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Ginger & Lemon Cookies

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields about 30 cookies.

These cookies are excellent with tea. A rasp-style grater comes in handy for grating both the ginger and the lemon zest.


  • 1/2 lb. (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbs. finely grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 11-1/4 oz. (2-1/2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1 lightly beaten egg white

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size based on 30 servings
  • Calories (kcal) : 120
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 60
  • Fat (g): 6
  • Saturated Fat (g): 4
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 0
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 30
  • Sodium (mg): 25
  • Carbohydrates (g): 14
  • Fiber (g): 0
  • Protein (g): 1


  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line three large cookie sheets with parchment or nonstick baking liners.
  • In a large bowl, combine the butter, 3/4 cup of the sugar, the grated ginger, lemon zest, and salt. Using an electric mixer set on medium speed, beat the mixture until well blended and light, 2 to 3 min. Scrape the bowl. Add the egg yolks and vanilla; continue mixing until well blended, 30 to 60 seconds. Add the flour and mix on low speed until the dough is blended and just comes together.
  • Shape tablespoonfuls of the dough into 1-inch balls (I use a small ice cream scoop) and set the balls 1-1/2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheets. In a small, shallow dish, mix the crystallized ginger and the remaining 2 Tbs. granulated sugar until blended.
  • With the palm of your hand, press on one of the dough balls until it’s 1/4 inch thick and about 2 inches in diameter. Repeat with remaining dough balls. Brush the tops of the cookies with the egg white and sprinkle them with the ginger-sugar mixture. Press gently on the cookies with the bottom of a metal measuring cup to help the topping adhere.
  • Bake one sheet at a time until the cookies are light brown on the bottoms and around the edges, about 11 min. on dark cookie sheets, or about 13 min. on silver-toned sheets. Set the sheet on a rack to cool for 5 min. and then transfer the cookies to the rack to cool completely. When cool, store in airtight containers.
  • Ginger flavor intensifies with time, making these cookies excellent candidates for long keeping. When stored in an airtight container, the cookies remain impressively delicious for up to five days from baking. Well wrapped, the cookies will keep for several weeks in the freezer.


Although I shape these cookies by hand, they can also be formed with a cookie press or pastry bag so they look like traditional spritz cookies. Brush the tops with the egg white and sprinkle with just the sugar, eliminating the crystallized ginger.


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Reviews (3 reviews)

  • Cocodrie | 07/24/2012

    Wonderful cookies! I made these for a baby shower but there was so much food that few of my cookies were eaten. That's okay - more for us:-) I wrapped them, and froze them as soon as I got home. For the crystallized ginger topping, I used King Arthur's "Ginger Mini Chips" which are very small pieces of chopped crystallized ginger, so there was no need to have to chop larger pieces of crystallized ginger (a tedious job). I made the mistake of not saving the egg whites, so I simply pressed the mini pieces of ginger lightly into the cookie with the back of a measuring cup which worked well. Mine, too, took longer than 13 minutes to finish baking so I increased the time by a few minutes. The ginger and lemon are nicely balanced so neither flavor is dominant - just perfect. I will definitely make these again. Don't hesitate to make these delicious cookies.

  • User avater
    mowgli | 04/11/2009

    I agree with the other reviewer - they are great cookies - light and very flavorful. I had to cook them a touch more than they said - about 15 minutes in all. WELL worth the effort of grating the ginger!

  • merlincat | 12/18/2007

    I absolutely love these. The crystallized ginger and the lemon go together so well; the blend of flavors is just perfect. I make them to give away, but I want to keep them all for myself!

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