ice box gingersnaps – easiest cookie you’ll ever bake

You’ve heard of ‘refrigerator cookies’. Ever since Ralph was a little boy, his mom baked ICE BOX GINGERSNAPS. They’re the same thing except her recipe was written when fridges were called ice boxes.

By the time our kids came along, they knew a trip to Nanny Hooton’s house would mean a big glass of milk and, as many, of ‘Daddy’s gingersnaps’ as they could eat. The girls thought it was a wonderful joke, on their father, that Nanny was giving them his precious cookies. Once they finished, she’d put the lid back on the tin then pass it to Ralph and say, “see that I get my cookie tin back.” The girls were delighted. They knew returning it empty would mean she could fill it again.

That cookie tin continued to make its way into my pantry, long after the girls left home. We’d stop in for a cup of tea and a chat with his mom and she’d send us home with cookies.  What started, such a long time ago, as a little joke between her and the girls became a loving tradition. Now that she’s no longer baking, we take the cookie tin to her.

I’ve eaten other ice box cookies. For the most part, I find them tough and tasteless. These ICE BOX GINGERSNAPS are melt-in-your-mouth perfect! Just the right amount of ginger and absolutely tender. Every time that I took my first bite, I’d tell Ralph’s mom how delicious they were. And every time she’d say back, “they’re the easiest cookie you’ll ever bake!” She’s right. The trick is to slice them thin enough to bake crispy; too thick won’t do. Play around with the thickness and the cook time to find what works for your oven. Once you find the perfect combination, you’ll be able to keep your cookie tin filled too!

ice box gingersnaps - easiest cookie you'll ever bake

Preheat oven 350*

1 cup margarine
1/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup fancy molasses
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon


  • Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt and spices in a medium bowl – set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, beat margarine with sugar until well blended

  • Add molasses and beat again.

  • Stir in flour mixture until well mixed.

  • Place cookie dough on a large piece of wax paper.
  • Using your hands shape into a large rectangle about 1 1/2 – 2 inches thick. It will be smooth on the top.

  • Wrap the cookie dough up in the wax paper and chill in fridge for two hours.
  • Remove from fridge and unwrap.
  • Cut into 1/8 inch slices and place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes.

THE LOVE: The trick to these cookies is getting them the right thickness. Do a couple of testers to find the right size for you. Also, this dough keeps well up to two weeks in the fridge so you can always have freshly baked ginger snaps coming out of the oven! It keeps in the freezer for three months.

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