Grandma's Gingerbread Men

Grandma’s Gingerbread Men

It’s always fun to welcome in a new season with a sweet treat.  We love our Rainbow Cookies for Spring and our Sunshine Cupcakes for Summer.  I was happy to have my mom help the kids make our family favorite Gingerbread Cookies.

Today, I’m sharing one of our family’s favorite traditions.  Just like the gingerbread houses, this one is sponsored by Gramom!  She mixes, rolls, refrigerates, bakes, and supervises the entire cookie making process.  She called to see if I can a rolling pin…. just one for play-dough was my response!

This recipe has been with my family for over 40 years.  They were originally made by my dad’s mom (my grandma).  I grew up with these tasty treats and now my children enjoy helping with them as well.  Helping = adding the red hots and eating them.

Gingerbread Men
1/2 cup shortening
1 egg
1/2 cup sour cream
5 cups flour
1 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp salt
1 cup brown sugar (firmly packed)
1 cup molasses
grated rind of orange (or purchase the container in the spice aisle)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice

*You also need “cinnamon imperials”.  They are found in the cake decorating section of the grocery store.  Do not purchase “red hots”, they melt and look strange after baking

Mix all ingredients.  Chill overnight.

1.  Roll out 1/8″ to 1/4″ thickness on lightly floured cloth covered surface.
2.  Use cookie cutters and add add red hots.
3.  Refrigerate again for about 10 minutes (helps them keep their shape).
4.  Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes.

Makes 5 dozen.

Merry Christmas!

Kristen @ Busy Kids Happy Mom 
Kristen’s background is in elementary education, crafts and raising boys!  Busy kids are those engaged in fun, practical, and purposeful activities in their daily life.  
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About Kristen

Kristen is a Reading Specialist who currently works with children in Kindergarten through 3rd Grade. She is the blogger behind Busy Kids Happy Mom, a site dedicated to fun, practical, and purposeful activities to do with your kids. Follow Kristen on Facebook, Pinterest, and subscribe for updates.


  1. Thank you so much for sharing this post. I love the recipe. We’re from India – have never made something like this before. The recipe, with all its wonderful and aromatic ingredients, looks very sumptuous. I think we’ll try this tomorrow. My daughter is totally into baking and cooking :-)

  2. Thanks for sharing your Grandma’s recipe with us. I will be making cookies with my daughter tomorrow and we’re going to use your recipe! I also added your link to our 50+ Gingerbread Man Activities. Don’t forget to share on our After School Link Up this week!



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