My gingerbread biscotti is totally and utterly the BEST biscotti recipe for the festive season, and then some! Packed with delicious warming spices and partly dipped in white chocolate, this biscotti recipe is perfect for edible gifting or just to enjoy with a steaming hot drink!
Tis the season for all the gingerbread
Following on from pumpkin spice everything season, along with caramel apple and s’mores of course, is the cosiest time of year. Time to layer up, pull on a snug woolly hat and gloves and indulge in the warming flavours of gently spices. I love baking with spices, especially cardamom, but ginger and cinnamon are high on the list too. And really, what is there not to like about beautifully comfortingly spiced everything?
What is biscotti?
If you have never had biscotti before, you are in for a treat! The word biscotti comes from the Latin word biscoctus which means twice baked or cooked. When making biscotti, the dough is formed into logs and baked, then cooled slightly before being sliced and baked again.
In other words, biscotti are firm and dry biscuits, having been baked twice. They are often served with coffee (to dunk into), but should always be crisp and dry, not soft and chewy as other cookies are. Traditional biscotti would have been made with almonds and almond flour (at least in part), but today you can find biscotti both with and without nuts.
What does gingerbread taste like?
For me, gingerbread tastes like Christmas. It has all the warming smells and flavours thanks to spices such as ginger, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg, though it can be a little fiery too depending on the amount of ginger used. It has a deep earthy sweetness from treacle or a dark brown sugar and sometimes even a little added depth from a little cardamom. Overall, it is a wonderfully warming, cosy flavour, perfect for colder winter baking!
Why you’ll love gingerbread biscotti
- The best crunchy texture. This is one of the key components of biscotti, and the key to the best biscotti recipes. Thanks to their dry and firm texture, these gingerbread biscotti not only make fabulous gifts throughout December and the festive season, but they transport really well and will actually keep really well when stored correctly.
- Simple to make. There is no melting, no beating and no unusual ingredients. In fact, this recipe can be made using just a bowl, a spatula and a baking tray.
- Adaptable. I love my gingerbread a little fiery, but by simply adjusting the amount of ginger used, you can make it less strongly gingery if this is what you prefer.
- Egg free. This recipe, unlike a lot of other biscotti recipes, is actually egg free biscotti. This also means it can easily be converted into a vegan biscotti recipe too, just by substituting the milk for a dairy free alternative.
What ingredients do I need to make gingerbread biscotti?
- Milk: I use whole milk in this gingerbread biscotti recipe for the best results.
- Oil: I use vegetable oil to make these biscotti rather than butter.
- Brown sugar: using brown sugar here makes for a deep caramel flavoured bake. This suits the flavour profile of this biscotti gingerbread perfectly.
- Vanilla: for delicious flavour in these gingerbread biscotti.
- Treacle: adds darkness and depth to the flavour profile, along with a little bitterness to balance the sweetness. Add this as the last ingredient into the wet mixture and mix mix mix to combine!
- Flour: I use plain (all purpose) flour to make this gingerbread biscotti. Do not use self raising flour, as we want the biscotti not to rise and be puffy.
- Baking powder: the leavening agent in this bake, to give the biscotti a little lift so it does not bake into a dense log!
- Spices: I use ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to make these gingerbread biscotti. Adjust the amount of spices to suit your preferences.
- White chocolate: melted and used to dip one end of the gingerbread biscotti into. This is for decoration only and is totally optional.
What equipment do I need to make gingerbread biscotti?
- Parchment/baking paper: to line the trays before baking the biscotti on them.
- Baking tray*: to chill and then bake the gingerbread biscotti on. Depending on the size of your baking sheet and oven, you may find you will need two trays to make this recipe.
- Digital kitchen scales*: I provide all my measurements in cups too, however I would encourage all bakers to weigh out ingredients using weighing scales when baking. A set of digital kitchen scales is so useful and totally an essential baking tool for me.
- Measuring spoons*: a set of measuring spoons is essential for any baker. This is because these are more accurate than using everyday teaspoons and tablespoons, which can vary greatly in size.
- Jug*: to mix together the wet ingredients before combining them with the dry.
- Mixing bowl*: used to make the gingerbread biscotti dough in.
- Sieve*: useful to remove lumps from dry ingredients before blending everything together.
- Spatula*: for mixing the wet and dry ingredients together before tipping out and shaping the gingerbread biscotti into logs to bake.
- Cooling rack*: to place the baking tray on once out of the oven.
How to make the best gingerbread biscotti
Biscotti is essentially a biscuit that is baked twice, once before being sliced and once after. Then, following the second bake, each gingerbread biscotti biscuit is dipped in white chocolate and left to set. Easy!
Step 1: Line the baking tray with parchment paper, then set it aside. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.
Step 2: In a jug, pour in the milk, oil and vanilla. Tip in the brown sugar and finally spoon in the treacle (molasses). Mix everything together until completely combined and it turns into a thick dark liquid. Set aside.
Step 3: Into a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground cloves and ground nutmeg. Pour in the wet ingredients and mix everything together into a smooth soft dough.
Step 4: Tip the gingerbread biscotti dough out onto a clean work surface and knead it enough to bring it all together. Divide the dough in two equal portions, then shape each portion into a long, slightly flattened log and place on the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, then remove and leave to cool for about 20-30 minutes on a cooling rack (leave the baked logs on the baking tray).
