Cookies/ Dessert/ Recipes/ Seasonal Recipes

long winter molasses cookies

my, are these ever yummy.

If you’re a big molasses/old fashioned cookie fan in general, you’ll go crazy for these large flat spicy cookies. You all are probably going to laugh at me when I say this, but I really feel like these cookies are cookies that Laura Ingalls would take to school, tucked in the pocket of her prairie dress.

Okay, get it over with.

I know you’re laughing at the poor girl on the other side of the computer who lives vicariously through a children’s book character.

Heh heh heh heh.

It’s not as if I re-read every Little House book ever written every few years…or drink cambric tea every morning…or make vanity cakes like that one time at Nelly’s birthday party…or nickname my real life boyfriend “almanzo” after my first true literary love.

good grief!


These molasses cookies are crisp…almost like a ginger snap. Now normally, I prefer a more chewier spice cookie but I love the snap and texture of these. They are sturdy and sweet, and would be lovely drizzled with a basic flat icing.

To make ’em, just mix your dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and….a sprinkle of white pepper! that’s the secret!) in a bowl.

For the record, I usually don’t mix my cookie dough in pots. I was just currently out of bowls.

Actually, I just didn’t feel like washing any more dishes. So there.

wet ingredients in another pot bowl:

melted butter, eggie, sugar and molassessssss!

Mix together wet and dry and then wrap up and chill for an hour. I usually hate cookies that require chilling time….but these are worth it!

When the dough is all nice and firm from the fridge, roll it out and either use cookie cutters or a glass to cut nice big, round cookies.

Bake the cookies at 375 for eight minutes. They taste better when eaten out of a prairie dress pocket…with a nice cold glass of milk.

Long Winter Molasses Cookies

makes about two dozen large cookies

2 cups all purpose flour

1 egg

1/4 cup molasses

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4th tsp ground white pepper

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup granulated sugar

2 tsp baking soda

1 stick + 4 T melted butter

In a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, ground ginger, white pepper, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the melted butter, sugar, egg and molasses. Stir well to combine.

Add dry ingredients to wet and stir to form a sticky dough. Wrap in wax paper and chill in the fridge for at least an hour before rolling out on a flour surface and punching with either cookie cutters or a glass.

Bake cookies on a lined sheet tray at 375 for eight minutes.

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72 Comments

  • Reply
    Tab - Just Weighing In
    November 5, 2010 at 8:06 am

    oh my heavens those look amazing! Definitely adding it to my list of things to try soon!

  • Reply
    Michele @ Healthy Cultivations
    November 5, 2010 at 8:14 am

    It’s so interesting how there’s pepper in these cookies.

    And isn’t molasses so pretty. Makes me think of people saying things like, “…slow as molasses in January.” ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    katie
    November 5, 2010 at 8:18 am

    i kind of love the fact that you love the little house on a prairie series almost as much as i do – and i hope when i have kids that the books are still as loved then as they were when we were kids.

  • Reply
    Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin
    November 5, 2010 at 8:19 am

    Oh my gosh these look incredible!! I bet they would be delicious crumbled over some ice cream or oatmeal!

  • Reply
    Camille
    November 5, 2010 at 8:21 am

    Well this is news to me! I thought that Almanzo was your boy’s real name!

  • Reply
    Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf
    November 5, 2010 at 8:23 am

    A long time ago, in my homeschool cooperative group, I took a class called “Prairie Primer.” Basically we read through and discussed the Laura Ingalls Wilder books then we did a bunch of fun crafts and whatnot that Laura might have done. On the last day of class we had a party and had to bring something to eat that was common in those days. I brought hardtack. Yes, I so did.

    But one of the helpers (a parent) in the class brought roast duck. Holy moley was it good!

  • Reply
    jenna
    November 5, 2010 at 8:27 am

    ooo i bet these are spicy little things!

  • Reply
    Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun
    November 5, 2010 at 8:27 am

    I love how much you adore Laura Ingalls Wilder. And those cookies do sound like something right out of one of the books.

  • Reply
    Lindsay @ The Ketchup Diaries
    November 5, 2010 at 8:28 am

    I LOVED molasses cookies. Definitely an underrated treat!

  • Reply
    meg
    November 5, 2010 at 8:29 am

    I see what you did there re: the title of this post! I can’t find that book in my collection and I’m sad because I want to read it – it’s one of my favorites.

