Chewy Molasses Cookies

We can't get enough of these chewy molasses cookies! They have crisp edges, fudgy middles, and rich, spiced flavor from ginger and cinnamon.

Chewy molasses cookies

As I sat down to write this molasses cookies post, I watched some of the first snow of the year drift past the window. What could be more fitting? These chewy molasses cookies are perfect for cold, wintry days. They have crisp edges, soft middles, and a rich, spiced flavor that’ll warm you up in an instant. Pair one with a cup of hot chocolate, and you have an unbeatable holiday treat!

I think you’re going to love this molasses cookie recipe. It’s quick and easy to make (you don’t even have to chill the dough!), and it yields really wonderful cookies. After the first time I made them, I liked them so much that I couldn’t resist nabbing one for breakfast the next morning. Since then, I’ve baked countless batches of these molasses cookies, and Jack and I still can’t get enough. Baking them has become a new holiday tradition in our house. I hope it will in yours, too!

Molasses cookie recipe ingredients

Molasses Cookie Recipe Ingredients

Something else I love about this molasses cookie recipe? It’s totally vegan! It comes together with these basic ingredients:

  • Molasses, of course! I make these cookies with unsulphured blackstrap molasses, which gives them a rich molasses flavor and dark color. My favorite brand is Wholesome Sweeteners.
  • Dark brown sugar and white sugar – For sweetness. This combination also contributes to the cookies’ delicious chewy texture.
  • Coconut oil – For this recipe, your coconut oil should be soft, but not melted. To achieve the right consistency, I usually pop it in the microwave for around 15 seconds before I start to bake. The exact timing depends on its initial texture, which varies based on the temperature of the kitchen. Room temperature butter will work here too.
  • All-purpose flour – For the most precise measurement, use the spoon-and-level method.
  • Baking soda – It reacts with the molasses and brown sugar to help the cookies rise.
  • Warm spices – You can’t make good chewy molasses cookies without spices! I use the same ones that I do in my vegan gingerbread: ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom.
  • Vanilla – It deepens the warm, spiced flavor of these molasses cookies.
  • Fine sea salt – To make all the flavors pop!
  • And natural cane sugar – For rolling! It creates a sweet, crispy crust around the cookies’ chewy middles.

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

Hands rolling balls of cookie dough

How to Make Molasses Cookies

This molasses cookie recipe is super easy to make! Here’s how it goes:

First, make the dough. Cream the coconut oil and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer until light and fluffy. Add the molasses and vanilla, and mix again to combine. Then, whisk together the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Gradually add them to the bowl of the stand mixer, mixing after each addition. Finally, mix in 1 tablespoon water to moisten the dough.

Next, shape the cookies. Use a 2-inch cookie scoop to portion the dough, and roll each scoop into a ball. Roll the balls in a small bowl of cane sugar. When they’re evenly coated, place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Hand pressing down balls of dough

Before you bake, gently press down on the balls to flatten them slightly.

Then, bake! Transfer the cookies to a 350° oven and bake for 10 minutes, until the cookies have spread slightly and cracks form on their surfaces. Allow them to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Stack of ginger molasses cookies

Chewy Molasses Cookies Tips

  • Use natural cane sugar for rolling. I like to use regular granulated sugar in these cookies, but I use natural cane sugar on the outside. It has a slightly coarser texture, which creates a delicious crispy crust around the cookies’ edges.
  • Bake one sheet at a time. These ginger molasses cookies spread out as they bake, so depending on the size of your baking sheet, you may need to bake them in two batches. Though working in batches takes longer than putting all the cookies in the oven at once, the extra time is worth it. Because temperatures vary throughout an oven, the cookies will bake most evenly if they’re all on the same oven rack. You don’t want cookies on a lower rack to burn before ones above them are cooked through!
  • Leave them on the baking sheet for 10 minutes after they come out of the oven. It’ll be tempting to reach for these chewy molasses cookies as soon as they finish baking, but if you can, hold off for at least 10 minutes. Straight out of the oven, the cookies are puffy and delicate. As they cool, they crisp up around the edges and become chewy and fudgy in the middle. After 10 minutes, go ahead and sample one (or more), and transfer the rest to a wire rack to cool completely.

Molasses cookies recipe

More Favorite Cookie Recipes

If you love these molasses cookies, try one of these yummy cookie recipes next:

Chewy Molasses Cookies

rate this recipe:
4.97 from 33 votes
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Serves 16
We love to make these chewy molasses cookies for the holidays! They have crisp edges, soft middles, and a rich, spiced flavor from ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom.

