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Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies

Full of tons of flavor and perfectly soft these Glazed Gingerbread Cookies are a must make during the Christmas season! Perfect for enjoying with the family or for a cookie exchange, this is a recipe you will save to make year after year!

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Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies arranged out on a wire cooling rack with a bowl and brush full of glaze.

Soft Gingerbread Man Recipe

Gingerbread is my favorite holiday flavor, just search ‘Gingerbread’ on this site and you will see that! So I thought this year for the Christmas season I would finally share the gingerbread cookies I have been making for my family for years!

These Glazed Gingerbread Cookies to me are the epitome of what I gingerbread man should be. These cookies are tender and soft on the inside filled with a ton of flavor from all the spices added, and the glaze on the outside doesn’t just look nice it give the cookies this little bit of a crunchy coating when you bite in. I am literally drooling…

I would not call this gingerbread recipe hard but I will admit it does, like most cookie recipes have quite a few steps so it does end up taking some time, but in batches! For example you will want to make the dough the day before you are actually ready to bake so it can chill and rest in the fridge overnight. Then it can take some time to roll out and cut that many cookies. The good news is that they bake fast! And then of course glazing the cookies, which really isn’t that hard but again another step.

I actually like this recipe when doing a cookies baking party/making a day out of baking cookies because of the fact that the dough is made the night before. It makes it easier when the time comes to just roll and bake these ones!

A pile of glazed gingerbread men on a wire cooling rack.

So let’s take a look at the supplies you will need to get these made!

Supplies for Cookies

A lot of typical supplies are needed for these gingerbread cookies as well as some specific baking supplies:

  • standard kitchen accessories like mixing bowls, measure cups & spoons, spatula
  • stand mixer, or in a pinch an electric hand mixer
  • plastic wrap
  • parchment paper
  • rolling pin
  • cookie cutters
  • baking trays
  • wire racks
  • pastry brush
A glazed gingerbread cookie tilted up leaning against a stack of more cookies on a wire cooling rack.

Ingredients for Gingerbread

This is one of those recipes where the list looks so long but in reality a lot of it is just spices! You’ll need:

  • all-purpose flour
  • cocoa powder
  • ground ginger
  • ground cloves
  • ground cinnamon
  • baking soda
  • kosher salt
  • unsalted butter, room temperature
  • granulated sugar
  • egg
  • molasses (not blackstrap)
  • light corn syrup
  • powdered/confectioners sugar
  • vanilla extract

For a complete detailed list of the ingredients continue towards the bottom of the page.

Ingredients need to make soft glazed gingerbread cookies.

Instructions for Soft Gingerbread Man Recipe

Make the Dough the Night Before

In a medium sized bowl measure out and mix together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

A collage showing the dry ingredients being added and mixed in a bowl.

In the bowl of a stand mixer (you can use a hand mixer if needed) with the paddle attachment beat the butter 1-2 minutes. Add the sugar and beat an additional 2-3 minutes scraping down the sides when needed. Add the egg to the butter and sugar, beat until fully incorporated and scrape down the sides. Lastly add the molasses and corn syrup, beat until combined remembering to again scrape down the sides of the bowl. 

A collage showing the steps of beating the butter, sugar, and egg.
A collage showing the egg, molasses, and corn syrup being beat into the dough.

Add the dry ingredients in 3 batches mixing on low letting the dry ingredients get incorporated between each batch. Mix until fully incorporated and no streaks of flour remain, the dough should be soft and somewhat crumbly looking until you roll it together.

A collage showing the steps of adding the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients.

Roll the dough out into a ball/brick shape with floured hands then flatten the ball into a rectangle. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. 

Gingerbread Cookie Dough wrapped tight in plastic wrap.

Baking the Cookies

Remove the dough from the fridge about 10 minutes before you are ready to roll it out. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line baking trays with parchment paper. 

To roll out cookies sprinkle flour over a clean work surface and rolling pin. Lightly roll dough just shy of ½ inch (or around 1 cm). Use cookie cutter to cut out your cookies. Place cookies 1 inch apart on the baking tray. Reroll the dough when needed and continue to cut out more cookies until all the dough is used (no need to chill inbetween*). 

*Although you do not need to chill in between batches I will note that the dough can be really hard to work with if it starts to get to warm and works best when still slightly cool. So if you aren’t a quick worker and you are afraid of the dough getting warm, I would recommend doing half of the dough at a time and keeping the second half in the fridge until you are ready to use it. I made the mistake of working with the dough next to our running wood burning stove where it was hot and the dough practically melted in my hands, if this happens just return the dough to the fridge to cool down again.

A collage showing the cookies being rolled and cutout of the dough.

Now the really fun part! Press designs into the cookies if desired like eyes, buttons, and smiles… with a clean lollipop stick or similar sized skewer. Kids LOVE helping at this stage, I usually let my kids go crazy with a batch of them, the gingerbread end up with all sorts of designs, which always end up looking pretty cool when glazed!

