Pepparkakkor (Swedish Gingersnaps), Gluten-Free

by Jeanne on December 23, 2010


Humpty wants these cookies!

It’s almost Christmas (for those of you who celebrate it)!  And that means I have time to squeak in one or two more Christmas cookie recipes.  I have about eleventy million in my recipe binder, but I’ve been picking and choosing ones that are particularly holiday-appropriate.

Today’s recipe is for pepparkkakor, a Swedish gingersnap cookie traditionally made at this time of year.  This recipe is an adaptation of a recipe shared with by Emily, of the West of the Loop blog.  The recipe comes from Emily’s Swedish grandmother.  Emily and I met a couple of years ago on Canning Across America.  Emily sent us one of the very first essays we posted on the site–about canning with her kids!  It’s a delighful essay–please check it out.

Anyway, in November, I posted a request on Twitter for people’s favorite holiday cookies.  Emily immediately sent this recipe and said she’d appreciate it if I could adapt to gluten-free.  My answer was, “of course!”  This is the type of recipe that falls into one of my favorite categories: family recipes.  I love, love, love family recipes.  There’s some so special about family recipes.  I love to keep family cooking history alive.    Thanks for the lovely recipe, Emily and  Emily’s grandmother!

Pepparkakkor (Swedish Gingersnaps) , Gluten-Free
-adapted from a recipe from Emily Paster
-maked 3-4 dozen, or more, depending the size of your cookies

Note: this recipe uses my gf flour mix, Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix (mix together and store in a cool, dark place):
1 1/4 C (170g) brown rice flour
1 1/4 C (205g) white rice flour
1 C (120g) tapioca flour
1 C (165g) sweet rice flour (also known as Mochiko or glutinous rice flour)
2 scant tsp. xanthan gum
(you can also use the gluten-free flour mixture (not baking mix) of your choice–just be sure it contains xanthan gum. Or, you can add 1/4 tsp. xanthan gum per cup of gluten-free flour. If you use bean flour, it will add a bean taste to the cookies)

Ingredients (updated to add a note about baking soda)
(note: I cut Emily’s recipe in half)
1/2 C (1 stick; 4 oz; 115g) unsalted butter (or butter substitute), softened
1/2 C (100g) granulated sugar
1/4 C (60ml) molasses
1 1/2 C + 1/8 C (230g) Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 C silvered almonds, chopped (optional)
Note: Emily’s grandmother didn’t use baking soda, so these cookies are on the dense and crunchy side. If you want a bit of a lighter cookie that’s a little less dense and more crisp, add 1 tsp of baking soda to your dry ingredients.  Either way is delicious!

In a small bowl, mix together flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt (and baking soda, if using).

In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar (you can do this with a mixer or just by hand).  Add the molasses and mix until completely integrated.  Add the dry ingredients and stir until all the ingredients are well integrated.  Add the almonds if using, and mix in well.

Shape the dough into a log that is 2″-2 1/2″ thick.  Wrap log in plastic wrap or waxed paper and refrigerate until firm (about 2 hours) or overnight or until you need it.

When ready to make the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.  Remove your cookie log from the refrigerator.  Unwrap and using a ruler or measuring tape, mark off 1/4″ thick segments.  Cut the log at the marks and put the dough disks on the cookie sheets with 1″ in between each. 

Bake at 350 degrees until cookie looks like it’s a bit darker in color (the dough is already very dark)–about 9-12 minutes.  I baked mine for 10-12 minutes.  Watch them carefully so that they don’t burn.  Remove from oven and place the cookies on a wire rack to cool.  The cookies will become crisp as they cool.

Store in an airtight container.



{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Heather December 9, 2012 at 10:29 am

this recipe looks great! My mom has been making the regular swedish pepparkakkor cookies for years. I am wondering if they can be rolled out and used with cookie cutters? Maybe chill them first and roll out?



Jeanne December 11, 2012 at 12:34 pm

Heather: Yes! In my book, I tweaked the recipe and have folks roll it out between two pieces of waxed paper. Works like a charm!


Ana December 13, 2011 at 5:11 am

I have a question about granulated sugar. I use sugar in the raw, is that granulated sugar? If not what would be better to use.


admin December 13, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Ana: Sugar in the raw is granulated sugar–it’s just not bleached and the crystals are bigger. It is fine to use in place of granulated sugar–just be aware that since the crystals are bigger, you will feel them in the baked good more than you would with the bleached granulated sugar. This isn’t bad–just different. :) Happy baking!


InTolerantChef December 25, 2010 at 7:23 pm

I love ginger, these sound lovely.


Emily December 25, 2010 at 9:10 am

This is terrific! Thanks for adapting this recipe, Jeanne.


admin December 26, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Emily: Thanks for sending it to me! I love it!


Marilyn December 24, 2010 at 11:14 pm

Hi Jeanne – I just wanted to wish you and yours a wonderful Christmas & a the best new year ever. I’ve learned so much from you this year – thank you so much for sharing your talents with us. I’m so looking forward to next year when I can get back into the swing of cooking & baking. (I owe you an email….)

Anyway, have a huge amount of fun this weekend & eat a lot of good stuff!

Best wishes, Marilyn (in Broomfield CO)


kelly cooper December 23, 2010 at 5:45 pm

Oh I just love family recipes with a history behind them too. My husband LOVES gingersnaps and this just looks like Christmas time too. =0) Thanks and thanks Emily’s family too.


admin December 23, 2010 at 7:59 pm

Kelly: Yay! You’re welcome! They really do smell like Christmas!!


Leave a Comment

{ 3 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: