Soft Molasses-Raisin Cookies

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Yield: a generous 4 dozen 2" cookies

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These moist, "bendy" molasses cookies are studded with chopped golden raisins. A crunchy coating of coarse sugar is a nice complement to their soft interior. While we usually think of molasses cookies as winter/holiday fare, these are delicious with a glass of cold lemonade — perfect for summer.

Soft Molasses-Raisin Cookies

star rating (20) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: a generous 4 dozen 2" cookies
Published: 07/12/2010



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1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) two baking sheets.

2) In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until they're well-combined. Beat in the molasses and the egg.

3) Combine the flour, raisins, baking soda, salt, and spices in the bowl of a food processor. Process till the raisins are coarsely chopped. Note: If you don't have a food processor and don't mind your raisins remaining whole, skip this step.

4) Add the flour/raisin mixture to the wet ingredients, beating just till thoroughly combined.

5) Scoop the sticky dough into 1" balls; a teaspoon cookie scoop works well here.

6) Roll the balls in coarse white sugar, if desired. This is easily done by sprinkling the sugar into an 8" cake pan, and dropping the sticky dough into the pan. Shake the pan to coat the dough balls with sugar.

7) Space the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2" between them.

8) Bake the cookies for 7 to 9 minutes. The centers will look soft and puffy; that's OK. Cookies baked for 7 minutes will be VERY soft; bake them for 9 minutes, they'll be firmer.

9) Remove them from the oven, and cool right on the pan; or transfer to a rack to cool. To maintain soft texture, store at room temperature once cookies are completely cool.

Yield: 52 cookies.


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  • star rating 04/27/2015
  • Toni from Prescott, AZ
  • These cookies are wonderful, even my husband who doesn't usually like a ginger cookie liked these. The only change I made was to reduce the amount of ground ginger and add crystalized ginger. Chopped it up a little and put it with the dry ingredients in the food processor.
  • star rating 11/20/2014
  • Shumskym from KAF Community
  • Although I'm a 71 year-old retired woman, my comment on this recipe is OMG! We grew up in western Massachusetts and moved to the San Francisco area in 1979 for my husband's work. 31 years later, we retired and came back to our original home base. Well, in the first half of our lives, we routinely enjoyed hermits that were available in our local markets. In California, we never found any store-bought hermits, and recipes that I found (pre-www) didn't come close to what we wanted. Recently, I stumbled upon the KAF recipe for soft molasses-raisin cookies, not with hermits on my mind; I just try new recipes occasionally, usually from King Arthur Flour. My husband and I each took a bite of the cooled cookies and called them "wonderful". With a second taste, I remarked "These are hermits!". My husband agreed and we skipped dinner in favor of our new favorite hermits. I also had quite a journey with sourdough bread, but that's an entirely different story...
  • star rating 06/10/2013
  • Donna from Texas
  • These cookies taste great but I was hoping they would be more chewy and less soft. I've baked them as long as 10 minutes. Can anybody give me ideas? Would omitting the molasses and substituting brown sugar work?
    Try using brown sugar in place of the white sugar for a chewier cookie, or subbing in 2 tablespoons corn syrup in place of 1/4 cup of sugar. ~Amy
  • star rating 10/08/2012
  • drasnianembassy from KAF Community
  • I just finished making these cookies using the substitutions suggested by another reviewer. This modified recipe makes the best ever chocolate chip cookies: soft, chewy, chocolatey goodness. I subbed light corn syrup for the molasses, added 1/4 cup of flour, added 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract, used butter flovered crisco sticks and used semi sweet chocolate chips. I then doubled the recipe which made 4 dozen good sized cookies ( 1 tsp full balls). I just love the recipes on the KAF site and really enjoy trying the suggestions made by others. You guys at KAF should test this modified recipe and post it under the chocolate chip cookie recipe, because I think they make the absolute best. Thanks. Brian
  • star rating 07/06/2012
  • chezsam from KAF Community
  • I usually tweek a recipe because I live at a high altitude but this time I didn't. Used currants instead of raisins, that was what I had at the time. These turned out fantastically wonderful. I didn't roll them in the sparkling sugar but used a glass bottom dipped in the sugar to smash them to about 3/4 inch and they puffed up still and kept their shape. Wonderful recipe that I'll use a lot.
  • star rating 07/01/2012
  • ebenezer94 from KAF Community
  • Yuuummmm! I made these with dark raisins that had been in the cupboard a bit long and were a bit dry and crystallized, but they came out great. I used white whole wheat flour and rolled them in turbinado sugar (what I had). They were definitely soft and bendy and a bit on the thin side, which might be partially the whole wheat flour, but they look a bit thin in the picture too, and the turbinado sugar lent them a lovely crunch. Will definitely make again.
  • star rating 06/29/2012
  • from KAF Community
  • I normally do not like soft cookies, but this one changed my world. I love spicey potent cinnamon and cloves I buy at Penzey's spice shop. Thanks!
  • 06/27/2012
  • jrepka from KAF Community
  • i haven't tried these yet but will be using dates when i do. i prefer them to raisins. the question that i have is can the balls be frozen to bake later?? has anyone done this and what were the results??
    Yes, the dough may be frozen after portioning. For a uniform cookie, it helps to gently flatten the balls once on the baking sheet. Frank @ KAF.
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