Low-fat Gingerbread cookies


These are so chewy and really spicy! You can cut back on the ginger if you want, but it really gives these cookies a punch.  Thanks to John for tweaking this recipe to up the protein and lower the fat!

Based on Ina Garten’s recipe



  • 1 cup AP flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup whey protein powder*
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1-1/4 cups  crystallized ginger chopped really fine (6 ounces – use less if you’re scared!)
  • Granulated sugar, for rolling the cookies


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.

In a large bowl, sift together the flours, protein powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. * (If you don’t use protein powder, replace it with an equal amount of all-purpose flour, and use 2 egg whites in place of the water later in the recipe.  Also use egg whites if you use brown rice protein instead of whey.)

In an electric mixer, beat the brown sugar, applesauce, and molasses on medium speed for 5 minutes.

Turn the mixer to low and add the water, and beat for 1 minute.  Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula and beat for 1 more minute.  Slowly add the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix on medium speed for 2 more minutes.  Add the crystallized ginger and mix until combined.  The mixture will be wet.

Scoop up the dough with 2 spoons .  Roll each piece of dough into a 1 3/4-inch ball and then flatten lightly with your fingers.  Roll both sides of each dough ball in granulated sugar and place them on the cookie sheets.  Leave lots of room because they spread out a lot while baking.

Bake for  13 minutes.   The cookies will be crackled on the top and soft inside.  Cool the cookies for  1 to 2 minutes before transfering to wire racks to cool completely.

Store in a covered container in a single layer or between parchment sheets, as they are so moist they will stick together.

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24 thoughts on “Low-fat Gingerbread cookies

    1. Lori Post author

      You could leave the ginger in whatever size chunks they come in. I just like the fine chop on them. You could leave the ginger out all together and it would be a mild molasses cookie. Feel free to experiment!

  1. Pubsgal

    Thanks, Lori! These sound fantastic!!!

    I suppose if one wanted the ginger to blend into the cookies more, one could blend the candied ginger with one of the wet ingredients in the blender. Or perhaps one could freeze the ginger, then shred it using one’s food processor. (I’d try that if we had one, but we don’t.)

    Even though I use it to make pancakes, I never thought to sub out some of the flour with whey protein powder in cookies. I could see that working really nicely with other types of cookies, too (such as chocolate chip, oatmeal, peanut butter). Hmmm….
    .-= Pubsgal´s last blog ..Weekly Update, 12/16/09 =-.

    1. Lori Post author

      I don’t think it really matters if it is flavored or not. I think we had vanilla, but unflavored would do as well.

  2. debby

    I think that is the one recipe I will try this year–love that they have protein powder AND crystallized ginger in them. Is crystallized ginger the same as candied ginger–not sure what the bag in my cupboard says.
    .-= debby´s last blog ..Chai Tea Success! =-.

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