These old-fashioned bacon fat ginger cookies with fresh ginger are soft, chewy, spicy, smoky and sweet …oh, my!
The easy recipe makes old-fashioned ginger cookies with amazingly spicy flavor thanks to the inclusion of three kinds of ginger: fresh ginger juice, candied ginger, and dried ginger.
Adding a bit of bacon grease gives these cookies a hint of smoky flavor you’ll love and makes them perfectly soft and chewy. (Bacon fat is also the secret ingredient in our Maple Bacon Cupcakes recipe.)
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To prepare the bacon fat for baking, I poured the cooled grease through a regular wire strainer and let it sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes to allow the particles to settle. Then I re-poured it through a double layer of cheesecloth into a glass container. I covered and chilled it because I wasn’t going to use it right away, but if you’re going to bake with it right away you can skip that step. (Read more about rendering bacon fat and what to do with bacon grease.)
This recipe has one fussy step, and that’s peeling and grating fresh ginger for the dough. Adding fresh ginger gives the cookies a hint of fresh, spicy flavor that I think pushes this recipe over the top.
- A piece of fresh ginger – also called a ginger stem
- Butter (salted or unsalted is fine – your preference)
- Rendered, strained bacon grease, room temperature
- Brown sugar (light or dark is fine. We used dark.)
- A large egg
- Unsulfured molasses (or substitute regular molasses)
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Powdered ginger
- Powdered cloves
- Chopped crystallized ginger
- crystal sugar or granulated sugar for sprinkling
You don’t need any fancy equipment to make this recipe!
- Cutting board
- Sharp knife
- Vegetable peeler
- Box grater
- Measuring cup
- Mixing bowl
- Silicone spatula
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
Step by Step Instructions
Let’s get started, shall we? Select one or two pieces of ginger at the store that are a total of about 4 inches in length. Look for firm, unblemished ginger. Here’s what I used:
Use a vegetable peeler to remove the outer skin…
…so that it looks like this:
Next, arrange a grater over a plate and grate the ginger using the side of the grater with smaller holes:
When you’re done, you’ll have a little pile of grated ginger like this:
Now, squeeze the ginger with your hands into a measuring cup to extract all of the fresh ginger juice:
If you prefer, you can press the grated ginger on a strainer set over a measuring cup to extract the juice. Compost or discard the remaining ginger fibers, and pour the ginger juice in a large bowl. Now you’re going to add the bacon grease. Since I had refrigerated my strained bacon grease, I removed it from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for an hour to soften. You could also microwave it on low for 30-40 seconds to soften it.
Here’s how it looks:
Add the bacon fat to the bowl along with the softened butter.
Blend it together:
Now mix in the brown sugar, egg and molasses:
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, powdered ginger, and ground cloves.
Now, finely chop the candied ginger and add it to the flour mixture.
Stir the two mixtures together, cover and refrigerate the dough for 1 hour. Remove from the refrigerator and use a dining teaspoon to roll the dough in 1 1/2-inch balls. Roll in sugar (demerra sugar, sparkling sugar or granulated sugar all work well) if you like, and arrange on a parchment-lined cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.
Bake until cookies are just done and barely starting to brown around the edges, about 10 to 12 minutes. Do not overbake. Sprinkle with a little more sugar if you like, and remove to a wire rack after cookies have cooled for 2 minutes.
Because they contain bacon fat, I suggest storing the cookies in a covered container in the refrigerator. They taste best if they’re eaten within 5 days.
If you enjoy this Candied Ginger Bacon Fat Cookies recipe, I’d be thrilled if you clicked the little stars below and gave the recipe a 5-star rating. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Let’s make cookies! Here’s the easy recipe:
Bacon Fat Ginger Cookies with Fresh Ginger
- 1 Vegetable peeler
- 1 1- inch by 2-inch piece fresh ginger peeled and finely grated
- 7 tablespoons butter softened
- 1/4 cup rendered strained bacon grease, room temperature
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup unsulfured molasses or substitute regular molasses
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 3/4 teaspoon powdered cloves
- 1/2 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
- crystal sugar or granulated sugar for sprinkling
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, squeeze the juice from the grated ginger (compost or discard remaining fibers). Add the butter, bacon grease, brown sugar, egg and molasses and stir until well blended.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Mix the dry ingredients into the butter mixture and stir until well blended. Sprinkle with the chopped crystallized ginger and mix well. Refrigerate, covered, for 1 hour.
- Roll in balls using a dining teaspoon. Roll in crystal sugar or granulated sugar and arrange on the prepared cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.
- Bake until just starting to brown around the edges, about 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Store cookies in a covered container in the refrigerator. They taste best if they’re eaten within 5 days. Makes about 3 dozen.
More Bacon Fat Cookies
Here are some of our favorite bacon grease cookies recipes from other top bloggers:
More Bacon Grease Recipes
For more ways to use delicious bacon fat, you might enjoy:
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