Ginger Shortbread with Molasses

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses

If you like soft, buttery shortbread, you’ll love our festive version for Christmas. These cookies aren’t fussy, but the molasses and spices give them an unmistakable holiday flair.

Buttery and beautifully spiced, these ginger shortbread with molasses cookies add the beauty of simplicity to your holiday cookie plate.

Adding a bit of molasses and a few more spices to a classic shortbread cookie makes them taste unmistakably like Christmas.

The simplicity of ginger shortbread with molasses stands out amidst all of the over-the-top cookies and squares that are often popular at cookie swaps. They may not look as snazzy as say, triple-layer marshmallow snicker-doodle squares, but they are distinct in their own quiet way.

“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret. It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye.”

― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

Not that a cookie can’t really teach life’s great moral lessons, but we do believe that simplicity is key to the true substance of the holidays.

Ditto for cookies.

As with any shortbread cookie, we prefer to use our hands to pull the dough together after the butter has been cut in. That way the dough doesn’t get over mixed.

Ginger Shortbread Cookies with Molasses in a box

Tips:

One reader made the following changes to the recipe, with great success: Double the powdered ginger and add some freshly grated ginger.

Print

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses

If you like soft, buttery shortbread, you’ll love our festive version. These cookies aren’t fussy, but the molasses and spices give them an unmistakable holiday flair.

  • Author: Crosby Molasses
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 24 1x
  • Category: Cookies

Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves (optional)
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • ¼ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/41/2 cup diced (finely) candied ginger
  • granulated sugar for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Combine flour, powdered sugar, and spices in a large bowl.
  2. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or your fingers, until mixture resembles fine crumbs.
  3. With a fork or your hands mix in the molasses and candied ginger. Knead until mixture forms a ball and divide in half.
  4. Roll ¼ to ½” thick and cut into shapes.
  5. Prick with the tines of a fork, brush with a little milk and sprinkle with granulated sugar.
  6. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until bottoms just start to turn golden brown (be careful not to overcook)

Notes

Adapted from Threadbare Bakery blog.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can’t wait to see what you’ve made!

The dough will look crumbly like this, but keep working it (use your fingers):

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses dough

Before you know it your dough will come together, like this:

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses dough

You can roll it out immediately or pat it into tidy packages and refrigerate:

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses dough

Ginger Shortbread with Molasses with sugar

Comments

  • April 22, 2021
    reply

    Dori

    So glad I found you website. I so love molasses & look forward to trying your recipes. Thanks for the ebook. Dori

    • April 26, 2021
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      You are very welcome. We hope you enjoy the recipes.

  • November 27, 2020
    reply

    Laurie Jardine

    Such a treat to find these treasures in my inbox! Baking is great therapy in these strange times! Would love to get a copy of the molasses cookbook!
    2094 east 7th ave
    Vancouver BC
    V5N1S6

    • December 1, 2020
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Laurie, We’ll send a cookbook you way.

  • November 27, 2020
    reply

    Lydia Hearh

    Tried these and rhey are wonderful. I lost my old Crosby molasses cookbook and have been searching frantically for it. How can l get a copy.

    Lydia Hearh
    26 water street
    Trenton, ontario
    K8V4L9
    Canada

    • December 1, 2020
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Lydia, We’ll send a copy your way.

  • January 10, 2020
    reply

    MiMi Harman

    Thank you so much for this amazing recipe. I recently attended a holiday fair and purchased 12 ginger/molasses shortbread cookies for $20. Little heart shaped wonders about 1 1/2″ in size. Not very big. They were so delicious, but so expensive. I immediately came home and searched thru so many recipes. And then… I found Crosby’s. Yay. I made them exactly and fell in love with them. They are even more delicious than the expensive ones that sent me on my quest. Easy to make and easy dough to work with. Warning: They are addictive.

    • January 29, 2020
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi MiMi, What a great discovery for you! I’m so pleased you have a new favourite cookie.

  • December 23, 2019
    reply

    Ruth Milord

    Growing up in the Maritimes my favourite cookie was Molasses. Would love to receive your free recipe book so I could enjoy them again! Thank you for helping me bring my childhood memories back to life. My address is Ruth Milord. 353 Water st., Wallaceburg, Ont. N8A 2G4

    • April 13, 2021
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Ruth, We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our printed cookbook.

  • December 18, 2019
    reply

    Kim Wagner

    If really appreciate a hard copy of your wonderful Crosby’s molasses cookbook. Would you please mail it to 419 Lawrence Avenue West, Ontario Canada M5M 1C3

    • December 19, 2019
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Thanks Kim, We’ll send a copy your way.

