The Best Gingersnaps Recipe (2024)

Why It Works

  • Fresh and powdered ginger create a deep but aromatic heat.
  • Whole wheat flour adds a graham cracker-y flavor and crunch.
  • Seasoned with the natural mineral content of molasses, these cookies don't need added salt.

I love gingersnaps with the burning heat of a thousand suns.

Now, you might be wondering whether Ilovegingersnaps with the burning heat of a thousand suns, or whether I lovegingersnapswith the burning heat of a thousand suns, and the answer to either question is yes.

What Makes the Best Gingersnap?

In fact, the intensity of my love for gingersnaps is directly related to the intensity of the gingersnap itself. It's not that I want to flame out on the first bite, only that I expect a cookie named after ginger to pack a certain punch. It should start off cozy and warm, gradually building until at least one eyebrow is raised in appreciation: wow, that's got some kick.

And let's not forget the snap.

So far as I'm concerned, the crunch should be deafening, resonating in your ears with every bite. Not just crunchy, which I think of on a macro-level, but crispy too, delicate in the spaces between its beautiful crumb.

Gingersnaps should be buttery like shortbread, hearty like Biscoff, and small enough to eat by the handful. (Too big, too thick, and gingersnaps get hard. Tough.) It's a lot to ask from one little cookie, but with the right ingredients, it's no effort at all.

Gingersnaps Ingredients

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The only wildcards are fresh ginger, molasses, and whole wheat flour; everything else is likely in your kitchen right now.

Compared to ground ginger's earthy depth, fresh ginger is aromatic and bright, almost citrusy. Layered together, they hit all the highs and lows, delivering ginger across the spectrum, with a heat that lingers long after the cookie itself is gone.

Crystallized ginger lingers in the worst possible way, sticking between your molars as if your mouth's been tarred and feathered with cookie crumbs. And besides, most grocery store brands are priced like foie gras and taste like window cleaner, so good riddance. (Crystallized ginger can be delicious, don't get me wrong, but it belongs with soft and chewy cookies.)

Malty sweet molasses balances the double-ginger heat. It's an acid, which means it reacts with baking soda to give the cookies their delicate crumb (it also lets us doctor the dough with a precision brown sugar won't allow). Like maple syrup, molasses varies in quality and flavor between national or local brands, but in the context of a cookie, any brand will do, so long as you avoid anything called blackstrap (literally, "black syrup"). This thick and inky substance comes from the final pressing of sugar cane, giving it a significantly higher mineral content than other types of molasses. Not only is it intensely bitter and acidic, every tablespoon contains 30 milligrams of sodium: a full percent of our recommended daily intake.

Stick with plain, unsulphured molasses. If you don't live in a part of the country where it's locally made, grocery store brands like Grandma's or Brer Rabbit will do in a pinch. Otherwise, hop online and buy a jar ofsorghuminstead. It's a similar product, made from a grass of the same name, with a bright, almost orangey flavor to balance the darker notes of caramel and malt. Sorghum's an artifact of my upbringing in Kentucky, a personal preference rather than any sort of make-or-break secret ingredient. That distinction goes to whole wheat flour.

It provides the same depth of flavor we love in graham crackers, but it's also both hyper-absorbent and lousy at forming gluten. Those two factors make the dough thick but weak, so it spreads less and cracks more, for gingersnaps that bake up invitingly thick yet tender. Plus, it bakes to a chestnut hue that puts white flour to shame.

Making Gingersnaps

I make gingersnaps bycreaming the butter and sugara full five minutes. This provides tons of fine, evenly distributed air pockets for the carbon dioxide to inflate, giving the cookies a slightly more even crumb (and more pronounced cracks across the top).

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You wouldn't notice any difference in flavor if you skipped the creaming process, though the crumb would be slightly irregular and the gingersnaps more crunchy than crisp. Both versions bake about 2 1/4 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick, but resist the temptation to rush through!

