Old-Fashioned Molasses Sugar Cookies - Aunt Linda's Treasured Recipe


  • 1 1/2 cups butter OR Parkay Original Margarine, at room temperature 
  • 2 cups sugar (granulated) 
  • 1/2  cup dark molasses
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 4 cups flour (all-purpose)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Turbinado or Sparkling sugar to coat the unbaked cookies.


In a medium bowl, beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Stir in the eggs and molasses until completely blended. 

In a separate large bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients together. Add the butter mixture to the flour mixture and mix well until combined completely. Cover the dough tightly and refrigerate overnight.  

When dough is ready to bake:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 

Roll the dough into 1-inch balls and coat them with Turbinado sugar. Bake the cookies on a sheet pan, placed 1-2 inches apart for 10-12 min. The cookies should crackle on top and have golden edges. 

Recipe makes 6 to 8 dozen, depending on size. 

IMPORTANT - The dough needs to be thoroughly chilled. When the dough is thoroughly chilled and ready to be rolled, it will be very stiff. Allow at least 4 to 6 hours to chill.


If you were to ask my aunt which to use, butter or Parkay, she would say (passionately), Parkay! The original recipe, which dates back to 1981, calls for Parkay Original Margarine.  Parkay can sometimes be difficult to find, especially in Alaska. If you can't find Parkay, use butter - the cookies turn out wonderful! When it comes to margarine, I recommend ONLY using PARKAY ORIGINAL MARGARINE. Some brands of margarine have a higher water content and will make the cookies super flat.