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My First Time Making Gingerbread – And It Was Actually So Easy

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CU Boulder chapter.

You know how every year you make a list, whether physical or mental, of all the jolly activities you are planning to do that year and then never do them? No? Just me? Okay. 

Well this year, I knew gingerbread had to be on that list. Making gingerbread houses is on the agenda, of course, but I’ve never made *actual* gingerbread. I love ginger snaps (a snack I consider to be year-round) and flavors like gingerbread, so I knew it couldn’t be too difficult. I was in luck because I found the easiest recipe from this recipe book from the 1980s (!!!), filled with all types of recipes of Blue Ribbon winners from various state fairs and competitions.

America\'s Best Recipes Recipe Book
Original photo by Maeve Reilly

2 ¾ cups of flour ⅔ cup molasses ⅓ cup of brown sugar ⅓ cup of butter 1 egg 2 teaspoons of cinnamon 1 teaspoon of baking soda 1 teaspoon of salt 1 teaspoon of ginger ½ teaspoon of vanilla  


  1. Set the butter out for at least an hour before baking. If you forget to set it out (like me), microwave carefully to soften, or put the oven on low and put butter in for a few minutes.
  2. Mix the brown sugar and softened butter. Add the egg, vanilla, and molasses and mix well.
  3. Sift the dry ingredients together (flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, ginger) and add to the mixture. 
  4. The hardest part? Having patience as you wait for the dough to chill. I waited three-four hours, then let the dough soften before rolling.
  5. Using a lightly floured board, roll the dough about ¼ inch thick. Cut with a gingerbread man cutter. Decorate with sprinkles before baking, if you choose. 
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. 

In Progress Gingerbread Cookies
Original photo by Maeve Reilly

Baked Gingerbread Cookies
Original photo by Maeve Reilly
Oh, and if you are so inclined to make your own frosting (I was not inclined, I just didn’t have any), here’s a two to three-ingredient recipe. 

Ingredients 1 cup of powdered sugar ¼ cup of milk If coloring, 10 drops of food coloring

Instructions Stir the powdered sugar into a small bowl. Stir in enough milk to make a smooth, but not too runny. Add as much food coloring as needed to make the desired hue. That’s it. Those are all the directions. 

Gingerbread Cookies
Photo by Jill Wellington from Pexels
I hope this recipe helps bring some yummy smells and jolly activities into your holiday season!  

Maeve Reilly

CU Boulder '21

Maeve is a full-time Events Associate at Her Campus Media. After three amazing years at Her Campus CU Boulder, interning, and being a national writer, she just couldn't get enough HC! She graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder (sko buffs!) in December 2021 with a degree in business.
Sko Buffs!