Chewy Snickerdoodle Cookies made from scratch. These buttery Snickerdoodle Cookies are rolled in sweet cinnamon sugar and baked until golden. There’s no chilling the dough so they’re ready to eat in under an hour.
The humble Snickerdoodle Cookie 💕
I first heard about Snickerdoodle Cookies from my sister-in-law. Snicker-what? But one bite and I was in sweet cinnamon heaven.
These buttery sugar cookies are rolled in cinnamon sugar and then baked to crinkly perfection. An American classic, they’re soft, chewy and oh-so sweet.
They’re the ideal Christmas cookie since they can be made and ready to gift in under an hour. If you’re a cinnamon enthusiast like me, you’ll LOVE these!
Why you will love this recipe
Soft and chewy: You can expect chewy, buttery Snickerdoodle cookies that just about melt-in-your-mouth.
Simple ingredients: You only need a handful of pantry staples to make a batch.
Perfect thickness: While other Snickerdoodle recipes make super thin or super thick cookies, this recipe produces Snickerdoodles that boast the perfect thickness.
No chill time: You don’t have to chill the dough, so these cookies are ready to eat in under an hour.
Make-ahead: You can easily make the cookie dough ahead of time and simply thaw and bake when needed.
What is a Snickerdoodle?
Snickerdoodles are sweet sugar cookies that have been rolled in cinnamon sugar before baking.
What makes them unique is their chewy texture, slightly tangy flavour and their crinkly appearance. These three things come from the addition of cream of tartar.
While they’re an American favourite today, it is believed that they have Dutch-German roots. The original name of Schnecke Knödel apparently translates to snail dumpling.
Despite their simplicity (and their quirky name), it’s their buttery taste that will have everyone reaching for just one more cookie.
The not-so-secret ingredient in these cookies is cream of tartar which helps to give them their signature tang and enviable chew.
The base is a chewy sugar cookie recipe, similar to what you would use for my popular Cut-Out Sugar Cookies.
Other than cream of tartar, these buttery cookies only use regular pantry ingredients.
The magic happens when the cookie dough is rolled in sweet cinnamon sugar – that’s heavy on the cinnamon – and then baked until golden.
While I’ll always love chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, these delicious cookies are one of my all-time favourite treats.
I’ll even go as far to say that this is the best Snickerdoodle recipe EVER.
You only need a handful of ingredients to make a batch of chewy Snickerdoodles. Here are some of the key ingredients you will need, including any substitutions you can make:
- Butter: For the best-tasting Snickerdoodles, use full fat butter (not margarine or a butter substitute). Make sure your butter is softened, but not melty, so it easily mixes with the sugar. If your butter is too warm, your cookies will spread too much when baked.
- Caster sugar: Or you can use granulated sugar. Only using caster sugar instead of brown sugar keeps these cookies light in colour and closer in flavour to a traditional sugar cookie.
- Cream of tartar: Cream of tartar is an acidic powder that is often used to stabilise egg whites. You may not have used it in your baking before, but cream of tartar gives these cookies a slightly sour flavour, a signature crinkle and makes the cookies EXTRA chewy. You can usually find cream of tartar in the baking aisle of the supermarket, near the baking soda or baking powder.
- Cinnamon: The cinnamon sugar mixture is simply made from ground cinnamon and caster sugar. These cookies are nothing without their cinnamon sugar roll! Don’t skip it.
See recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
How to make Snickerdoodle Cookies
These cinnamon sugar cookies are so easy to make. You will need an electric hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Here’s how to make them:
Step 1: In a large mixing bowl, add butter and sugar. Mix using an electric mixer on medium speed until combined and creamy – it should take a minute or two.
Step 2: Add vanilla and egg. Mix on medium speed just until combined.
Step 3: Add dry ingredients and then mix on low speed until a soft cookie dough forms.
Step 4: Scoop using a medium cookie scoop (approximately 1.5 tablespoons of dough per cookie) and roll into balls.
Step 5: Roll each cookie dough ball in cinnamon sugar. Place on prepared baking sheet.
Step 6: Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes or until golden on the edges. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Tips for perfect Snickerdoodle Cookies
- Start with room temperature butter: Don’t use cold butter. Your butter should be nice and soft (but not melty by any means) so it’s easy to combine with the sugar. If your butter is too soft, your cookies may spread too much resulting in flat cookies.
- Use a baking scale to measure: It’s very easy to overmeasure flour when using cup measurements. Too much flour can result in dry, thick or cakey cookies. Measuring your flour using a baking scale will ensure your cookies spread just the right amount when baked.
- Don’t skip the cream of tartar: Just a teaspoon of cream of tartar will give these cookies a slight tang and their incredible chewiness. It can be found in local supermarkets in the baking aisle – often next to the baking powder.
- Try not to over-bake cookies: Cookies firm up as they cool. Just a minute or two longer in the oven will give you a tough cookie – not a soft and chewy one that we love. Watch the bake time!
Frequently asked questions
Cream of tartar is an acidic powder that is often used in baking recipes like cookies and meringues. It can help stablise egg whites and create chewy cookies. It gives these Snickerdoodle Cookies their chewiness and offers a subtle but unique tangy flavour.
You added too much flour. This recipe is designed to make cookies that flatten out naturally in the oven when baked. If your cookies don’t spread, it’s likely that you added too much flour. Be sure to use a baking scale for accuracy.
Keep Snickerdoodle Cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.
Keep cookie dough in the fridge covered in plastic wrap until you are ready to bake them. Bring the dough back to room temperature before rolling in cinnamon sugar and baking. Alternatively, you can roll cookie dough into balls and store in a freezer bag or airtight container in the freezer. To bake, simply bring the cookie dough balls back to room temperature and then bake as per instructions below.
Snickerdoodle Cookies rolled in cinnamon sugar and then baked to crinkly perfection.
- 115 grams (1/2 cup / 1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 150 grams (3/4 cup) caster sugar or granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 210 grams (1 and 1/2 cups) plain flour or all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 15 grams (1 tablespoon) caster sugar or granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F) standard / 160 C (320 F) fan-forced. Line two baking trays or cookie sheets with baking paper or parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, add butter and sugar and beat using an electric mixer on medium speed until pale and creamy.
- Add vanilla and egg and beat briefly, just until combined. Add flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt, and beat briefly until a soft cookie dough forms.
- In a separate bowl, stir together sugar and cinnamon. Scoop cookie dough using a medium cookie scoop (approximately 1.5 tablespoons each) and roll them smooth using your hands.
- Roll each cookie dough ball in cinnamon sugar until they are completely covered. Place on prepared trays, leaving room for the cookies to spread naturally in the oven.
- Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies spread out and have a nice crinkly top. They may look slightly under baked. Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Butter: For the best-tasting Snickerdoodles, use full fat butter (not margarine or a butter substitute.) Make sure your butter is softened, but not melty, to start so it easily mixes with the sugar. If your butter is too warm, your cookies will spread too much when baked.
Cream of tartar: You can usually find cream of tartar in the baking aisle of the supermarket, often near the baking soda or baking powder.
Storage: Keep Snickerdoodle Cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.
Make-ahead: Keep cookie dough in the fridge covered in plastic wrap until you are ready to bake. Bring the dough back to room temperature before rolling in cinnamon sugar and baking.
Alternatively, you can roll cookie dough into balls and store in a freezer bag or airtight container in the freezer. To bake, simply bring back to room temperature and then bake as per instructions above.