Best Gingerbread Recipe Without Molasses – Made With Honey

There is nothing better than the smell of spicy gingerbread in the kitchen. I mostly make them around Christmas. As these are cookies that can be stored for a long time, they can be made weeks in advance.

This is the best gingerbread recipe without molasses I have come across over the years. It’s made with honey.

This dough is suitable for making a gingerbread house, as well as cookies of all shapes and sizes. Once the cookies are baked, you can decorate them with royal icing or melted white chocolate. Royal icing also acts as a glue in the assembly of the gingerbread house.

In this blog post, I’ll also share with you a recipe for royal glaze as well as how to make the most delicious homemade gingerbread spice mix. Seasoning gingerbread can be simply done by using a store-bought spice mix, but it can also be easily made at home.

Homemade gingerbread spice mix:Cinnamon, Cloves and Star Anise

  • 17 g / 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 8 g / 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 8 g / 1 tablespoon ground nutmeg
  • 5 g / 1 tablespoon ground cardamom or 8-10 cardamom pods
  • 2 g / ¾ teaspoon ground cloves or 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 2 g / 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 star anise pods.

Grind the ingredients into a fine powder with a coffee grinder, then sift through and store in a closed box.

One batch of this gingerbread recipe requires approx. one-quarter (10 g / 2 tablespoons) of the spice mixture.


How to make gingerbread dough?

What is gingerbread dough made of?

  • Honey – heat it slightly if it has crystallized
  • Powdered sugar
  • Plain flour
  • A whole egg
  • Room temperature butter
  • Baking soda
  • Gingerbread spice mixture

Assemble the dough:

  • In a large mixing bowl, mix the soft butter with the honey, an egg, powdered sugar, and the spice mixture.
  • Mix the baking soda with the flour.
  • Gradually add the baking soda flour to the honey mixture. The best tool for this is a wooden spoon.
  • Wrap the assembled dough in foil and let it rest in the fridge for at least 1 hour, but it`s best to let it sit for about 6 hours (or overnight).

Shape and bake the gingerbread:

  • On a floured surface, roll out the dough 3mm / 1/8 inch thick.
  • Cut the rolled-out dough with cookie cutters of your choice and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  •  If you’re making a gingerbread house, I recommend that you roll the dough out on baking paper, cut out the elements, and remove any excess dough pieces. Carefully place them onto the baking sheet together with the baking paper. This way, the elements will not be deformed.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  • Bake the gingerbread in the preheated oven for about 12 minutes, or until a nice brown.

How to decorate gingerbread cookies?

Gingerbread cookies are traditionally decorated with royal glaze. You can use a white glaze or color it with food coloring. Gel food coloring is best for this, but you can also use natural coloring agents like beetroot powder or Matcha Tea.

White chocolate also goes well with the taste of gingerbread. I like to decorate cookies with tempered white chocolate as well.

To decorate gingerbread cookies, you can use a pastry bag with a small round tip or a cone made from parchment paper with the tip cut off.

Royal Icing for gingerbread cookies and houses

  • Mix the egg white with the powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth.
  • If the icing is too thick, it can be diluted by adding some more egg white.
  • If the icing has become too liquid, you can add more icing sugar.

Cover the finished royal icing with plastic foil to protect it from drying out.

The royal icing is suitable for making lace patterns, embroidery motifs, and figural decorations. The decoration can consist of lines or dots. You can fill the outlines drawn with royal icing from a pastry bag with more liquid icing diluted with egg whites.

Set aside the decorated cookies until the royal icing dries and solidifies on them.


Gingerbread house architecture

At the following link, you can download the printable template for a 10 x 10 cm / 4 x 4-inch gingerbread house. One batch of dough is needed to make a gingerbread house of this size with the base plane.

Freshly baked gingerbread is soft, at which point you can still use a knife to shape and beautify the edges of the elements as well as the doors and windows. After cooling, the gingerbread hardens and can no longer be shaped.

Pour the royal glaze into a pastry bag with a small round tip. I prefer to use disposable pastry bags, but you can also use a cone made of parchment paper with a tip cut off.

Glue the walls of the solidified gingerbread house together with royal icing, making sure they stand at right angles.

Then glue the assembled house to the base.

Finally, glue the roof slats onto the house as well.


The decoration of the gingerbread house is also made with royal glaze. You can decorate the elements before or after the assembly as it suits you better.

Christmas themed decorated gingerbread cookies

Best Gingerbread Recipe Without Molasses – Made With Honey

Yield: 850 g / 30 oz
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 27 minutes

This gingerbread dough is suitable for making a gingerbread house, as well as cookies of all shapes.


For the gingerbread dough:

  • 500 g / 3 1/3 cup / 17.6 oz plain flour
  • 150 ml / 0.6 cup / 5 fl oz liquid honey
  • 1 whole egg
  • 50 g / 3 1/2 teaspoons / 1.8 oz soft butter
  • 2 tablespoons gingerbread spice mix
  • 1.5 teaspoon baking soda
  • 130 g / 1 cup / 4,5 oz powdered sugar

For the royal glaze:

  • 1 egg white (about 30 g / 1 oz)
  • 200 g / 1 cup / 7 oz sifted powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice


Make the gingerbread dough first:

  1. Prepare the ingredients at room temperature. Heat the honey a little if it has crystallized.
  2. In a bowl, mix the butter with the honey, eggs, powdered sugar, and gingerbread spice.
  3. In another bowl, mix the flour with the baking soda.
  4. Gradually add the flour mixed with baking soda to the honey mixture and mix with a wooden spoon.
  5. Wrap the dough in foil and let it sit in the fridge for at least 1 hour, but it’s best to let it rest for about 6 hours or overnight.

Shape and bake the gingerbread dough:

  1. Roll out the dough on a floured surface 3 mm / 1/8 inch thick.
  2. Cut the dough with various cookie cutters and place them onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  3. If you are making a gingerbread house, roll the dough out on baking paper and then cut out the elements of the house. Remove the excess dough pieces and carefully transfer the cut elements along with the paper onto a baking sheet.
  4. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 180°C / 360°C.
  5. Bake the gingerbread in the preheated oven for about 12 minutes, or until a nice brown.
  6. Immediately after baking, the gingerbread is soft but it hardens after it has cooled. The cookies will soften after a few days of standing in a box.

Make the royal icing:

  1. Mix the ingredients until smooth, then cover with a plastic cover to protect it from drying out.
  2. If the icing is too thick, you can dilute it with some more egg whites. If it is too liquid, add a bit of powdered sugar to thicken the icing.

Decorate the cookies or the elements of the gingerbread house:

  1. Royal glaze can be used to decorate cookies as well as to glue together a gingerbread house.
  2. Pour the glaze into a pastry bag with a small diameter tip and pipe it onto the surface of the gingerbread.
  3. After drying, the royal glaze solidifies on the cookies.


Gingerbread cookies can be stored for a month in a closed tin box or cookie jar.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 70 g
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 335Total Fat: 4.2gTrans Fat: 0.1 ggCholesterol: 23mgCarbohydrates: 70gFiber: 1gSugar: 38gProtein: 5g

Disclaimer: Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

Did you make this recipe?

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The history of gingerbread cookies

The use of honey for human consumption is probably the same age as humanity itself. It has been used since ancient times to flavor baked goods and was considered a valuable raw material.


Honey cakes have been baked in the Indus Valley as well as in ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome. This is evidenced by numerous archaeological finds. While on the subject, you may wish to read my article about the most ancient honey ever found.

Gingerbread came to Europe with the crusaders from the Middle East. It spread throughout Europe during the Middle Ages, reaching America with European immigrants.

The tradition of making a gingerbread house began in Germany in the early 1800s, thanks to the Grimm brothers and the tale of Hansel and Gretel.

What’s the difference between honey and molasses?

Both molasses and honey are suitable for making gingerbread dough. It’s traditionally made with honey in Europe and molasses is mostly used in America.

Molasses is a by-product of the manufacture of sugar made from sugar beet or cane. Honey is made by bees from the nectar of flowers.

Honey and molasses are similar in texture. Molasses is dark in color with a sweet, smoky taste, while honey is light and fruity. However, their nutritional value is different. Molasses contains significantly more vitamins B and dietary minerals than honey.


Honey has a significant content of fructose and glucose. Molasses, on the other hand, is rich in sucrose. Talking of honey, you may be interested to find out if honey should be kept in the refrigerator.

How far ahead can you make gingerbread?

Gingerbread cookies can be stored in a tightly closed metal box or cookie container for up to a month. They can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Final thoughts 

Gingerbread can be stored for weeks, it is delicious and also very nice looking. It`s fun to make gingerbread cookies and houses, you can involve the whole family, including kids. Beautifully decorated and delicious cookies can also be a great Christmas gift.

If you have any questions or comments related to this recipe feel free to leave them in the section below and don`t forget to share.

If you’re looking for some more festive cookie recipes, I recommend my Best Linzer Cookies Recipe.

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