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Molasses Spice Cookies

These Molasses Spice Cookies are a delicious treat that combines the warmth of molasses with a perfect blend of spices.

The flavors are the perfect balance of sweet and spicy, with a hint of molasses to add depth and a touch of caramelized sweetness. These molasses spice cookies are reminiscent of gingerbread, but with a unique twist. The combination of spices, including ginger, cloves, and a hint of pepper, gives these cookies their warmth.

Molasses Spice Cookies stacked on a white plate.

The texture of Molasses Spice Cookies is soft, chewy, and slightly crumbly, which makes them a delightful blend of tender and satisfying.

My recipe is easy to follow, and in just 20 minutes you’ll be ready to put your Molasses Spice Cookies in the oven. I also love how simple the ingredients are, with mostly pantry staples being used. 

These cookies make an excellent choice for holiday gatherings, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, but they're also perfect for any occasion when you want to indulge in a cozy, homemade treat.

Ingredient Notes

See the printable recipe card below for all ingredients, specific measurements, and complete instructions.

Ingredients to make molasses spice cookies set out on the counter.
  • Butter: Adds richness and moisture to the cookies.
  • Brown Sugar: Provides a warm, caramelized sweetness and helps with the cookies' soft texture.
  • Sugar: Enhances sweetness and contributes to the cookies' texture.
  • Eggs: Bind the ingredients together, adding structure and moisture.
  • Molasses: Infuses a deep, complex flavor and a touch of sweetness.
  • Vanilla: Enhances the overall flavor and aroma of the cookies.
  • Flour: Serves as the primary structure and foundation of the cookie dough.
  • Baking Soda: Acts as a leavening agent, helping the cookies rise and become tender.
  • Ground spices like ginger, cloves, and pepper bring a warm, spicy flavor to the cookies while salt brings out all the tastes. 
  • Coarse Sugar: Provides a delightful crunch and a hint of sweetness to the cookie's exterior.

Cookie Variations

  • Chocolate Chip Molasses Cookies: Fold a cup of chocolate chips or chunks into the cookie dough to create a delightful combination of molasses and chocolate flavors.
  • Add Nuts: Mix in chopped nuts such as walnuts, almonds, or macadamia nuts for a crunchy, nutty texture.
  • Cinnamon Sugar Coating: Roll the cookie dough balls in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar instead of coarse sugar to give them a warm, spicy coating.
  • Molasses and White Chocolate: Incorporate white chocolate chips into the dough for a little contrast between the sweet white chocolate and the spiced molasses.

How To Make Molasses Spice Cookies

Softened butter in mixing bowl.
Creamed butter, sugar, and brown sugar in a mixing bowl.
Butter egg mixture in a mixing bowl and flour and spices in bowls ready to combine.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar with a stand or handheld mixer. You want it to be light and fluffy.

Next add in the eggs one at a time. Make sure to completely stir in each egg before adding the next one. Then mix in the molasses and vanilla.

In a separate medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, ground cloves, ground pepper, and salt until well combined.

Next combine the dry ingredients from the medium bowl with the wet ingredients from the large bowl, mixing just until the flour is incorporated.

At this point you will need to refrigerate the cookie dough for at least an hour or overnight.

When ready to bake preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Scooping cookie dough onto parchment-lined baking pan.

I like to scoop the dough with a regular cookie scoop or an ice cream scoop. Roll it into a ball, and then roll the ball in coarse sugar. Place it on the prepared cookie sheet.

Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes. I recommend checking them at 10 minutes and adding 1-2 minutes as needed.

Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool on the cookie sheet before enjoying.

Baked Molasses Spice Cookies cooling on a baking sheet.

Cookie Baking Tips

  • When measuring flour, spoon it into the measuring cup and level it off with a flat edge. This ensures you don't accidentally pack in too much flour, which can result in dry cookies.
  • Make sure your butter, eggs, and molasses are at room temperature. Room-temperature butter combines more easily with the sugar and results in a better texture.
  • Cream the butter and sugars for the full 3 minutes to create a light and airy base for your cookies. This step is crucial for the texture of the final product.
  • Chilling the dough is essential. It prevents the cookies from spreading too much during baking and helps develop their flavor. The longer you chill it, the better the flavor and texture.
  • Use a cookie scoop or an ice cream scoop to ensure consistent cookie sizes. Rolling the dough into a ball with your hands helps create a uniform shape.
  • Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet.

How To Store Cookies

Store baked cookies in an airtight container on the counter for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator up to 5 days.

Make Ahead: You can make the cookie dough a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator overnight. Simply follow the recipe up to the point where the dough is refrigerated. When you're ready to bake, proceed with the remaining steps. 

Six Molasses spice cookies stacked together and tied with red ribbon.

These Molasses Spice Cookies offer a taste of the holidays with each bite and make the perfect holiday gift.

If you need more delicious cookie recipes here are a few of our favorites.

These cookies are sure to become a cherished favorite and I can’t wait for you to try them!

Molasses Spice Cookies stacked on a white plate.

Molasses Spice Cookies

Author: Judy Wilson
These Molasses Spice Cookies are a delicious treat that combines the warmth of molasses with a perfect blend of spices.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 27 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 390 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ¾ cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • cup molasses
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup coarse sugar

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl using a stand-mixer or handheld mixer, cream together butter, brown sugar, and sugar for 3 minutes.
  • Add eggs one at a time, incorporating each before adding the other. Add the
    molasses and mix. Then add the vanilla and mix in.
  • In a medium bowl add the flour, baking soda, ginger, cloves, pepper, and salt and whisk all ingredients together.
  • Add flour mixture to butter mixture and mix just until flour is mixed in.
  • Refrigerate the batter for at least an hour or overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Scoop dough with a regular cookie scoop or ice cream scoop and roll into a ball
    and roll ball in coarse sugar. Place on cookie sheet.
  • Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes, start checking at 10 minutes, adding 1-2 minutes
    each time.
  • Remove from oven and cool on cookie sheet. Enjoy!

Notes

This recipe makes 10-12 large or 16-20 regular cookies.
Make sure the dough is well chilled. If the dough is pretty solid, press the cookie ball down a little before baking.
Make sure the ingredients are completely mixed in, but do not over-mix the batter.

Nutrition

Calories: 390kcalCarbohydrates: 66gProtein: 4gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 58mgSodium: 391mgPotassium: 214mgFiber: 1gSugar: 42gVitamin A: 395IUVitamin C: 0.001mgCalcium: 49mgIron: 2mg
The nutritional information provided is approximate and should only be used as a general guideline. It is an estimate that will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.
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