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The Best Chewy Hermit Cookies

4.80 from 5 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Chilling time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Yield 32 cookies
Category Dessert
Cuisine New England
Author Lauren Grant


Chewy, spicy, and bold in flavor, these old-fashioned cookies are a more unique version of chewy molasses cookies. 


  • 1 cup (152g) raisins
  • 3 tablespoons (35g) crystallized ginger, finely chopped (see note)
  • 8 tablespoons (½ cup) unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 cups (227g) white whole wheat flour*
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • cup (137g) packed dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup (166g) molasses*
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup (60g) finely chopped walnuts, optional
  • 2 cups + 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 heaping teaspoon orange zest


  • Process raisins and ginger in food processor until mixture sticks together and only small pieces remain, 10–15 seconds. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.
    minced dried fruit in a food processor
  • Melt butter in small saucepan over medium heat, swirling saucepan occasionally, until nutty brown in color, about 8 minutes. Stir in cinnamon and allspice and cook until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Stir butter mixture into raisin mixture until well combined; let cool completely.
    minced dried fruit in a large bowl with melted butter
  • Whisk flour, baking soda, and salt together in a bowl. 
  • Whisk brown sugar, molasses, and eggs into cooled butter-raisin mixture until incorporated.
    cookie dough in a large glass bowl with a whisk
  • Using a rubber spatula, fold in flour mixture and nuts (dough will be very sticky). Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until dough is firm, at least 1½ hours or up to 24 hours.
    cookie dough in a large glass bowl with a spatula
  • Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat oven to 350ºF (176ºC). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. 
  • Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and divide into quarters. Roll 1 piece of dough into a 10-inch log on lightly floured surface. Transfer log to prepared sheet, brush off any excess flour, and tap ends with a ruler to neatly square (each sheet will contain 2 logs). Repeat with remaining dough.
    dough logs on a baking sheet
  • Bake cookie logs until only a slight indentation remains on edges when touched (center will appear slightly soft), 16–20 minutes, switching and rotating sheets halfway through baking. Let cookies cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then slide cookies, still on parchment, onto wire rack. Let cookies cool completely.
    large baked cookie logs on a parchment-lined baking sheet
  • Whisk together confectioners' sugar, orange juice, zest and pinch of salt in small bowl until smooth. Drizzle glaze onto cooled cookies and let sit until glaze dries, about 15 minutes.
    large baked cookie logs drizzled with an orange glaze on a parchment-lined baking sheet
  • Cut cookies into 1½-inch bars before serving. 


Storage: Store hermits in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week. For longer storage, transfer the container of cookies to the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. To freeze, layer cookies between pieces of parchment or wax paper. Transfer the layered cookies to zipper-lock freezer bags. Store cookies in the freezer for up to 3 months (allow cookies to thaw at room temperature overnight before eating)
Flour: you can use 2 cups all purpose flour instead of white whole-wheat flour. 
Molasses: Mild molasses is best for this recipe (instead of robust or blackstrap).
Ginger: Crystallized (or candied) ginger is available in the spice aisle or the bulk section of most grocery stores. Make sure you use dry crystalized ginger, not ginger in syrup.
This recipe was adapted from America's Test Kitchen.


Serving: 1cookieCalories: 141kcalCarbohydrates: 23gProtein: 3gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 75mgFiber: 2gSugar: 14g
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