You also get a bonus from the extra creaming: Aerating the dough forces it to physically expand, so much so that it yields 48 tablespoons of dough. Simply stir all the ingredients together and the dough is so heavy and dense with molasses that number drops to 38. What's an extra five minutes compared to the tragic loss of 10 spicy gingersnaps?

Once the dough is portioned and ready, the final trick is to coat each piece in granulated sugar. It partially dissolves as the dough begins to melt, forming a sugary shell to enhance that gorgeous cracking across the top. Plain granulated sugar will do, but the larger crystal size of turbinado or raw cane sugar will add an extra layer of molasses flavor and crunch.

December 2015

Recipe Details

The Best Gingersnaps Recipe

Active25 mins

Total2 hrs


  • 7 ounces sugar (1 cup; 200g)

  • 1 3/4 teaspoons (10g) baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon (3g) ground cinnamon

  • 2 tablespoons (20g) fresh ginger, finely grated

  • 2 tablespoons (10g) ground ginger

  • 1 tablespoon(15ml) vanilla extract

  • A few cracks of black pepper

  • 6 ounces unsalted butter(1 1/2 sticks; 170g); firm but pliable, about 60°F (16°C)

  • 2 ounces sorghum or unsulphured molasses, not blackstrap (60g; about 1/4 cup)

  • 1 large egg, cold

  • 12 ounces traditionalwhole wheat flour(2 1/2 cups; 340g)

  • Raw or granulated sugar for finishing


  1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position, preheat to 350°F (180°C), and line 2 aluminum half sheet pans with parchment paper (not wax paper!).

  2. Combine sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, gingers, vanilla, pepper, butter, and molasses in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on low to moisten, increase to medium, then beat until fluffy, pale tan, and soft, about 5 minutes. Add egg and beat until smooth, 2 minutes more, pausing to scrape as needed. Resume mixing on low, sprinkle in flour, and continue until a soft dough is formed.

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  3. Divide into 48 level 1/2-ounce portions with a 1 tablespoon scoop. Roll until smooth and round, tumble in a dish with raw or granulated sugar, and arrange on prepared sheet pans, leaving 2 inches in between. Do not flatten, these cookies will spread on their own.

    The Best Gingersnaps Recipe (5)

    The Best Gingersnaps Recipe (6)

  4. Bake until puffed and chestnut brown, about 22 minutes. Cool directly on sheet pan 2 hours—prior to that, gingersnaps will not be crisp inside. Store leftovers in an airtight container up to 3 weeks at room temperature.

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Special Equipment

Stand mixer, paddle attachment, #60 cookie scoop (1 tablespoon), aluminum half sheet pans


Due to its unique pH and sodium content, blackstrap molasses will give these cookies a cakey texture and slightly bitter edge. If you can't get a hold of molasses, reach for Lyle's Golden Syrup instead.

Make-Ahead and Storage

Portion dough onto a cutting board wrapped with plastic, cover lightly, and chill until firm; about 30 minutes. Divide between a few heavy-duty zipper-lock bags, and refrigerate for up to one week (freeze for two months). Bring to room temperature, roughly 70°F (21°C), then roll, coat in sugar, and bake as directed.

The Best Gingersnaps Recipe (2024)


What are the ingredients in great value ginger snaps? ›


Why didn t my ginger snaps crack? ›

The oven isn't hot enough. (it needs to set the top before the middle's fully risen) Not enough leavening (it needs to be strong enough to crack the top once it's set) Using a single-acting baking powder (double acting gives extra rise when it gets heated)

What is going on with Nabisco ginger snaps? ›

In announcing the settlement with the maker of Oreo and Chips Ahoy cookies, California Attorney General Kamala Harris on Friday said testing revealed that a serving of the ginger snaps contained lead levels up to nine times the threshold requiring a warning under California's Proposition 65.

