Perfectly spiced, with just the right amount of crunch and softness, these Gingerbread Men Cookies are SO yummy! Make these ahead, and plan a decorating party! A fun activity for people of all ages to enjoy!
In a large bowl using a hand mixer (or stand mixer with the paddle attachment) cream butter and brown sugar until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes.
Add molasses, egg, and vanilla and mix until light and fluffy, making sure to scrape down the edges as you go, about 3 minutes.
In a separate smaller bowl combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Then add ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves until well combined.
Slowly add the flour mixture to wet ingredients one cup at a time and mix until fully blended. The dough should be sticky and thick but not too sticky that you can’t handle it.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and shape it into a disc. Refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight, the longer you chill it the better.
Rolling and Cutting
Place the dough disc on a lightly floured surface, split it in half, put one half back in the refrigerator to continue cooling.
Roll out with a rolling pin the other half of the dough until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Using a cookie cutter cut out shapes and add them to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
Transfer to the preheated oven and bake for 8-10 minutes.Allow the cookies to cool completely on cooling rack before frosting them.
For the icing
Add egg white, powdered sugar and milk to a bowl and beat on low speed until combined. Beat on high speed for 4-5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. You should be able to pull your beater up and the drips melt into the rest of the icing slowly. If it is too runny add more sugar and if it is too thick add more milk.
Fill a piping bag with a small tip attached with icing, I used a #3 tip, or you can use a sandwich bag with a small cut at the end.
Decorate your gingerbread men with icing or decorative candies and allow the icing to harden for about 10 minutes before eating.
How to store Gingerbread MenStore in a covered container at room temperature for 7-10 days.Make aheadMake the dough ahead, up to a week. If you need to make this longer, freeze your dough. Wrap it well, and place in a ziploc bag. Freeze up to 2 months, then thaw in the refrigerator until ready to use.Substitutions/AdditionsYou could use store-bought icing if preferred. Royal icing is a good one to use on these!Adjust the amount of spices to your personal preference. I feel like the spice level is perfect, but you can amp it up or dial it back if you need or want to.What to decorate Gingerbread Men with?Frosting, candy, and little decorations you find in the grocery store works!Make other shapes!I'm talking candy canes, circles (made to look like Christmas tree baubles), Christmas trees - let your imagination go!