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, or using an electric mixer, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Add the molasses and vanilla and mix again.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, ginger, cardamom, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing after each addition. Mix in the 1 tablespoon water.
  • Use a 2-inch cookie scoop to scoop the dough and use your hands to roll it into balls. If the dough feels dry, mix in 1/2 tablespoon additional water. Roll the balls in the sugar, press down slightly, and bake for 10 minutes, until the cookies are puffed and cracking on top. Remove and let cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

Note: these cookies taste great using any brand of unsulphured molasses and any brand of sugar, but we recommend Wholesome Organic Molasses and Domino granulated sugar for the pictured crinkly look.

43 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Julie
    12.17.2020

    Do you think it’s a problem to use regular molasses instead of blackstrap in this recipe?

  2. Hayley
    12.13.2020

    Just made this. They were delicious and they looked exactly like the photo (a little lighter because I had to use regular molasses). I will be making these again for sure.

  3. Ingrid
    12.10.2020

    5 stars
    Wow. These turned out perfectly. I’ve been looking for the perfect molasses cookie recipe for a while and I finally found it. Crispy on the outside. Chewy and soft on the inside. I followed the recipe exactly except that I rolled them in granulated sugar. I also used butter. I will definitely be writing this recipe down and using it every Christmas!

  4. Belle
    12.10.2020

    Hi, would you have another substitute for oil/butter..maybe apple sauce or yogurt? Would that work?

  5. Cindy
    12.09.2020

    Any ideas for a replacement of coconut oil or butter. I’m allergic to both. Would love to make these cookies.

  6. chinnaddington
    12.08.2020

    I too was looking up the recipe for the when I saw these and switched plans. Thank you so much for sharing these with us! They were a lot of fun to make and so delicious. Happy Thanksgiving.

  7. Melanie
    12.06.2020

    5 stars
    OOPS…just realized I left out the baking soda

  8. Lipsey Karen
    12.06.2020

    These are so, so good-they were actually even better the next day. The spice molasses flavor was even richer. I used regular molasses, since I did not have blackstrap molasses. Would the molasses flavor be stronger or less strong with blackstrap? I have read different things on the internet about blackstrap molasses.

  9. Lisa Ellsmore
    12.06.2020

    5 stars
    My daughter made these last night—they were sooo good! 😋

  10. Casey
    12.06.2020

    5 stars
    so so so good! I’ve been baking all year and these are so different from anything I’ve ever made! The fudgey middle is to die for – and so easy to make! Thank you

  11. ks
    12.06.2020

    What if I’d only like to replace the AP flour with whole wheat flour? How would that change things?

  12. Debbie
    12.05.2020

    5 stars
    These molasses cookies are amazing! We turned them into ice cream sandwiches for the grandkids! 💕

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.06.2020

      oh yum! I’m so glad you all enjoyed them!

  13. Kristin
    12.05.2020

    5 stars
    Just great! Made them, love them!

  14. Linda
    12.04.2020

    5 stars
    I am a huge fan of molasses cookies and I must say these are the best I’ve tasted. This recipe is just soooo good! The combination of Cardamom and Molasses are tasty and predominant making the cookie not only delicious but an incredible smell as well. Only thing I had to do was add 3 tbsp of water at the end instead of 1 tbsp for some reason as I found it too dry to work with it. Thanks for sharing this gem!

  15. Kate
    12.04.2020

    5 stars
    Made these this afternoon. All I can say is—“YUM!” I am definitely saving this recipe!! I used regular sugar to coat just because I didn’t have any cane sugar on hand and I thought they were perfect.

  16. Janet
    12.04.2020

    Oh my! My mouth is watering just looking at these. They look fabulous!

  17. Nanda
    12.04.2020

    I’m curious what you think of replacing 1/4 to 1/3rd of the AP flour for something more healthy, like whole wheat/spelt/rye etc. really trying to use other flour these days.

  18. Nicole
    12.03.2020

    Could soft butter or margarine replace the coconut oil?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.03.2020

      Hi Nicole – room temperature butter works great.

  19. Laurie
    12.03.2020

    We’re wanting to bake some of our Christmas cookies ahead and freeze them for cookie plates we make up closer to Christmas. Would these cookies freeze well?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.04.2020

      Hi Laurie, yep they freeze well!

  20. Nicole
    12.03.2020

    Hi! Do you think these would come out good with gf flour?

    • Darcie
      12.03.2020

      Oo I’m thinking the same thing!

    • Kris
      12.04.2020

      I’m wondering the same!

      • Jeanine Donofrio
        12.04.2020

        I haven’t tried these with gluten free flour, so I’m not sure if it would work.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.