Seriously Soft Molasses Cookies

Homemade soft molasses cookies with crackly tops are super chewy, perfectly spiced, and incredibly easy to make. They stay seriously soft for days– if they last that long– and are always a holiday favorite.

Seriously soft and chewy molasses cookies will be your favorite Christmas cookie! So much delicious flavor in one easy cookie recipe. Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Molasses cookies have always been my top choice because they bring me right back to my childhood. I grew up helping my mom bake them. After rolling the dough in the sugar and watching them bake through the little oven window, my sweet reward was biting into a warm and chewy cookie fresh from the oven. In addition to the nostalgia, their chewy and soft texture paired with the warm spices and cozy molasses puts them above any other cookie.

Sorry chocolate chip cookies. You don’t even compare.

Seriously soft and chewy molasses cookies will be your favorite Christmas cookie! So much delicious flavor in one easy cookie recipe. Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Molasses Cookie Comparison

Since they’re a favorite, I have plenty gingersnappy/molasses cookie recipes on my website and in my cookbooks. Most stem from the same-ish recipe with the exception of the crisp variety. (Soooo crisp!) Let’s review what makes each undeniably delicious:

  • Soft White Chocolate Chip Molasses Cookies: Studded with white chocolate chips, these cookies are tender, lusciously soft, and mega chewy. You’ll love the combination of cozy spices and white chocolate.
  • Caramel Molasses Cookies: We’re combining molasses and caramel in this soft, crinkly-topped cookie recipe.
  • Soft Gingersnap Molasses Cookies: These cute cookies are fat and fluffy! They’re mega soft and mega flavorful.
  • Ginger Pistachio Cookies: I added salty pistachios to my mom’s classic recipe. These ginger and molasses cookies are soft, salty, sweet, spiced, and total winners. Find this recipe in Sally’s Cookie Addiction cookbook.
  • Crisp Molasses Cookies: These are oh so crisp and oh so snappy. If you’re looking for a crunchy molasses cookie, this one’s for you– they actually snap when you break them!

If I had to chose, I would always reach for my mom’s recipe that lives in Sally’s Baking Addiction cookbook. Nothing compares to mom’s.

Soft molasses cookie dough on sallysbakingaddiction.com

What Makes These Molasses Cookies Different?

Another molasses cookie recipe? Yes! These cookies are different from my other varieties and here’s why– they’re chewier than all the rest with soft centers and crackly tops. I used my traditional soft gingersnap molasses cookies recipe as a starting point (these are the cute, puffy ones!). My goal was to produce a flatter, chewier cookie with the same amount of softness. To accomplish this, I used the same ingredients but slightly altered the ratios:

  • Flour: I reduced the flour considerably because a slightly flatter cookie was the goal.
  • Baking Soda: To avoid a super flat and overly greasy cookie, I increased the baking soda. Need that lift!
  • Spices: Same amount. Didn’t want to mess with perfection. This careful blend of ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves is exactly what every molasses cookie needs!
  • Butter, Brown Sugar, Egg, + Vanilla: Same amounts. Brown sugar is what helps produce the softest molasses cookie ever. (It’s the first thing I changed when making my crisp molasses cookies.)
  • Molasses: Too much liquid in a cookie dough will cause cookies to over-spread. I reduced the molasses by 1 Tablespoon to prevent this from happening. 1/4 cup of molasses still provides the cookies with all that delicious molasses flavor you want in a Christmas cookie.

Mission accomplished. These cookies are mega chewy, mega soft, and mega crackly!

Molasses for soft molasses cookies on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Which Molasses Do I Use?

There are varying intensities of molasses on store shelves from lighter molasses to blackstrap molasses. Go for a dark molasses, also sold as “robust” molasses. Blackstrap molasses can be quite intense; I don’t bake with it too much.

I’m often asked which brands of molasses I like best. I’m not working with any of these companies, but I prefer either Grandma’s brand, Brer Rabbit brand, or Wholesome! brand. Wholesome’s organic molasses is super dark, so it will make your cookies a little darker. Look how dark it makes my spiced gingerbread loaf. As opposed to the same recipe as a cake (moist gingerbread snack cake) made with Grandma’s brand. What a difference in color!

(I always giggle at the cute grandma on the label!)

Rolling molasses cookie dough into balls on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Soft Molasses Cookies Recipe Video

Let’s watch how quickly and easily these cookies come together.

Soft molasses cookie dough on sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to Make Soft Molasses Cookies

These are a great make-ahead cookie recipe because they stay seriously soft for days (if they last that long!). Let’s review how to make soft molasses cookies: 

  1. Whisk the dry ingredients together.
  2. Combine the wet ingredients together.
  3. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together.
  4. Chill cookie dough. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  5. Roll cookie dough into balls. Use about 1 Tablespoon of dough per cookie.
  6. Generously roll each cookie dough ball in granulated sugar. For sparkle, of course!
  7. Bake. The cookies will puff up as they bake then gently sink back down. This is what creates those familiar crinkles and crackles we love.
  8. Enjoy!

Seriously soft and chewy molasses cookies will be your favorite Christmas cookie! So much delicious flavor in one easy cookie recipe. Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

More Christmas Cookie Recipes

Seriously soft and chewy molasses cookies will be your favorite Christmas cookie! So much delicious flavor in one easy cookie recipe. Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Print

Seriously Soft Molasses Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 30-32 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These seriously soft molasses cookies are the most tender and chewy gingersnap cookies around!


