Sugar glazed lebkuchen (German Christmas cookies)

Recipe for Sugar glazed lebkuchen (German Christmas cookies), the perfect spicy and sweet cookies. Great for Christmas or any cold month, they're filled with honey and wonderful, aromatic spices. The festive sprinkles add that extra holiday touch. | @mitzyathome

Perfect sweet and spicy Christmas cookies!




  • 250g (2 cups minus 2 TBSPs | 9oz) all-purpose flour
  • 85g (3/4 cup) almond meal (ground almonds)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 200ml (3/4 cup + 1 1/3 TBSPs) honey (I use a mixture of light and dark honey)
  • 85g (3/4 stick or 6 TBSPs) unsalted butter
  • zest from 1 organic lemon

Sugar glaze

  • 160g (1 cup) powdered sugar
  • juice from 1 lemon (yield about 30-40ml | 23 TBSPs)
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • sprinkles of choice


  1. Stir flour, almonds, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Heat the honey and butter in a small saucepan over low heat until the butter completely melts. Pour butter into the flour mixture along with the lemon zest. Mix well until the dough forms into a solid ball. It’ll be soft and sticky, but will hold its shape. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel (so dough doesn’t dry out) and leave to cool.
  2. Heat oven to 180°C (355°F). Using your hands, roll dough into 18 balls and place all on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, leaving some room between the cookies for when they bake and expand. Flatten each ball slightly with your fingers. Bake cookies for 10-15 mins, until they puff up and get golden brown on the bottom. (Make sure they’re not burnt at the bottom!) Remove from oven, transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.
  3. Once cool, make the glaze:
    Whisk powdered sugar, lemon juice and salt in a small bowl. The glaze will be thick, but still smooth. Spread 1-2 teaspoons of glaze over each cookie and immediately decorate with sprinkles, because the glaze dries quickly.
  4. Let cookies dry completely, then store in an airtight container at room temperature for 1-2 weeks. Maybe longer, but they never last that long in my home.


You can add more spices to the mix, like ground cardamom or cloves.

The cookies are naturally sweet from the honey, but if you want them sweeter add a few tablespoons of sugar (white or brown) to honey and butter and cook the 3 together (before pouring the melted mixture into dry ingredients).

As the cookies bake they’ll hardly change the color on top, but they can burn on the bottom so watch them after the 10-minute mark. If you’re unsure when they’re done, take one out and see if the bottom is golden brown and hard if you tap it.

If you are not a fan of sugar glaze, dip these into melted chocolate instead. Whatever you decide to do, they do need a coating of something, to balance out the zingy spices.

Recipe adapted from BBC Good Food.