Not-So-Gingery Bread Men: The Journal News Cookie Swap 2014


Not-So-Gingery Bread Men
This post is part of our series on my cookie swap tradition.  Every December, for the past ten years, I’ve invited friends to join me in a cookie exchange.  Over the years, our party has evolved into a mother-daughter event, hence the many recipe contributors listed on some of the posts!  Each post contains a favorite recipe from past exchanges.

See how to win more than $700 worth of prizes, including a stand mixer, at our Cookie Swap on Dec. 2

This is the recipe I shared at my very first cookie exchange.  I came up with it after realizing that traditional gingerbread was much too ‘gingery’ for my kids.  This mellow version has about 1/3 of the ginger and is usually adored by children and adults alike.

Click here to see our recipe database with more from past Cookie Swaps. 

Not-So-Gingery Bread Men by Josephine and Sophie D’Ippolito

Not-So-Gingery Bread Men by Josephine and Sophie D’Ippolito


  • Ingredients:
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses


  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  2. Whisk together flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves in medium bowl.
  3. In large bowl with electric mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add egg and molasses, and beat on medium speed until smooth. Scrape down and add flour mixture. Blend on low speed just until combined; do not over mix.
  4. Separate dough into two balls and flatten to disks. Wrap each tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour until firm.
  5. Between 2 sheets of plastic wrap (no flour necessary!) roll dough out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into gingerbread men with cookie cutters. Place on baking sheets 1/2 inch apart.
  6. Bake 9-11 minutes being careful not to brown. Transfer to a cool flat surface. Store in airtight container.


cookieswap2012finalC-01Win more than $700 worth of prizes! The Journal News Cookie Swap will be held at 6 p.m. Dec. 2 at the new Chef Central location at 419 Tarrytown Road, Greenburgh. Suburban Sweets blogger Josephine D’Ippolito will teach everyone how to host their own cookie swap, with tips on everything from the guest list to the decorating sprinkles. Food writer Megan McCaffrey will host. Come down, meet our experts, share in some cookies and enter to win more than $700 worth of prizes! We’re giving away a Kitchen Aid Mixer, cookware, a waffle maker — and a basket of must-have bakeware selected by Josephine herself.


About Author

Suburban Sweets columnist Josephine D’Ippolito is a baking enthusiast whose passion began more than twenty years ago, when, on a whim, she and her college friend made a single batch of cookies from scratch. One husband, three children and thousands of cookies later, Josephine enjoys the creative and culinary process of baking more than ever. Older, wiser and slightly more health conscious, she tends to justify her habit by making her desserts on the tiny side. Quite possibly her favorite day of the year is her annual cookie exchange held each December, when she gets to revel in the talent and sweetness of her dearest family and friends.

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