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  1. Great Grandma's Gingerbread Cookies Recipe

January can be a long month. Usually it is gray and cold and after the excitement of the holidays, there is not much to anticipate. The holiday baking extravaganza may be over, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t great items to bake for winter! Why not make winter an occasion by baking something special, such as a batch of fragrant gingerbread cookies?

Gingerbread is usually a Christmas specialty, but I decided to hold off making any gingerbread treats until after Christmas. To avoid feel too Christmas-y, changing the cookie cutters from gingerbread men to snowflakes was the solution. Perfect for a cold and windy winter night with a cup of coffee, this old family recipe will warm your soul and look appropriately festive for the wintery season!

These cookies are the classic gingerbread you crave and will instantly become one of your post-Christmas favorites! Enjoy the snow!

A gingerbread cookie in the shape of a snowflake.

Great Grandma’s Gingerbread Cookies

5 from 3 votes
Gingerbread is a classic holiday flavor, holding flavors of the past. This recipe has been passed down for generations in my family, and I hope it becomes a staple in yours.
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 20


  • 1 cup lard
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 5 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • dragees (optional)


  • Place lard in a large pot. Use real lard; it’s all-natural and makes these cookies taste amazing! Add molasses and sugar. Stir together then boil. After dissolved, let the mixture cool completely.
    1 cup lard, 1 cup molasses, 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • In a large mixer, combine cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, eggs, salt, vanilla, and baking soda. Also add flour.
    1 ½ tsp cinnamon, 1 ½ tsp ground ginger, ¼ tsp ground nutmeg, 2 large eggs, ¼ tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1 tsp baking soda, 5 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • Add the lard, molasses, and sugar mixture to the mixer and combine until thick. Aim for the dough to be stiff and dense.
  • This dough may be made a day in advance and stored in the refrigerator until used. When ready to make the cookies, start with a floured surface. Roll the dough out to the desired thickness. The dough will not rise much in the oven, so roll it to at least a ¼-inch thickness. To make the shape of the cookie, use something festive, such as a snowflake cookie cutter! The best part of cookie making is the embellishments you add. Just like my grandma in years past, I always use dragees. You can add anything you want to the top of the cookies: just be creative! By adding these elements before baking, the embellishments will adhere better to the cookie.
    dragees (optional)
  • Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes at 375°F.


Serving: 1cookieCalories: 222kcal
Course Cookies
Cuisine American
Difficulty Intermediate
Method Baking

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I’m Kaleb! I'm not a chef, professional baker, landscaper, or designer, but I like to play each on Knollgate Farm. Come join me on my journey and let's learn together!

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  1. 5 stars
    This turned out the most gorgeous batch of gingerbread I’ve ever made. I was really nervous about lard spreading a lot more than shortening, so I dos sub 1/4 of the lard with shortening. I don’t think I needed to. Gingerbread can be somewhat generic, but this garnered compliments all around

  2. 5 stars
    Hi Kaleb,

    Let me start off by saying how much I love watching your videos and trying your recipes. While shopping yesterday I picked up a bag of lemons to try your lemon pie later this weekend. As for these cookies I was apprehensive at first…I am a 63 year old who bakes weekly and tries new recipes more often than using old ones…that’s how we find great things right! Well these cookies are a great thing. Why they don’t have more reviews is beyond me because they deserve to be tried. I have made many variations of gingerbread cookies but never one that involved cooking the molasses, sugar and lard first. These cookies have that perfect crispy outer edge while still having a light, flavorful, tender inside. Kudos to your great grandma and all the other wonderful influences you have had in your life. The must be so proud of the beautiful person you have become! P.S. ( I only wish there was a video of you making these)

  3. 5 stars
    Hi Kaleb,
    I made your recipe for gingerbread cookies this morning with my two granddaughters. I mixed up the dough yesterday and we rolled out the dough after chilling overnight in the fridge. This is a lovely dough to work with and the spices were right on .I was looking for an old fashioned dough using lard and this recipe was just what I was looking for.My new favourite gingerbread cookies. Thanks for sharing your Great Grandmothers recipe .