Play Me a Recipe

Triple-Ginger Chocolate Chunk Cookies

November 23, 2020
16 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Megan Hedgpeth. Food Stylist: Lauren LaPenna.
  • Prep time 3 hours 15 minutes
  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • makes 24 cookies
Author Notes

I'm kind of famous for these cookies. The first version was created many years ago, when I was food editor at Martha Stewart Living. They were a favorite of the staff, and even ended up gracing the cover of an MSL cookie book.

I grew up loving a chewy crinkly molasses cookie, and it was one of my favorite childhood baking projects (when I learned that vegetable oil was not a good substitute for vegetable shortening). This version uses butter, of course, and is studded with chunks of chocolate and nubbins of chewy candied ginger that gets stuck in your teeth (in a good way). The recipe has evolved a bit from the original, and is moister and gooier.

I store a big batch of this dough in my fridge around the holidays and bake off a plate at a time to bring to parties and gatherings (warm). I like to serve them as close to baking time as possible, but of course they are still good for a few days stored in an airtight container.

Excerpted from Open Kitchen © 2020 by Susan Spungen. Reproduced by permission of Avery. All rights reserved.

This recipe was featured on our new cook-along podcast Play Me a Recipe. Listen as Susan whisks, rolls, and bakes her way through this recipe, offering insider tips and backstory along the way.Susan Spungen

What You'll Need
  • 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (285 grams/10 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup unsulphured molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces dark chocolate chunks (chop a quality chocolate bar for the best results)
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped candied ginger
  • Granulated sugar
  1. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and cocoa powder in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. With a stand or hand mixer, cream together the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the fresh ginger and egg yolks until combined. Add the molasses and vanilla, then add the flour mixture and mix on low speed just until no flour pockets remain. Stir in the chocolate and candied ginger. Chill the dough until firm, at least 3 hours, but preferably overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Place some granulated sugar in a bowl. Pinch off 6 pieces of dough about the size of a golf ball (about 1 1/2 ounces) and roll in the sugar. Place on a plate and freeze while the oven heats up (about 10 minutes). Roll in the sugar again and place the cookie dough balls 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, 1 sheet eat a time, rotating the pan after 5 minutes, until the tops begin to crack and the edges are just set. Be careful not to overbake. Let the cookies cool for about 5 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough, keeping it in the refrigerator between batches.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • carpecookie
  • liamoran
  • Rebecca MD
    Rebecca MD
  • melissa lang
    melissa lang
I am a food stylist for print and film, a cookbook author, recipe developer, culinary consultant, and dedicated home cook.

19 Reviews

carpecookie December 14, 2023
This is my all-time favourite holiday cookie recipe. I’ve been making it since Susan’s original version appeared in a holiday cookie issue of Martha Stewart magazine many years ago. I love this latest version even better with the addition of the chopped candied ginger.
Rebecca M. December 12, 2023
These are really good cookies! Layers of flavor with the spices, molasses and chocolate. But for me….just too big for the holidays. I find guests want to sample a few different cookies from the holiday tray and smaller sizes just work better. I’m going to experiment with sizes, baking times. If anyone made smaller cookies, please share the info!
Denise December 29, 2023
I use the original recipe and make them smaller -- 20g instead of around 30g -- and get about three dozen 2-inch cookies, baking them for 10 minutes. I just saw this new recipe version, which I'll be interested in trying.
Denise December 29, 2023
I noticed several comments about cookies spreading too much, so I wanted to add that I chill the dough overnight (and sometimes for days if I'm too busy to bake), which probably helps them retain their shape.
Rebecca M. December 29, 2023
melissa L. December 23, 2022
My cookies spread out into each other … I just realized I used whole eggs, not yolks…I bet that’s it. Flavor is lovely though.
Tgeez March 6, 2022
This is a wonderful cookie! I made the mistake of putting semi sweet chocolate which did not stand up as well as dark chocolate would have. Looking forward to making and eating them again.
Mary W. February 16, 2022
I love this recipe & have some suggestions. I made the dough & refrigerated it before baking as I have found that this makes a better cookie. I then baked them & was a little disappointed as I didn’t taste much ginger, but tasted mainly chocolate. I live in a very hot & humid climate & have a small household so always freeze my baked cookies & defrost some daily. WOW! After one day frozen & then defrosted, the ginger came through with flying colors. Very happy & have decided that this recipe is absolutely a keeper.
PS I have read that spice cookies always taste better after a second day to allow the spices to “mellow” & combine. Definitely the case with these.
CJ1 January 8, 2022
Wow, these are delicious, better than the standard ginger crinkle cookies. Going to double the fresh ginger next time! Thanks for sharing the recipe Susan!
Danika December 23, 2021
I was looking for a gingerbread recipe when I stumbled upon this recipe instead. Thought I'd give it a try since cookies seemed more practical because I wasn't building any houses.

I'm so glad I tried this recipe out. These cookies are gingery and not-too-chocolatey. Great cookies to share around the holidays. In fact, they have become the new tradition in my house.
Kaylen December 19, 2021
Great flavor but they spread really bad as they baked. Left the dough to chill in the fridge for a few hours and even put them in the freezer for a bit before putting in the oven. I have leftover dough that has sat in the fridge overnight so hopefully that will bake off better. But they taste amazing.
melissa L. December 23, 2022
Mine totally spread out too…bummed:(
liamoran December 17, 2021
These are wonderful! I made this recipe last Christmas to share with family and friends and it was a hit. Just about to make another batch of dough to bake more cookies tomorrow. I loved the idea of having the dough made in the fridge to bake on the spot when hungry cookie monsters arrive!
Emily December 5, 2021
Just made these and they're AMAZING. I'm lactose intolerant so I used a Flora Unsalted Baking Butter Block (available in the UK, where I live) and used an extra 1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger since we were out of fresh. Thank you so much for this recipe. It's just become my new favourite holiday cookie
Jill C. January 2, 2021
These are Incredible cookies! Multiple friends commented on the many textures and not-too-sweet flavor. The melted chocolate and ginger candy make for a soft center with a crispy outer part + sugar crystals. Making the dough is a lot easier if you have a ginger shredder/ chopper helper! These are now a staple that will be hard to disappoint.
rutlamb1 December 29, 2020
I've made a lot of cookies during this pandemic and I have to say that these are, hands down, the best cookie I've ever made. EVER. So, so yum.
Julie December 21, 2020
Made these last night and they were delicious! The candied ginger pops and they are decadent and zippy and not cloying. A super hard balance to strike. Definitely a keeper! Santa won't be disappointed :)
Julie December 20, 2020
These cookies are the best and are a family favorite. I first made them from the 2001 Martha Stewart Holiday Cookies magazine and have saved it just for this recipe. Glad to now have them in my Food52 recipe box!
Rhinoclan6 December 13, 2020
Delicious!! My husband says they are an adult gingerbread cookie. The depth of flavor is spectacular.