crispy, chewy gingersnap cookies {a one bowl recipe}

The trip to the country this past weekend was a bit treacherous. The rain and fog made for a very slow drive, but I’m glad we went up on Friday night because this is what we woke up to on Saturday morning. Meet Olaf. He’s our upstate mascot until the sun turns him into a puddle. As you might have guessed we saw Frozen recently, hence our snowman’s name.


Snow Upstate

Every time I load us up into the car, I wonder if I’m crazy to clock 300 miles every weekened. The drives are most certainly taking their toll on me physically. And then I pull off the Thruway, and a peace washes over me. This house was a big step. A fresh start. While I have a few of M’s things in the house, it is my house.

Not our house.

Or his apartment that I inherited by way of death.

No one knows my story. They just see a somewhat kooky single mom, trying to figure out the challenges of being a homeowner. I never did get to use the lawnmower this past summer. My neighbor mowed the lawn for me most of the time; I was shocked when he asked if I minded, so as to keep the neighborhood looking neat. By time I figured out the lawnmower needed gas to work (duh!), and then bought said gasoline, well, the seasons had changed. Colder days descended, leaves changed colors, and then fell from their branches.

And now this weekend, we had our first real snowfall. It flurried a bit a few weeks ago, but the flakes disappeared as quickly as they sprinkled from the sky. This snowfall was substantial enough to make Olaf. The crazy thing is that by Sunday afternoon, all the snow had melted, but Olaf was still intact. I was shocked a deer, raccoon, or some other critter didn’t snatch his carrot nose!

A little housekeeping business before I get onto the recipe I’ve been wanting to share for weeks months. If anyone is giving Homemade with Love as a gift for the holidays, I’d be happy to send you a personalized bookplate (fancy publishing word for sticker). Just send me an email at I’ll send it out by regular mail, and think if you get me a note by 12/17 it should get to you in time for Christmas, but can’t promise with the United States Postal Service.

A friend mentioned recently that she couldn’t find the book at Barnes & Noble. I’ve seen it at quite a few Anthropologie stores, and it’s still available on Amazon, and if you want to support a local bookstore, then check out IndieBound. Brooklyn folks, a friend told me that 4Play in Park Slope has it, too! Okay, that’s enough shop talk for one post. Let’s talk about the cookies!

I first made these in early October. They came out so incredibly good the first time, I thought it had to be a fluke. I mean, I tweaked my recipe for these walnut cookies, and bam! I had created the best gingersnap cookie recipe, ever. I know that’s a huge thing to brag about, but I’m not kidding here folks; at least not in my world. A gingersnap cookie that has a crisp edge, with a chewy center? I mean, that’s cookie nirvana, right?

Well, I didn’t believe it myself, so I proceeded to make about 10 dozen more. Every batch yielded one simple truth—this is the only gingersnap cookie recipe you’ll ever need. I’m only sharing it under one condition. You have to promise not to relegate it to just the holiday baking season. That would be just awful. Need to make a gingersnap cookie crust? These are the cookies you want to use. Looking for texture in a sundae, trifle or parfait? Crumble a few of these into it.

After much testing with this recipe, I discovered a few weeks ago that you can make the whole thing in one bowl, and with just a whisk and wooden spoon. No need to whisk the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and no need for a stand mixer, or even a hand mixer! I’ll admit there’s a slight difference using this method, but it’s so faint, I’d never bother you with mussing two bowls when one will suffice.

And let’s not gloss over that whole melted butter fact. You don’t need to soften butter to make these cookies! In less than 30 minutes you can have two and a half dozen cookies baked because there’s no waiting time to soften the butter. I’m getting frantic with excitement as I type this, no joke. My heart is racing. I know, it’s such silly business to get this worked up over a cookie.

My kitchen has been by salvation these last 856 days. If the joy, and healing, I get from being in there makes your life easier, then it makes me feel like I have a purpose in this world. I’ve been struggling with that a lot lately.

What is my purpose?

What is my next step?

Until I figure that out, I say we bake cookies. ‘Tis the season.

Crispy Chewy Gingersnap Cookies

makes 30 cookies

Look no further for the easiest, and best, chewy gingersnap cookie recipe. Last time I made these, I added a handful of toffee pieces. Next time I’m thinking of trying some chopped white chocolate. No worries if you have neither on hand. The cookies are incredible “as-is”.

