Perfect Gingerbread Cookies without Molasses

4.72 from 7 votes

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Do you love gingerbread cookies but don’t have (or like) molasses? Then’ll you love these molasses-free Gingerbread Cookies! This easy gingerbread cookie recipe makes warm, sweet cookies with just the right amount of spice.

Looking for more gingerbread cookie recipes? Try my Classic Gingerbread Cookies or these Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies!

Gingerbread Cookies Without Molasses
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The Best Gingerbread Cookies Without Molasses

Maybe you know this, maybe not, but I’m sort of the reigning star of gingerbread anything. Yep, it’s my claim to fame! Especially around Christmastime, I’m baking gingerbread cookie batches galore, and honestly? I wouldn’t have it any other way. They’re such a lovely treat to gift to friends (you can even package them up and mail them), bring along to parties, and freeze to share later on with visitors or on special occasions.

But something that always seems to come up when I share my love of gingerbread cookies is people asking me: is there ANY possible way to make gingerbread cookies without molasses!? And the answer is, hallelujah, yes! You can totally swap in honey for molasses if you’re just not a fan of its taste or can’t find any at your local store. This recipe is just as amazing and scrumptious as any other, and you won’t have to fret about finding any obscure ingredients. That’s a win!

What can I use instead of molasses in gingerbread cookies?

Honey! If you can’t find molasses (based on your location generally) or if you don’t like it, this is the perfect gingerbread cookie recipe made without molasses, just for you. They still taste impeccable, lightly chewy, sweet and a bit spiced from the cloves, cinnamon, and ginger.

They are a breeze to make ahead for a group or party, and you can also freeze them with great luck. If you ask me, they’re the perfect cookie. All I did was swap the molasses in my original recipe for honey. My mom did this a lot when we were kids (because she had a lot of fresh honey on hand), and we loved them.

When you swap out the molasses, the cookies still taste great though they are not as dark in color as traditional gingerbread. I know you’ll love baking, munching on, and sharing these, too!

The best recipe to make perfect gingerbread cookies without molasses that are still sweet, spiced, and sturdy!

Tips and Tricks for Making Gingerbread Cookies without Molasses:

  • These cookies are sweet, soft, and hold their shape well. The spiced flavor is light and really pleasant. My kids love these, my husband loves these, and I had a bag hiding in the freezer that I have now eaten completely, so it’s pretty obvious that I love these, too. These will make a gingerbread lover out of anyone.
  • If you like your gingerbread on the crispy side, roll it to 1/4″ thick and bake for 11-12 minutes. If you like it nice and soft (though still very sturdy), roll the dough 1/2″ thick and bake for 10 minutes. If you play around with the thickness of the dough and the baking time, you’ll discover a cookie that meets your liking. I really like these thick and soft.
  • Use real butter and don’t forget the resting time. The dough should be tacky but not gloopy when you put it in the fridge. When it comes back out of the fridge, it should be very firm. You can keep the dough in the fridge for up to 2 days before using.
  • This is not a good gingerbread recipe for making gingerbread houses. The dough is too soft. I love making gingerbread houses and I normally use this Gingerbread House recipe for a sturdy hard cookie that is good for construction.
  • If you are in need of a cookie cutter set, I’ve had this one for almost 11 years and we use it all the time.

Here’s how you can bake ahead and store your cookies in the freezer:

  • Bake your gingerbread cookies and let them cool without decorating them with frosting or other toppings. Keep them in a freezer safe bag or airtight container frozen for up to 6 weeks. Pull one out when you need (or “need”) one or you can get out the whole batch to thaw and decorate together. They’re great to store frozen for neighbor and friend goody bags around the holidays.
  • If you don’t need them that long, you can bake them and store them in an airtight container at room temp for up to 3 days. Another option is simply prepping the dough and keeping it refrigerated for up to 3 days before you bake it.

