Healthier Gingerbread Cookies

Festive and healthy gingerbread cookies for the holiday season.

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This Christmas, I was on a mission to create some healthy and festive gingerbread cookies. Having never made gingerbread, I was unfamiliar with the traditional recipe, let alone adapting it into a healthier version. Alas, I have crafted some delicious cookies that are perfect for any festive occasion. 

Gingerbread is a traditional holiday treat that is spiced with flavours such as ginger (obviously), cinnamon, cloves and cardamom. As you can imagine, it tastes amazing during the holiday period. It brings a warming and comforting feeling to any occasion. Additionally, this recipe makes up to 40 cookies that can be stored for 5 days in an air tight container. As such, they can be made in advance and displayed in a beautiful saucer or bowl for family and friends to enjoy.

Cooking with my family has always been a highlight at Christmas. When we can, we all get together to make our festive feast. There is always a few mishaps in the kitchen that turn into funny tales at the next years Christmas lunch and some great memories are made. Similarly, I loved making these gingerbread cookies with my mum. We got to create something delicious for others to enjoy and also catch up on everything new in our lives. I love how the spiced smell of the cookies fill the entire house, making it feel welcoming and inviting.

Although these cookies are a healthier version of gingerbread, they are still quite high in sugar due to the molasses, maple syrup and brown sugar. This is necessary to balance out the strong spiced flavour of the cookies. Otherwise the cookies may turn out quite bitter. However, I do believe in a balanced lifestyle and for a special treat during the holiday period, that is healthier than the traditional recipe these are perfect!

I hope you enjoy making these gingerbread cookies for your family and friends, just as I have for mine.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of whole-wheat flour
  • 1 Tbs of ground ginger
  • 2 Tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tsp Chinese Five Spice
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 Tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup unsulfoured molasses
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg whisked or flax egg substitute (1 Tbsp ground flax-seed mixed with 3 Tbsp water and left to thicken)
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 175 degrees celsius and line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl combine the flour, spices, salt and baking powder. Mix until all combined. Make a well in the middle.
  3. In a medium saucepan melt the coconut oil over a low heat, then add the molasses and maple syrup. Combine the coconut oil, molassas and maple syrup by stirring regularly, this may take a few minutes.
  4. Add in the packed dark brown sugar and allow the mixture to thicken slightly.
  5. Pour the wet mixture into the dry and add in the whisked egg or flax egg substitute. Mix together the dry and wet ingredients. As these are cookies, the mixture will be quite dry to start with but keep mixing until all the flour has been incorporated into a dough.
  6. Divide the dough into two, wrap them in plastic wrap and allow to rest in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  7. Dusting some flour on a work surface and using a rolling-pin, roll out the dough into the desired thickness. Grab your favourite cookie cutters (I used stars and hearts) and cut out the cookies. Place these a few cm apart on the baking trays (they wont expand much in size).
  8. Repeat this process with the remaining dough until all of it has been used.
  9. Place in the oven for 8-10 minutes and then transfer onto a wire rack to cool.
  10. Once completely cooled feel free to decorate the cookies as desired. I used some powdered sugar to dust over the top.

5 thoughts on “Healthier Gingerbread Cookies”

      1. No but you don’t know how annoying it’s that so many desserts — recipes and otherwise — require eggs. I’m vegetarian for religious reasons and most people in my culture can’t even bring themselves to not eat eggs because they miss out on cakes and pies and stuff. (I’ve been vegetarian my whole life so technically I’m not missing out anything since I’ve never had it to begin with! 😅) But I really appreciate you taking the time to make this recipe accessible to vegetarians. Like I’m tired of being treated like a second-class citizen. Anyway I’ll step off my soapbox now! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I understand that this must be so frustrating for a lot of people. It can be difficult to find substitutions that work in traditional baking recipes for eggs but it’s not impossible! I think it’s good to have the access of both options 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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