Ginger "Snaps"

Merry Christmas! 

One of our favorite holiday activities is baking cookies. And when my daughter came to visit for the first time in a year, it was one of the things she mentioned wanting to do together. She specifically wanted to bake "gingerbread cookies."


I looked for recipes and found one on the Serious Eats website that looked perfect to me: easy and somewhat healthy. I love baking with whole wheat flour whenever I can. And this ginger snap recipe actually called for whole wheat flour.

I had most of the ingredients on hand--we just needed to purchase some fresh ginger root. These cookies contain both powdered ginger AND fresh ginger for a VERY gingery bite. If you love the flavor of real ginger and prefer a cookie that is not overly sweet, this recipe is a MUST TRY!

Of course you already know I had to adjust the recipe. I am not a follower of instructions. But this recipe really didn't need much tweaking. I cut the original amounts in half as I didn't want to bake 48 cookies. My halved recipe made more than 24. We don't have a stand mixer so we had to beat everything by hand, and a smaller amount of dough made this doable. If you're baking for an army, double this recipe!

The recipe also wanted us to bake the cookies for 22 minutes! And then leave them on the baking sheet for another 2 hours! This is in order to dry out the cookies for a "snappy" texture. We decided we didn't want the "snap" so we baked for 10 minutes and removed the cookies to a cooling rack after only a few minutes. Our cookies are soft and slightly chewy, which is the texture we prefer.

We made one more change to the original instructions. Instead of rolling the cookie dough balls in sugar, I just sprinkled a little on top. If you have raw turbinado sugar, this will look a lot more impressive! The granulated sugar seemed to get absorbed into the dough and not make much difference to the final product. I think you could skip this step altogether, unless you have a chunky type of decorative sugar.

Happy baking!!


6 ounces unsalted butter, slightly softened

100 grams (1/2 cup) sugar

1 TB freshly grated ginger root

1 TB powdered ginger

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 TB molasses

1 teaspoon vanilla

a few grinds of black pepper

1 large egg

1 & 1/4 cups whole wheat flour

Extra sugar for sprinkling, if desired

Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare a large cookie sheet (or 2) with parchment paper or Silpat sheets.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients up to the black pepper. (Not the egg and flour.) Beat well until mixture turns a lighter tan color, about 5 minutes. Add egg and beat some more until mixture is fairly smooth. Add flour and combine thoroughly. Roll dough into small balls (or just spoon onto cookie sheet) and sprinkle with sugar. No need to flatten balls as cookies will spread when baking. Bake 10 minutes for soft cookies or up to 22 minutes for crunchy ginger "snaps". Cool for several minutes on sheet for soft cookies or up to 2 hours for crunchy ones. Makes about 24 cookies.