How to decorate gingerbread cookies:

  1. Adorn with royal icing to add fun faces and details.
  2. Pop little candies on to add eyes, clothes, or anything else.
  3. Add sprinkling sugars for a little bit of sparkle.
  4. Sprinkles add a festive touch over top the icing!
  5. Dust some powdered sugar on top for a simple and sweet look.

Check out this post all about decorating gingerbread cookies for more specifics and details: 6 Simple Ways to Decorate Gingerbread Cookies.

The best recipe to make perfect gingerbread cookies without molasses that are still sweet, spiced, and sturdy!
4.72 from 7 votes

Perfect Gingerbread Cookies without Molasses

The best recipe to make perfect gingerbread cookies without molasses! These gingerbread cookies are sweet, spiced and hold their shape for easy decorating.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 36 large cookies

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature (salted or unsalted)
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup honey
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
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Instructions 

  • Cream butter, adding sugar gradually. Beat until well combined and light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • Beat in egg, honey, and vinegar.
  • Sift all of the dry ingredients together and then blend sifted dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, working in batches, stirring after each addition.
  • Divide the dough into two even pieces, wrap each piece of dough in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 to 90 minutes.
  • When the dough is done chilling, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Working in sections, roll the dough to 1/2″ thick on a floured surface; cut into desired shapes. Place shapes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a baking mat. Gather and reroll “scraps” of dough as needed, using all of the dough.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes, and then move to a cooling rack.
  • Repeat with remaining dough.
  • Leave plain or decorate (here are 6 Simple Ways to Decorate Gingerbread Cookies if you are looking for some inspo).

Notes

  • These cookies are sweet, soft, and sturdy. The spiced flavor is light and really pleasant. My kids love these, my husband loves these, and I had a bag hiding in the freezer that I have now eaten completely, so it’s pretty obvious that I love these, too. These will make a gingerbread lover out of anyone.
  • If you like your gingerbread on the crispy side, roll it to 1/4″ thick and bake for 11-12 minutes. If you like it nice and soft (though still very sturdy), roll the dough 1/2″ thick and bake for 10 minutes. If you play around with the thickness of the dough and the baking time, you’ll discover a cookie that meets your liking. I really like these thick and soft.
  • Use real butter and don’t forget the resting time. The dough should be tacky but not gloopy when you put it in the fridge. When it comes back out of the fridge, it should be very firm. You can keep the dough in the fridge for up to 2 days before using.
  • This is not a good gingerbread recipe for making gingerbread houses. The dough is too soft. I love making gingerbread houses  and I normally use this recipe for a sturdy hard cookie that is good for construction.
  • If you are in need of a cookie cutter set, I’ve had this one for almost 11 years and we use it all the time.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 of 36 large cookies, Calories: 161kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 18mg, Sodium: 121mg, Potassium: 29mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 164IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 7mg, Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

If you like this Gingerbread Cookie recipe here are a few others you might like:

And there you have it – one lovely cookie recipe, from my kitchen to yours. Make them with your people, they are simple and delicious, and just plain fun to eat!

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Recipe Rating




28 Comments

  1. Leila says:

    5 stars
    Great recipe! I made them twice, both times I substituted the flour for gluten-free flour, and the sugar for brown sugar, and they turned out delicious! I added a little more of the spices than called for for a slightly stronger taste, and everybody loved them. After adding the vinegar to the wet ingredients, it looked strange and separated, no matter how much I mixed, but it went away after adding the dry ingredients. I’m usually not a huge fan of gingerbread, but these are amazing and I highly recommend them.

  2. Stubbs says:

    5 stars
    Made this recipe twice.
    Best cookies ever!

  3. Penelope says:

    Amazing recipe!

  4. Melanie says:

    Can I freeze this dough for future thaw and use?

    1. Melissa says:

      Yes, it freezes like a dream! Baked cookies also freeze very well!

  5. Yelena Chekoff says:

    Never bake or boil honey. It turns toxic if heated up above 40 degrees C.

  6. Shiro says:

    uhm can i use brown sugar instead? it makes it tastes more like molasses.

    1. Melissa says:

      I haven’t made it with it but you can sure try!