German Gingerbread "Lebkuchen"
Member recipe

German Gingerbread "Lebkuchen"

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(7 ratings)

Member recipe by


Serves 1 - 50 Cookies

This is a traditional Christmas treat, soft & chewy with many wonderful spices. Use your favourite cookie cutters to create an army of little men, a collection of hearts or a herd of reindeer! "Lebkuchen" (gingerbread) is also known as "Honigkuchen" (honeycake) in some parts of Germany.

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  • 100g butter
  • 250g honey
  • 120g brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves (or allspice)
  • 1 vanilla pod, seeds
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 2 tsp cocoa powder
  • 440g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder


    1. In a small pot gently heat the butter, sugar and honey and stir regularly until the sugar has completely dissolved.
    2. While this is happening, mix together all the other ingredients in a big bowl.
    3. Then add the liquid honey/butter/sugar mix to this (you'll either need a spoon and strong arms, or a kitchen aid machine with a kneading hook attachment).
    4. Now leave the dough to rest/cool down for an hour at room temperature. Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees. (160 if fan-assisted)
    5. After an hour, roll out the dough to about 1cm thickness and cut out gingerbread men or any other shapes you prefer (if the dough is too sticky, place it in the fridge for a few minutes to firm-up, or knead it with your hands and add a bit more flour).
    6. Place the cookies on a tray lined with baking paper, and bake for approx. 10min. (they will still be slightly soft to the touch; this is what you are aiming for!) Once cool, feel free to frost them with icing, sugar pearls, or any other kinds of sweet decoration!

Comments, questions and tips

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14th Nov, 2019
Another mega batch completed -my 15 year old and 25 year old (and let’s face it they don’t give complements at this age)just love these - I am the best mum in the world - freezer stacked up. Yes it does work out expensive but I am making quality filling gingerbread. Thankyou reader for these my boys think I’m amazing
23rd Dec, 2017
If you add the hot butter, honey and sugar mixture to the rest of the ingredients won't the egg get cooked? I left the hot mixture to cool before adding. I got a very sticky mixture which needed lots of flour to make it anywhere usable.
14th Nov, 2019
No the mass of dry ingredients seems to diffuse the heat. I did give it a few mins to cool before adding. Mine was like a dough - the hour in the fridge works well. Keep flour handy.
27th Dec, 2014
I was after a more shoft chewy texture than the normal biscuity type and this is the recipe to use. Very easy to follow and make. I used dark Muscavado sugar. Enjoyed by my half German husband.
2nd Nov, 2013
Made again this year - used Muscavado sugar this time. My eldest son loves them, the smell of the cloves makes it for him. I get so many best mum points for these. It's the best gingerbread recipe I have found and is close but better than the bread you get in the german markets . Keeping this recipe for ever
31st Oct, 2012
These were lovely. Just what I was looking for. Mine didn't come out as dark but my family loved them all the same. They have just put another order in. What I liked was they were soft more bready than a snap buscuit which made them filling (as my cutters are quite big) and so my gang took there time and appreciated them more.
mary voelker's picture
mary voelker
10th Dec, 2017
Is the baking temperature for these cookies in F or C?
23rd Dec, 2017
The temperature is Celsius.
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