sweets

Gingerbread Gooey Butter Cookies

Pure Christmas deliciousness! Melt-in-your-mouth Gingerbread Gooey Butter Cookies baked from scratch and spiced just right for the Christmas holiday.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes, chill dough for several hours-overnight before baking
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yields: 30 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2¼ cups, plus 1 tablespoon unbleached/wheat all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2½ teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated whole nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 (8oz) package cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated cane sugar
  • ½ cup packed light or dark brown cane sugar
  • 1 tablespoon unsulphured molasses
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
  • 1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
  • 1½ to 2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted (for rolling cookies twice before baking)

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and spices until well blended. Set aside.
  2. Using an electric stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, or handheld electric mixer, cream together cream cheese and butter until well blended, creamy and smooth. Beat in sugars, molasses, extracts and salt; mix until well combined and light and fluffy, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula when necessary. Add egg and egg yolk and beat in well until creamy and light, about 1 to 2 minutes on medium speed;
  3. On low speed, gradually add flour mixture and mix until just fully incorporated. Dough will be very sticky. Cover work bowl and refrigerate for several hours or preferably overnight.
  4. Meanwhile, arrange oven rack in lower third of oven and preheat oven to 325ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside. Place confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl; set aside.
  5. Measure enough dough to roll into generous 1-inch balls, using a 1 1/3-inch spring-loaded cookie scoop (or by measuring a generous tablespoon of dough with a measuring spoon) making sure each scoopful is in equal amounts. This is important for evenly baked cookies.
  6. Roll dough between palms of hands to achieve a small rounded ball and then roll in confectioners’ sugar to lightly coat. Place dough balls on prepared baking sheets at least 2 inches apart. Then, roll each ball of dough in confectioners sugar once again. This will enhance this particular gingerbread cookie in both taste and appearance.
  7. Bake in preheated oven until cookies have spread into round cookie shapes and are puffed and crackly, about 14 to 14.5 minutes. Do not overbake. The cookies will still be soft in the centers. If they start to brown around the edges, they have baked too long. The underside of the cookies should be only very lightly browned.
  8. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack and allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for at least 10 minutes. Then, carefully remove cookies from baking sheet using a thin metal cookie spatula and transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Once completely cooled, transfer cookies to an airtight container. Repeat with remaining dough on prepared cookie sheets.
  9. If desired, chill the cookies in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Before serving, you can dust cookies lightly with additional confectioners sugar. Serve cookies chilled or at room temperature (I preferred room temp).

NOTES

Pictured along side Dark Chocolate Candy Cane Cookies!

For GLUTEN-FREE Gingerbread Gooey Butter Cookies: Substitute the all-purpose wheat flour called for in the recipe for 2¼ cups plus 1 tablespoon Gluten Free Multi-Purpose Flour and 1¼ teaspoons and guar gum. (It is important to whisk in guar gum until evenly distributed throughout the flour because it is very sticky once moisture is added, and sticky lumps are undesirable in dough.) Whisk together until well blended and then continue with recipe by whisking in the baking powder, soda and spices.

Tips: Chill dough between batches to keep it firm enough to roll and to prevent excessive spreading during baking.

Recipe Credit: Wicked Good KITCHEN

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