There’s not much more I love than a good gingerbread man.
But then I discovered gingerbread yogis and my whole world changed.
You see, I’m in charge of baking Christmas cookies for a family event at the studio this weekend and Anna ordered these cookie cutters for me to use. I nearly cried. I mean, how cute are these? How perfect? She gave them to me yesterday after yoga, and I was too excited to wait. I had to try them out and I knew the perfect cookie to make.
Thick, chewy and spicy gingerbread cookies.
The kind your grandma made and the kind you get from artisan bakeries, sprinkled with coarse sugar. Dare I even say the kind that Pa brought Laura and Mary? Or would that be going too far?
I hate to say it—hate to go there—but I’m really sort of a gingerbread snob.
It’s been my favorite cookie forever and I know what I like (and don’t like). I know I like a lot of molasses, brown sugar, ground white pepper (secret ingredient!), butter and tons of ginger. I hate it when people skimp on the ginger. I mean it’s gingerbread for crying out loud!
These particular gingerbread cookies are made the old fashioned way, by boiling together the molasses, sugar and spices on the stove and then adding the baking soda, butter, egg and flour at the end. No mixer needed and there’s just something fun about adding baking soda to boiling sugar.
Trust me on this one.
You also don’t chill the dough in this recipe, which is always a good thing because who has time for that? There’s no telling when a cookie craving may strike, and it’s always good to be prepared so you can act fast.
If you missed the initial link, Anna got these cookie cutters here. Sadly I’ll be returning them to her, but only after I perfect a recipe for vegan sugar cookies so the kiddies can have something to decorate on Saturday after their yoga class.
I think my favorite is downward facing dog!
But tree pose? Seriously?
I ate this one first.
I have to say, the only way these cookies could possibly be cuter is if I decorated them with Lululemon frosting clothes. I mean, how cute would this gal be dressed in a pink power-y tank and groove pants?
Old Fashioned Gingerbread Cookies
adapted from Gourmet
makes about 4 dozen large man-shaped (or yogi-shaped!) cookies
3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 T ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2/3 cup molasses
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 egg, slightly beaten
Preheat the oven to 325.
Combine the brown sugar, molasses, ground cloves, white pepper, cinnamon and ginger in a large heavy-bottomed pot. Bring to a boil on the stove for about three minutes, stirring occasionally.
Take pot off the stove and add the baking soda (this is the exciting part!!!). Stir well.
Add the butter, adding only a few chunks at a time and stirring well so each addition melts before the next. Add the egg and stir.
Finally, add the flour and salt. The dough will be very soft and still warm, but roll out on a floured covered surface. Cut with cookie cutters or use a large glass to make regular shaped cookies.
Bake for twelve minutes.
Beth @ Beth's Journey to ThinDecember 2, 2010 at 7:40 am
hahaha those cookie cutters are adorable!! Decorating gingerbread men is one of my favorite holiday activities. The gingerbread yogis sounds even more fun!
Jessica @ How Sweet It IsDecember 2, 2010 at 7:40 am
Oh how cute are those cutters?! I am not a huge fan of gingerbread cookies alone, but my husband loves them. And white pepper in these?? I just may need to try!
NikitaDecember 2, 2010 at 7:42 am
Gingerbread yogis! how adorable! Must try one now 🙂
Clare@FittingItAllInDecember 2, 2010 at 7:55 am
Those are adorable!! I’ve seen ninjamen too! Making these are probably a better idea than undertaking and entire gingerbread house …
AllyDecember 2, 2010 at 7:56 am
OMG those cookie cutters are to die for!!! And your gingerbread looks so yummy.
Angela @ Eat Spin Run RepeatDecember 2, 2010 at 7:56 am
These are SO SO cute!! I think I’m definitely going to hunt down some cute cookie cutters and make these as Christmas gifts, using your recipe. I’ve never tried the boiling technique before but it sounds interesting. I’m SO excited!! 😀
Estela @ Weekly BiteDecember 2, 2010 at 7:57 am
I need to get my hands on those cookie cutters! So freakin’ cute!
Cathy B. @ Bright BakesDecember 2, 2010 at 7:58 am
ohmy goodness! this tops it all!!!!! I’m also excited because today is another christmas bake-a-thon in my kitchen… and I was just googling gingerbread men! because, yes, I too am a gingerbread snob. Sad fact. Are these chewy? or crispy? I don’t like crunchy gingerbread men…they’re just not my type!
cathy b. @ brightbakes
laurenDecember 2, 2010 at 7:59 am
i also loved the iced version of the cookies on the website!
Sarah @ goingongoalsDecember 2, 2010 at 7:59 am
OMG I looove those cookie cutter! They have been added to my christmas list!!1
LauraDecember 2, 2010 at 8:00 am
Oh my word. Want, no need, MUST HAVE those cookie cutters. That is sooo awesome. And I bet they taste phenomenal too. Little down dog Gingy is doing it better then I do my down dogs. Jealous of a gingerbread man, who would have thunk it.
Amanda (Eating Up)December 2, 2010 at 8:04 am
At first, I totally thought they were the ninja gingerbread men cookie cutters (http://www.amazon.com/Fred-Friends-Ninjabread-Cookie-Cutters/dp/B003YUBQHO).
These are way cooler.
KimDecember 2, 2010 at 8:04 am
It’s not a matter of wanting those cookie cutters for me right now. It’s become essential that I possess them. I’m putting them on my wish list! Great find, thanks for sharing!!
Liz @ Tip Top ShapeDecember 2, 2010 at 8:04 am
Oh my goodness, those cookie cutters are absolutely adorable!!!!
Alina @ Duty Free FoodieDecember 2, 2010 at 8:06 am
I love these gingerbread yogi shapes! Could they be any cuter? I think not.
JoanneDecember 2, 2010 at 8:16 am
Your favorite flavors in a gingerbread cookie are identical to mine. I printed this recipe and, look out oven, I’m ready to bake. I’ll have to use the tradit. gingerbread cookie cutter or… maybe there’s a “runner dude” cutter out there?! 🙂
LaurenDecember 2, 2010 at 8:18 am
Aw those are adorable! Where’d she find them?
Moni'sMealsDecember 2, 2010 at 8:19 am
So cute, Best cookie cutters ever!
I like this low maintenace recipe too.
Faith AnnDecember 2, 2010 at 8:30 am
Those are the most adorable cookies *ever*!! I wish that store shipped to Canada!!
I’m a first-time commenter but I have enjoyed your blog for a while. I love your new approach to blogging and how you share your love of baking/cooking. For me, I enjoy this type of blog so much more than seeing bowls of oatmeal, but that’s just me, a lot of people obviously enjoy pics of oatmeal!
KatieDecember 2, 2010 at 8:32 am
I need those cookie cutters!!!
Allie (Live Laugh Eat)December 2, 2010 at 8:33 am
Ahhhh these gingerbread men are ADORABLE!! I am newly obsessed with all things gingerbread, molasses, and ginger. I can’t get enough of it. If I had cookies this cute, they wouldn’t last a minute!
DorryDecember 2, 2010 at 8:35 am
I love gingerbread cookies! And those cookie cutters are so cute it’s ridiculous.
grocery goddess jenDecember 2, 2010 at 8:36 am
OMG I LOOOOVVVEEEE those cookie cutters!! What will they come up with next?
AshleyDecember 2, 2010 at 9:01 am
Tree pose is my FAVorite. Oh my word. It’s hard to believe, but I own NO cookie cutters. What is my problem? I really want little animal cracker sized cookie cutters to use with my homemade grahams!
NicoleDecember 2, 2010 at 9:01 am
These have to be the CUTEST cookies I’ve ever seen! I would buy these cookie cutters in an instant if they weren’t $32!
MichaelaDecember 2, 2010 at 9:01 am
I can’t even handle how cute these are! I put them on my Christmas wish list immediately! So adorable!
NicoleDecember 2, 2010 at 9:13 am
OMG! I think we’re on the same wavelength right now! I saw these cookie cutters earlier this week and nearly died! I love them! I’m actually writing about them in my blog post for tomorrow. I hope you check it out! I’ll be sure to reference your pics and post as well. These cutters would also make some cute PB&J sandwiches!
EllaDecember 2, 2010 at 9:15 am
I love those cookie cutters! Oh man, thats precious. I love gingerbread. I’m Swedish and my family always has this type of gingerbread cookie called pepperkaker, I look forward to it every Christmas..
Krystina (Basil & Wine)December 2, 2010 at 9:18 am
How adorable! I love how the one in tree pose looks like an amputee.
stacey-healthylifeDecember 2, 2010 at 9:25 am
Cute, how fun.
DanielleDecember 2, 2010 at 9:28 am
OMG! Those are the cutest cookies I have EVER seen. I would love to see them decorated. Where can I get my hands on cutters like that!
chelsey @ clean eating chelseyDecember 2, 2010 at 9:35 am
Those are the cutest cookie cutters EVERRRR!
Stacy @ Every Little ThingDecember 2, 2010 at 10:00 am
I once had a set of “Noah’s Ark” cookie cutters that I’m so sad I lost. I love fun cookie cutters!
Balanced Healthy LifeDecember 2, 2010 at 10:16 am
Those are so cute! I love them!
KellyDecember 2, 2010 at 10:20 am
Cute idea, though before you told me that’s what they were I had no idea!
sassy molassyDecember 2, 2010 at 10:21 am
So glad you did gingerbread men! I love them. And yogis…how adorable! Another holiday (?) cookie I love is chocolate crackles w/ powdered sugar on top. Melt in my mouth.
megan @ whatmegansmakingDecember 2, 2010 at 10:22 am
I have never done yoga in my life, but I still think these are so cute! Your recipe sounds so intrigueing. I had one planned for this weekend, but maybe I’ll switch to try yours!
Deanna (PRetty in Pittsburgh)December 2, 2010 at 10:31 am
TOO CUTE! Love it.
Chelsea @ omtowngirl.comDecember 2, 2010 at 10:37 am
Hi Jenna! I met Anna at a Baptiste bootcamp this summer and she also introduced me to these cookie cutters. I can’t wait to use them! I am hosting a Christmas party for my yoga students and plan to give treat bags full of gingerbread yogis as favors. So excited! Seriously, does it get any better when jolly gingerbread cookies come in yoga poses? And I’m with you on decorating them in lululemon gear. Too cute!
Allison KDecember 2, 2010 at 10:39 am
ok, those are adorable. although at first I wasn’t sure what they were and thought maybe they were kama sutra gingerbread men. 😉
DeeDecember 2, 2010 at 10:41 am
Oh my gosh! These cookie cutters are precious!
ps. I am now craving gingerbread cookies. YUM! 😉
Food & Other ThingsDecember 2, 2010 at 10:57 am
Gingerbread cookies are my favorite type of Christmas cookies! And those cookie cutters are beyong words!
AmandaDecember 2, 2010 at 11:03 am
Heaven! Gingerbread cookies are my FAVORITE! My mom never made them for us, but now that I’m on my own I make them EVERY Christmas. White pepper is an amazing idea. I will definitely be trying this recipe 🙂
salah@myhealthiestlifestyleDecember 2, 2010 at 11:21 am
these are adorable 🙂 and look/sound delicious too!
Tracey @ I'm Not SuperhumanDecember 2, 2010 at 11:21 am
Those are adorable! I love the shapes!
KellyDecember 2, 2010 at 11:28 am
Those are the cutest cookie cutters! I love gingerbread cookies so much that I have been known to eat an entire batch in one day. Look out I am a gingerbread man killer!
Eclectically ElizabethDecember 2, 2010 at 11:31 am
Omg those are amazing!!! They made me want to look for other shapes, and I found “ninjabread men” cookie cutters! Can’t wait to go on a cookie baking rampage 🙂
jessicaDecember 2, 2010 at 11:36 am
I LOVE these cookie cutters- so cute! I’ll have to order them so I can bring some treats to my yoga students. Thanks for the great idea!
Jil @ Big City, Lil KitchenDecember 2, 2010 at 12:25 pm
These are too cute!!
KatelynnDecember 2, 2010 at 12:34 pm
I love those cutters!
Heidi - Apples Under My BedDecember 2, 2010 at 1:38 pm
Fabulous!! I’m going to bake these today, thank you so much 🙂 they will not be as wonderful as yours though – I don’t have those adorable cookie cutters! Must get some, too cute for words.
