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Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies: Your Ultimate Guide

Gingerbread Men and Soft Molasses Cookies are the ultimate Christmas treats! But what sets these two cookies apart and which one is best?

I’m sharing my favorite recipes for both of these delicious cookies and tips to bake great cookies for your next holiday party, cookie exchange, or any time of year! 

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies: What’s the Difference?

Gingerbread cookies are known for their cozy spices, like ground ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. They are typically crisp and sturdy, making them ideal for using cookie cutters and decorating as gingerbread men or houses.

Molasses cookies, in contrast, have a richer and more intense flavor due to the use of molasses. Depending on the recipe and baking techniques, these cookies can range from soft and chewy to light and crisp.

Looking for More Gingerbread Recipes?

For the ultimate holiday activity, everyone loves making and decorating gingerbread men!

You can find everything you need to make and frost gingerbread men in this chewy gingerbread cookie recipe.

Craving ginger snaps? Be sure to check out my crispy gingersnaps here.

What Type of Molasses is Best for Cookies

For making cookies, dark molasses is typically the best choice. It has a rich, deep flavor that complements baking spices without being too overpowering. Here’s what the different types of molasses mean:

  • Light molasses is the first syrup extracted from the sugar refining process. It’s lighter in color and has a milder, sweeter flavor.
  • Dark molasses is the second extraction and is used in gingerbread, or anywhere a deeper molasses flavor is desired.
  • Blackstrap molasses is the third and final extraction. It is the darkest and most bitter flavor. 
  • Unsulphured molasses is preferred for baking because it has a cleaner, more natural flavor compared to sulfured varieties.

Each type of molasses brings something unique to recipes, but for the best cookies, I love this un-sulfured dark molasses.

These are The Best Chewy Molasses Cookies 

You don’t need to wait until fall to bake these delicious treats. Bake a batch of these chewy molasses cookies, and let the cozy vibes take over. 

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Here’s why these Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies are so good. 

  • Uses dark brown sugar for extra moistness. 
  • Candied ginger pieces add the perfect chewy texture.
  • Dark unsulphered molasses gives a deliciously rich flavor.

The full recipe can be found on the recipe card at the bottom of this blog post. 

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Baking Tips for Chewy Molasses Cookies

  • Use butter that is softened but not melted.
  • Roll the dough balls in sugar before baking.
  • Don’t flatten the dough before baking.

Suggested Variations for Mix-ins

  • Add white chocolate chips for a sweet contrast.
  • Mix in raisins and nuts for added texture and flavor.

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Freezing Tips and Shelf Life


  • Room Temperature: Keep your baked cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. This keeps them fresh and tasty.

Freezing Baked Cookies:

  • Single Layer Freezing: For longer storage, place the cookies in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze them until they’re solid, about an hour. This way, they won’t stick together.
  • Transfer to Freezer Bag: Once frozen, move the cookies to a freezer bag or airtight container. Don’t forget to label the bag with the date.
  • Thawing: When you want to eat them, take out the cookies and let them thaw at room temperature for a few hours. They’ll be as good as fresh!

Freezing Cookie Dough:

  • Portion the Dough: Scoop the cookie dough into individual balls using a spoon or cookie scoop. Place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Freeze Individually: Freeze the dough balls until solid, about an hour.
  • Store Frozen Dough: Put the frozen dough balls into a freezer bag or airtight container. Label it with the date and type of cookie dough.
  • Baking from Frozen: When you’re ready to bake, defrost the dough balls for about 20 minutes. Roll the dough in granulated sugar, place the dough balls on a baking sheet, and bake them at the usual temperature. 

With these tips, you can have fresh, homemade cookies anytime. Frozen cookie dough can last up to 3 months in the freezer. Enjoy your baking!

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Gingerbread vs. Molasses Cookies

Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

You don't need to wait until Fall to bake these delicious treats. Bake a batch of these chewy molasses cookies, and let the cozy vibes take over.
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  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter softened-1.5 sticks
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup molasses dark or blackstrap for a more intense flavor
  • 1/4 cup white sugar for rolling


  • Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Mix Dry Ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.
  • Cream Butter and Sugar: In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and dark brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add Wet Ingredients: Beat in the egg and molasses until well combined.
  • Combine Dry and Wet Ingredients: Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, mixing on low speed until just combined.
  • Form Dough Balls: Roll the dough into 1-inch balls. Roll each ball in white sugar to coat.
  • Bake: Place the dough balls on the prepared cookie sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are crisp around the edges and crackly on top.
  • Cool: Allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 2 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.


Storage: Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. For longer storage, freeze the cookies and thaw as needed.
Variations: For a different twist, add white chocolate chips or finely chopped crystallized ginger to the dough before baking.
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