookie Recipe – This recipe is made in one bowl with no mixer, and has a relatively quick chill time.
- Maple Glaze – Top the warm cookies with a silky maple glaze for a polished finish! These truly are the best molasses cookies you’ll ever taste.
As always, the full recipe with measurements & directions can be found at the bottom of this post.
- Butter – I always use salted buter for the best flavor, but feel free to use unsalted butter if you prefer.
- All-purpose Flour – Spoon your flour into the measuring cup, then level it with a flat utensil for best results, or use a scale. Scooping the measuring cup directly into your flour will lead to too much flour, and a potentially dry bake.
- Molasses – Don’t use blackstrap molasses – it’s quite bitter and people don’t typically bake with it. Dark molasses or unsulphured molasses are both fine. I typically buy the Brer Rabbit or Grandma’s brand. Brer Rabbit does make blackstrap, so be sure to double check the type on the bottle label. Molasses can be found in most grocery stores in the baking aisle.
- Dark Brown Sugar – Dark brown sugar beautifully enhances the flavors in these cookies – I highly recommend using it! It’s a wonderful addition to most cookie recipes in place of light brown sugar.
- Spices – Ground cinnamon, ginger, and a pinch of nutmeg perfectly enhance the flavor of these molasses cookies.
- Dairy-free – Use your favorite dairy-free butter to make this recipe dairy-free.
- Gluten-free – I have not tested a gluten-free version of these cookies but I’ve had readers say they’ve had good results using a cup-for-cup gluten-free flour in my cookie recipes.
How to Make this Molasses Cookies Recipe Step-by-Step:
Step 1: Brown the Butter. Brown your butter (it adds SO much flavor!).
Step 2: Make Cookie Dough. Whisk together the butter and molasses, Then whisk in the brown and white sugar, then the eggs, and vanilla. Fold in the dry ingredients just until a dough forms.
Step 3: Scoop & Chill Cookies. Scoop cookie dough balls that are 70 grams each (or you can make them smaller). Place in the freezer to chill for at least 30 minutes, or in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
Step 4: Bake. Roll cookies in granulated sugar. Place 5-6 cookies on your prepared baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake at 365 degrees F as directed in the recipe card below. The cookies will look a bit puffy out of the oven, but will settle down to look like the other photos as they cool.
Step 5: Add the Maple Glaze. When the cookies are out of the oven, let them cool for 20 minutes or so before adding the glaze. Make the glaze by whisking together powdered sugar, milk, maple syrup, cinnamon, and vanilla. Drizzle over the warm or cooled cookies.
Serving + Storing this Recipe:
Once the molasses cookies are still warm, but cool enough to handle – dig in! Let cookies cool completely at room temperature before transferring to an airtight container. Store cookies in the fridge for 5-7 days. Unglazed cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 4-5 days.
Expert Success Tips:
- Oven Thermometer – An oven thermometer will tell you if your oven is actually running at the temperature you set it to. Your oven may not be accurate. Accurate oven temperature is crucial for most bakes, so I leave an oven thermometer in at all times to keep an eye on my oven’s calibration.
- Kitchen Scale – A food scale is the best way to make sure your flour is at the proper weight, since amounts will vary SO widely based on how you measure it, as well as the measuring cup you use, as they are not standardized.
Yes. Cookie dough balls can be frozen on a lined baking sheet, then transferred to a freezer bag or airtight freezer container once solid, and frozen for up to 2 months. Bake from frozen, adding 1-2 minutes or so to the bake time. Cookie dough balls can also be filled & stored in the fridge in an airtight container for 2-3 days before baking.
These cookies will naturally spread some, but if yours came out much thinner than mine, it’s either because you didn’t chill the dough long enough, your oven temperature is not accurate (see note above about an oven thermometer), or your baking powder or soda are old and didn’t leaven the cookies properly.
Immediately place a round cutter around the outside of each cookie and swirl the cookie within it to “scoot” them into perfect circles. This also helps them appear thicker.
