Gingerbread men on a wire tray

Gingerbread men

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(74 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 10 mins


Serves 15-20

Use this versatile dough to make gingerbread men and other shapes. Let the kids decorate them with icing for a perfect winter's day activity

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: Per serving (20)

  • kcal95
  • fat2g
  • saturates1g
  • carbs17g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre0.5g
  • protein1g
  • salt0.44g
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  • 225g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 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-…

  • 1 heaped tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp cinnamon



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

  • 50g unsalted butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 100g soft brown sugar
  • 100g golden syrup
    Golden syrup

    Golden syrup

    goal-dun sir-rup

    Golden syrup is a translucent, golden-amber coloured, sweet syrup, which can only be produced…


  1. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5 and line a baking tray with baking parchment. Sieve the flour, salt, bicarb, ginger and cinnamon into a large bowl. Heat the butter, sugar and syrup until dissolved. Leave the sugar mixture to cool slightly, then mix into the dry ingredients to form a dough. Chill the dough in the fridge for 30 mins. 

  2. On a surface lightly dusted with flour, roll out the dough to a ¼-inch thickness. Stamp out the gingerbread men shapes with a cutter, then re-roll any off-cuts and repeat. Place your gingerbread shapes on the lined trays, allowing space for them to spread. Cook for 10-15 mins, then remove from the oven and leave to cool.

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Comments, questions and tips

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30th Jun, 2020
I’ve tried this recipe twice now and second time round was far more successful. I found the mixture very dry and crumbly when I followed the method exactly first time and the biscuits were overdone. So this time I have added a splash of warm water when pulling the mixture together, halved the time it was in the fridge (15 mins), and reduced cooking time to 9 mins. I also took the salt out as I could really taste it first time. May be a bit trial and error but overall I really like this recipe. It’s simple to follow, easy for the kids to get involved and if, like me, you don’t have a food processor, it’s ideal! Might add a touch more spice next time....
22nd May, 2020
Made them today with my daughter. Came out really well (only popped in the fridge for 15 mins). Comes together really well when mixed with your hands.
26th Apr, 2020
I wish I’d read the reviews before attempting this recipe. The dough just fell apart. I added some water and it still wouldn’t bind. An absolute waste of time & 2 very disappointed children!
22nd Dec, 2019
Needed a little milk to bind the dough. Also baked for just 5/6 mins, spinning the tray half way through. Baked the first batch for 8 mins and they were overdone!
anita n
19th Dec, 2019
It's an ok recipe. I used self raising flour because its all I had in the cupboard and omitted the baking powder and salt. Its a good firm dough which is easy to work with and cut very neatly. I cooked the biscuits for the cooking time stated at the temperature stated and they way out too hard, not burnt, just rock hard. So I tried again with the second half of the dough and chopped a but of cooking time off and wow what a difference. I got a lovely chewy gingerbread with really warm gingery flavour. I will use the recipe again but with the slight temperature change when cooking and it'll be fine.
Andy Muir's picture
Andy Muir
15th Dec, 2019
Omg first time making gingerbread men-very upset as turned on dry doh and crumberly why no eggs ?
15th Dec, 2019
Really disappointing and so wish I had read these reviews before making this. Ditto to what everyone else has said!
Hollie Williams's picture
Hollie Williams
5th Dec, 2019
Terrible :-( crumbly dough, spread a lot in the oven and cracked and very hard. Worst gingerbread recipe i've ever used.
30th Nov, 2019
Oh my what a trash gingerbread man recipe I went to mix and nead but it was just a crumbly mess the I managed to get it into a ball I let it set for 30 mins I go role it and it breaks it is dry so I had to throw away an hour and half of effort to make nothing.
26th Nov, 2019
I'll be honest we make gingerbread every year, using varying recipes but this is the first where I've had real trouble. Just couldn't get it to set into a dough! Really disappointed!


4th Dec, 2019
Hi I've just made the dough ready for my daughter to cut out and bake tomorrow. I've just covered it in cling film and was going to leave it in the fridge all night.. but I've just read the comments below about it going hard and crumbly after 30 minutes. What do you recommend? Can I just leave it covered in cling film all night in the kitchen at room temperature please? Is that safe to use and eat tomorrow please?
23rd Dec, 2019
Add approximately half a cup of milk to add some viscosity to the mixture. I advise not to bake it for a quarter of an hour as it throroughly eradicates the poor little men. Also whilst shaping the dough and transferring over to a baking tray be wary not to snap of their heads, arms or legs as it quite sincerely removes from the asthetic of the confection.
Suji Kim
8th Dec, 2017
I use this recipe all the time and the trick is not to chill the dough in the fridge. Follow the instructions but ignore Step 3 and voila! Perfect gingerbread men every time.
Joanne Galvin's picture
Joanne Galvin
29th Jun, 2019
Wish I had seen this before making. Thanks for posting
Baker jones
19th Dec, 2013
Add 1/4 cup milk to stop the crumblyness and bake for 5 mins @ 300f and they come out perfect every time. And I double the ginger and replace the cinnamon with 1/8tsp ground cloves for the spice.
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