Gingerbread man

Gingerbread man

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(83 ratings)

Prep: 45 mins Cook: 15 mins


Makes 12 big gingerbread men

Even the smallest hands can help make these gingerbread men – perfect for Christmas. You can use raisins, sultanas or Smarties to decorate

Nutrition and extra info


  • kcal264
  • fat10g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs43g
  • sugars20g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.33g
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  • 140g unsalted butter
  • 100g dark muscovado sugar
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup
    Golden syrup

    Golden syrup

    goal-dun sir-rup

    Golden syrup is a clear, sparkling, golden-amber coloured, sweet

  • 350g plain flour
  • 1 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-…

  • 2 tsp ground ginger and 1 tsp ground cinnamon



    A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

  • pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)



    Also known as capsicums, bell peppers, sweet peppers or by their colours, for example red and…

  • 2 balls stem ginger from a jar, chopped



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

To decorate

  • 50g icing sugar
  • a few glacé cherries (we used undyed)
  • 2 balls stem ginger


  1. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Line 2 baking sheets with baking parchment. Melt butter, sugar and syrup in a pan. Mix flour, soda, spices and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Stir in the butter mix and chopped ginger to make a stiff-ish dough.

  2. Wait until cool enough to handle, then roll out dough to about 5mm thick. Stamp out gingerbread men, re-rolling and pressing the trimmings back together and rolling again. Lift onto baking sheets. Bake for 12 mins until golden. Cool 10 mins on the sheets, then lift onto cooling racks.

  3. To decorate, mix icing sugar with a few drops of water until thick and smooth. Halve then slice cherries thinly to make smiles, and cut ginger into small squares. Spoon icing into a food bag, snip off the tiniest bit from one corner, then squeeze eyes and buttons, and a tiny smile onto 1 man at a time. Stick on a cherry smile and ginger buttons. Repeat; leave to set. Will keep up to 1 week in an airtight tin.

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Comments, questions and tips

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28th Oct, 2011
I've tried this recipe several times and each time it's crumbly and impossible to work with! It definitely needs at least 4tbsp of golden syrup to actually bind the dough! Once recovered it tastes lovely but the recipe definitely needs to be improved!
28th Oct, 2011
Sound good, I'm not a big fan of ginger so I'll use less, but sound great! I'll make dem with my lil cousin, she's 8 and she luvs baking with me!!!! Speacially cupcakes!! Jessicaxx
18th Oct, 2011
Super easy and tasted delicious!
8th Oct, 2011
Although the taste is good I have a problem with the dough also. It starts off sticky but wont hold together. I have tried reducing the golden syrup but it still ends up the same. I have tried adding water as suggested but it ends up sticky and wet. Would apprecite where I am going wrong.
6th Oct, 2011
Made this today with my little boy, we followed the recipe exactly but missed the pepper, they were delicous and really easy.
12th Aug, 2011
Loved making these with the boys. Quick, unfussy and totally delicious!
4th Aug, 2011
I've just had exactly the same problem. Mix was really greasy when compressed into a ball, and impossible to roll out as it just crumbled into bits so we squashed balls of it between our hands and then baked them. Only thing I can think of is that I didn't allow the dough to cool enough before rolling?? Will try again another day...
12th Jun, 2011
So much fun for little one's! Perfect solution for rainy day as quick to make and lots of fun to decorate. Didn't have stem ginger but tasted yummy but was a bit crumble and difficult to role out.
30th May, 2011
I too had the crumbly issue. I squashed it all into a round tin and made a giant cookie. Would love some suggestions as to what the issue was as my boys were really upset that they couldn't make gingerbread men.
23rd May, 2011
I also found this recipe so crumbly that I couldn't roll it out and ended up putting it all in the bin :-( And yet I followed the recipe to the lettera nd don't think i overworked it, so don't really know what went wrong....


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