- Brown Butter – If you’re short on time, you can simply melt the butter and skip the step of browning it. You’ll have delicious molasses cookies either way!
- Glaze – Feel free to skip the glaze if you aren’t into glazed cookies.
- Baking Sheets – These are my favorite cookie sheets!
- Cookie Scoop – I like using a cookie scoop to help portion my dough, but I still recommend weighing it out with a kitchen scale for the most accuracy.
- Round Cutters – Round cutters are a baker’s best trick for getting your baked cookies perfectly round! Immediately place a round cutter around the outside of each cookie once baked and swirl the cookie within it to “scoot” them into perfect circles.
More Perfect Christmas Cookies to Love:
- Cinnamon Roll Snickerdoodle Cookies
- Frosted Sour Cream Cookies (chewy not cakey!)
- Double Chocolate Peppermint Bark
- Black Forest Chocolate Truffles
- Best Soft Gingerbread Cookies
Did you make this recipe? Snap a photo and leave a comment!
Chewy Brown Butter Molasses Cookies
For the Molasses Cookies
- 14 tbsp salted butter 200 grams before browning, 156 grams after – See Notes
- 1/3 cup + 1 tbsp molasses 130 mL
- 3/4 cup dark brown sugar 163 grams
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar 156 grams
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, spooned & leveled 423 grams
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 and 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- extra granulated sugar, for rolling
For the Maple Glaze
- 3 tbsp maple syrup 45 grams
- 1 cup powdered sugar 130 grams
- pinch of cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- milk as needed, to thin the glaze
- Brown the Butter (Optional): Add butter to a medium saucepan over medium heat. Melt the butter, stirring occasionally. Once it's melted, turn the heat to medium-low, and continue cooking the butter, stirring frequently. The butter will get foamy and bubbly, then turn a deep golden shade with a nutty, caramely aroma. (This will take about 4-6 minutes once the butter has melted.) Pour into a large bowl, making sure to scrape in the brown bits from the bottom of the pan, and allow to cool in the freezer for 40 minutes while you gather the other ingredients. (See note about brown butter & skipping this step below.)
- Make the Dough: Add the cooled brown butter (or melted & cooled regular butter) to a large mixing bowl and whisk in the molasses. Add the sugars and whisk to combine. Add the eggs and vanilla, and whisk until smooth and combined, about 30-45 seconds. Stir in the dry ingredients, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to get any hidden dry bits from the flour mixture. (You can also do this part with a mixer.)
- Chill the Dough: Scoop dough balls that are 70 grams (2.5 ounces) in size (about 3.5 tbsp) and chill in the freezer for at least 30 minutes, or in the fridge for at least 2 hours. Smaller Cookies: You can make cookies 35-40 grams in size to stretch the recipe yield. Bake for 8-10 minutes. The recipe will yield about 26 cookies with 40 gram dough balls.
- Bake: Preheat your oven to 365℉. Line a few cookie sheets with parchment paper. Roll dough balls in granulated sugar and place 5-6 on a cookie sheet, leaving space for them to spread. Keep remaining dough balls in the fridge while each cookie sheet bakes.Bake cookies for 12-13 minutes. They will be a little puffy and crinkly on top, and the edges will appear set. Immediately place a round cutter around the outside of each cookie and swirl the cookie within it to "scoot" them into perfect circles. This also helps them appear thicker. Place baking sheet on a wire rack to let the cookies cool for at least 20-30 minutes.
- Make the Glaze. Whisk together all glaze ingredients and adjust to taste.
- Serve + Store: Dip the warm or cooled cookies in the glaze or drizzle it on. Enjoy cookies immediately, or let the glaze set! Store cooled cookies with the glaze in single layers in airtight containers in the fridge for 5-7 days. Unglazed cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 4-5 days.
- Make Ahead Tips: Cookie dough can be balled, frozen on a sheet pan until solid, then transferred to a freezer bag or airtight container. Freeze for 1-2 months. Bake from frozen, adding 1-2 mins to the bake time. You can also refrigerate the dough balls for 2-3 days before baking.