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Snickerdoodle Cookies (3 variations!)

Looking for the best Snickerdoodle Cookies? Turn off your search light and pull out a jug of milk because these are IT, soft and fluffy inside, slightly crispy on the outside, with fragrant cinnamon in every single bite.

A stack of Snickerdoodle Cookies

Cinnamon always reminds me of Fall and the official baking season. But these homemade snickerdoodles are perfect at any time of the year. Pair them up with a cold glass of milk for Summer or a spiced hot chocolate during the Winter.

But guess what? I’m giving you 2 more variations to make them even better! Chocolate chip snickerdoodles, stupid easy, with the addition of chocolate chip. And chocolate snickerdoodles with slightly more variations in ingredients but the process is the same.

I was baking them all up over the holiday season as part of my Christmas cookies list. Both variations were so good, I can’t keep them a secret!

How to make Snickerdoodle Cookies from scratch

Typical snickerdoodle cookies are made with vanilla cookie dough rolled in cinnamon sugar. These are a bit different, they also contain cinnamon in the cookie dough for a full cinnamon blast in every bite.

Making snickerdoodle cookie dough

Making snickerdoodle cookie dough (Photos 1 – 4)

  1. Start by creaming together softened butter and sugar.
  2. When the butter is creamy, add the egg and vanilla extract.
  3. Beat the wet ingredients together until fluffy.
  4. Sift together the dry ingredients. Stir in the salt, and add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl. Mix just until a dough forms. 
Rolling cookie dough ball in cinnamon sugar

Rolling snickerdoodle cookie dough ball in cinnamon sugar (Photos 5 & 6)

  1. Scoop out the cookie dough and roll them into approximately 1 ½” balls, this makes 14. Or roll them smaller for a batch of 20.
  2. Roll the dough balls in cinnamon sugar just before baking.

To flatten or not to flatten?

Should you flatten snickerdoodles before baking? That is up to you! For this recipe, I didn’t flatten them because I wanted to keep them thick and soft. You can certainly flatten them if you want them to be a bit wider, thinner, and crispier.

These are not snickerdoodles because they don’t have cream of tartar!

Before you judge a cookie by its ingredient list, let’s talk about cream of tartar and what it is, and why we use it in not only a snickerdoodle recipe, but also other cookies and baked goods. 

Cream of tartar is a leavening agent, it’s used along with baking soda to leaven baked goods. These two ingredients react to form carbon dioxide which forms bubbles inside cookie dough, cake, and bread, and help them rise.

But more specific to the snickerdoodles, cream of tartar is said to add tanginess and chew to these cookies, giving them their distinct characteristic that make them snickerdoodle cookies as opposed to sugar cookies.

Ok, so you made snickerdoodles without cream of tartar, are they still snickerdoodles? To me, they still are. But some may say otherwise because they won’t have that characteristic tanginess that cream of tartar is supposed to give them.

For what it’s worth, I’ve made them both ways, and I can hardly tell the difference. But if you have a super sensitive palate, maybe you will notice.

I want that classic snickerdoodles taste! Can I just add cream of tartar in this recipe?

Absolutely, you can add cream of tartar back into this easy snickerdoodle recipe, but a couple of points to keep in mind:

  • Add ½ teaspoon of cream of tartar and ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Remember that cream of tartar goes hand in hand with baking soda, you need to add them together.
  • Reduce the baking powder to ½ teaspoon, we don’t want to over-leaven the cookies.

Chocolate Chip Snickerdoodle Cookies

Make these cookies exactly the same way as the classic snickerdoodles and stir 1 cup of chocolate chips into the dough at the end. I used semisweet chocolate chips. 

Chocolate chip snickerdoodle dough in a mixing bowl, and baked cookies on a tray

They baked up with creamy and gooey chocolate chips studded throughout, so good! Best when still a little warm for the full gooey experience.

Chocolate Snickerdoodle Cookies

There is a little bit more substitution going on with these chocolate snickerdoodles but it’s still super easy. I give a separate full ingredient list for this version in the recipe card.