Music Pairing: 2,000 Miles by The Pretenders

1 stick (4 ounces) butter, melted and slightly cooled

3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated natural cane sugar

1 large egg (50 grams)

2 tablespoons (45 grams) molasses (I use Steen’s)

1 cup (145 grams) plus 2 tablespoons (16 grams) whole wheat pastry flour

1/4 teaspoon (1 grams) baking soda

1/4 teaspoon (1 grams) fleur de sel

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) ground cloves

3/4 teaspoon (2 grams) ground ginger

Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

Add the butter, sugar, molasses and egg to a deep bowl. Whisk vigorously until well combined, and a bit fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the flour, baking soda, fleur de sel ans spices to the bowl. Using a wooden spoon, stir until the flour is completely mixed in.

Drop mounds of the dough, 2 teaspoonsful each, onto the prepared baking sheets. (Note: you should be able to fit 12 per sheet I use this OXO cookie scoop for even, uniform-sized cookies.). Bake for 10 minutes, until the edges are golden and the bottoms are lightly browned. Remove sheet from the oven and let the cookies cool on the pan for 2 minutes. For extra chewy cookies, bake them for only 8 minutes. Using a spatula, transfer the cookies to a wire rack to finish cooling completely.


  • Libby

    These sound delicious! And I can definitely relate to the trials and triumphs of heading upstate on the weekends. We had a house in Sullivan County for a number of years. I too wondered if we were nuts every time we loaded up the car, but the feeling you get when you pull into the driveway is worth it. Enjoy!

  • Mardi (eat. live. travel. write.)

    Jennie these look great. I am always looking for cookies to bake with my students that don’t require the dough to sit in the fridge for ages (we only have an hour, right?) so am filing these away in my “doable” list! (also, sending three BIG hugs your way!)

  • emily

    We are making these today since they’ve called another snow day on us!!! Maybe some will make it into our Christmas goodie gift bags…but I’m not promising :). As always, thank you for sharing your beautiful self with us 🙂

  • Martha T

    These sound delicious and will be made as soon as I get the missing ingredients. Jennie, I have grieved with you along with the baking world. Having survived a “could be” life ending loss (mine was my 15 year old son), I knew that you would survive as well with time. No, life will never be the same, but we are Mom’s snd that is what we do. Blessings and peace to you during this Christmas season.

  • cheryl c

    It’s bitter cold in Edmonton. Your getaway home looks amazing Jennie. Thanks for the clever cookie recipe. I’ll put it to work right away.

  • Jan Harris

    Jenny: 856 days warms and breaks my heart at the same time. Sweet and sad. These cookies look so good, and I like em chewy. Have you tried them with AP flour? I rarely have pastry flour on hand.

  • Jennifer Perillo

    Yes, Jan, I’ve made them with AP flour, too. It’s even swap, and they pretty much taste the same.

  • Cinda

    I am always on the lookout for a great gingersnap. I am going to get on this right away. With all my girls coming home for Christmas vacation, I don’t think they will last long!
    Thank you!
    I love your cookbook and I’m gifting it this Christmas.


  • Mary Topf

    OH my…these are so simple and you’re right…it’s the best ginger cookie I’ve ever eaten. Thank you.

  • Cheryl

    Ibaked these

    I made these this morning – my house smells a azing

    I made these this morning -my house smells amazing! These are the best!

  • Kathy H.

    These just came out of the oven. The first sheet I baked for about 8 minutes and they are chewy, like the recipe states. The second sheet I kept in the oven a few minutes longer and they have more of a ‘snap’. These are easy and delicious and would make great gifts for the holidays. Thanks Jenny!

  • Carla

    Thanks for a really simple and tasty recipe! I made these with organic whole wheat white flour and replaced the molasses with maple syrup. I put all the wet ingredients in my stand mixture and after they were mixed together added the dry ingredients. It was really quick to make these (maybe 5 minutes or less of active work). For the next batch, I think I will add more ginger (either double the dry ginger, or add a few spoonfuls of ginger puree): these cookies were good but not quite as spicy as I like gingersnaps to be.

  • Jennifer Perillo

    Thanks for your notes Carla. It sounds like a nice variation. I just want to add a note for my other readers that swapping in maple syrup for the molasses will change the flavor of these cookies, perhaps the reason you didn’t get enough “punch” from the ginger. Molasses has a strong flavor that compliments the ginger, and accentuates the spicy notes, whereas maple syrup is sweeter and might mellow the ginger a bit.

  • Carla

    I’ve made these again, and this time I added fresh grated ginger to the dough in addition to 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger. I let the dough sit in the fridge (covered) for 2 days to develop the flavor. I used maple syrup instead of molasses (molasses doesn’t exist in Denmark). I’ve just baked the cookies and they are wonderful! This is definitely a keeper. Thanks, Jennie!