    ALSO, I’ve thought all this time that his name actually WAS Almanzo and I have to admit, I was a good bit jealous…

  • Reply
    janae@hungryrunnergirl.com
    November 5, 2010 at 8:32 am

    My mom made molasses cookies at least once a month growing up! I can’t wait to try this recipe with her!! Thanks!!

  • Reply
    Jocelyn
    November 5, 2010 at 8:32 am

    I LOVED the Laura Ingalls Wilder books! I used to wear prairie dresses and bonnets and petticoats to school when I was a kid. I also went to “Pioneer Camp” ….TWICE. So you are definitely not the only person who thinks they may have been born in the wrong century ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Natalia - a side of simple
    November 5, 2010 at 8:37 am

    Laura puts purpose into my life, nuff said ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Andi
    November 5, 2010 at 8:40 am

    These look great! I remember trying to make “snow candy” like Laura did by pouring molasses into cold snow when I was a little girl. Now that I live in chilly Wisconsin, I should try it again. And I must admit, the only way I get through Wisconsin winters, including trekking through huge snow drifts to get to work and school, is by imagining myself as Laura, bravely surviving a prairie blizzard.

  • Reply
    Estela @ Weekly Bite
    November 5, 2010 at 8:41 am

    I love big ole molasses cookies like that !!!

  • Reply
    Megan (Braise The Roof)
    November 5, 2010 at 8:44 am

    Those look like they would be amazing with a cup of coffee…3pm coffee break? A wise idea, I’d say. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m with you on making cookie recipes that have to chill- although it’s great to make a double batch and just freeze the extra dough (since it usually freezes really well, too). Then you can make them again without having to start from scratch!

  • Reply
    The Blue-Eyed Bakers
    November 5, 2010 at 8:56 am

    Oooh delicious! We LOVE molasses cookies…but have never had a crispy one…! Need to make these asap. And yes, they are totally Little House cookies..!

  • Reply
    Lynne
    November 5, 2010 at 8:59 am

    Funny! I’ve been reading for a while, and I thought your boyfriend’s name WAS Almanzo!!

  • Reply
    Alina
    November 5, 2010 at 9:02 am

    I just re-read Pride & Prejudice. I live vicariously through that book every few years, among others… no judgment, haha.

  • Reply
    Michelle
    November 5, 2010 at 9:05 am

    Nice memory. I didn’t know Laura Ingalls carry these cookies in her pocket. Lol.

  • Reply
    Jillian @ Reshape Your Life
    November 5, 2010 at 9:05 am

    I love reading your recipes. Half the time not even for the actual recipe!! Your writing style is so entertaining, it’s really a story within a recipe! I love them Jenna, keep them coming!

  • Reply
    Food & Other Things
    November 5, 2010 at 9:16 am

    I love this type of cookie, especially in the winter! They go perfectly with a cup of tea!

  • Reply
    Maggie
    November 5, 2010 at 9:18 am

    Those look good! Did you use blackstrap molasses or a different kind?

  • Reply
    Rachel @ The Avid Appetite
    November 5, 2010 at 9:20 am

    Love molasses cookies and cakes! Perfect for the holiday season!

  • Reply
    Katie (Life... Discombobulated)
    November 5, 2010 at 9:20 am

    If it helps, when I read the title “Long Winter Molasses Cookies” my thoughts immediately went to Kiersten, one of the American Girls Characters. ๐Ÿ™‚ I poured over those books (the original ones) every winter when I was younger. It might be worth trying to find my old copies this winter… What better way to spend a cold, snowy day than with a molasses cookie, a cup of tea, and Kiersten??? haha Thanks, Jenna! The images your writing brings to my mind are always so vivid! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Rachel
    November 5, 2010 at 9:26 am

    I’m pretty sure you and I would have been best friends as kids. I read and re-read the entire series over and over, I refused to wear anything that wasn’t a Laura dress, (made by my grandmother,) I wore a bonnet, cooked from the cookbook, and forced my friends to have old fashied tea parties and wear the dresses. I even tried very hard to convince my mother we didn’t need electricity at one point. I should go back and read those books again… it’s been a LONG time! The best part is when she tricks Nelly into going into the part of the water with all the leeches… totally gross, and totally bada** on the part of Laura ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Krystina (Basil & Wine)
    November 5, 2010 at 9:28 am

    I love that you go from dainty little pastries and huge cookies. ๐Ÿ˜› These look wonderful.

  • Reply
    grocery goddess jen
    November 5, 2010 at 9:52 am

    You make everything look so simple and appealing, Jenna. I’m not sure I’d have to wear a prairie dress to enjoy these!

