Holiday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake Style

Holiday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake Style

Gingerbread Cookies are as good a reason as any to bring up a touchy subject we all face now and then. Holiday dread.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas and all the other reasons and holidays we celebrate this time of year. But there’s one part of the season that gets me a little down. Christmas Cookies. Just the phrase “Christmas Cookies” brings up visions of sugar plum fairies ransacking my kitchen– leaving a sticky silver and gold sugary residue across everything in sight.

Which can only mean one thing, it’s not the holiday mayhem or even the Christmas cookies themselves I dread. It’s those dadgum cookie decorations. They can be so tedious and fussy. That’s where these Christmas Gingerbread Cookies come in. They’re every bit as festive as any cookie dribbled with syrupy food dye, but they’re a breeze to make at half the calories.

It starts with a solid recipe from Martha Stewart that I spiced up. Her standard Gingerbread Cookies are rolled out and cut into elaborate holiday shapes. I realize that’s the classic way to go, but I don’t see the point of all that fuss and muss. Because the main reason cookie cutters were invented was to open the door to cookie decorating. I’m sure you know what cookie decorating leads to. That’s right, way too much sugar, messy food dyes, sticky counters, and neat little piles of gingerbread men bound and gagged with red and green ribbons. I don’t think so. Not my style.

Holiday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake StyleHoliday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake StyleHoliday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake Style

Because if I want Christmas Gingerbread Cookies– I want them now. So my extra gingery version gets made in advance. The dough is kept in the fridge or freezer until the cookie monster strikes. Then in true slice and bake style, I have fresh from the oven homemade cookies in 10–12 minutes. Any time, any day… even Christmas Day.

However, I realize it’s the holidays. Despite my snark, I’m not immune to a little Christmas cheer. So I’ve dipped these Christmas Gingerbread Cookies in sparkly turbinado sugar crystals. Even if I don’t much like cookie decorating, a little Christmas bling never hurt no cookie. GREG

Holiday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake StyleHoliday Gingerbread Cookies Slice and Bake Style

Slice and Bake Gingerbread Cookies 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 24Source adapted from Martha StewartPublished

You may alternatively freeze the log of dough and slice and bake these cookies frozen.

gingerbread cookies


  • 3 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoon unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 2 ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon ginger, fresh, peeled, and finely grated
  • ½ cup unsulfured molasses
  • ⅓‑½ cup turbinado or demerara sugar


In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, spices, and baking soda.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, brown sugar, and grated ginger on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in molasses. Beat in flour mixture in batches until the dough just comes together.

Shape dough into a log about 12 inches long and 3 inches in diameter; wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours (or up to overnight, see note).

Preheat oven to 325ºF. Pour the turbinado or demerara sugar into a shallow bowl or sloped plate. Line two or three baking sheets (depending on size) with parchment paper or nonstick silicone baking sheets. Slice dough into 24 slices about ½‑inch thick. Dip one side of cookie in the turbinado or demerara sugar. Place, sugar-side up, onto the baking sheets, spacing each cookie 2 inches apart. Bake until surfaces crack slightly, about 10–12 minutes. Let cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire racks to cool completely. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days.