Gingerbread Cookies without Molasses

What is a Christmas without house smelling like cinnamon, sugar and spices! Every year on Christmas day morning my daughter and I bake cookies at home. Nothing extravagant, just simple cookies. I make the dough and roll it and my daughter cuts various shapes using cookie cutters and then we together bake them and feast!

Last year we made sugar cookies and decorated with lots of icing and colored sugar sprinkles. But I was always so guilty letting my daughter eat those cookies because they were so sugar laden! So this year I decided to keep it simple and as much healthy as possible, so skipped the icing and decoration and settled on a basic gingerbread cookies recipe.

But then came the next hurdle; every gingerbread cookies recipe I came across called for Molasses. We did not have any on hand and of-course stores are all closed on Christmas day. I have made the gingerbread cookies many years ago and I remembered from then that they were quite versatile. So taking a leap of faith we decided to modify the recipe on the spot hoping the results, even if won't pass a critic's true gingerbread taste, would be delicious enough all the same for our friends and family to enjoy through holidays :)

The cookies came out delicious and two days after making them we are already halfway through the cookie jar so that speaks for itself!

1.5C all purpose flour
1/2C sugar (our cookies were not very sweet, which is how we like them, but if you desire sweet cookies, up the sugar to 3/4C)
6Tbsp butter - softened at room temp
1Tbsp vegetable oil
1.5tsp dry ginger powder (I did not have dry ginger at hand, so used fresh ginger instead, grated 2.5tsp)
1tsp cinnamon powder
1/4tsp nutmeg
1/4tsp crushed cloves (~3)
6 cardamoms - crushed
1/4tsp salt
1 small egg
2tsp vanilla extract
1tsp baking powder
1/2tsp baking soda
flour to dust and roll

Prepare the dough:

  1. Mix the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices (including ginger if using dry ginger), salt.
  2. In a large pot or a standing mixer, add softened butter cut into cubes, oil and sugar. Using hand mixer or standing mixer, beat the butter and sugar until well mixed
  3. Then add egg, vanilla powder and ginger (if using fresh ginger) and beat together.
  4. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet and keep mixing until a dough forms.
  5. Remove from mixer and make a dough ball together using hand
  6. Cover in a plastic wrap and let it sit in fridge for upto few hours (4-6) to overnight.
On the day of baking:
  1. Preheat oven to 375F
  2. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Remove dough from fridge and let sit for a couple of mins.
  4. Divide dough into two.
  5. Liberally flour a rolling surface and roll each dough ball into 1/4inch thick sheet
  6. Using cookie cutters of your choice, cut small cookies and transfer them on cookie sheet.
  7. Bake for 10-12 mins, remove sooner for soft cookies, later for crunchy.