These Healthy Gingerbread Cookies are made with whole-grain flour for some added nutrition. The cookie dough is easy to make and the cookies can be cut into whatever shapes you like and decorated however you like!

snowflake gingerbread cookies on a marble board

Easy Healthy Gingerbread Cookies

And the saga continues…

From ginger molasses cookies to vegan gingerbread donuts, we’re now moving onto a holiday classic: Healthy Gingerbread Cookies

Now, before you go ahead and look at these sparkly snowflakes in doubt thinking “that does not look easy,” let me assure you, the actual COOKIE making part of this recipe is easy as can be! Really, just dump all the ingredients into a stand mixer and then pop the dough into the fridge to chill.

The decorating part can be a *little bit* trickier, but with a little bit of practice, you’ll be a professional gingerbread cookie decorator in no time!

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Healthier than your average cookie. These gingerbread cookies are made with whole-grain flour and have less sugar than your average gingerbread cookie, making them a little more nutritious without sacrificing flavour.
  • Makes for a great holiday activity. Besides the fact that you’ll have delicious cookies to eat, the actual making of the cookies is such a fun activity to do for the holidays!
  • Can be made gluten-free. Just swap out the flour for a 1-1 gluten-free flour blend.
  • Holiday party approved. These cookies are perfect to bring to a holiday party or to make with friends and family as an activity.
  • They are perfectly crisp around the edge and slightly soft in the center and filled with festive gingerbread flavour!

Key ingredients and substitutions:

  • Butter: we’re making cookies after all! Butter is a key ingredient to making tasty gingerbread cookies.
  • Cane sugar: you can substitute regular sugar if needed.
  • Egg: this will help the dough come together, no substitute here.
  • Molasses: I recommend using blackstrap molasses if you have some on hand. It will give the cookies a deeper and richer flavour.
  • Vanilla: real vanilla extract is best!
  • Whole grain Spelt flour: you can also use regular all-purpose flour if you prefer or a 1-1 gluten-free flour blend.
  • Spices: these cookies need a mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves. It’s important to use all these spices to get that classic “gingerbread” taste.
  • Baking soda: to help the cookies rise.
  • Salt: to balance out all the flavours.
snowflake gingerbread cookies with royal icing on a marble board

How to make Gingerbread Cookies:

Many people think gingerbread cookies are hard to make, which is not the case. So let’s break it down a little further.

  1. Mix all the dough ingredients together in a stand mixer
  2. Pop the dough into the fridge for 1-4 hours to chill 
  3. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough 
  4. Use your favourite cookie cutter to cut out shapes
  5. Place on a baking sheet and bake 
  6. (Optionally) Use a piping bag to pipe royal icing onto the cookies

Pretty simple once it’s broken down into steps, right? 

How to store these cookies

Store the gingerbread cookies in an airtight container on the countertop for up to 2 weeks. These cookies can be frozen, however, they are best enjoyed fresh.

Freezing gingerbread cookie dough

If you have leftover gingerbread cookie dough or want to make a double the recipe to make extras, you can freeze the dough for up to 4 months in the freezer.

How to freeze cookie dough: form the cookie dough into a ball and flatten it so it resembles a large patty. Tightly wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap and place the dough into a freezer-safe ziplock bag. Freeze for up to 4 months. When you’re ready to make cookies, remove the dough from the freezer and place it in the fridge to thaw. You want the dough to still be slightly cold when rolling it out so it doesn’t stick to the rolling pin.

Tips for making this recipe perfectly

  • I like to use organic blackstrap molasses for these cookies. This gives them a super deep and robust flavour, but regular (also known as fancy) molasses tastes great too! If you’re wondering what the difference is between regular molasses and blackstrap molasses let’s clear that up quickly: 
  • For icing the cookies: make sure you having a piping bag on hand and the right piping tips. I like to use the Wilton #1 and #2 round decorating tip. These are the perfect decorating tips if you’re looking to make some fun designs on your cookies, or even just gingerbread men! 
  • For icing consistency: This is the *only* part of the recipe that is a little bit trickier. If your icing is too thick, it will be hard to pipe on well. If it is too thin, it will leak. So how do you know the right consistency? (You’re looking for a “5-second consistency.” This means, if you run a knife through your icing, it should seep back together within 5 seconds. I found this video quite helpful for making royal icing & piping tips!)
snowflake gingerbread cookies on a cooling rack and napkin

More holiday treats to make

If you tried these Healthier Easy Gingerbread Cookies or any other recipe on the blog let me know how you liked it by leaving a comment/rating below! Be sure to follow along on PinterestInstagram and Facebook for even more deliciousness!

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snowflake gingerbread cookies on a marble board

Healthier Easy Gingerbread Cookies

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 6 reviews
  • Author: Jessica Hoffman
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 1220 cookies 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American


These gingerbread cookies are made with healthier ingredients than a traditional gingerbread cookie and are easy to make!


Units Scale
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (or dairy-free butter) at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups whole grain Spelt flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Royal icing: 


  1. In a stand mixer, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy, then add the egg, molasses and vanilla and mix until combined.
  2. Mix all the dry ingredients together and slowly add to the mixer. Mix until everything is well combined.
  3. Cover your dough and place it in the fridge for at least an hour until it’s firm enough to work with.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  5. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/4 inch thick.
  6. Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes and place the cookies onto the baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes

Royal icing: 

  1. Mix the powdered sugar, egg whites and vanilla extract together in a stand mixer until smooth and shiny.
  2. Slowly add the water, one tsp at a time until your icing drizzles off a spoon and holds for a few seconds before melting back into the icing. (If it’s too thick, add some more water. If it’s too thin, add some more icing sugar.)
  3. Use a piping bag to pipe the icing onto your cookies.


Use blackstrap molasses in these cookies if you have some on hand. It has a deeper more rich flavour and will make these cookies taste amazing! 

I use the Wilton no.1 and the Wilton no.2 tips for icing these cookies. I use these snowflake cookie cutters for these cookies!

You want the icing to have a 5-second consistency. If you a run knife through it, the icing should seep back together in 5 seconds. 


  • Serving Size: 1 cookie
  • Calories: 207
  • Sugar: 25g
  • Fat: 5g
  • Saturated Fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 37g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 2g