Cinnamon Brown Sugar Stamped Cookies

Sweetened mostly with brown sugar and spiced with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom, these stamped cookies are just as flavorful as they are beautiful. If you’ve never stamped cookies before, see all of my cookie stamping success tips below.

stamped cookies

Here’s a gorgeous cookie that requires zero decorating skills. I’m always up for that!

Tell Me About These Cinnamon Brown Sugar Stamped Cookies:

  • Texture: The centers are a little soft, but the edges have a crunchy crumbly texture that you don’t always get with soft-baked cookies. They remind me of these crisp molasses cookies, but aren’t quite as crunchy.
  • Flavor: There’s a glaring absence of chocolate, sprinkles, and candies, but I wouldn’t necessarily call these stamped cookies plain. They’re sweetened mostly with brown sugar and are generously spiced with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom. A bit of molasses, honey, or maple syrup (your choice) adds a touch of flavor too. They remind me of Biscoff (Belgian Speculoos) cookies. Sometimes a simple cookie without all the excess fluff is what really hits the spot. They’re fantastic dipped in hot cocoa or coffee!
  • Ease: This is a pretty standard cookie recipe– no crazy ingredients or mixing methods. The only thing we’re doing differently is stamping the dough balls before baking. You’ll appreciate that there’s no extra decoration required. The stamp does it all.
  • Time: Set aside enough time to chill the cookie dough. I know it’s a drag, but 2 hours in the refrigerator firms up the dough. If you skip it, the cookies will over-spread and the beautiful stamped design will be ruined– wasting all your efforts and ingredients.

Can You Make These Without a Cookie Stamp?

Yes. Follow the recipe exactly as written but skip the stamping step. Simply bake as round cookie dough balls, like you would any other drop cookie. You can even roll in cinnamon sugar or chai sugar before baking, just like we do with snickerdoodles and chai snickerdoodles. (In fact! I actually did that with a few of these pictured stamped cookies, but the stamp just pressed the cinnamon sugar down into the cookie and you can’t really see it after baking.

I don’t recommend these as cut-out cookies. If you want to use your rolling pin, stick with sugar cookies, chocolate sugar cookies, maple cinnamon star cookies, or gingerbread cookies.

stack of cinnamon brown sugar cookies

Overview: How to Make Stamped Cookies

The full printable recipe is below, but this overview should help you understand the process before you get started.

  1. Make the cookie dough. This is a pretty straightforward recipe. Whisk your dry ingredients together including the spices. Cream the butter and both sugars together, then add 1 Tablespoon of molasses/honey/maple syrup, an egg, and vanilla extract. Liquid sweetener slightly thins out the dough. I used molasses in the pictured cookies, but honey or pure maple syrup work too. Bring the dough together by combining the wet and dry ingredients.
  2. Chill the cookie dough. I’m a broken record here. Don’t skip the chilling step!
  3. Roll dough into balls. Measure 1 Tablespoon of chilled cookie dough per cookie and roll into balls. Feel free to roll the cookies in cinnamon sugar, just like we do with snickerdoodles, but know that the sugar coating gets stamped right down into the cookie. I did that for some of the pictured cookies and you can’t even see it!
  4. Stamp the dough balls. Grab your cookie stamps. I used Nordic Ware’s “starry night” cookie stamps for the pictured cookies. Place the cookie stamp directly on top of each cookie dough ball, centering the ball as best as you can, then firmly press down until the dough extends nearly to the edges of the cookie stamp. Lift straight up. Most cookie doughs, including this one, are a little sticky. That’s expected. If your cookie dough is sticking to the cookie stamp (mine does!), lightly dip the cookie stamp in a bowl of flour before stamping the cookie dough ball. If dipped lightly, the flour bakes right off the cookie.
  5. Bake. Remember one of my cookie baking tips? Use your eyes as the timer, not the clock. Cookies are done when the edges are set.

Glaze always adds a lovely finishing touch, but I skipped it for these. If desired, feel free to lightly dip each cooled cookie in vanilla icing or even this eggnog icing.

cinnamon brown sugar cookie dough in glass bowl

stamping cookie dough balls

stamped cookies before baking spaced apart on a baking sheet

One Thing to Note: Cookies naturally puff up and spread out in the oven, so the design will never be quite as defined on a baked cookie. You can see how defined they are above (before baking) compared to below (after baking).

close up photo of stamped cookies

Success Tips for Stamped Cookies

I include most of these above, but let me summarize each. It’s important to remember that the amount of definition your stamped design holds depends on the recipe, how firm the cookie dough is, and the stamp you use. Like I mention above, cookies naturally puff up and spread out in the oven, so the design will never be quite as defined on a baked cookie.

