These molasses spice cookies aren’t your ordinary cookies. Sure, they’re made with flour, butter, sugar, allspice, cinnamon, and molasses, but they get a nice savoriness from black pepper. Bet you can’t stop at just one.
These molasses spice cookies are incredibly reminiscent of a ginger snap although they boast a surprise hit of black pepper for just the right warmth. The cookies not only contrast sweet with savory but crisp with tender. And we can say from personal experience that you’ll be thankful the recipe makes such a big batch. Trust us, you won’t have problems making them disappear. Consider yourself warned.–Angie Zoobkoff
Molasses Spice Cookies
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon allspice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup superfine sugar for sprinkling
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, allspice, cinnamon, and pepper.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With the mixer running, beat in the molasses and then the egg. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing well. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
- Center the oven rack and preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Place the superfine sugar in a plastic or paper bag. Scoop up a little less than a tablespoon of dough and roll it in the palms of your hands to form a 1/2-inch (12-mm) diameter ball. As you work, drop each ball into the bag containing the superfine sugar. Shake the bag to evenly coat each ball. Set the sugarcoated balls at least 2-inches (5-cm) apart on the prepared baking sheets as the cookies will spread quite a lot during baking. Bake until the edges of the cookies start to color, 11 to 15 minutes.
- Cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes, and then transfer the cookies to a wire rack for further cooling. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 1 week although it’s unlikely they’ll last that long.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This was a solid molasses spice cookie with a beautiful crackle finish. The taste was lovely and not overly sweet. The dough was quick to put together—it took me just 10 minutes.
Pepper in cookies???? Hmm, I was dubious! But they pack a yummy, surprising, unique, and subtle “WOW” factor, and I know that I will make them time and again. This recipe is delicious, different, and easy to make. Combining a bit of pepper with the cinnamon gives a taste reminiscent of those red hot cinnamon candies that I gobbled down as a kid. But they aren’t red, they look rather plain, and the subtle “kick” is unexpected and delightful.
They were simple to make, especially when I used a spring-loaded cookie scoop to make the dough balls. To make a 1/2-inch dough ball I used a scant 1 tablespoon of dough but the baked cookies still came out a little bigger than the 2 inches diameter stated in the recipe (they ranged from 2.5 to 3 inches, but no complaints on that from my delighted tasters!). These cookies do spread quite a bit when baking, so be generous in calculating the 2 inch space between each dough ball on your cookie sheet.
After the required 15 minutes of cooling, the molasses spice cookies were easily removed from the cookie sheet which I had lined with a sheet of parchment paper lightly greased with butter (rubbing the parchment with the greasy side of the wrapper from a stick of butter). Even with my slightly larger cookies, the recipe yielded 44 cookies, all of which got gobbled up fairly quickly. It is true that these cookies are indeed addictive, so baker beware! Hard to say how well they kept—just like the author says, these cookies are too good to last long—after 3 days they were still delicious and had no change and then they were gone.
Love, love, love these molasses spice cookies! At first bite, they seem very similar to a gingersnap, but the bite of the black pepper delivers a unique and addictive spin on these super easy cookies. We have been enjoying them for 4 days now, and they are still as delicious as fresh.
The initial bite was crunchy on the outside but chewy on the inside. A nice blend of cinnamon and molasses. Perfect! This recipe was easy to put together.
These simple yet divine molasses spice cookies take no more than 10 minutes of your active time. So plan on whatever amount of time you choose to chill the dough plus 10 minutes. After mixing the dough, I ventured out into the world for several hours. Upon my return, I was presented with a chilled ball of dough, just right for rolling into perfect half-inch globes and coating with sugar and some very coarsely ground black peppercorns which I mixed with the sugar.
Simply out of laziness, I also chose to use regular granulated sugar, which I simply to a small bowl and tossed the dough balls around in the mixture. I baked the cookies for 12 minutes, after which I was treated to nearly 40 crisp, delicious spiced cookies with very little effort. I can’t help but think these would be heavenly, paired with a maple buttercream frosting between 2 of these cookies for a spectacular fall, sandwich cookie. Of course, this only works if you can refrain from devouring them as soon as they cool. I should mention that my cookies had a crackled top unlike the photo.
Originally published March 29, 2018