Gingerbread cookies are one of my favourite things to bake, eat and share, especially around the holiday season. I usually leave them unadorned or glaze them with lemon icing, but this year I decided to take things up a notch by turning them into adorable linzer-style cookie sandwiches, filled with a lightly spiced cinnamon buttercream and rich salted caramel.
The combination of ginger, cinnamon, spice and salted caramel in these gingerbread cookie sandwiches is ridiculously moreish. They would make the perfect edible holiday gift for family and friends, or be equally perfect devoured alone with a quiet cup of tea.
I’ve filled these cookies with the best salted caramel you’ll ever taste, but if short on time, you can substitute with your favourite gourmet salted caramel from your local specialty food store.
Here’s to a delicious holiday baking season filled with gingerbread, salted caramel, cinnamon, spice and all things nice!
1) If this is your first time making cookies or you encounter any problems while baking, I would recommend referring to my post on Cookie Basics.
2) For the most aromatic and tastiest gingerbread cookies, ensure you use the freshest ginger and ground spices you can buy. Please also note that the number of cookies will vary greatly depending on how thick you roll out the dough and what size cookie cutter you use.
Gingerbread Cookie Sandwiches + Salted Caramel
Delicious spicy gingerbread cookies are filled with cinnamon buttercream and rich salted caramel in this year’s favourite holiday cookie sandwich.
- 450g (3 cups) plain flour, sifted
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- 150g butter
- 100g (1/2 cup, firmly packed) dark brown sugar
- 125ml (1/2 cup) treacle
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2-3cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled, finely grated
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 1 egg, at room temperature, lightly beaten
- 150-200ml Salted Caramel Sauce
- 80g unsalted butter, softened
- 160g (¾ cup) icing sugar, sifted
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground cloves
- 1-2 tbsp whole milk
- Sift flour, baking powder and spices together in a large bowl and set aside.
- Melt butter, sugar and treacle together in a large saucepan, then bring to the boil. Remove saucepan from heat and add bicarbonate of soda with a gentle stir. The mixture will foam and become paler in colour.
- Add fresh ginger, lemon zest and vanilla paste to butter and sugar mixture with another gentle stir.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then mix sifted dry ingredients into the butter and sugar mixture in small batches, then egg, until smooth.
- Bring the dough together into a ball, it will be warm and very soft, but do not add any flour. Flatten the dough into a disc, cover in cling film and chill for 1 hour or ideally overnight.
- Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) and line a couple of baking trays with baking paper.
- Roll dough out to a thickness of 4mm on lightly floured work surface, or between two sheets of baking paper sprinkled with flour.
- Cut shapes out of dough using a round scalloped 45mm cookie cutter. For half the cookies, cut out 25mm stars. Repeat until all dough has been used.
- Place cookies on a baking tray at least 1-2cm apart to allow cookies room to spread during baking. If time permits, refrigerating cookies 5-10 minutes before baking will encourage the cookies to hold their shape when baked.
- Bake cookies for 7-8 minutes in the middle of the oven, until cookies are lightly browned, then remove from oven and transfer to cooling rack. Ideally bake one tray at a time to allow more evenly baked cookies.
- When cookies have completely cooled, sandwich them together in pairs by piping cinnamon buttercream around the periphery and filling with salted caramel. Dust with sifted icing sugar to serve.
- Beat butter, sugar, cinnamon and cloves together until very light and fluffy.
- Depending on the buttercream consistency, beat in milk to slightly soften and lighten the buttercream.
- Place buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a small (3-4mm) nozzle, and set aside for assembly.
Makes approximately 30-35 cookie sandwiches