  • Reply
    helen
    November 5, 2010 at 9:54 am

    you should make vanity cakes!!!!! i always wanted to.

  • Reply
    Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga)
    November 5, 2010 at 9:59 am

    As a kid…I LOVED molasses cookies, gingerssnap cookies, you name it, those seasonings and blends were all me! Nothing better than a chewy, perfect molasses cookie! I dont eat them anymore b/c no one can make them like my grandma can make them and she’s not around anymore so I ought to try to veganize and GF a recipe for them….I am craving them now ๐Ÿ™‚

    Oh and Laura Ingalls and Little House was the go-to programming after school, right after Scooby Doo was over…hah!

  • Reply
    Lilac
    November 5, 2010 at 10:07 am

    The crisp ones are nice soaked it tea or milk with honey. And I don’t think I’d describe you as “poor”. You’re very blessed with your career, skills and ability to take frequent trips. Have a nice day Jenna.

  • Reply
    cyndie
    November 5, 2010 at 10:08 am

    I read the whole Little House on the Prairie series when I was in first grade. I freaking love it when you reference them! Immediately after reading the title, I recognized the reference ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Clare @ Fitting It All In
    November 5, 2010 at 10:26 am

    I was at Anthropologie yesterday and saw their line of classic books covered in beautiful patterned fabrics. I thought of you. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Shayne
    November 5, 2010 at 10:28 am

    Like Andi said in her earlier comment, I tried to make maple candy in the snow when I was a kid too! Those books were and remain inspiring. Thanks for the recipe; I’ve got it bookmarked to make in the not-so-distant future…

  • Reply
    The Wife of a Dairyman
    November 5, 2010 at 10:28 am

    Love molasses! Gooey goodness:)

  • Reply
    Megan @ Healthy Hoggin'
    November 5, 2010 at 10:36 am

    You must have read my mind! I was CRAVING a molasses cookie!! Ginger and Molasses cookies are my favorite at this time of the year. I prefer mine on the softer side, but I pretty much love under-baking all of my cookies. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    eml
    November 5, 2010 at 10:38 am

    I prefer a nice, soft, chewy, thick, rich molasses cookie myself too ;). But can’t go wrong with a gingersnap!

  • Reply
    Dee
    November 5, 2010 at 10:44 am

    holy wow! this looks good enough to eat through my screen! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Sarah for Real
    November 5, 2010 at 10:45 am

    Oh I love molasses cookies. I think these have a good chance at the great honor of being the first thing I bake in my newly remodeled kitchen!

  • Reply
    yogapol3
    November 5, 2010 at 10:49 am

    Love those. Love you, miss Ingalls. ๐Ÿ™‚ XOXO

    big sis Mary

  • Reply
    polly
    November 5, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Those cookies are totally Ma Ingalls worthy. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Love you bunches,
    Mary Ingalls XOXO

  • Reply
    Mary @ Bites and Bliss
    November 5, 2010 at 10:55 am

    These look so dense from the outside! Ohh I bet they’re fabulous.

  • Reply
    Heather @ Get Healthy With Heather
    November 5, 2010 at 11:02 am

    Mmmmm I love spices and molasses mixed together. I could get down with this cookie ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Dawn @ Running at Dawn
    November 5, 2010 at 11:15 am

    These look delicious! Could you also slice & bake from the chilled log instead of rolling them out? Or does rolling do something necessary to the dough?

    • Reply
      jenna
      November 5, 2010 at 12:15 pm

      absolutely! Either way would work really well.

  • Reply
    Lacey @ Lake Life
    November 5, 2010 at 11:25 am

    Molasses is the devil ๐Ÿ™

  • Reply
    Hope
    November 5, 2010 at 11:31 am

    Lol you crack me up girl! These look great!

  • Reply
    rebecca lustig
    November 5, 2010 at 11:47 am

    there is something so comforting about simplicity! love the recipe

  • Reply
    Rachel @ Fit Fun and Fabulous
    November 5, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Whew those look gooooood

  • Reply
    Jessica @ How Sweet It Is
    November 5, 2010 at 12:48 pm

    Love that these are so thin and crisp!

  • Reply
    Shauna
    November 5, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    You’re not the only one, don’t worry. Fluffy white cake with vanilla frosting and fresh squeezed lemonade has always had a special place in my heart due to a certain birthday party in the Little House books!

