Christmas Gift # 14: Ginger Snaps

Many years ago, we were in Ft. Scott, Kansas during the holidays.   The local historical society was sponsoring a holiday tour of historic homes and the ladies of the society were baking these cookies in each featured residence.   Not only were the houses decorated to the hilt, but they also smelled delicious.  The aroma of the spicy ginger cookies almost transported us back to the 19th century and Christmases of long ago.   Later on that evening we toured the old Fort and enjoyed a Victorian Christmas on the prairie.

Mom and I begged the recipe from Mildred, a dear family friend and society member.  (Please forgive the food stains on the card.)

I have revised this recipe into an easier-to-follow format with a few tips.

Ginger Snaps

1/2 c. butter, softened
1/4 c. molasses
1 farm fresh egg
2 c. flour
1 c. sugar
2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. fine sea salt
1 T. ground ginger
1 t. cinnamon
a bit of butter for coating bottom of glass
1/8 c. raw sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter until soft and creamy.   Add molasses and egg and continue to beat until incorporated.

In a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and spices).

Add dry ingredients to butter mixture and beat until mixed.   This is a stiff dough.

Using a small cookie scoop, drop dough onto prepared baking sheets (or parchment-lined sheets or a Silpat).

Coat the bottom of a flat glass with butter.   Place raw sugar in a flat-bottomed bowl.  Dip coated bottom of glass in sugar and press down each cookie ball slightly.

Bake for 8-10 minutes.   Let cool on baking sheets 1-2 minutes before removing to wire racks.

I got 48 small cookies out of this recipe.

I hope you enjoy this heirloom recipe on my “vintage” recipe card.   For a gift idea, scan and copy a vintage holiday post card and write this recipe on the back of the card.   (Feel free to copy the vintage card at the bottom of this post.)  Include it in a box of these holiday cookies.

Ginger Snaps surrounded by vintage postcards.

As these were baking (and they do smell delicious), I started thinking about our dear friend Mildred.  It has been many years since we have seen her and the last Christmas card I got from her was written in an unsteady hand.   She is getting up there in age and I wonder if she is still baking?   I am glad that I have this recipe to remember her by, to imagine those Christmases of long ago on the plains, and to share with family and new friends.

Happy Holidays to all!   I hope you have lots of food, fellowship, family, and fun!

Merry Christmas! This is a vintage postcard from my grandfather’s collection, circa 1914.

And as always,  remember the reason for the season.


This is the final day to get all your Gifts from the Kitchen made up.   Good luck and Merry Christmas!


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Also, please check out The Secret Recipe Club’s cookie swap today.
Secret Recipe Club Cookie Party

4 comments to Christmas Gift # 14: Ginger Snaps

  • I love ginger snaps, and I like my cookies on the smaller side — somehow I feel less guilty about eating a few small ones, than one or two big ones.

    I am always looking for ways to use up the open bottle of molasses that I have around Christmas after making a family cookie recipe, so this is perfect 🙂

    Hope you have a very merry Christmas!

  • Hi Eliot! I LOVE that old recipe card and I LOVE gingersnaps. Looking forward to trying this recipe soon! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season! : )

  • I adore gingersnaps, a perfect cookie to go with tea!