Amish Molasses Cookies With Lemon Frosting

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I decided to test a recipe from the Amish Cook archives this morning.  Posting recipes is one thing, TRYING them and tasting them…well, that’s another:)   But I LOVED this recipe and will definitely make them again sometime. This recipe is from the late Elizabeth Coblentz.  The recipe was actually for molasses nut cookies, but I’m not a big nut fan…sooo, the good thing about running my own website is, darn it, if I don’t want nuts in my cookies then I’m not going to put them in!


I used homemade sorghum molasses for this cookie. The molasses was from the Amish settlement near Ethridge, Tennessee. We picked up the molasses last summer.

One thing I didn’t realize until after I started baking is that the recipe called for 10 dozen cookies. Holy moly! Elizabeth must have been using this as an “after-church cookie.”  I am going to leave the recipe as is, but unless you want 10 dozen cookies, my recommendation is A) halve the recipe or B) do what I did and make monster-sized cookies.

The lemon frosting is a superb addition.  The lemon taste really balances out and complements the strong molasses flavor.

Here is Elizabeth’s recipe for molasses cookies with lemon frosting:

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extra
  • 6 cups all-pupose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
  1. Position one of the oven’s racks in the center and preheat oven to 375F degrees.
  2. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or lightly grease them.
  3. In a large bowl beat together the sugar and shortening until creamy.
  4. Add the eggs, molasses, and vanilla and beat well.
  5. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ginger until well blended.
  6. Add the dry mixture to the sugar mixture in several additions, alternating with the buttermilk until well combined.
  7. Stir in the nuts.
  8. Drop the cookie dough by teaspoonfuls (or if you want monster-sized cookies, you tablespoons!) spaced 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets.
  9. Bake for about ten minutes, until golden around the edges.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer them with a spatula to wire racks to cool completely.  LEMON FROSTING:
    1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
    2 tbsp. butter
    1 tbsp. lemon juice


    Cream to moisten.

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The Discussion

  1. Looks good! I have a thing for anything lemon lately, so I want to try the frosting more than the cookie. :)
    Heather D. recently posted..Hat No. One, Take OneMy Profile

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  2. These cookies look delicious….need to try the recipe….

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  3. Pam R. says:

    Hi Kevin, I just had to comment about the size of this cookie recipe. In 1983 on my first trip to Amish Country in PA, I bought my first Amish cookbook at the visitor’s center. It was one of those local collections of recipes type of cookbooks that tells you who contributed which recipe. Well, almost all of the cookie recipes in that book made 6 or more dozen cookies. At first that seemed like a lot, but as my family grew in size to include 3 growing boys and a daughter, I really came to appreciate how big those recipes were. I always assumed that the reason their recipes for cookies were so large was that they had large families to feed and like in my house, 3 dozen cookies wouldn’t even have made it to get cooled and put in the cookie before they were gone. When you are busy taking care of your family to care for you don’t usually have time to bake cookies every day and for me making a small batch was kind of like Thanksgiving when you send all day cooking and the meal is on in 30 minutes! Making large batches really helped as it gave me enough cookies to feed the kids and their friends for afternoon snacks for several days. Even in today’s world, I still bake a large batch and freezer half and that way I can pull them out as needed.

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    • Pam, you are right…Lovina always sort of says the same thing…”If you’re going to bake 3 dozen, might as well make it 6 or 8 dozen” and then they can be stored for future use! – Kevin

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