Meredith @ An Epic ChangeDecember 2, 2010 at 2:28 pm
You solved a huge problem for me today! I told my students that I would bake cookies for their last day of class (Friday) and then realized that I didn’t know many recipes that made enough for all 44 of my students and I hate doubling/tripling recipes because it messes everything up. Then I saw your recipe! this makes about 60 (!!) round cookies. Thanks!
Alexia @ Dimple SnatcherDecember 2, 2010 at 3:43 pm
Jenna, I’m sure it’s good baked, but straight from the can isn’t TJ’s canned pumpkin unpleasant to taste?
KaitlinDecember 2, 2010 at 4:00 pm
These look absolutely amazing, and what an adorable cookie cutter set! Definitely going on my holiday baking list 🙂
kateDecember 2, 2010 at 5:51 pm
Ive been obsessed with those cutters since I saw them on a yogi gift guide a few weeks ago, so cute!
Mary CatherineDecember 2, 2010 at 7:33 pm
I just bought both sets of these cutters – I just couldn’t resist! I can’t wait to bake some gingerbread yogis for the girls at my studio! Do you have any suggestions for what kind of icing to use for piping along the edges?
jennaDecember 3, 2010 at 1:47 pm
A plain royal icing will do the trick nicely! Try this: http://recipes.epicurean.com/recipe/23118
LizDecember 2, 2010 at 8:54 pm
I also LOVED the cookie cutters and my nice husband purchased them for me as an early Christmas present. The best icing for piping appears to be Royal Icing. Use the version the has meringue powder not egg whites (salmonella issues).
AnnDecember 2, 2010 at 9:24 pm
Pahahaha. TOO cute!
Annie D @ Annie's Simple LifeDecember 3, 2010 at 4:33 am
OMG those are SOOOOOO cute!!!!!!!!!
sofiaDecember 3, 2010 at 5:43 am
i saw an advertisement for these cutters! so cute.
LisaDecember 3, 2010 at 7:49 am
“I have to say, the only way these cookies could possibly be cuter is if I decorated them with Lululemon frosting clothes. I mean, how cute would this gal be dressed in a pink power-y tank and groove pants?”
This totally made me laugh out loud and I totally agree!!
Natalia - a side of simpleDecember 3, 2010 at 8:11 am
I have to agree with you and Rachel Zoe… “I die.”
Cake BetchDecember 3, 2010 at 10:04 am
OMG! Reference to Little House on the Prairie! I was totally obsessed with those books when I was little 😀
LauraDecember 5, 2010 at 4:15 pm
oh my word those cookie cuttersare the cutest!
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Becca @ Peace, Love & BagelsDecember 7, 2010 at 8:56 am
I absolutely LOVE these cookies. I made some to give away as holiday gifts the other night, unfortunately I didn’t have any yogi-cutters…just regular old men, snowmen and trees! They’re still amazing. Thank you so much for the GREAT recipe, I only made one or two substitutions…take a look and let me know what you think if you get a chance!!
CliziaDecember 18, 2010 at 10:29 am
OMG I’ve just baked these (in the regular non yoga gingerbread men shape lol)… they are AMAZING!!!!!!!!! You’re a baking genius, Jenna x
JenOctober 7, 2011 at 1:56 pm
I know this is an old post, but I was searching for a gingerbread recipe yesterday *sidenote* my slightly eccentric 13 yr old sister is having a Christmas party, yes in October and requested gingerbread*…anyway, the recipe turned out great! I love stovetop gingerbread cooking, so fun and the cookies are nice and soft! 🙂 I didn’t have white pepper but it didn’t seem to affect the recipe. thanks for a great recipe! 🙂
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why white pepper?
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it gives it a little kick…try it! I swear white pepper is the secret in all delicious gingerbread.
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i had this recipe bookmarked forever and finally got around to them today. it was a very soft dough so i wasn’t afraid of incorporating more flour into it during rolling. after you flour it heavily it is very easy to handle. they bake up super puffy and delicious, i loved them! i baked them in those ABC (already been chewed) cookie cutters – so cute 🙂
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JonJanuary 3, 2020 at 11:30 pm
After mixing everything, put the ball of dough into some plastic wrap and refrigerate it for an hour, THEN roll it out. It’s too soft when it is warm to ever roll out without adding a ton of flour, which dulls the flavor and makes it stiff.