  • We will use brown sugar instead of granulated sugar in these.
  • Instead of 1 ⅓ cup of flour, we will use 1 cup of flour + ½ cup of cocoa powder.
  • We won’t put cinnamon in the cookie dough, but we will still use cinnamon sugar to roll the cookies in for a more subtle hint of cinnamon this time. 

Chocolate snickerdoodle dough in a mixing bowl, and baked cookies on a table top

They taste like a Mexican hot chocolate in cookie form. If you want to kick it up a bit, add a pinch or two of cayenne pepper to the dough for some heat! 

Other Tips for easy Snickerdoodle Cookies

  • The snickerdoodle cookie dough does not need to be refrigerated and can be baked right away. However, I usually let them rest in the fridge while I preheat the oven or if the kitchen is especially warm that day.
  • To make it even easier, I like to streamline the process by portioning the dough all at once, roll them into balls, place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and refrigerate them while they wait for their turn to go into the oven.
  • If you pre-portion the dough, roll them in cinnamon sugar just before you pop them into the oven.
  • You can stretch this recipe to about 19 – 22 cookies if you use the smallest size cookie scoop to divide the dough, one flat scoop per cookie.
  • If you’re making smaller cookies, bake them for 8 – 9 minutes.

Storing baked cookies

Keep these cookies in an airtight container at room temperature, and they will last up to 5 days.

Storing unbaked dough and making ahead

Refrigerating – The dough can be refrigerated up to 3 days if you don’t want to bake them right away. 

  • You can refrigerate the dough in the bowl, covered, or in an airtight container. 
  • But I recommend pre-portioning the dough, and then refrigerate the dough balls in an airtight container in one layer.
  • When you’re ready to bake, just roll them in cinnamon sugar and pop them into the oven.

Freezing – If you want to keep them for even longer, or prepping for a massive baking extravaganza, freeze the dough. Frozen cookie dough will last months. To freeze:

  • Pre-portion the dough.
  • Roll them into balls.
  • Freeze the dough balls on a baking sheet in one layer until totally frozen.
  • Then pop them all into a freezer bag.
  • You can bake from frozen, add about 2 minutes to the baking time. Don’t forget to roll the dough balls in cinnamon sugar before baking. 
  • Or allow the dough to thaw before baking. To thaw, place the dough balls out on a baking sheet in one layer, and don’t thaw them all together in the freezer bag.

A tall stack of Snickerdoodle cookies

More delicious cookies you’ll love

If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!

Baker’s Tip: Use cream of tartar in this recipe for that characteristic snickerdoodle tanginess. But don’t worry if you don’t have cream of tartar, baking powder will work just fine to leaven these delicious cookies.
A stack of Snickerdoodle Cookies

Snickerdoodle Cookies

Looking for the best Snickerdoodle Cookies? Turn off your search light and pull out a jug of milk because these are IT, soft and fluffy inside, slightly crispy on the outside, with fragrant cinnamon in every single bite. And I'll show you 3 variations!
5 from 2 votes
Print Rate
Course: Cookies, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 14 cookies
Calories: 150kcal
Author: Trang

Ingredients

Classic Snickerdoodles

  • 4 oz unsalted butter (room temperature, 113 g)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar (132 g, divided, use 2 tablespoons for rolling)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour (172 g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon (divided, use 1 teaspoon for rolling)

Add for Chocolate Chip Snickerdoodles

  • 1 cup chocolate chip (6 oz, 169 g)

Chocolate Snickerdoodles

  • 4 oz unsalted butter (room temperature, 113 g)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (lightly packed, 132 g)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (130 g)
  • ½ cup cocoa powder (45 g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (for rolling)
  • 2 tablespoon granulated sugar (for rolling)

Instructions

For classic snickerdoodles

  • Measure out 3/4 cup of sugar and set aside 2 tablespoons for rolling. Add the remaining sugar and softened butter to the stand mixer bowl and beat with the paddle attachment until combined and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  • Add egg and vanilla, and beat for another minute until thoroughly combined.
  • In a small bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Then stir in the salt until evenly distributed.
  • With the mixer on low speed, add the flour to the liquid mixture and mix until just combined. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as necessary.

