Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies (Discard Recipe) (2024)

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Welcome in the warmth of the holidays with these Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies, irresistibly soft, chewy, and bursting with festive spices, and of course, sourdough!

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During the holiday season, there’s nothing quite like the timeless charm of classic cookies, and these Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies are a delightful treat that captures the beauty of this special time of year.

What makes them even more remarkable is that they’re crafted using sourdough discard, ensuring no ingredient goes to waste.

These cookies are perfect for family members to gather around the kitchen and create cherished memories together. Roll out the dough and cut it into festive shapes like Christmas trees, gingerbread men, or even a gingerbread house, sparking creativity and joy in the holiday spirit.

One bite and you’ll experience the magic of these cookies – they’re soft and chewy, with just the right amount of crispiness around the edges.

The warm blend of holiday spices will instantly transport you to a cozy, festive atmosphere.

Whether you’re leaving them out for Santa or sharing them with loved ones, Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies are a heartwarming addition to any holiday celebration.

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Why You’ll Love This Recipe:

Soft & Chewy –

Unlike ginger snaps, these are softer sourdough gingerbread cookies. Each bite is chewy with the perfect balance of sweetness and spice.

Classic Cookies –

Sourdough Gingerbread cookies are the ultimate Christmas treats. Their soft, chewy texture and festive shapes make them a delightful centerpiece for any Christmas gathering, bringing joy and flavor to every bite.

Great way to use Sourdough Discard –

I’m always trying to find different ways to put mysourdough discardto good use – and the Christmas cookie tray is where it’s at! FromSourdough Thumbprint Cookies,Sourdough Snowball Cookies, or Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies, sourdough discard will never be wasted in my household.

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Ingredients

Flour –I used all-purpose flour for these sourdough ginger molasses cookies.

Baking Soda –Double check that your baking soda isn’t expired, otherwise they won’t have the proper rise.

Salt –Any unrefined salt will do, but my favorite isRedmond’s unrefined saltfor some extra minerals!

Spices– A blend of cinnamon, ground ginger, cloves, and all-spice brings the perfect flavor combination to these sourdough cookies.

Unsalted Butter –Be sure to use room temperature in order for all of the ingredients to mix properly.

Brown Sugar –Light or dark brown sugar captures the moisture in the cookies and keeps each bite soft and chewy.

Large Egg – Adds moisture to the dough.​

Molasses –I used medium molasses (double-boiled) for this cookie recipe for a richer flavor, but you can use light molasses for a more mild flavor.

Sourdough Discard –For sweet treats, I prefer to use sourdough discard that is no older than 1 week. I use a 100% hydration starter, which is equal parts water and flour.

Supplies

Stand Mixer or Electic Hand Mixer

Large Mixing Bowls

Plastic wrap

Rolling Pin

Cookie Cutters

Baking Sheets

Parchment Paper

Cooling Rack

How to Make Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies

Dry Ingredients

Whisk together flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Set to the side.

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Wet Ingredients

In a bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or in a bowl with a hand mixer, cream butter and brown sugar on medium speed for 3-4 minutes, or until light and fluffy.

Add the egg, molasses, and sourdough starter discard, and mix until combined. It may curdle, but that’s okay.

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Combine and Chill

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. It will be a rather thick and slightly sticky dough. A dry gingerbread dough will often lead to a crumbly and dry cookie.

Divide the dough ball into two even pieces, roll until a smooth ball, and cover each with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Once the long chill period time is complete, remove the dough from the fridge.

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Roll and Cut

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place parchment paper on a cookie tray.

Roll out one disc at a time on a floured work surface to 1/4 of an inch thick. Use cookie cutters of your choice, and place the unbaked cookie dough on the prepared pan.

Reroll the scraps and continue to cut out additional cookies.

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Bake

For cookies smaller than 4 inches, bake for 9 minutes. For cookies larger than 4 inches, bake for 11 minutes.

These sourdough ginger molasses cookies are soft and chewy. If you’d prefer crispier cookies, cook for additional time. Remember the cookies crisp up while they cool.

