Recipe for decorated Alsatian gingerbread

By Marine
Updated on 2024-04-26

Ah, gingerbread! It's a delicacy that's emblematic of the Christmas season in Alsace! As soon as we bake them, the whole house smells of honey and spices (especially cinnamon), it's a real holiday fragrance! Here's my recipe for homemade Alsatian gingerbread.

Born and raised in Alsace, I'm in love with my region, but I also love to travel. On my blog Miss crumble, I share both traditional Alsatian recipes and recipes from other parts of the world. Cooking is all about the emotion of the taste buds!

You can choose to make a large gingerbread, or opt for the small, decorated gingerbreads traditional to the region (you’ll see them at every Christmas market, or by visiting the two gingerbread makers in Gertwiller). In the past, it was customary to give gingerbread as a gift, especially to the one you love… The hardest part will be choosing which cookie cutter to use. I recommend “simple” shapes: stars or hearts, for example.

Icing is a bit technical, but don’t worry, you just need a little patience and imagination for the patterns. Here too, choose something simple: dots, mini-arabesques. Keep the piping bag very close to the gingerbread, so that the icing “sticks” and you’re done!

The gingerbread will be even better 48 hours later: they have time to become a little “softer”. They can be stored in a metal tin for up to 1 month.

This recipe was passed on to me by my friend AurĂ©lie from the blog Mademoiselle cuisine, and it’s the only recipe I make for gingerbread!

Decorated Alsatian gingerbread

A traditional recipe for gingerbread, to be enjoyed at Christmas time in Alsace.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Rest time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 45 minutes
Cuisine: Alsacienne
Servings: 20


  • cookie cutters


  • 500 gr flour
  • 1 sachet baking powder
  • 200 gr of sugar
  • 250 gr acacia or mixed-flower honey
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon clove powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise powder
  • 1 pinch of grated or powdered nutmeg
  • 10 cl water
  • 150 g powdered sugar
  • 1 egg white


  • In a small bowl, mix together all the spices (cinnamon, aniseed, cloves, nutmeg). If you don't have powdered cloves, put them in a blender with the other spices, blend and strain.
  • Pour the spices into the bowl of your food processor or into a large salad bowl. Add flour, baking powder and sugar. Blend.
  • Add the honey, if it's liquid it's better.
  • Mix the dough by hand or with the blade of your food processor. Add half the water.
  • Keep kneading, the dough may seem a little dry, so keep kneading without adding the rest of the water.
  • After a few minutes, add the remaining water if necessary. The dough should not be sticky; if it is, add a little flour.
  • Form the dough into a ball and wrap in cling film. Leave to stand for 1 hour or more at room temperature. This also allows the dough to develop its full flavour.
  • Preheat oven to 180°C. Roll out the dough to a thickness of 1 cm (see tip below), flouring the work surface. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters. The thickness (1cm) will keep the gingerbread soft.
  • Arrange the gingerbreads on a baking tray lined with parchment paper, spacing them well apart, as they will swell up a little as they bake. Bake for about 15 minutes.
  • The gingerbread should barely color. They should not be overcooked, as they will harden once removed from the oven.
  • Cool the cakes on a wire rack.
  • Prepare the icing by mixing the powdered sugar and egg white.
  • Whip the mixture with an electric whisk until smooth, glossy and white. Decorate with a piping bag.


Tip: to spread the gingerbread evenly and to the right thickness, buy a 1 cm square wooden stick from a DIY store. Cut the baguette into 2 pieces, each 30 cm long. Place these 2 chopsticks on either side of the dough and roll up the roll, resting on the chopsticks. This will ensure an evenly spread dough.