Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside with deliciously crispy edges. Seasoned with fragrant chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to another level!  Serve with Authentic Masala Chai!Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chiacookies #christmascookies

One of my favorite things in India, were the roadside Chai stands, called Chai Wallahs. (In Hindi, a wallah is someone who makes or sells a certain good.)  Truth be told I had never really been into drinking chai before this trip, not out of dislike, more out of disinterest. I couldn’t relate to it. Which as a side note, reminds me how experiencing something, rather than hearing about it or reading about it, changes everything. The beauty of life!

These soft and chewy Chai Cookies are very much like old-fashioned molasses cookies, but with the addition of flavorful chai spices –  cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, pepper and ginger.

Perhaps these will do nothing for many of you. But to some, it will take you somewhere. Perhaps back to India. Perhaps to the place in dreams, that feels so much like home, but slips out of memory once we awake. Going to India, felt like that to me. Like I had been there before, like I knew it, so very familiar. Yet, every time I asked myself “why”, the gates of perception in my mind, shut down tight.

It was while drinking a cup of chai, a whisper floated through me,  like air – so light, and fleeting…

Watch how to Make Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies | 50-second video

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chaicookies #christmascookies

The recipe is easy and straight forward.

Just follow the directions and you’ll be happy with the results. Know that the dough must be refrigerated until its hard enough to roll into balls- 2 hours, or overnight. Also, the dough keeps for up to 5 days in the fridge, if wanting to make ahead, or bake in smaller batches.

Roll the dough into small walnut sized balls and roll in coarse sugar. Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan ( or use a silicone baking mat). Bake for 8-10  minutes, until edges are crisp and cookies begin to crack. As they cool and deflate, they will crackle more.

Soft and chewy with deliciously crispy edges!

And- the cookies stay soft and chewy for several days after being baked, although they may not last that long!

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chaicookies #christmascookies

The only strong recommendation I have, is to let the butter soften to room temp naturally. Don’t melt it.

And weigh the flour if you have a scale. Otherwise fluff the flour with a fork before measuring,

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chaicookies #christmascookies

These Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are super easy, flavorful and oh soooooo delicious!

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chaicookies #christmascookies

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chiacookies #christmascookies

More cookies recipes you may enjoy

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside and crispy on the edges. Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to whole other level! #molassescookies #chaicookies #christmascookies

You might enjoy these with Authentic Masala Chai!

Enjoy!

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Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside with deliciously crispy edges. Seasoned with chia spices, these take old fashioned Molasses Cookies to another level.

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 36 1x
  • Category: desserts, cookies, sweets, baked goods
  • Method: baked
  • Cuisine: Indian

Description

Spicy Chai Molasses Cookies are soft and chewy on the inside, crispy on the outside! Seasoned with chai spices, these take old-fashioned Molasses Cookies to another level. These require 2 hours refrigeration time.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature ( don’t melt, let it come to room temp naturally)
  • 2/3 cups granulated (white) sugar
  • 2/3 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1 extra large egg
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups (380 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3 teaspoons ground ginger, plus 1 for more spicy
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cardamon
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Coarse sugar for rolling


Instructions

350 F Oven

Cream butter and sugars together in a stand mixer or large bowl. Whip until light and fluffy. Add egg, molasses and vanilla, and whip until combined.

Whisk flour, baking soda, and ginger, cinnamon, cardamon, cloves, nutmeg, pepper and salt together in medium bowl, whisk until well combined. If you can weigh the flour, do so, otherwise fluff up the flour with a fork, before measuring. 

Gradually add flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix well. Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight, so you can easily roll them into balls.

Roll into small, 1 inch wide, walnut-sized balls and coat all sides with coarse sugar or turbanado sugar.

Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan, 3 inches apart. ( Or use a silpat!)

Bake 8-12 minutes, until edges crisp and tops, begin cracking.  They will puff up a bit, then flatten out, and this is what creates the beautiful crackling. Cool on a wire rack. They will crack more as they cool.

Soft and chewy with crispy edges, to me, the perfect cookie!


Notes

Use naturally softened butter- don’t melt. Weigh the flour if you can. Dough will freeze for future baking.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 122
  • Sugar: 9.1 g
  • Sodium: 123.7 mg
  • Fat: 5.4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.3 g
  • Carbohydrates: 17.2 g
  • Fiber: 0.4 g
  • Protein: 1.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 18.7 mg

Keywords: Chai cookies, molasses cookies, soft molasses cookies, old fashioned molasses cookies, chewy molasses cookies, ginger molasses cookies, chai molasses cookies, christmas cookies, holiday baking

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  1. Everyone loves these. They’re great exactly as the recipe is, or I like to make an espresso buttercream and make them into dirty chai sandwich cookies. Dough also freezes really well so you can make a half batch and save some for a rainy day. Thank you!

  2. I’ve made these before and I loved them! Unfortunately, I’m now in a prediabetic range and want to make some adjustments for myself.
    Can I use almond flour instead of regular flour? I also have erythritol for a sugar substitute– can I replace the white sugar with that?

    Also, do I need to make any baking adjustments for living in Denver?thank you!

    1. Hey Amanda- I have not tried making these with almond flour or Erythritol- so can’t advise, sorry! You may just have to experiment? Let us know how they turn out if you do!

  3. These are quite possibly the most perfect cookie ever. I love them! My family loves them! I plan on making more to give as gifts. I’m planning to drop some off at the yoga studio as they are “Ayurveda cookies”. I made them exactly as directed and they turned out beautifully. Mine look exactly like the picture. The coarse sugar gives these cookies a delectable crunch. Thank you for the recipe!

