These Chai Ginger Cookies drizzled with orange glaze are perfect for the holidays! Crisp and full of ginger, chai spice, cinnamon and orange zest. They taste wonderful with a cup of tea or coffee!
Holiday cookie baking season is here and even though it’s only the second week in December, I feel like I’ve already made a ton. I made a batch of vanilla and chocolate pizzelles and Danish vanilla rings last week. On the list this weekend are chocolate orange dipped almond horns and the recipe I’m sharing today, Chai ginger cookies!
These chai ginger cookies are a recipe from my grandma’s cookbook. Her’s doesn’t use a chai spice mix, but I thought it would be the perfect addition to the ginger and cinnamon in her recipe. I also bumped up the amount of orange zest in the cookie and made a delicious orange glaze to drizzle on top of them.
The cookies are reminiscent of a gingerbread cookie, but there’s only a hint of molasses and the spice is more subtle. It’s crisp, but still a little soft in the center. It’s a wonderful cookie to have with a cup of tea or coffee and can be made with or without the glaze and still taste delicious!
Ingredients Needed to Make Chai Ginger Cookies
- whole wheat pastry flour and all purpose flour
- baking soda
- chai spice, ground ginger and cinnamon
- unsalted butter, room temperature
- granulated sugar and dark brown sugar
- orange zest and juice
- vanilla extract
- powdered sugar
How to Make Chai Ginger Cookies
Keep in mind before you start this recipe that the cookie dough is one that needs to be chilled for a couple hours or overnight before rolling and baking.
In a large bowl stir together the flours, baking soda, salt and spices and set aside. In the bowl of your stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat together the room temperature butter and both sugars until their lighter in color and creamy. This will take anywhere for 4-6 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl at least once.
Add in the egg, molasses, orange zest and vanilla and beat for another couple minutes so that everything is well incorporated. Pour in the flour mixture and beat just until combined, scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill it.
After the dough has chilled, cut it into four equal pieces. Lightly flour the surface you will be rolling them out on as well as the rolling pin. Roll the dough so that it is very thin, about 1/8 – 1/4 inch. Use whatever shape cookie cutter you would like and cut out the cookies.
Place them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake at 350° F. for 8-10 minutes. Let the cookie cool completely before drizzling them with glaze. To make the glaze simply whisk together the powdered sugar, orange zest, orange juice and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Add more sugar or juice as needed to get the right consistency. See the photo above for what the glaze consistency should look like.
Tips and FAQ
- Be sure that the dough is properly chilled. It will be too sticky to roll out if you skip this step.
- Make sure that all of your ingredients are at room temperature so that everything mixes together properly.
- Dip your cookie cutter into the flour and shake off the excess to prevent the dough from sticking to it.
- For an extra crisp cookie roll the dough out as thin as you can, about 1/8 inch. For a slightly less crisp cookie, roll out to 1/4 inch.
Can I Freeze the Cookie Dough?
Yes. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and flatten it into a disc. Place it in a plastic freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Let it defrost in the refrigerator overnight before rolling it out to make the cookies.
What Size Cookie Cutter Should I Use?
You can use any size cookie cutter you would like. The one I used is approximately 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Be aware that the more intricate the cookie cutter is the harder it will be to remove it since the dough will be rolled out quite thin.
I Don’t Have Chai Spice What Should I Use?
Do the Cookies Taste Good Without the Glaze?
Yes! My grandma’s original recipe does not have a glaze and they taste wonderful. The glaze adds a bit more sweetness and orange flavor to the cookies, along with making them look pretty.
How Long Will the Cookies Keep?
The cookies will stay fresh in an airtight container for up to a week. If they are glazed they’ll likely get softer the longer they sit out. You can also freeze the baked cookies, unglazed, in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
- 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chai spice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
- 2-3 teaspoons orange juice
- In a large bowl stir together both flours, baking soda, salt and spices, set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until they're pale in color and creamy, approximately 4-6 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl at least once.
- Add in the egg and beat for another minute, scraping down the sides. Add in the molasses, orange zest and vanilla and beat for another couple minutes so that everything is well incorporated.
- Pour in the flour mixture and beat on low speed just until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and flatten it into a disc. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350° F. and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Lightly flour a clean hard surface and your rolling pin. Cut the dough into 4 equal pieces then roll it out until it's approximately 1/8 - 1/4 inch thick.
- Dip your cookie cutter(s) into the flour and shake off any excess. Cut out the cookies and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat the process with the remaining dough. The scraps may be gathered into a ball and rolled out again. You may need to chill them again if they're too soft.
- Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes or until they're golden brown around the edges. Let them cool for a minute on the baking sheet before removing them onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Whisk together the powdered sugar, orange zest, orange juice and salt in a bowl. Use a spoon to drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 35 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 63Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 40mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 0gSugar: 5gProtein: 1g