Belsnickle cookies are soft ginger spiced cookies with orange glaze. The addition of buttermilk makes the cookies cake-like texture and very moist. These cookies are perfect for Holidays.

Soft ginger cookies are frosted with orange glaze.

I was in the serious mood for baking this week. There is nothing like baking good spiced ginger cookies, like these Belsnickle cookies, around this time of the year. The aroma, the flavor, the texture, and the spirit you feel, these soft ginger cookies with orange glaze are perfect for a Holiday treat.

I would like to introduce a very nice cookie recipe this week. This recipe comes from one of my favorite cookbook, Cooking from Quilt Country by Marcia Adams.

It is soft ginger cookies with orange glaze on top. Some calls them Belsnickle cookies – I like this name better for the season.

Who is Belsnickle? You will read at the picture below.

The beauty of this recipe is not just about the taste or the simpleness of how to make them. These cookies freeze beautifully, which I always look into, so that I will always have fresh cookies ready whenever I need. You can eat them right out of freezer and they are still soft and cake-like, only cold.

Soft Ginger Cookies

Ingredients for soft ginger cookies with orange glaze.

Here are the ingredients. I used powdered buttermilk mixed in water.

Add baking soda to milk and you shall see some serious foam on top. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl throw sugar, molasses, eggs and oil

Mix well until you see the dark side of a force turn into mud. I forgot to take a important picture here (I’m getting older), but you need to add the buttermilk at this point.

Dry ingredients for ginger cookies are sifted.

In a separate bowl sift flour, spices and salt altogether.

Slowly add the flour mixture and mix until just combined.

Scoop the thin cookie batter with a cookie scoop.

Here is the batter. Yes, it will be quite thin, almost cake batter-like. You need to let it sit for 15 minutes. It will thicken up a little.

BTW this 1.5 tablespoon cookie scoop is one gadget that I can’t live without. Everybody seems to have their favorites. What is yours?

Soft ginger cookie batter is thin and loose.

Drop by 1.5 tablespoonful of batter on a lined baking sheet.

Soft ginger cookies are baked in an oven,

Put them in a 325º F oven.

Orange Glaze

Orange is zested.

While your cookies are baking, zest an orange.

Orange juice is being squeezed out

and squeeze out the fountain of their youth.

In a small bowl mix powdered sugar, orange zest and the juice, tiny piece of very soft butter, vanilla and a pinch salt. I had to increase the amount of glaze a little more than given amount.

Fresh squeezed orange juice is added to make orange glaze.

Mix altogether until you get a nice, somewhat thick, glaze.

When they comes out of oven, immediately transfer hot cookies onto a wired rack.

Drizzle the orange glaze over soft ginger cookies.

Drizzle about 1 tsp of glaze on top of warm cookies.

Soft ginger cookies with orange glaze need to be set.

I transferred them on to another baking sheet to let them set in the fridge.

Put a waxed paper in between the layer of cookies when stored in the freezer.

I recommended to keep them flat in a zip bag with parchment paper in between the layers and store them in the freezer. Snack them whenever you feel like…

Soft, cakey, nicely spiced with hint of orange, I am going to hand them out to my guests, and even to a very special visitor on the night before Christmas.

Other Holiday Dessert Recipes

Soft ginger cookies  with orange glaze are great for a Holiday treat.
Belsnickle Cookies

Soft Ginger Cookies with Orange Glaze

Belsnickle cookies are spiced soft ginger cookies with orange glaze. Buttermilk adds the soft cake-like texturen to the cookies. These soft delicious cookies are perfect for Holidays.
4 from 1 rating


For ginger cookies

  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup dark molasses
  • 2 eggs
  • 3-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves

For orange glaze

  • 2 cup powdered sugar, plus 1 tbsp
  • 1 tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 tsp grated orange zest
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt


To make ginger cookies

  • In a small bowl combine buttermilk and baking soda and set aside. They will foam up.
  • In a larger bowl combine oil, sugar,molasses and eggs and beat until well mixed (about 1 minute). Add the buttermilk mixture and blend. Sift together dry ingredients. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet mixture. Let mixture stand 15 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Drop batter by heaping tablespoon onto the oiled cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 9 minutes until the top springs back when touched with your finger. Do not over-bake. The cookies should be quite soft.

To make the orange glaze

  • In a medium mixing bowl, mix the powdered sugar, butter, orange juice, orange zest, vanilla extract and salt until smooth but thick.
  • Remove cookies to wax paper lined wire rack. While cookies are still warm, ice them with 1/2 tsp of glaze for each cookie. Let cool completely. Transfer to trays and place in freezer to completely set. Once frozen, pack them in a tin in single layer seperated by wax paper. These cookies freeze well.


This recipe is adapted from Cooking from Quilt Country by Marcia Adams. 
Did you make this recipe?Tag @beyondkimchee on Instagram. I love to see your masterpiece.