Why did my ginger snaps go flat? ›

If your cookies repeatedly turn out flat, no matter the recipe, chances are your oven is too hot. Here's what's happening. The butter melts super quickly in a too-hot oven before the other ingredients have firmed up into a cookie structure. Therefore, as the butter spreads so does the whole liquidy cookie.

Are ginger snaps good for your stomach? ›

Some studies have found that the spice may be as effective as some anti-nausea medications with fewer side effects. Gingerols are more abundant in raw ginger and some research has shown that ginger and its compounds may increase digestive responsiveness and speed stomach emptying, which may reduce nausea.

Do ginger snaps raise cholesterol? ›

Additionally, the saturated fat found in both types of ginger cookies negatively affects your blood cholesterol, which can put you at risk for cardiovascular disease.

Why can t you buy ginger snaps California? ›

It is based on a lawsuit in CA with regards to small amounts of lead found in the ginger. Some of the companies pulled the products in CA and do not sell them anymore. The lead is a naturally occurring element in the ground Ginger does absorb some of it. Although not nearly enough to have any affect on humans.

How do you keep powdered sugar from melting on crinkle cookies? ›

How to Prevent the Powdered Sugar from Melting. The trick is to coat the dough with granulated sugar first, and then with powdered sugar. This way, the granulated sugar draws out moisture from the surface to create that crinkled exterior while the powdered sugar remains on top.

Are ginger snaps unhealthy? ›

If you must have a cookie from time to time, a ginger snap is among your best options, compared to other varieties such as chocolate chip or sugar cookies. Most ginger snaps are lower in fat and sugar than other types of cookies, and you'll also get a good dose of certain vitamins and minerals, as well.

Why is Nabisco closing? ›

The total assessed value of the Nabisco factory is $29.3 million. Mondelēz has a quarterly tax payment of $252,294 due soon. The company pays more than $1 million a year in taxes to Fair Lawn. The decision to close the factory was based on the outdated manufacturing capabilities of the Fair Lawn site, Guzzinati said.

What cookie did Nabisco discontinue? ›

Earlier this year, Nabisco discontinued its Famous Chocolate Wafers, one year short of the cookie's 100th anniversary. Makers of icebox cakes and chocolate crusts were incensed, and you know what happens when a bunch of bakers get outraged?

Why did Nabisco shut down? ›

“Both Fair Lawn and Atlanta are no longer strategic assets from a geographic footprint perspective and both face significant operational challenges, including aging infrastructure and outdated production capabilities, which would have required significant investment to bring them to the modernized state required for ...

Is ginger alive in ginger snaps back? ›

The hunter urges Brigitte to kill her sister; instead, Brigitte kills the hunter and flees with her sister. The film ends with only Ginger and Brigitte left alive, huddled in the snow in the woods back where the movie began.

Should I use baking soda or baking powder in cookies? ›

Baking soda is typically used for chewy cookies, while baking powder is generally used for light and airy cookies. Since baking powder is comprised of a number of ingredients (baking soda, cream of tartar, cornstarch, etc.), using it instead of pure baking soda will affect the taste of your cookies.

Why is ginger snaps so good? ›

The strong female cast and biting satire of teenage life makes Ginger Snaps far more memorable than your average werewolf movie -- or teen flick.

Are ginger snaps good for high blood pressure? ›

Ginger may also decrease blood pressure by preventing blood clots from forming in your arteries and blood vessels, according to Castleman.

What is the difference between ginger nuts and ginger snaps? ›

In North America these cookies are usually called gingersnaps but in Australia and New Zealand they are called ginger nuts. I cannot tell you how delicious these ginger cookies are so I'm just going to sort of beg you to make them.

Do ginger snaps have real ginger? ›

Nabisco Ginger Snaps is made with real ginger and molasses for authentic old fashioned flavor. Its a classic crunchy cookie with the fresh zing of ginger and sweetness of molasses.

What are the ingredients in Nabisco ginger snaps? ›



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