Ah, gingerbread: the holiday staple that we begrudgingly bake every year, despite our guests’ insistence on choosing sugar cookies instead. Why are we so scared of injecting a lil’ spice into our Christmas dessert spread? Gingerbread cookies are not only nostalgic and charming (don’t even get us started on too-cute-to-eat gingerbread houses complete with icing shingles and gumdrop doorknobs), but they offer timeless, warm, wintry flavor to an otherwise basic cookie swap. And they don’t have to be rock hard. We’ll prove it with 45 gingerbread recipes that will inspire you to mix up your annual menu once and for all. There’s so much more to explore than standard cookies, too—we’re talking doughnuts, fudge, cheesecake and beyond.
45 Gingerbread Recipes That Will Spice Up Your Holiday Baking
11. Gingerbread Pear Crumble With Boozy Whipped Cream
Make a double batch of the dark rum whipped cream so you can use it to finish off a cup of hot chocolate or eggnog.
22. Overnight Gingerbread French Toast Breakfast Bake
Assemble the dish and let it chill overnight. In the morning, it’ll magically appear on the table, just like the presents under the tree. (That’s what you can tell the kids, at least.)
31. Gingerbread Surprise Beignets With Spiced Mocha Hot Chocolate
As if this holiday pairing wasn’t enticing enough, the beignets are also stuffed to the brim with Nutella.
36. Mini Paleo Pumpkin Pies With Gingerbread Cookie Crust
We never thought we could stick to the Paleo diet, but these dangerously poppable cuties are making us reconsider.
42. Gingerbread Cake With Caramel-cream Cheese Buttercream
When it comes to feeding a crowd, a massive, ornately decorated cake is the way to go. (But you could totally turn the batter into a bunch of tiny cupcakes instead.)