  • Reply
    theTreadmilldiaries
    November 5, 2010 at 3:23 pm

    I can appreciate a good Little House on the Prairie reference. It’s only one of the best television shows ever. And I’m also a fan of a good molasses cookie. Yum.

  • Reply
    Dani @ Dani Does It
    November 5, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    You mean Almanzo is NOT his real name??? Lol!

  • Reply
    Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin
    November 5, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I read those books ages ago but I think I only got to the 4th book. You make me want to go back and finish the series!

  • Reply
    Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat)
    November 5, 2010 at 4:42 pm

    I love that I’ve finally found someone who understands the Little House love. It makes me beyond happy to go back and read those books, reliving parts of my childhood in certain passages that are still so clear in my mind.

  • Reply
    Rhonda
    November 5, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    lol! well my 17 year old daughter makes raspberry cordial…..from Anne of Green Gables, she believes she will marry her own Gilbert Blythe one day ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    Salah@myhealthiestlifestyle
    November 5, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    Holy Moly….yummmm!!!! Must try those very very soon!

  • Reply
    Nora@LifeLifeEatRight
    November 5, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    mmmmm..I almost made a similar cookie the other day. Something about the cold weather and the sun setting earlier makes me crave winter spices and hearty flavors. I prefer a chewy cookie as well but these sound perfect. I’ve been loving your recipes ๐Ÿ™‚ so inspirational.

  • Reply
    Erin Robertson
    November 6, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    Mm, these look great!
    And do not fret about the LIW obsession, sista. I dressed up as her for a literary costume party last night. It was killer.

  • Reply
    Zen Tree Wellness
    November 6, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    Not only do I LOVE these cookies, but I LOOOOOVE Little House!

  • Reply
    Laura
    November 7, 2010 at 4:57 am

    wow, definitely took me a long time to connect where your boyfriend pseudonym was from. especially considering my namesake is Laura Ingalls Wilder… yep. my mom loved the books and TV show, and therefore named me after her and brought me up surrounded by the Little House on the Prairie booksets and reruns.

  • Reply
    Sarah B
    November 7, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    God bless these cookies. Ever since you posted them I haven’t stopped thinking about them. Probably a combination between my obsession with Laura and my love for all things wintery/Christmasy.

    Am I ever glad I finally made them today. And so were my dinner guests!

    So THANK YOU!

  • Reply
    Lizzy
    November 10, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Thank you for this recipe! I made them last weekend and the fiance is in cookie heaven.

  • Reply
    Edna
    November 11, 2010 at 5:22 am

    Is it sad that I thought the same thing re: Laura? Those cookies look delicious..

  • Reply
    Molly
    November 22, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    I loved the cookies! Mine didn’t come out crispy, I was a little sad. What did I do wrong? They were still incredible. Definately making them again! I plan on cutting them with christmas shapes next time and icing them!

  • Reply
    marian
    December 4, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    just made these. they were amazing. crispy and chewy at the same time – so good i said a little prayer thanking God for butter, sugar, and molasses. and your blog. rock on miss jenna!

  • Reply
    miranda
    December 5, 2010 at 7:11 pm

    Mmmm had to make these, not just because I too still want to be Laura, but they are perfect for winter baking! What makes cookies crack on top? Mine are perfectly smooth, but I want wrinkles like yours!

  • Reply
    Cinnamon Owl
    February 26, 2011 at 6:18 am

    I was reading one of your more recent blogs, United States of Cookies, and clicked on this link in the hopes the name of this cookie was referring to the Little House book. I am pleased to find out I am not the only one who revisits the Wilder family every few years! And I agree, I can totally see these stuffed into Laura’s pocket. I am going to have to try them!

  • Reply
    Hubby’s Favorite Treats | runbakerace
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  • Reply
    Project Christmas Cookie | runbakerace
    December 1, 2011 at 5:20 am

    […] used the husbandโ€™s favorite Molasses Cookie recipe for Eat Live Run and the gingerbread man cookie […]

  • Reply
    Erin
    June 28, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    Have you read The Wilder Life by Wendy McClure? I am reading it right now and it made me think of your Little House references. I think you would enjoy it!

  • Reply
    Emily
    September 10, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    I’ve just come across your blog through pinterest. You have so much beautiful food photography and I can’t wait to try these molasses cookies. I love baking and I’ve got all these new things to try out. But I had to comment because, well, listen – I also read Laura Ingalls Wilder books every few years. Gotta say, ‘Farmer Boy’ is one of my personal faves hahaha. Just giving you my respect – you had to know that there are others like you out there. lol!

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