Remove the cookies from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

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How to Decorate

These Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies are absolutely tasty on their own, but why not add a little extra sweetness and creativity with some royal icing?

Royal Icing

To a medium bowl, add room temperature butter, milk, and 1 cup of powdered sugar to a bowl. Mix until smooth. Then, add the additional cup of powdered sugar and mix again. Add frosting to a piping bag if desired.

Other Ideas

Top the cookies with candies, sprinkles, or melted white chocolate!

How to Store

Leftover cookies can be stored in an airtight container for a couple of days at room temperature.

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Common Questions:

What kind of molasses should I use?

There are three popular types of molasses – regular molasses (light), medium molasses, and blackstrap molasses. Each is made with the same ingredients but the number of times each is boiled is what makes the difference. Blackstrap molasses is boiled 3 times, which creates a very dark and bitter molasses. I prefer using medium molasses for a deep, rich flavor, but one that isn’t so bitter.

What’s the difference between Sourdough Gingersnap Cookies and Gingerbread Cookies?

Just like the name says, Gingersnap Cookies tend to be crispier and should “snap” when bitten into. A gingerbread cookie tends to be a soft and chewy bite.

Gingersnap cookies are also often rolled into traditional rounds and covered in granulated sugar, whereas Gingerbread cookies are traditionally rolled and cut into different shapes and decorated with icing.

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Happy baking!

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More Sourdough Discard Recipes Like This:

Sourdough Thumbprint Cookies

Peppermint Sourdough Brownies

Sourdough Snowball Cookies

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Soft and Chewy Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies

Yield: 24 cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Chilling Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours 23 minutes

Welcome in the warmth of the holidays with these Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies, irresistibly soft, chewy, and bursting with festive spices, and of course, sourdough!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (420g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (5g)
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon (7g)
  • 1 Tablespoon ground ginger (4g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice (2g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves (2g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (4g)
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature (1 stick)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed (250g)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup dark molasses (90g)
  • 1/2 unfed sourdough starter, discard (140g)

Royal Icing

  • 2 Tablespoon butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons milk

Instructions

Dry Ingredients

1. Whisk together 3 cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 Tablespoon ginger, 1 Tablespoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon allspice, 1/2 teaspoon cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large mixing bowl. Set to the side.

Wet Ingredients

2. In a bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or in a bowl with a hand mixer, cream 1 stick of butter and 1 cup brown sugar on medium speed for 3-4 minutes, or until light and fluffy.

3. Add one egg, 1/4 cup molasses, and 1/2 cup sourdough starter discard, and mix until combined. It may curdle, but that's okay.

Combine and Chill

4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. It will be a rather thick and slightly sticky dough. A dry gingerbread dough will often lead to a crumbly and dry cookie.

5. Divide the dough ball into two even pieces, roll until a smooth ball, and cover each with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.

6. Once the long chill period time is complete, remove the dough from the fridge.

Roll and Cut

7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place parchment paper on a cookie tray.

8. Roll out one disc at a time on a floured work surface to 1/4 of an inch thick. Use cookie cutters of your choice, and place the unbaked cookie dough on the prepared pan.

9. Reroll the scraps and continue to cut out additional cookies.

Bake

10. For cookies smaller than 4 inches, bake for 9 minutes. For cookies larger than 4 inches, bake for 11 minutes.

11. Remove the cookies from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

For Frosting:

12. To a medium bowl, add room temperature butter, milk, and 1 cup of powdered sugar to a bowl. Mix until smooth. Then, add the additional cup of powdered sugar and mix again. Add frosting to a piping bag if desired.

Notes

These sourdough ginger molasses cookies are soft and chewy. If you'd prefer crispier cookies, cook for additional time. Remember the cookies crisp up while they cool.

Leftover cookies can be stored in an airtight container for a couple of days at room temperature.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Sourdough Gingerbread Cookies (Discard Recipe) (2024)
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