Ingredients

  • 2 and 1/4 cups (280g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 and 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) unsulphured or dark molasses
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated or coarse sugar, for rolling

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and salt together until combined. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl using a hand-held or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar together on high speed until creamy and combined, about 2 minutes. Add the molasses and beat until combined. Then add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  3. On low speed, slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. The cookie dough will be slightly sticky. Cover dough tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour and up to 2-3 days.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  5. Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator. If the cookie dough chilled longer than 2 hours, let it sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. The cookies may not spread in the oven if the dough is that cold. Roll cookie dough, 1 Tablespoon each, into balls. Roll each in granulated sugar and arrange 3 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 11-12 minutes or until edges appear set. If the tops aren’t appearing cracked as pictured, remove the baking sheet from the oven and gently bang it on the counter 2-3x. This will help those warm cookies spread out and crack on top. Return to the oven for 1 additional minute.
  6. 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.
  7. Cookies will stay fresh covered at room temperature for 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature, if desired, before serving. Unbaked cookie dough balls (before rolling in sugar) will freeze well for up to 3 months. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, pre-heat the oven, then roll in granulated sugar. Bake as directed. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer, Molasses, Silpat Baking Mat, Cookie Sheet, and Cooling Rack
  3. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: soft molasses cookies, molasses cookies

Seriously soft and chewy molasses cookies will be your favorite Christmas cookie! So much delicious flavor in one easy cookie recipe. Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

178 Comments

  1. I came to your website to search of a soft ginger cookie and behold that was the most recent post !!!!
    Someone brought in some years ago at work and I’ve been meaning to try making them. I was never able to track down the recipe. Cant wait to try these. 

  2. Perfect timing! I scoured and scoured the Internet and my cookbooks yesterday for the ultimate ginger molasses cookie recipe. Although I found one, I still felt like it came up short – yours, however, seems like it will be perfect and taste just as I remember them from when I was a child! These are now at the top of my baking list!

  3. ah perfect!!! my brother and sister in law just had a baby and this will be a perfect little treat to bring over with a dinner for them!! Molasses cookies have always been a favorite of my brothers!

  4. Hey Sally!

    Molasses cookies are my all time favorite. My perfect version has a soft center with a chewy edge; would you recommend this recipe to achieve that, or the one from your cookbook?

  5. I was wondering if these are as gingery as the soft gingersnap molasses from November 2012? I love me some gingery molasses cookies!

  6. Yum! I was in a molasses mood last weekend – Made your Gingerbread swirl fudge and the Spiced gingerbread loaf. Both were hits (so now on to these cookies!)…..

    1. You’ll need 1 Tbsp size balls– the #60 scoop is slightly smaller and the #40 scoop is slightly larger (1.5 Tbsp), so either use a Tablespoon measuring spoon to measure OR the #40 scoop and remove some of the dough 🙂

      1. Unfortunately the ingredients just say spices. I have it in my spice bin but never have used it. I’m guessing it would be similar to a pumpkin pie spice just gingerbread type spices. I may have to experiment with the next batch 🙂

  7. I have made some ginger cookies in the past and lost my recipe. I have tried other recipes but always have problem that cookies don’t get crinkle on top. What am I missing or doing wrong?

  8. have you ever tried to make this wonderful recipe gluten free? wondering if a GF substitute like Better Batter would work…?

  9. Hi Sally, these look so good. I love the idea of the chewy cookie with the thinner crisp edges but also love the white chocolate chips.. could I add some without altering the recipe? Also, what do you think about adding some freshly grated ginger for an extra gingery taste? Thanks! 

  10. I just want to let you know I baked these cookies tonight. I left them cooling on the rack. When I came back into the room there was only two left. My 3 and 7 year old apparently loved these cookies. Thank you! 

  11. I just finished baking these cookies, and although they did not spread like yours, they tasted amazing.  They remained “baby” cookies.lol.  I will definitely try them again and maybe flatten them slightly.  Keep the great recipes coming.  I hope you and your beautiful family have a wonderful Christmas; how could you not with your little miracle!

    1. Thank you so much Christine! I appreciate the well wishes. And pressing the cookie dough balls down will certainly help them spread out in the right direction. Thanks for trying them!

    2. Hi Sally, I want to make these tomorrow for my neighbors wedding, so I was wondering if you can make a quadruple batch of this. I’m really excited to try these!

      1. Hi Jessica! You can make a higher quantity of cookies, but I suggest doubling the recipe twice instead of making a quadruple batch all at once.

  12. It’s starting to seem a little repetitious, same recipes just tweaked or dressed up differently but still same old stuff. Just for fun how about a recipe that doesn’t resemble any other on your site, or maybe you’ve run out of original ideas. 

  13. My husband would be all over these cookies! Totally making them tomorrow for him to have after work!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  14. These look wonderful. I have similar memories from my childhood – mom’s molasses crinkle cookies were the best! I think I’ll have to go ahead and make these today!

  15. I’m making ginger molasses cookies this weekend for a cookie swap – I usually use the other recipe (sans caramel or white chocolate) and have always got rave reviews. Do I switch it up to this one? Are these ones flatter? There is so much pressure!

    Ps. Whichever I choose I will probably dip some in white chocolate anyway. For fun.

    1. Ha! I know the feeling. Which to choose? I like both. These aren’t quite as puffy, but are just as soft… and even chewier!

  16. Just tried these and they’re really enjoyable. Not too spicy. I also like that they are a manageable size. (some cookies are just too big for one person and look silly on a holiday cookie tray).

  17. This looks identical to the recipe my dad has used for years for molasses cookies except we always add more spice than the recipe calls for. These are awesome.

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