  4. Not your typical spice cookie. It’s better. I love a sweet now and then as long as its not too sweet so its my practice to half the sugar as I did for this recipe. I opted to use melted pilloncillo instead of molasses (just my Latinx roots showing). Next time I will reduce the cardamom- I felt it overtook the other spices. This cookie is a repeater, especially with cafe de olla!

    1. HI Teresa- I love your thinking here! I haven’t tried ghee with this- so not sure. I think the flavor would be good, but not sure if you would get the crackling? If you try it let me know!

  5. This was fantastic! I didn’t have ap flour so subbed with sprouted spelt flour. Package says 1/4 cup is 37g, so I just weighed out 440ish grams for 3 cups. Dough came out a bit dry so it didn’t need much chilling before it was hard enough to roll. I baked until the edges have set (so upon touch no longer felt doughy), ~15-20min. After cooling for a lil bit the edges were crispy with chewy insides. Looks and tastes perfect!

  6. So nice and warming and spicy! I will definitely be using this recipe and making it again and again. I highly recommend the extra teaspoon of ginger, and using freshly ground cardamom.

  7. Delicious with coffee in the morning. I made this and put it in the fridge overnight. I baked a dozen in the morning and they were very tasty. Still have a lot of dough left. I may put it in the freezer for another day 🙂

  8. I made these for Christmas using dairy-free butter and gluten-free flour and they turned out perfectly! They were chewy and crackled on top just like the photos. It is SO hard to get a properly chewy gluten-free cookie so I was just thrilled at how they turned out! I must also mention that my mum, who often professes how much she doesn’t like chai, loved them and asked if I could leave her the leftover cookies 🙂

    1. I am new to vegan lifestyle and would love to know Which gluten free flour and dairy free butter did you use?

  9. WOW these are good. Of all the holiday goodies I baked this year, these were my (and my husband’s) favorite. They are so so so good with your morning cup of coffee. I will keep these in my baking rotation. Please try making these. Give some away as gifts! They are lovely.

  10. My family loves these cookies. They are always excited when I start mixing the dough the night before I bake them. A household holiday favorite that’s easily made and better than store bought.

  11. I have tried making these twice in a row now. I thought the first time I had issues with baking soda. But after the second time, I am sure it’s an issue with the recipe. I have to second reviews about these cookies turning out flat. And my first batch was definitely like “chewy bark”. I know my baking soda was good, I added egg, and I left the dough in the fridge overnight to make sure it was cold. They are still flat and the inside looks raw (I’ve tried baking for 8-12 minutes with same result). Note to home bakers out there – having a chewy cookie is different from having a raw cookie. Sadly, I will be throwing this recipe out and am sad to have wasted the ingredients.

    1. Sorry, Jacqui, I hear your frustration and trying to figure out why they are not working for you. Did they puff up in the oven at all before getting flat? Are you baking using convection setting? Just trying to think of what could cause this- as they always turn out for me, and the recipe has not changed.

    2. Jacqui, I have made these cookies for several years, about as long as she’s had the recipe on the website and have never had any issues until this year, so I do not believe it’s the recipe. Sorry for your bad luck, though. I love these cookies and everyone raves about them

  12. I was so excited to try these & was looking forward to making them all week. I made the dough yesterday afternoon, it was great dough! wonderful texture. Soon after I put them in the oven, they all just melted! They ended up coming out like hard, chewy bark. It was SO weird! The issue wasn’t that they made too small/big or were too close together. Maybe I used too much molasses? I have a cookie curse- I can hardly make a successful batch.
    Any idea of what happened??

    1. Oh no Jillian! It’s hard to know- I bet something was left out of the recipe or maybe mismeasured? I’ve had this happen to me. I’m so sorry- it’s heartbreaking!

      1. It’s weird because I had the same thing happen to me yesterday. I was going to make another batch and this time just 1/2 a batch, and they never rose up in the oven and just spread out. I don’t think I left out anything, but I guess I could have. It has never happened before. Maybe I’m just too overloaded with baking right now! Maybe just need a break. Haha.

        1. Haha! I hear you Lisa. I wonder if your baking soda is old? I’ve heard that it can happen? You added the egg right?

          1. Well I used the same baking soda, two weeks ago when I made the first batch, so I don’t think that’s it and yes I did add the egg. I think it is possible that I left it out though, I got stopped in the middle of the process and then went back to it, so I bet that’s what happened. Ugh.

  13. Cookies were amazing, but had some leftover dough that I want to use later. Can I freeze it, and if so, how long would it last?

    1. Yes Amber, fee-free to freeze, perhaps in a log- and double wrap in plastic. Should keep up to 6 months.

  14. Could oil be used instead of butter for these cookies?
    They sound amazing but I have a non butter fan in household!

    1. Hi Joan- I think oil could work but have not personally tried this. Let us know if you give it a try!

  15. I love these cookies and bake them every Christmas. I need quite a few to mail off to my son and also share here. Do you think it would be okay to double the recipe, or should I just make them twice?

    1. Hi Carol- I have not tried this with a flax egg. You may not get the rise and crackle? If you try it will you let us know… very curious!

      1. I made these with a flax egg because I happened to be out. They turned out great! I would recommend 10-11 minutes. I baked the first batch for 9 and they were a bit underdone, and I like soft cookies!

  16. I have been making these cookies this evening and I plan on taking a dozen to my friend’s house as a Christmas gift. She loves all different kinds of tea, so I thought these cookies sounded like something that she would really enjoy.
    If you are on the fence about making these cookies, please do! They are so delicious. I think Sylvia is right, and they would be wonderful alongside her authentic masala chai or paired with any other tea, coffee, or milk of your choice.

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Hi, I'm Sylvia!

Chef and author of the whole-foods recipe blog, Feasting at Home, Sylvia Fountaine is a former restaurant owner and caterer turned full-time food blogger. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest and shares seasonal, healthy recipes along with tips and tricks from her home kitchen.

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