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25 Days of Cookies: Ginger Crackles

Photograph by Daniel Montoya

Ginger crackles are a holiday favorite in my family. I've been making these cookies every Christmas for more than a decade, when I first learned how to make them from a friend who brought them to my holiday cookie exchange party during our college years.

This recipe is a slight variation from the original, and is named for the way the top of the cookie has a crackled texture. They're perfectly spiced, similar to gingerbread, and are completely addictive!

A tip: If you like the cookies to be soft and chewy like they're just out of the oven, be sure to store them in an airtight container. But if you like them crunchy and solid enough for dipping in hot cocoa or milk, let them sit out on a plate for about 24 hours to dry out.

RELATED: Mint Chocolate Snowball Cookies

RECIPE: Ginger Crackles
Yields about three dozen cookies

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 12 minutes per baking sheet


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 large egg


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
  3. In a stand mixer, beat the butter and 1 cup of sugar on medium speed until well-combined and fluffy.
  4. Add egg and molasses to butter mixture; beat well.
  5. Add dry ingredients and mix until all ingredients are incorporated and a dough forms, scraping down the sides of the bowl often.
  6. Shape the dough into tablespoon-sized balls and roll each ball in the remaining 1/3 cup sugar. Put cookies two inches apart on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. The cookies will spread while baking.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges and puffed, about 12 minutes.
  8. Remove cookies from the oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

Store cookies in an airtight container, such as a zippered plastic bag or tupperware, for up to 10 days.

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Photograph by Daniel Montoya

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