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Sugar-crested Molasses Cookies

Recipe taught to me by my maternal grandmother, Erna Clara Augusta Obenhaus Holtzen.

Molasses Cookie
Sugar-crested molasses cookie with characteristic crevices after baking.



  • 3/4 cup shortening
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ginger


  1. Mix shortening and sugar until fluffy.
  2. Stir in beaten egg and molasses.
  3. Sift flour with soda, salt, and spices.
  4. Add flour mixture to shortening mixture, mixing until well blended.
  5. Cover dough and chill for at least 2 hours.
  6. Shape dough into large marbles by rolling between palms, dip formed dough into coarse sugar, and place on greased (or better: parchment-lined) baking sheet.
  7. Bake in oven preheated to 365 F for 12 to 15 minutes. Choose the shorter time for a chewy texture and longer time if you like them crispy.

Created 20120920; updated 20131214; updated 20211219