  1. Recipe: Not all cookie doughs are ideal for cookie stamps. Avoid using cookie stamps on thick and fluffy cookies, which will likely puff up in the oven instead of holding onto the stamped design. Follow the recipe as written below because it yields a relatively flat cookie. Additionally, darker cookies show the stamped design better than lighter cookies.
  2. Place the Stamp Centered Over the Dough: Center the stamp as best you can on top of the cookie dough ball before pressing down.
  3. Flour Your Cookie Stamp: Cookie dough can stick to the stamp. Dip your cookie stamp in flour before stamping. If dipped lightly, the flour bakes right off the stamped cookies.
  4. Firm Cookie Dough: Don’t skip chilling this cookie dough. You could even chill the stamped cookies before baking. It wouldn’t hurt to stamp the dough balls, preheat the oven, then chill the stamped cookies in the refrigerator as your oven preheats.
  5. Stamp: There’s really no way of knowing how well your cookie stamp works until you test it out. This isn’t sponsored, but I’m a genuine fan of Nordic Ware cookie stamps. They’re good quality, heavy duty, and work wonderfully. I used the Starry Night ones in these photos. (You can find them online and some stores including Target.)
Print
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stamped cookies

Stamped Cinnamon Brown Sugar Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes (includes chilling)
  • Cook Time: 13 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours (includes cooling)
  • Yield: 32 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Sweetened mostly with brown sugar and spiced with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cardamom, these stamped cookies are just as flavorful as they are beautiful. Chill the cookie dough in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Feel free to skip the cookie stamp and bake them as round cookie dough balls.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled), plus extra as needed for stamping
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick; 115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon (15ml) molasses, maple syrup, or honey
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cardamom together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, beat the softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the molasses, egg, and vanilla extract and mix on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl again as needed.
  3. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, then mix on low speed until combined. Cover and chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours (and up to 4 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before rolling because the dough will be quite hard.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
  5. Roll and stamp: Measure 1 Tablespoon of chilled cookie dough per cookie and roll into balls. The dough may seem crumbly, but will come together as you roll. Arrange dough balls 3 inches apart on the baking sheets. Place the cookie stamp directly on top of each cookie dough ball, centering the ball as best as you can, then firmly press down until the dough extends nearly to the edges of the cookie stamp. Lift straight up. If your cookie dough is sticking to the cookie stamp (mine does!), lightly dip the cookie stamp in a bowl of flour before stamping the cookie dough ball. If dipped lightly, the flour bakes right off the cookie.
  6. Bake cookies until the edges are set, about 13 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  8. Cover leftover cookies tightly and store at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days (step 3). Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw completely at room temperature, then stamp and bake as directed in the recipe. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Spices: Feel free to make spice substitutions as needed, keeping in mind some spices have a stronger flavor than others. For best results, I recommend following the spices and measurements listed.

Keywords: stamped cookies, cookie stamp, spice cookies

90 Comments

  1. Could I just engrave something on top if I have no stamp?

    1. Hi Emily! You certainly could, but I’m unsure how well the design will hold as the cookies bake. Let me know what you try.

  2. These look amazing! I’ve been eyeing cookie stamps for some time now and this seems like the perfect time to purchase them. Your recipes are the top choices for Holiday baking in our household-complete with Star Bread on Christmas morning! Thanks for coming up with so many great recipes!

    1. Perfect timing 😉 Thank you so much for including my recipes in your holiday traditions!

  3. Lynette Pruett says:

    I have almost every set of cookie stamps that Nordic Ware makes, and I love them all. They are truly heirloom quality AND made in the USA! I will pass them down to my grandchildren.
    I’ve found that rather than dipping the stamps in flour, a very light brushing with canola oil on a silicone brush works better to prevent sticking. My grandchildren are only three, but they can stamp the oil-brushed cookie stamps on the dough balls and lift them successfully by themselves! Also, each set of three stamps comes with a printed recipe on the box. All are excellent!
    Merry Christmas, everyone! Let’s BAKE!

  4. Are there other cookie recipes that you can use the stamp?

    1. Hi Joan! I bet you could chill this chocolate sugar cookie dough after making it (skip rolling it out), then roll into dough balls and stamp as instructed here.

      1. Thanks for the information. I love your recipes. I am making the cookies & cream cookies now. Everyone loves them.

    2. There are some stamp recipes of the Nordicware website.

  5. These are so pretty! Do you think this recipe would work with spingerle mold stamps? Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Sheena! I haven’t tested it, so I can’t be sure. I can’t see why it wouldn’t work though. Make sure the dough chills.

  6. Hi, I’m so glad I read your recipe for stamped cookies. I’ve had stamps for sometime but have always been very disappointed in the outcome — now I know why I’ve been doing it all wrong, rolling the dough and then stamping. Can’t wait to dig out the stamps and give it a try. Thank you

    1. Glad you found this blog post helpful, Sandra – let me know how these turn out for you!

      1. Hi Sally, well they weren’t perfect but it was the best result I’ve ever had. My stamps are the rubber kind not the ones you pictured. There is definitely a technique to pressing the stamps.

