Fitness & Nutrition

Healthier Gingerbread Cookies

TIMEDecember 16, 2021

Our gut-healthy, brain-healthy version of a favorite Christmas cookie will nourish the body while bringing holiday cheer.  This recipe has nutrient-dense ingredients, healthy fats, and little sugar which will protect against feeling yucky after indulging in a treat.

happy family in the kitchen
Challenge yourself to get into the holiday spirit in unique ways that won’t break the bank. Bake some cookies, make a gingerbread house, or volunteer your time together as a family. (Shutterstock)



2 cups blanched almond flour

1/4 cup coconut sugar

1/4 cup palm shortening or coconut oil, room temperature

1 egg, from a free-range hen

1 tablespoon molasses

3 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon unrefined salt

a couple tablespoons of arrowroot powder, for rolling out the dough


1 cup palm shortening, room temperature

1/2 cup filtered water, room temperature

1/4 cup maple syrup or raw honey

1 teaspoon gelatin, responsibly-sourced

15-20 drops liquid stevia 

a pinch of unrefined salt

Crisp Gingerbread Stars (Tina Rupp)
Crisp Gingerbread Stars (Tina Rupp)


For the cookies

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  In a large mixing bowl combine your preferred fat and coconut sugar and beat at medium speed with a hand mixer until creamy.  Add the egg and molasses and mix until combined.  In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until well incorporated.

Using arrowroot powder to dust your surface and rolling pin, roll the dough out evenly to about 1/4 inch thickness.  On a small plate, put a couple tablespoons of arrowroot powder and dip the cookie cutters in it between each cut.  Cut out your favorite shapes and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Bake for 10-15 minutes, keeping an eye on them as different shapes cook differently.  When the edges are just starting to brown, remove from the oven and cool on the cooling rack.  Once cookies are cool, they can be frosted.  Store in the refrigerator.

For the icing

Place the water in a small saucepan.  Sprinkle the gelatin over the surface of the water and allow it to start to dissolve for a minute or two.  Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring consistently until the gelatin is completely dissolved.  Stir in the sweeteners and salt.  Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.  Place the butter in a mixing bowl and beat it until it is creamy.  Add the gelatin mixture a tablespoon or so at a time until the frosting is smooth.  Frost the cookies and serve at room temperature.

Ashley Turner
Dr. Ashley Turner is a traditionally trained naturopath and board-certified doctor of holistic health for Restorative Wellness Center. As an expert in functional medicine, Dr. Ashley is the author of the gut-healing guide “Restorative Kitchen” and “Restorative Traditions,” a cookbook comprised of non-inflammatory holiday recipes.