Gingerbread men on a wire tray

Gingerbread men

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(76 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


  • 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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Amelia Szadowska's picture
Amelia Szadowska
15th Dec, 2018
Dough turned out too crumbly to roll so had to attempt to fix it with some water. Somehow got them baked and they turned rock solid and inedible after cooling. Very bad recipe
4th Dec, 2018
Really not a great recipe. Crumbly, has to add milk and once cooked just REALLY REALLY salty
26th Dec, 2016
Really good, I have used it several times and they have always turned out delicious.
29th Apr, 2016
Follow this recipe if you want a dough that crumbles to dust the moment you show it the rolling pin.
8th Nov, 2015
My children made this recipe. They are 3 and 5 years old. This recipe makes really nice gingerbread men and women. I think I would omit the salt next time though as we used salted butter and they were a little salty.
7th Nov, 2015
I've made this recipe and had no problems. I left out the cinnamon as I didn't have any, and put the dough in the fridge overnight wrapped in a freezer bag until the next day. Before rolling and cutting I left it on the side for 30 minutes. It was really easy to work with. The only thing I changed was the temperature of the oven - I put this at gas mark 4 and cooked the biscuits for 7-10 minutes, but kept an eye on them. I removed them from the tray immediately and left to cool. They were perfect!
22nd Dec, 2014
I made this and had the same problem with a crumbly dough, however I managed to rescue it with amazing results. I heated up an extra 50g butter, a big squeeze of gold syrup (about a tbsp.) and about tbsp of light muscovado, along with an extra shake of cinnamon and extra ginger over the dough (until it smelt spicy). I kept adding the extra liquid to my dough until it came together in a smooth dough, I didn't use all of it so be careful when you are adding that you just do it until you are happy with the end result. I didn't bother refrigerating, just kept it on a cold worktop for 15 minutes. Hope this helps! They came out really tasty and my family loved them!
29th Oct, 2015
I made these today, and faced with the same problem as everyone else of a crumbly dough, I followed this advice and they turned out wonderfully. I would also cook them for less time than 10-15 minutes, 7-10 would be better as some were a verging on slightly overdone.
27th Nov, 2014
I tried twice. First time with demerara and it was a flop. Second time with icing sugar and no refrigeration and it worked. Agreed shorter bake or thick biscuits is a good idea. This came out similar to a Mary Berry recipe and was very crumbly when refrigerated. As far as I remember she doesn't pop in fridge.
1st Dec, 2014
Do not fear, this recipe does work well and tastes delicious however they won't really be soft and chewy. I only use organic spices. Now you may think this is daft however organic cinnamon is almost a completely different spice from non organic. It has such a wonderful flavour - try it! Every gingerbread recipe that I have ever made is somewhat crumbly and you do need to take care with it when rolling out, this is the nature of gingerbread! If you are used to it, you will find this is no drier than most other recipe. Not sure what people are doing wrong but if you follow the recipe and quantities it does make a dough. Make sure you use a pan on a gentle heat to melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup. TIP: I don't refrigerate the dough, but I do leave it to stand in cling film for about 30 minutes. I only bake these cookies for 7 minutes on 170 degree heat. Then I remove them from the baking tray immediately to cooling racks. Anyone who bakes regularly would know to do this anyway as cookies continue to cook when out of oven. Add flavour and interest by chopping crystallised ginger and mixing into the dough. When rolling out gingerbread take time and care. Be delicate and it will work.


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