Pierniczki – Traditional Polish Cookies with Honey and Spices

Pierniczki are traditional cookies from Poland made with honey, it is a Polish version of gingerbread. Homemade pierniczki are must have during Christmas season but ready, store bought ones are enjoyed all year round.

Polish gingerbread recipe


  • 4½ – 5 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup ground almonds (about 100g)
  • 400 g mixed local honey
  • 1 cup soft dark brown sugar
  • ¼ bar unsalted butter (about 65g)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 pinch of ground black pepper – optional
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • more flour for working surface

for the decoration

  • 300 g chocolate, white and/or dark chocolate
  • 150 g almond flakes


  • baking tray lined with non-stick Teflon sheets or baking paper
  • baking paper for baked cookies
  • silicone brush
  • rolling pin
  • cookie cutters

homemade pierniczki recipe


  1. Combine honey, sugar, butter and spices and heat over low fire until melted and bubbling.
  2. Leave aside to cool down a little bit.
  3. In a mixing bowl place baking soda, ground almonds, 4½ cups of flour and eggs, add also honey mixture and knead the dough.
  4. Stir in additional half a cup of flour if necessary.
  5. Dough should be soft but not very sticky.
  6. Roll on the floured surface to about ½ cm thick, cut out shapes with cookie cutters and place on baking trays lined with Teflon sheets or baking paper.
  7. Bake in 200°C (392°F) for about 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Place on baking paper and leave to cool down completely.
  9. When cookies are cold, melt the chocolate in a small saucepan or in a microwave.
  10. Use it to brush the cookies and immediately sprinkle them with almond flakes.
  11. Leave to cool down completely.
  12. Store in a cookie tin for a week or even two.

Makes about 45 medium cookies.


Pierniczki taste the best after few days when the flavours will get a chance to develop.


Pierniczki came out almost the same like I remember from my childhood… only could be a little bit more spicier and a little darker (I will try to use darker honey next time), but kids loved them anyway.

They were soft like they should, at least for the first 9 days… they did not survive longer.

Some people compare pierniczki to gingerbread cookies but they are not the same thing, pierniczki have much softer texture and they are tasting more of clove and honey than ginger.

I’m adding this to the Inheritance Recipes link-up that we co-host together with Solange of Pebble SoupDecember Inheritance Recipes is hosted by Solange.

traditional Polish recipes passed from generation to generation

Your thoughts…

  1. They are beautiful! I’d love to taste it. Happy Holidays!

  2. I love pierniczki…these look delightful, too!

  3. Now that looks gorgeous. Man!

  4. These are truly beautiful Margot!!

  5. How very festive and delicious, packed with almonds in and on the cookies!
    Margot, you did Santa proud.

  6. I’d love to try making these as they look wonderful! I love the pretty white chocolate icing and almonds on top :)

  7. i love this picture margot! lovely! hope you had a great Christmas! :)

  8. These cookies look lovely! I’m glad to see that you had time to make these despite your busy schedule Hope you had a great Christmas and good start into 2009!

  9. Margot-

    I haven’t had these in years. I am also Polish and grew up around a Polish church in Los Angeles. My whole family speaks Polish and eats polish foods etc. my grandparents came to the states in the early 1920’s. So nice to have found this out about you.

  10. I am going to try this one out soon……

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