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Molasses Cookies with a Kick

Here’s my go-to combination of ingredients for the best spice cookies. They’re a natural for fall, but I make them all year long. My mom says they’re her favorite! —Tamara Rau, Medina, North Dakota
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
  • Makes
    5 dozen


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons minced fresh gingerroot
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon each ground white pepper, cardamom and coriander
  • 3/4 cup turbinado (washed raw) sugar


  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in the molasses, egg and ginger. Combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, cloves, cayenne, salt, nutmeg, white pepper, cardamom and coriander; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 1-1/2 hours or until easy to handle.
  • Roll into 1-in. balls; roll in turbinado sugar. Place 3 in. apart on lightly greased baking sheets.
  • Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes or until set. Cool for 2 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks. Store in an airtight container.
Nutrition Facts
1 cookie: 66 calories, 2g fat (2g saturated fat), 9mg cholesterol, 46mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 0 fiber), 1g protein.
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Average Rating:
  • Jill
    Nov 16, 2019

    I haven’t even baked these yet but can tell they’re a winner! Delish. I think I’ll increase the cayenne to 1/2 tsp. next time too for a little extra punch.

  • Reenwad
    Mar 15, 2018

    Why is this listed under "low carb" recipes? Not even close to being low carb!

  • Katyjane
    Dec 3, 2014

    I have made these cookies every Christmas for years - the best recipe I've ever found for chewy, spicy, molasses-y cookies! I started out using just 1/4 tsp of cayenne but quickly bumped it up to a full 1/2 tsp and it gives them a great kick without being spicy hot.

  • juicyfruit007
    Nov 5, 2014

    I have been wanting to make these cookies for years, ever since I first saw them in TOH magazine. Finally got around to it last night, and they are really, really good! Soft and delicious. I made mine into 1" balls -- because who needs a million tiny cookies? -- and baked them for 11 minutes. Didn't need to flatten them or even to grease the pan. I did leave out the cardamom because I could not find it in local grocery stores. I also used only 1/8 tsp of cayenne, half the amount called for, because I wanted to be sure my children would eat them. The result is just a hint of heat that lingers at the end, but I think I was the only one here that noticed any heat. Next time I will try doubling all the spices and using the amount of cayenne called for.

  • mrart3
    May 20, 2013

    The best molasses/ginger cookie I've ever eaten. This cookie bites back.

  • jenbum1
    Jan 10, 2013

    These are awesome. I'm terrible at making cookies and theses always turn out.

  • LaDonna Dozier
    Dec 19, 2012

    No comment left

  • awestich
    Nov 29, 2012

    This was a BIG hit in our house! I swapped out 1/4 cup flour with ground flax seeds. You'd never know. Plus I used white whole wheat flour in place of white flour. One other thing to remember was to flatten with your palm the cookies before they go in the oven. YUMMMO!

  • Sugarbearchef
    Dec 30, 2011

    We've been making this cookie quite often since it was published in Dec 2010. It is a huge success with our family. I do leave out the cayanne for our little ones, but it still is wonderful, I use all the other spices. It is awesome.

  • jwestich
    Oct 31, 2011

    No comment left