Gingerbread Fall Leaves Cookies
5 from 1 vote

Gingerbread Fall Leaves

Adapted from Cookie source: Icing source: Decorating source:
Makes 36 -3” cookies
Author Wendy Sondov


  • Cookie ingredients:
  • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups dark brown sugar packed
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 1/2 – 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • Icing ingredients:
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 + tablespoons milk add more to thin icing to desired consistency
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Decorating materials:
  • food coloring gel or liquid
  • paper towel squares 1 for each color being used
  • plastic wrap 1- 6” strip for each color being used
  • twisty ties 1 for each color being used
  • small bowl of water


  1. COOKIE DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and molasses and mix until incorporated. Stir in spices and salt.
  3. Gradually add flour, 1 cup at a time, until the dough is roll-out consistency. When baking immediately, I needed 4 ½ – 5 cups. For dough that will be refrigerated overnight before baking use only 4 cups.
  4. Roll 1/3 of the dough out to ¼” thickness on a lightly floured surface. Hint: Because these cookies spread minimally, cutting them out directly on the parchment paper they will be baked on, eliminates the need to transfer the cut out dough. Roll the dough out on a sheet of parchment paper the size of your cookie sheet. Cut out the cookies about 1” apart. Remove the excess dough from around the cut-out cookies. Slide the parchment onto your cookie sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  5. Bake for 6-7 minutes. (Cookies will firm slightly as they cool.) Cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Icing directions:
  7. By hand or with an electric mixer, combine sugar and milk until smooth.
  8. Add corn syrup and vanilla. Continue beating together until smooth and glossy. Add additional milk in tablespoon increments until desired consistency. (Icing consistency should be thin enough to spread easily but thick enough not to drip off the cookies. It should resemble a thin paste but not glue.)
  9. APPLYING THE ICING: (choose 1 of the following suggested methods)
  10. SPATULA METHOD: Use icing that is a spreadable consistency. Spoon icing into a piping bag or ziplock bag with a small part of a bottom corner cut off. Pipe some icing onto a cookie and use a knife or offset spatula to spread the icing evenly over the surface of the cookie. Allow the icing to dry overnight.
  11. OUTLINE/ FLOOD METHOD: Two consistencies of icing will be used. First, spoon about 1 cup of icing (thin paste consistency) into a piping bag or ziplock bag with a small part of a bottom corner cut off. Outline the top of each cookie. Thin all remaining icing to the consistency of glue and spoon into a piping bag or ziplock bag. Set aside and allow the icing outline to dry for about 1 hour. When the outline has set slightly, pipe the remaining icing onto each cookie filling in the outlines. Allow the icing to dry overnight.
  12. ADDING COLOR: You will need 1 paint dauber for each color. Cut a paper towel sheet into 4 pieces. Scrunch a piece of plastic wrap into a ball and place at the center of a paper towel square. Twist the paper towel around the plastic wrap and secure with a twisty tie.
  13. Dispense about 5 drops of each color food coloring onto a plate. Leave room between colors.
  14. Moisten a dauber slightly in the water. Dip the dauber in a food color, blot off excess color, then pat onto the cookie. Use a different dauber for each color.
  15. Cookies should be dry before they are stored. Drying time varies. My India Tree natural food colors required overnight drying.
  16. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Packing Tips

Double wrap pairs of cookies (with bottoms together) in plastic wrap, then place in an airtight container or zip lock bag.