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Photo: Jim Franco; Styling: Rebecca Donnelly Photo by: Photo: Jim Franco; Styling: Rebecca Donnelly

Gingerbread Sailors and Mermaids

You can find mermaid cutters at cookiecutter.com, and gingerbread boys from annclark.com. Decorate with icing, sprinkles, and dragées for a sweet and spicy coastal treat!

Coastal Living DECEMBER 2011

  • Yield: Makes about 4 dozen 4-inch cookies
  • Prep time:10 Minutes
  • Chill:1 Hour
  • Bake:8 Minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups butter
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey or molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • Royal Icing or prepared frosting
  • Candy decorations and sprinkles (optional)


1. Beat first 2 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixture until fluffy. Beat in honey and egg.

2. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating until blended.

3. Shape dough into 2 flat disks. Cover with plastic wrap; chill at least 1 hour or until firm.

4. Preheat oven to 350°. Line several large baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick aluminum foil. Roll out dough, 1 section at a time, to 1/4-inch thickness on a floured surface. Cut out gingerbread shapes with cookie cutters. Re-roll trimmed-off dough to make additional cookies. Place 1 inch apart on prepared sheets.

5. Bake cookies, in batches, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool 1 minute on baking sheets; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

6. Decorate cookies with Royal Icing or prepared frosting in a tube, and candy and sprinkles, if desired. Let icing harden at least 1 hour.


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Gingerbread Sailors and Mermaids recipe