For chocolate chip snickerdoodles

  • Add the chocolate chips to the cookie dough and stir to distribute.

For chocolate snickerdoodles

  • Beat brown sugar with softened butter until combined and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  • Add egg and vanilla, and beat for another minute until thoroughly combined.
  • In a small bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and cocoa powder. Then stir in the salt until evenly distributed.
  • With the mixer on low speed, add the flour to the liquid mixture and mix until just combined. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as necessary.

Form the cookies and bake

  • Allow the dough to rest in the refrigerator for 10 minutes while you preheat the oven to 375°F.
  • Mix the 2 tablespoon of sugar with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon in a shallow dish for topping.
  • Take the dough out of the fridge and portion with a small ice cream scoop. For smaller cookies, use 1 flat scoop of cookie dough. For larger cookies, use a full scoop, enough to form a dough ball about 1 ½” in size.
  • Roll the dough in the palm of your hand to form a ball. Roll the dough ball entirely in cinnamon sugar and set on a parchment line baking sheet about 2” apart. Don’t flatten them.
  • Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, depending on the size of your cookies.
  • Allow them to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

  • To use cream of tartar in this recipe, add ½ teaspoon of cream of tartar and ½ teaspoon of baking soda. And reduce baking powder to ½ teaspoon.
  • This recipe will make about 20 smaller 2” cookies or 14 larger 2.5” cookies.
  • Bake the smaller cookies for 8 - 9 minutes, and the larger cookies for 10 minutes.

Nutrition

Serving: 35g | Calories: 150kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @WildWildWhisk or tag #WildWildWhisk!

Snickerdoodle cookies pin image

This post was originally published on 5/24/2018. The post has been updated and republished on 2/15/2020 with the latest improvements, extra tips and process photos to help you in the kitchen.

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8 Comments

  1. Gigi
    August 16, 2019 /

    5 stars
    Great recipe!!!! The cookies were delicious. Soft texture and delicate flavor. Thank you

    • Trang
      Author
      August 16, 2019 /

      Thank you Gigi! So happy you enjoyed them 🙂

  2. baker
    December 30, 2018 /

    Can these be mixed and refrigerated overnight to save time before baking the best day, or better to only chill for 10 minutes?

    • Trang
      Author
      December 30, 2018 /

      You can refrigerate overnight but when you bake the next day, the cookies may not spread as much and may dome higher. However, you can always let it thaw slightly before baking. It should be fine though.

  3. Arina
    June 28, 2018 /

    5 stars
    Your cookies really look delicious and fluffy I hope it tastes good because after reading your recipe I think that this weekend I should try at my home, so I’ll get the idea about the cookies. This is the first time I’m going to prepare cookies at my home, so I think the experience will not be so bad. Thanks for sharing such different type of cookie recipe. Well, normally I like to eat a crunchy cookie but this time I’ll try your recipe. Well, I read about other types of cookies as well you can check here https://www.couponsmonk.com/blog/toothsome-cookies-will-surely-make-drool/.

    I have one question for you what to do if I have to make it crunchy using this recipe? If you can answer it then it means a lot to me.

    • Trang
      Author
      June 29, 2018 /

      Hi Arina, I have never made a crunchy one so I can’t guarantee the results. But here are some things you change to try and achieve crunchy texture:
      1. Substitute some or all butter with shortening (though I really prefer the taste of butter)
      2. Flatten the ball of dough before baking and bake for a longer time until it is crispier or crunchier.

      • Arina
        July 2, 2018 /

        Really, thank you so much Trang. I feel really glad that you get time with my question. Thank you so much again

        • Trang
          Author
          July 3, 2018 /

          It’s my pleasure Arina. If you make the cookies, come back and let me know how they turn out. 🙂

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