  • December 7, 2019
    reply

    Cheryl

    Molasses is a family fav. Nanny made molasses donuts. My father loved to dip warm home made bread in molasses. I love molasses brown bread and my daughters and grand daughters Are molasses crinkles fans. I would so like to have one of the cook books. I will be trying these cookies tomorrow. Thank you.

  • December 7, 2019
    reply

    I use Crosby’s molasses in a few recipes, especially baked beans. I would very much like to try the Ginger Molasses Short bread, however ever need to know where I can purchased the Candied Ginger, I have looked in our Sobey’s but could not find any. Would also appreciate receiving a copy of your Cook Book as well. My address is 1990 Mountbatten Avenue, Innisfil, Ontario L9S 1T6. Thanking you in advance.

    • April 13, 2021
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Dianne, You might have to look in a natural food store for the ginger. Your cookbook will be in the mail soon.

  • December 7, 2019
    reply

    Donna Klie

    I love cooking with molasses. Would like a copy of your cookbook. My address is 81 Auburndale Drive Thornhill Ontario L4J8W8. Thanks!

  • December 6, 2019
    reply

    Linda Norman

    Recently my husband was placed on a strict sodium reduced diet. I am amazed and delighted with the flavor enhancing that Crosbys Molasses brings to several savory dishes! It brings a whole new depth of flavor! So eager for more recipes to try.

  • December 6, 2019
    reply

    KimiW

    Excellent! Thank YOU.
    We just LUV those (now doing double-spiced) ginger cookies.
    I keep trying to save a few to try aging them, since download is not an option for me.

    Would you kindly mail a Crosby’s Molasses recipe book to me as well? 4-419 Lawrence Avenue West, North York, ON.

  • October 25, 2018
    reply

    Bobbet Hobbs

    This recipe is amazing! I made this recipe but doubled the spices and added some fresh drained grated ginger. My husband took them elk hunting and sent me a msg via his satellite phone that the guys wanted more cookies.
    I would love to get a recipe book. I would love to gift one to my mom as she tried to explain to me how she used Crosby’s while they were growing up but it was only for a special treat because they were on a shoe string budget with 6 kids.
    If able, my address is 3893 Sunnyside Rd, Sandpoint, Idaho 83864

    • November 6, 2018
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Bobbet, Thanks for the suggestions. More ginger, and fresh ginger, sound great. I’ll be sure to add your suggestions to the recipe. We’d be happy to send you a copy of our current cookbook, Everyday Favourites.

  • December 14, 2017
    reply

    Cheryl

    Is there a significant difference between fancy molasses & cooking molasses? I used crosbys cooking molasses for these and found the cookies a tiny bit on the bitter side.. love the idea of combining gingerbread flavour in a shortbread style cookie though! Would I also be able to get your cook book?

    • December 24, 2017
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Cheryl, There is quite a difference between fancy and cooking molasses. Coking molasses is 30% fancy and 70% blackstrap molasses so very robust and on the bitter side. If you don’t have fancy molasses (and would like to make the recipe again) you could just add 1-2 Tbsp. of cooking molasses. Also, we’d love to mail you a cookbook. Just forward your mailing address to me: bridget.oland@crosbys.com

  • November 14, 2017
    reply

    Sadie

    These are very good! They’re not much to look at but the taste makes up for their simplicity. I was skeptical that 1/4 cup of molasses may make them more chewy than a traditional shortbread, but they were nice and crunchy. I used a 2″ biscuit cutter, rolled the dough 1/4″ thick, and baked them for 17 minutes until they were firm when gently pressed in the centre. I doubled the spices and didn’t find them overwhelming. The taste improves as the cookies age and the butter mellows.

    • November 16, 2017
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Sadie, Thanks for all of the suggestions. Now I’m tempted to double the spices.

  • July 5, 2017
    reply

    Debra Bledsoe

    Ready to make these and incorporate them in a peach truffle or some sort of peach desert. Can you imagine with home made peach ice cream?
    Would love a cookbook…how can I get one? Thank you for this recipe!

    • July 27, 2017
      reply

      Hi Debra, Some fort of peach dessert with these ginger shortbread cookies sounds wonderful. We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our cookbook. In the meantime, please let me know if you make one of your peach ideas.

  • November 29, 2016
    reply

    Sue Munn

    I can,t wait to make these. growing up in a family of 13 children we ate a lot of molasses and also baked with it. I would so love to have a recipe book also.

  • November 28, 2016
    reply

    Will try baking with Crosby’s molasses for the first time using this recipe. Might I also receive a copy of your free cookbook?

    • December 9, 2016
      reply

      Hi Lynda, We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our cookbook. Just forward your mailing address to me (bridget.oland@crosbys.com). Thanks.