Step 5: Once the logs have almost cooled down, cut them into slices about 1″ thick on a cutting board. I like to cut mine at a slight diagonal, but you can cut them straight across too. Use a serrated/bread knife and cut using a sawing motion to reduce crumbling. Place the gingerbread biscotti slices back on the baking tray and bake again for at least 10 minutes (see notes for options). Leave to cool completely.
Step 6: When the gingerbread biscotti have cooled, as an optional extra, you can dip them in white chocolate. Simply melt the white chocolate and place in a narrow mug or glass. Dip the biscotti one at a time into the chocolate, then shake any excess chocolate off before leaving to set. Enjoy!
FAQs for gingerbread cookies
Whilst this biscotti recipe is pretty forgiving, there are often a few questions that come up when making them. If you have any other questions, please ask away in the comments below, I will do my best to help!
Should gingerbread be hard or soft?
Well, gingerbread cookies can be both actually. The traditional gingerbread man cookie can be either softer like a cookie or harder like a biscuit. A lot of store bought gingerbread tends to veer on the harder side, or perhaps firm but with a chewy middle as the Starbucks gingerbread biscotti is. In this recipe, when making a gingerbread biscotti, it will definitely be a hard bake. Biscotti are baked twice in order for them to be really crunchy, dry and firm, making these biscotti gingerbread perfect to enjoy lightly dunked into a hot drink!
Should this gingerbread biscotti dough be kneaded or not?
Biscotti dough, like shortcrust pastry, should not be kneaded when bringing it together. Instead, squeeze to bring together into one larger dough, then split, roll and shape immediately before baking. Easy peasy!
Should biscotti dough be chilled before baking?
When making my recipe gingerbread biscotti, there is no need to chill the dough. In some recipes, where butter is used, it will often also result in a much softer, stickier biscotti dough. It is for this reason the dough is chilled before shaping and first bake when making some other gingerbread biscotti recipes. However, since I use oil in mine rather than butter, chilling it would have very little effect to firm up the fat, so there is no need to chill the dough in this ginger biscotti recipe.
How to store gingerbread biscotti
This gingerbread biscotti recipes comes together really easily and keeps well when stored correctly. The important thing to remember is biscotti needs to be kept as dry as possible and not exposed to moisture. Always store biscotti in an airtight container, placing parchment paper between layers of biscuits if stacking. I place a folded piece of kitchen roll in the container too, to absorb any excess moisture. If stored correctly, this eggless biscotti can be kept for up to two weeks, if it lasts that long!
Can I freeze biscotti?
Yes, absolutely! As with any biscuits or cookies, place the baked biscotti in an airtight container, separating layers with parchment paper if needed, and freeze. This recipe can be frozen for up to three months. To defrost, leave the gingerbread biscotti at room temperature to thaw. You may need to bake them once again for about 10 minutes at 180C/350F to dry them out if they have become a little soft.
Quick tips for making the best recipe for biscotti
- When combining the wet ingredients, add the treacle (molasses) last to the jug. Treacle is super sticky and really hard to mix, despite being more a liquid. However placing it in the bowl last and mixing makes it easier to combine and less likely to stick to the jug.
- Leave enough space between the two logs of gingerbread biscotti dough for them to spread when baking. You could use two baking trays too if you prefer.
- If you want the biscotti to be a little taller, keep the logs more rounded. If you flatten the logs a little before baking, the final gingerbread biscotti will be more flat and long.
- Do not leave the gingerbread biscotti logs to cool completely before slicing as this will make it harder to get clean cuts without the biscotti crumbling. Twenty minutes is perfect.
- At the second bake, you can bake the biscotti to get to the texture you prefer. A shorter bake time will give you softer final gingerbread biscotti, a longer bake time will give you extra crunchy and dry biscotti.
- The white chocolate dip is totally optional. I love the sweet smooth flavour of white chocolate against the fiery gingerbread flavour, plus I think it looks so lovely if being gifted. You could also do a simple white chocolate drizzle instead of a dip if you prefer.
If you have any other questions about this recipe, please leave me a comment below, I would love to help. And if you do make this gingerbread biscotti recipe, please do consider leaving a rating and review below. I would really appreciate your feedback to grow my website and it really helps others looking for a similar recipe too. Additionally, you could also post a picture on Instagram and tag me when you share it with the world. You already know I would love to see!
More festive recipes from my blog for you to enjoy
Do check out these other yummy recipes on my blog too:
Gingerbread cheesecake: My no-bake gingerbread cheesecake is just perfect for the festive season! Creamy and dreamy, with a beautiful gingery biscuit base and all the yummy flavours of festive spiced gingerbread, this cheesecake is a surefire winner!
Mini mince pies: Is there anything better than mince pies at Christmas? Why, homemade mini mince pies, of course! These snowflake topped mince pies are so simple to make and utterly divine. A fabulous bake for making with kids of all ages (and adults too!), just put on some festive music and get everyone helping!
Lemon shortbread cookies: The ONLY lemon shortbread cookies recipe you will need! Wonderfully lemony, melt in your mouth shortbread cookies, topped with a zingy lemon glaze. Trust me, this one is the ultimate recipe for lemon shortbread cookies, everyone loves them!
Happy baking, my friends! x