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(45 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 15 mins


Makes 30
A German biscuit similar to gingerbread, lebkuchen is easy to make and a great Christmas treat

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freeze dough only


  • kcal102
  • fat4g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs16g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0.5g
  • protein2g
  • salt0.16g
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  • 250g plain flour
  • 85g ground almond
  • 2 tsp ground ginger



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 200ml clear honey
  • 1 lemon, finely grated zest



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 85g butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • pinch each ground cloves, grated nutmeg and black pepper
  • 1 tsp baking powder
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

For the icing

  • 100g icing sugar
  • 1 egg white, beaten


  1. Tip the dry ingredients into a large bowl. Heat the honey and butter in a pan over a low heat until the butter melts, then pour into the flour mixture along with the lemon zest. Mix well until the dough is combined and fairly solid. Cover and leave to cool.

  2. Heat oven to 180C/fan160C/gas 4. Using your hands, roll dough into about 30 balls, each 3cm wide, then flatten each one slightly into a disk. Divide the biscuits between two baking trays lined with baking parchment, leaving room for them to expand. Bake for 15 mins, then cool on a wire rack.

  3. To ice the biscuits, mix together the icing sugar, egg white and 1-2 tbsp water to form a smooth, runny icing. Dip the top of each biscuit in the icing and spread with the back of a knife. Leave to dry out in a warm

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Comments, questions and tips

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Auntie Depressant's picture
Auntie Depressant
24th Dec, 2017
Love Lebkuchen, but tough to find a recipe that doesn’t produce spicy Christmas stone shingles that one could use to rain-proof their roof. This recipe is great, but with the following tweaks, gleaned from 43 years of baking experience with Mom, and your comments: Bake for no longer than 10 minutes...I make mine approx 3cm or larger and use insulated, light, aluminium baking sheets for perfect biscuits every time. Almonds aren’t a staple nut in my kitchen, so I’ve subbed pecans and walnuts, and sometimes all flour and no nuts, all great, but get some almonds if you can. I use golden syrup OR honey, and add 25g or 2T of brown sugar to the honey/syrup & butter mixture, trust me, the added sweetness makes a difference. 1 ml of ground cloves and nutmeg, and WHITE pepper, the black pepper is too overwhelming in any amount. I also use my homemade quatre epices which contains all of these spices. Add an egg for the necessary “cake” texture of LebKUCHEN (cake right there in the name!) chill in fridge for easy rolling, and flour your mitts. I make double batches and freeze what I don’t use, as these go too quickly if made all at once. Use the rind of a small lemon, otherwise they’re too citrusy. These are now a Christmas staple, and I no longer purchase the preservative-laden store brands. Enjoy!
Ben Morris's picture
Ben Morris
18th Dec, 2017
These tasted OK but I don't think they tasted like any lebkuchen I've had which is supposed to be crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside. I would have thought an egg would be needed to get the right texture? I believe this recipe is closer to pfeffernüsse and is very similar to Norwegian pepperkaker which are both nice but not lebkuchen.
30th Dec, 2015
Made these with added 25g of brown sugar and an egg and they turned out incredible!! I also used half wholemeal and half plain flour. The dough was a tiny bit sticky but they are soft and yummy :)
21st Dec, 2014
Made these as something nice to share over christmas but must have made them too small. Got 40 or so out of the mix and baked for 13 minutes. They turned out to hard with burnt ends. Decorated with melted milk chocolate and my daughter loved them! Will make them larger next time & divide the dough in 3 then in 10s. Does need extra sugar i think... a few tablespoons of brown sugar.
ChocoKitty79's picture
7th Dec, 2014
I have not tried or baked them yet. Does it work if I don't put the almonds in it?
5th Jan, 2014
I had great hopes after reading the reviews and having tried out Emma Lewis's recipes before but this turned out neither good nor bad. The only thing I changed was using orange zest in place of lemon. Will not be making again.
2nd Jan, 2014
Easy to make and very tasty. Although I found the lemon a little overpowering which meant the ginger flavour didn't come through as much as I like. Next time I bake them I will put in a little less lemon zest and a bit more ground ginger.
1st Jan, 2014
I added an extra teaspoon of ground ginger and a quarter of a cup of dark brown sugar. Baked at 150 degrees fan forced for 15 minutes. Gave a lovely result, with a crunchy crust surrounding a soft interior.
20th Dec, 2013
Oh my word!! Divine isn't the word for this lebkuchen as it is soooo heavenly. I made these with my 4 year old son and were really easy to make and made the house smell very festive afterwards. Can't wait to make more as the first batch is almost all eaten. Brilliant recipe xx
19th Dec, 2013
Great! Easy to make too. I made this recipe suitable for coeliacs by using gluten free flour.


3rd Nov, 2016
How long do these last once made?
goodfoodteam's picture
7th Nov, 2016
Thanks for your question. These biscuits will keep for up to two weeks in an airtight container.
16th Feb, 2014
Bake them a day before as the flavour and texture improves over time