  • November 16, 2016
    reply

    Cynthia Casey

    Hi, I would also like to have a copy of the cookbook. I love baking for my grandchildren. Thank you so much! Cynthia Casey, 155 Macedonia Rd, Petal, MS 39465

    • November 28, 2016
      reply

      Linda McKinnon

      Hi, I would like a copy of your cookbook pls, my son grandmother used to make these cookies, love them.

      • December 9, 2016
        reply

        Hi Linda, We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our printed cookbook. Just email your mailing address to be (bridget.oland@crosbys.com). Thanks.

  • December 24, 2015
    reply

    tom mokry

    Hi,
    I’d like to get a cookbook.
    Thank you & Merry Christmas !
    Tom

    203 Enfield Cres
    Winnipeg, Mb.
    Canada
    R2H 1B2

  • December 20, 2015
    reply

    karen mcgraw

    wow…great recipe….a lady had it posted on facebook and had to try it…….is it possible to have a cook book…..130 j godin street, saumarez N.B. e1x2k1……thanks

  • November 30, 2013
    reply

    Misty

    Im going to try this recipe but try to make them using the whipped shortbread method! I love the flavours of gingerbread but find it a little hard and dry so this shoetbread version should be perfect

    • December 4, 2013
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Misty, I hope you enjoy the shortbread. It’s a treat to have the molasses flavour in a buttery cookie.

  • November 13, 2013
    reply

    Patrticia Boucher

    Hi, I would also love to receive a copy of your cookbook. I have tried a few of your recipes and I love what I have tried so far. I am anxious to try these Molasses Shortbread Cookies. My address is:
    457 McLellan Ave
    Amherstburg, Ontario
    N9V 4E1
    Thank you.

    • November 18, 2013
      reply

      Crosby Molasses

      Hi Patricia, We’d be happy to get a copy of our book in the mail to you. Enjoy!

  • April 2, 2013
    reply

    Ann Brennan

    would love your cookbook.i have a old crosby cookbook that is over 40 yrs old. love baking and cooking with mollasses. thank you. 47 Steels Hill Road
    Glace Bay
    Nova Scotia
    B1A 2V7

    • April 3, 2013
      reply

      Bridget

      Hi Ann,
      We’d be happy to mail you a copy of our Family Favourites cookbook. You should receive it within a couple of weeks.

  • December 17, 2012
    reply

    Glory

    My two most favorite cookies in one recipe! This is definitely going into my Christmas baking collection. I can’t wait to make these! Oh, and I would be interested in a cookbook as well. Where could I find one? ~ Glory

    • December 19, 2012
      reply

      Bridget

      Hi Glory – Just email me with your mailing address and we’ll send you a cookbook. I’m at bridget.oland@crosbys.com

  • December 8, 2012
    reply

    Carol

    Hi, I just made the Molasses shortbread cookies and they are just wonderful. I will share this with everyone that i know. My mom has one of the Crosbys molasses cookbooks from when I was a child. This book must be atleast 40 or 50 yrs old and she still uses it even though it is worn out.

    • December 11, 2012
      reply

      Bridget

      Hi Carol, I’m so pleased that you like the molasses shortbread. And I love that your mom still uses her old Crosby’s cookbook. Would you like us to send her a new one? If yes, just email me with her mailing address (bridget.oland@crosbys.com).

  • December 2, 2012
    reply

    Irma Isnor

    Crosby’s molasses has been used by my family for many years.When I lived in Halifax 23 years ago I was using it then too.Crispy gingersnaps, and sugared ginger cookies were two of my boys favorite cookies. I was using Crosby’s molasses way back. In wartime, Mom used to bake war cake with Crosby’s molasses. Great product-2 containers sitting on a kitchen shelf right now. I will try your molasses shortbread. Thanks for the recipe.Now I am baking for my grandson.

    • December 6, 2012
      reply

      Bridget

      Hi Irma, I love that you’re continuing the molasses tradition with your grandson. I hope that you enjoy the shortbread.

      • December 16, 2015
        reply

        Shirley Cullen

        With the holidays getting close again I’m always in the mood to bake …A little old fashion in some recipes ; simply because some recipes are just that good. A soft molasses cookie is a favourite . Making molasses bread with raisins is right up there too , over 24 loaves and rolls made already ( by hand ) and looking at making more . Love molasses and always will . Merry Christmas to you and yours ! And A Happy New Year for 2016 :)
        From a women who’s grateful that some things don’t need to change .

        • December 17, 2015
          reply

          Thanks Shirley. Like you I love the old fashioned recipes the best. They’re simple and comforting and make such meaningful gifts. Merry Christmas to you as well!

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