Spicy Fair Trade Gingerbread Cookies

Spicy Fair Trade Gingerbread Cookies
December 11, 2018 Sarah Culler

fair trade gingerbread cookies

This gingerbread is a little different, and we love it this way — it’s spicy and a little sweet. The kick is thanks to the Victoria Falls Rainbow Pepper (a must-have in every fair-trader’s pantry!) The chewy but sturdy texture is created by refrigerating the dough twice — before you roll and make shapes, and after, before baking in the oven.

Makes 36-48 cookies, depending on your cooking cutter size.


  • 6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 4 tsp. fair trade ground ginger
  • 4 tsp. fair trade ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp. fair trade ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. fair trade ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks, or 1/2 pound) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup packed fair trade dark-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup unsulfured fair trade molasses (look for the Wholesome Organic brand in the baking aisle at your local grocery store)


Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt together in a bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, beat butter and brown sugar together with an electric mixer. Mix in eggs and molasses. Add the flour mixture to this, mixing on low until combined. Divide the dough into thirds and wrap each portion in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until cold and firm, for about one hour or up to two days.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll the dough onto a lightly floured work surface to a 1/4-inch thick. Cut into shapes with cookie cutters (we made letters and gingerbread people). Don’t forget to decorate with sprinkles! Spread cookies two inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, and refrigerate until they firm up again, for about 15 minutes.

Bake the cookies until crisp but not dark, for 12-14 minutes. Let cool on wire racks.

(You can also decorate the cookies with royal icing, but we skipped this part and just ate them!)

Gingerbread cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up a week.

Adapted from Martha Stewart and Smitten Kitchen, two of our favorites!

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