Collage showing before the cookies go into the oven and after they are cooked.

When done pressing in the designs transfer to the oven and bake cookies 7-12 minutes depending on the size. My cookie cutter is 3 ½ inches and takes 7 minutes, any cookie cutter larger than that you will want to keep in a few more minutes.

For the best result you will want to take the cookies out of the oven before the sides and edges start to darken and look hard. A good way to tell if it is done is to give the center of one of the cookies a little tap, if the cookie bounces back into place or close to back in place it is done, if it is still gooey it needs more time.

When cookies are done transfer to a wire cooling rack.

To Glaze

Last part which is technically optional (as well as adding eyes and buttons with the lollipop stick). You could leave these plain, you could even decorate them in the more traditional sense like with frosting and candy if you wish!

But if you are using these for a cookie exchange or to give out I love the glaze addition! I swear it makes these cookies ‘fancy’.

So glazing these cookies isn’t necessary but I think it definitely sets them apart! Plus it is pretty easy:

While cookies are baking (or shortly after) make the glaze. In a small bowl whisk together the powdered sugar, vanilla, and water until smooth.

When cookies are done let cool at least 10 minutes (longer is okay) with a pastry brush gently glaze the top of each cookie being sure to cover and fill the designs you made. Let the cookies cool and the glaze harden before storing.

A wire cooling rack full of freshly glazed gingerbread cookies showing off the face and button designs.
Glazed Gingerbread Cookies arranged on a wire cooling rack with a bowl full of glaze.
Close up of a stack of glazed gingerbread men on a wire rack.
A hand holding a single glazed gingerbread man.

That is it! Have an awesome holiday season! Merry Christmas!

You might enjoy some of my other holiday favorites:

A bunch of gingerbread men on a wire cooling rack, one of the cookies is standing up showing off the glazed front.

Glazed Gingerbread Cookies

Yield: 44 cookies
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Rest Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours 47 minutes

A large batch of soft and flavorful gingerbread cookies, complete with a glaze. These cookies will impress everyone from the people at the cookie exchange to santa himself!

Ingredients

  • 3 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup

For the Glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons
  • ½ vanilla extract

Instructions

Make Dough the Night Before

  1. In a medium sized bowl measure out and mix together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer (you can use a hand mixer if needed) with the paddle attachment beat the butter 1-2 minutes. Add the sugar and beat an additional 2-3 minutes scraping down the sides if needed. Add the egg to butter and sugar and beat until fully incorporated. Lastly add the molasses and corn syrup, beat until well combined scraping down the sides of the bowl when needed.
  3. Add the dry ingredients in 3 batches mixing on low letting the dry ingredients get incorporated between each batch. Mix until full incorporated and no streaks of flour remain, the doiugh should be soft.
  4. Roll the dough out into a ball with your hands then flatten the ball into a rectangle about an inch thick. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Baking the Cookies

  1. Remove the dough from the fridge about 10 minutes before you are ready to roll it out. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line baking trays with parchment paper.
  2. To roll out cookies generously sprinkle flour over a clean work surface and rolling pin. Lightly roll dough just shy of ½ inch (or around 1 cm). Use cookie cutter to cut out your cookies. Place cookies 1 inch apart on the baking tray. Reroll the dough when needed and continue to cut out more cookies until all the dough is used (no need to chill inbetween*).
  3. Press designs into the cookies if desired like eyes, buttons, etc... with a clean lollipop stick or similar sized skewer.
  4. Transfer to the oven and bake cookies in batches 7-12 minutes depending on the size. My cookie cutter is 3 ½ inches and takes 7 minutes, any cookie cutter larger than that you will want to keep in a few more minutes.
  5. When cookies are done transfer to a wire cooling rack.

To Glaze

Glazing these cookies isn't necessary but I think it definitely sets them apart!

  1. While cookies are baking make the glaze. In a small bowl whisk together the powdered sugar, vanilla, and water until smooth.
  2. When cookies are done let cool at least 10 minutes (longer is okay) with a pastry brush gently glaze the top of each cookie being sure to cover the designs you made. Let the cookies cool and the glaze harden before storing.

Notes

*Although you do not need to chill in between batches I will note that the dough can be really hard to work with if it starts to get to warm, I made the mistake of working with the dough next to our running wood burning stove where it was hot and the dough practically melted in my hands, if this happens just return the dough to the fridge to cool down again.

Glaze hardening will depend on the climate of where you live, but it shouldn't take too long, for me it is usually dry to the touch in 15-20 minutes.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 44 Serving Size: 1 cookie
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 81Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 69mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 0gSugar: 10gProtein: 1g

Nutritional data is automated, final nutritional information will depend on ingredients used and any changes made.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment below on the blog or share a photo with me tag @the_schmidty_wife! Can't wait to see what you made!

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Peace & Love

Lauren, The Schmidty Wife

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