Citrus Spice Gingerbread Cookie Recipe
There's nothing that fills your home with the smell of Christmas quite like baking a batch of gingerbread cookies. And this citrus spice gingerbread cookie recipe is no exception.
With notes of orange and lemon, this recipe offers a twist on your traditional gingerbread cookie. The orange zest helps bring out the spices and the lemon juice brightens the overall flavor.
This is a soft and chewy cookie recipe, which isn't ideal for gingerbread house construction. However rolling the cookies thinner and baking them a little longer makes for a crispier cookie that could work in a pinch.
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Citrus Spice Gingerbread Cookies
- 1 ½ sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- ½ cup unsulphured molasses
- Zest from one orange
- Juice from one lemon
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 - 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour
In a mixer with a paddle attachment, cream butter, and brown sugar on medium. Mix until fluffy.
Add molasses, egg, vanilla extract, orange zest, and lemon juice. Mix until it is all well incorporated. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and cloves together until combined.
On low speed, at a cupful at a time, slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. After everything is well mixed, the dough should be non-greasy to the touch. If the dough is still sticky after 4 cups of flour, add an extra half cup of flour.
Roll to 1/4 inch thickness between two sheets of parchment or wax paper. (Using my Joseph Joseph rolling pin is a life-saver because the guides take the guesswork out of getting the correct thickness.) After rolling, chill the dough for at least an hour.
Once the dough is well chilled and hard to the touch, cut out shapes and place them on a parchment paper-lined, light-colored baking sheet. Chill the cutout shapes again before baking.
Bake at 350 degrees for 7-9 minutes. Remove from the oven when the top surface of the cookies look matte with no shine. Leave the cookies to cool on a baking sheet for 10 minutes.
Remove cookies from the baking sheet with a spatula and place on a cooling rack to cool before decorating.
This recipe makes about 2 dozen 3-inch gingerbread cut-out cookies. When it's time to decorate, these cookies would pair nicely with traditional royal icing flavored with orange extract.
In the next few days, I'll be decorating this batch of citrus spice gingerbread cookies with this year's new Christmas designs. Here's a little glimpse of what's to come, so stay tuned!