Frosted Soft Molasses Cookies

November 10, 2010
2 Ratings
  • Serves 2-3 dozen
Author Notes

These are known as my grandmother's cookies, and are reserved for special occasions because they require more time and effort than an ordinary batch of cookies. They are great for the holidays! The soft molasses cookies are cakey and wonderful. —NWB

What You'll Need
  • Cookie dough
  • 1/2 pound butter (2 sticks)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1.5 teaspoons ginger
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup hot tap water
  • 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4.5 cups flour
  • Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 4 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 4 ounces softened butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Melt two sticks butter, molasses, sugar, and ginger in a large sauce pan (these cookies are mixed by hand in the sauce pan). Bring to a boil. Let boil for a few minutes then remove from heat. Let cool for one hour.
  2. Add beaten eggs to cool molasses mixture and stir until well incorporated. Dissolve baking soda into the hot tap water. Add to molasses mixture.
  3. Sift cinnamon, salt, and two cups flour. Gradually add into egg and molasses mixture until well blended.
  4. Slowly add additional 2.5 cups of flour. This takes some elbow grease. The dough should end up stiff but still beatable.
  5. Let dough rest in refrigerator for at least three hours if not overnight.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Roll dough into balls that flatten into cookies with a 2 or 3 inch diameter. Roll balls lightly in sugar before placing on cookie sheet. I use silpat but I'm not sure it's necessary.
  8. Bake 12- 15 minutes. Remove to rack and let cool completely.
  9. While cooling mix together cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla for frosting. You may need to make another batch of frosting depending on how much you use so keep extra ingredients on hand in case. I like to start with a small batch so as not to waste any by making too much.
  10. Cover cookies with a light smear of frosting.
  11. Eat cookies, put them in the fridge to eat soon. If freezing layer in tupperware with a piece of wax paper between cookies.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Cwag5265
  • Joe
  • Rodney

3 Reviews

Cwag5265 December 30, 2018
This was by far the best recipe for molasses cookies I have ever made. Everyone thought they were wonderful. My oven runs hotter so I baked them at 350 for 9 minutes and doubled the icing recipe. They were perfect.
Joe April 30, 2017
This recipe ill-advisedly calls for ‘hot tap water’.

In the United States, hot water drawn directly from the tap generally is not potable. From one city's department of health to another, one will learn that heat-friendly bacteria may grow in the boilers that heat the water, and these bacteria may make one ill, sometimes seriously ill.

Hence, municipal departments of health generally advise using cold tap water for drinking and eating which is then heated over the stove or in the oven to the desired temperature.

Please correct this recipe and the many others on this site that advise the use of substances that are known to make one ill and caution readers to avoid this danger.
Rodney December 20, 2018
This has to be a joke right? Hot water is not delivered to homes hot from any municipal department in the United States. Water is heated within the home using the hot water heater. You sir are incorrect in your post.