  7. Hello! I bought one of those laser-cut rolling pins (mine is a honeybee/honeycomb pattern). After rolling out the dough, you give it a roll over the dough and then cut out. I see that you said this isn’t the best dough for rolling pins, but your cookies held the pattern so well, I thought I’d ask. Thank you!

    1. Hi Malissa, there’s really no way to know if that rolling pin would work without testing it out first. I found the dough a little difficult to roll out with a regular rolling pin. Let me know if you try it!

  8. Definitely coating the top with sugar where the side will be stamp. I have these stamps and use for my gingerbread. Flouring makes them too sticky and gum up the stamp.

  9. Can I just use cinnamon if I don’t have the other spices?

    1. Absolutely!

  10. Hi Sally! These are so lovely! I was wondering if I can replace the flour in these cookies, or any of your cookies for that matter, with gluten free flour? Thank you.

    1. Hi Paula, I’m sure you could but I haven’t tested it. I don’t have very much experience with gluten free flours. Let me know if you try it!

      1. Thank you, as always, for your reply, Sally. <3 I'll let you know if I try GF flour with any of your amazing cookies! Love your recipes!!

  11. If we don’t have a stamp, can we just push them flat?

    1. Hi Jenna! You can, but you could also just bake them as regular drop cookies without flattening them out.

  12. Megan Krenzke says:

    Hi Sally! I am going to make these without the cookie stamps. Should I use something to flatten the cookies into circles (perhaps the bottom of a bowl or jar)? Super excited to try these out 🙂

    1. Hi Megan! You can, but you could also just bake them as regular drop cookies without flattening them out.

  13. I absolutely LOVEd these cookies. The spice was perfect. My husband (not a sweet s eater) ate 5 while they were cooking. I will make them again and again.

    1. I made these this morning, and they were perfection!! Try rolling the balls of dough in a cinnamon sugar mixture before stamping- the stamp didn’t stick, and the mixture makes them even tastier!!

      1. Sounds delicious, Beth! Thanks for giving this recipe a try.

    2. Thrilled that these were a hit with you and your husband, Diane!

  14. Disappointed in how the cookies turned out. I followed the recipe precisely as written. Chilled the dough for four hours. I used a cookie press and had a very nice design on the cookies Before placing cookies in the oven. During baking, the cookie spread and I totally lost the design. I don’t understand what went wrong? Sally can you help me?

    1. Hi Suzanne, I’m sorry you had trouble with how the stamp designs came through on the baked cookies. I wonder if the cookies were pressed too flat with the stamp? If you try the recipe again, see if you can add a couple more Tbsp of flour, which will help soak up more butter and prevent them from spreading more than they should.

      1. Thank you Sally. I am going to try again based on your suggestions. I also will try the molasses instead honey to see if that makes a difference. I love all your recipes!

  15. I have a pan with 6 “gingerbread man” mold shapes. Could I press this dough into them? My recipe is for soft cookies and doesn’t work well- won’t come out easily and the face features disappear. Looking for a good gingerbread recipe that will mold well.

    1. I’m sure you could!

  16. I have had great success with using a piece of stretch-tite plastic wrap over a ball of dough…it is strong enough to be used for the whole batch, and pliable enough to get a perfect image of the stamp. Stamp stays clean, no flour mess, and NO sticking! Love those stamps too!

  17. I want to make these cookies but I’m confused about the right amount of flour. I use King Arthur brand all-purpose flour, which is 120 grams per cup. This means these cookies would need 240 grams of flour, not 255 grams as the recipe calls for. I’m assuming this discrepancy is because you use a different brand flour with a slightly different weight. Should I use the weight for my specific flour based on the recipe’s volume measurement (2 cups), or stick with the metric measurement (255 g) regardless of my flour’s weight? That is, should I go with the volume to get the right amount of flour (which would be 240 grams for King Arthur brand), or should I use 255 g as the recipe specifies?

    1. Hi Kelly, I use King Arthur Flour unbleached all-purpose flour. Using my scale, 1 cup is about 125g. Measuring 2 cups, it was a little over 250g. (Could have been from some settling in the bowl.) I recommend 250-255g.

  18. Would you suggest this recipe also for a cookie gun? Where you squeeze out the dough or do you have a better recipe for that?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Connie, Do you mean a cookie press? If so we love using this recipe for Spritz Cookies with a cookie press.

  19. Candy Richardson says:

    I have a set of glassware that have cut glass bottoms. I use these for cookie presses . Check your glass ware. I have been doing this for years! Worked great on these cookies. I do use a small bowl of cinnamon sugar to dip the bottom of the glass in between presses.

