One of the biggest addictions I had as a kid around Christmas were the Little Debbie frosted gingerbread man cookies. If my Mom brought those home….oh man, they were gone within 2 days between us 4 kids. I’ve made rolled gingerbread cookies before, which tasted very good, but soft and chewy is my ideal preference when it comes to cookies.
When I was at the store a couple of weeks ago, I came across cinnamon chips. I’ve always seen them on blogs, but NEVER in the stores near me. Maybe I’m just not that aware or it could be a seasonal thing around here, but when I saw them, I knew I had to scoop them up. I was thinking of how I could use them, and I didn’t want to just make chocolate chip cookie base and replace chocolate chips with these, so I thought that a molasses-y cookie would taste wonderful with these! I went to my favorite cookbook, and dug around for a recipe that featured a soft, spicy molasses cookie. When I read soft, chewy and “gently spiced”…I was in.
I will admit, I burned a batch of these. It’s VERY easy to overbake these cookies, so it’s best to keep an eye on the first batch to see how long it takes to bake them up in your oven. They will look kind of raw out of the oven, but they finish “baking” on the cookie sheet during the first part of the cooling process. These cookies have a wonderful flavor, and the cinnamon chips are the perfect enhancement to these. I rolled them in Christmas-y sparkling sugar instead of the granulated sugar as originally called for, which gave them a more festive feel. (Y’all can tell I’m obsessed with Christmas sprinkles, eh?…if you follow my Instagram, you know what I mean!)
Molasses Spice Cinnamon Chip Cookies
Source: adapted from Cooks Illustrated Cookbook
- 1/2 cup + 1/3 cup granulated sugar (can sub 1/2 cup sugar for 1/2 cup festive sparkling sugar)
- 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 12 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
- 1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup light or dark molasses
- 1 cup cinnamon chips
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and make sure the oven rack is in the middle position. Prepare your cookie sheets by lining them with parchment paper or a silicone sheet liner and set aside. Place 1/2 cup of granulated (or sparkling) sugar in a baking dish or pie plate and set aside for later.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, pepper and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar and remaining 1/3 cup of granulated sugar on medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Reduce the speed to medium-low and add in the egg yolk and vanilla extract. Once those are added, increase the speed a bit and beat until everything is incorporated (about 20 seconds).
- Reduce the speed to medium-low again and add in the molasses. Beat the molasses in until the batter is well-mixed. Scrape down the bowl at this time, if it’s necessary. Reduce your mixer speed to low and add in the flour mixture. Mix everything until the dough is just incorporated. Using a spatula or large spoon, stir in the cinnamon chips.Scoop the dough into tbsp. sized scoops, and place the top half of the balls in the leftover sugar. Place the balls of dough 2 inches apart on the prepared baking pans.
- Bake the cookies 1 pan at a time, until the cookies are browned but still puffy, about 11 minutes, making sure to rotate the pans halfway through baking. The centers of the cookies will still be soft, and look raw between the cracks. Do not overbake these cookies…they can overbake very easily (within a minute, I found).
- Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, and then transfer them to a cooling rack to finish cooling.