John's Roll-Out Molasses Cookies

READY IN: 1hr 58mins
Recipe by Debbie R.

A coworker of mine gave me this recipe. There isn't one exactly like it on Zaar, in that it uses allspice and has no eggs. It is a dense, spicy cookie that is rolled out and cut into shapes. Cooking time includes time to chill dough. I have halved the amounts in the original recipe because it made SO many cookies; hence the weird measurement for the shortening. It was originally 1/3 c. shortening, and this is the best I could come up with for getting half of that. Be sure not to roll them thinner than 1/4 - 1/2 inch (nor overbake) so that they keep their good, dense, kinda chewy texture.

Top Review by Kitchen Ninja

They tasted great, but it seems like these cookies are a case of trying to do too many things and so not doing either of them as well as they otherwise might. I've been looking for a molasses or ginger cookie that I could roll out, and these are the best ones I've tried, but they're not quite there yet. Rolling them was a beastly pain. I refrigerated them for about three hours, and the dough still seemed too sticky and fragile. My solution: roll between two large pieces of wax paper. Pull up the top layer, dust heavily with powdered sugar. Replace the wax paper, invert, pull up the new top (formerly bottom) layer, and dust heavily with powdered sugar again. Press cookie cutters into place and leave them there. Replace wax paper, invert again. Run spatula under dough and pick up cookie cutter upside down. Gently persuade cookie out of cutter and onto pan. Any shortcuts I tried resulted in sticking and/or tearing. The cookies were good, but definitey felt like a compromise --other kinds of cookies are easier to roll and cut out, and I prefer the texture and flavor of other molasses cookie recipes that can't be rolled out.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix together shortening, molasses and brown sugar. Stir in 1/4 cup cold water.
  2. Mix together the flour, salt and spices. Add to molasses mixture.
  3. Dissolve soda in 1.5 teaspoons cold water. Stir it into the above mixture.
  4. Gather up dough into a ball; on waxed paper, pat into a disk. Wrap up. Chill for at least an hour.
  5. Roll out between 1/4-inch and 1/2-inch thick. I thought 1/2-inch was a bit too thick, but it's up to you. Cut into shapes, specifically gingerbread men or bears. Gather up scraps, pat into a ball, reroll and cut into shapes, etc., until you have used most of your dough.
  6. On lightly greased or sprayed cookie sheets, bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes.
  7. These swell a little during cooking, so be sure to leave some space between them on the cookie sheets. Also, they taste better the day after baking when the spices have had a chance to meld with each other.

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a