    1. That’s wonderful! Thanks so much for sharing, Candy. Glad these cookies were a hit!

  20. Julie Beth McDonald says:

    Hi Sally! I love your recipes. Each one that I’ve made has been fantastic. I especially love your all butter pie crust recipe. My question is this: my daughter sent me a beautiful embossed Polish rolling pin for Christmas…how thin should each cookie be rolled to? 6mm? I can’t wait to try making these! Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Julie! There’s really no way to know if that rolling pin would work without testing it out first. I found the dough a little difficult to roll out with a regular rolling pin. Let me know if you try it!

      1. Julie Beth McDonald says:

        Thank you, Sally! Actually, I found the dough easy to work with. It’s a fun recipe! What I did was roll my dough out to 6 mm and used the embossing pin for the design. Then I took a small drinking glass and cut each one into a circle. Still baked them for 13 minutes. They are beautiful! I made a double batch, so now I have enough to share (if I can keep my husband away from them). Thanks again for a fabulous recipe!

  21. As soon as I read “The centers are a little soft, but the edges have a crunchy crumbly texture” I knew I had to make these. I’m that rare bird that prefers crispy cookies. I immediately went to HomeGoods and bought a set of cookie stamps for $4.99! Sally’s description is spot on. These cookies were perfectly spiced and a lot of fun to make. These cookies would be a lot of fun to make with kiddos.
    Happy Baking!

    1. Thank you for the positive feedback, Susan – I’m so glad this recipe was a success for you!

  22. Hi Sally!!!!! I love your recipes!!!!!! So far I’ve made different scones recipes. They are amazing. I love baking cookies. My question about cookies stamp, can I use the lace doilies to stamp my cookies? Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Barbara, thank you so much for the excitement and support! I’m thinking of regular lace doilies– is that what you’re asking? I’m unsure how to best use them as a stamp for cookies.

  23. If you don’t have a cookie stamp, look around your kitchen for gadgets that may work. For example, I have one of those plastic tools from Pampered Chef that you use to break up ground meat while cooking. It has sort of a swirl design on the bottom — you could stamp your cookies with that! I’m also thinking the discs from my cookie press could be pressed into the cookies for a design as well.

  24. Hi Sally!

    I absolutely love all your recipes! I made this one over the weekend and we had a few issues in that came up while we were making them. One of the questions we had after making it is, how do you get the flour to stick to the stamp? And we honestly only had luck with one of the stamps not sticking too much. We got the flour to stick on the stamp after a few stamps, but is there anyway to get it to stick on the stamp right off the bat? Also our cookies spread out a lot, we chilled before stamping and we even chilled for a little bit before baking them. I think my dough balls were a little bigger than a Tbsp and we pressed them out till they were the size of the stamp, could that have caused it to spread?

    Thanks!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kelsea, I’m sure all brands of stamps are different, but you should be able to just press the bottom into a small bowl or pile of flour to help it not stick. The cookies will puff up and spread out when baked. If you chilled for at least 2 hours and they still spread too much I wonder if the cookies were pressed too flat with the stamp? If you try the recipe again, see if you can add a couple more Tbsp of flour, which will help soak up more butter and prevent them from spreading more than they should.

  25. Hi!
    I was wondering since I can’t use anything else besides cinnamon can you tell me how much of it can I add to have a good flavour?
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Cristina, stick with the amount of cinnamon listed in the recipe. I fear if you add any more, it could be too much. Simply leave out the other spices. The cookies will have plenty of flavor.

  26. Sharon Roodhuyzen says:

    I just finished making these and they are delicious. Love the spice and that they aren’t too sweet. Will be making these again!

    1. Glad to hear this recipe is a keeper for you, Sharon!

  27. LOVED THEM!! Of course we added a small flair by baking only 8 minutes for a softer cookie and then dipping in a glaze (think oatmeal cookie)!!

    CANNOT wait to make them again 🙂 🙂

    1. I bet they were gorgeous – thanks so much for sharing, Rachel!

  28. These cookies looked so pretty I decided to order some cookie stamps and make them! They are so pretty and so delicious. This is a keeper!

    1. Wonderful! I’m so glad you decided to try these, Lisa.

  29. Really goooood cookies! I overload the cinnamon amount because we just love cinnamon and the cookies were amazing!
    Did not use stamps and they turned out so cute and round!

    1. Thrilled to hear that these were such a hit, Dulce!

  30. These cookies were delightful and taste like xmas! All the spices bring a different note than the more power punch of a ginger molasses cookie (which of course I love from your site!). I think the cardamom brings the delightful difference. Definitely worth a smidge from our local spice shop to make this lovely cookie. This cookie is perfectly spiced. I made it as a drop cookie and rolled it in cinnamon sugar before baking. Now I have a load of dough balls in the freezer just waiting to be enjoyed. Thank you Sally. Hope you have a wonderful holiday. I appreciate how cookie palooza lives on!

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