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12.5.14 Sweet Sorghum Spice Cookies

12.5.14 Sweet Sorghum Spice Cookies

The madness of Christmas cookie baking has officially begun in our household. This is always a difficult time for me because there are so many different delicious types of Christmas cookies one can make, and in our case, only 2 people to eat all of these cookies. Okay, so we give away a lot to our friends, bring cookies to work, etc., but still. It’s a lot of cookies. In general, I try to limit myself as much as possible, but on average, we end up with no less than six types of Christmas cookies on any given year. So many cookies.

Over the past several Christmases, I’ve made meringues, sablés, crackles, Russian tea cookies, peanut butter blossoms, shortbread, sugar cookies, mini tarts, lemon bars - you name it, at some time or another, I’ve probably made it. But regardless of what sort of cookies I decide to try each year, the ones I always end up making every year without fail are spice cookies. The smell of baking these little guys alone is worth making them, but once you taste them, well, to me, it just tastes like Christmas.


These spice cookies in particular are especially tasty; full of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and allspice, with a lovely dark flavor and pleasant chewiness from the addition of sorghum syrup. Sorghum syrup, if you’re unfamiliar, is a product made by boiling down sap from the stalks of the sorghum plant, a cereal crop native to Africa. It’s similar to molasses, but has a different complex, slightly malty, smokey flavor. And unlike molasses, which is made from sugar cane, sorghum syrup can be made from plants growing a little closer to home. In fact, there are mills producing sorghum syrup right here in Wisconsin. What’s not to love about these cookies?

Sweet Sorghum Spice Cookies

makes 2 dozen

I love the malty flavor that sorghum syrup adds to these cookies. I was able to find local Wisconsin-made sorghum syrup at the grocery store in the baking aisle, but if you’re having trouble tracking some downs, you can substitute molasses instead.

  • 1 ¾ cup flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • ½ tsp allspice
  • ½ tsp cloves
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup sorghum syrup (I used Rolling Meadows Sorghum Syrup)
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • coarse sugar for rolling (such as turbinado sugar)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease two baking sheets.

2. Combine flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and cloves in a small bowl.

3. In a larger bowl, mix the butter, sorghum syrup, and both sugars together until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla and stir until combined.

4. Stir in the flour mixture and mix until a cohesive dough is formed.

5. Form cookie dough into 1” balls, roll balls in coarse sugar until fully coated, and place onto greased cookie sheets. You should end up with about 2 dozen cookies.

6. Bake cookies at 375 for 8-10 minutes, or the edges of the cookies are set and tops are crackly. Cool in pans for about 10 min, then remove them and enjoy!

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