Soft, chewy, buttery cookies coated in cinnamon and sugar. This snickerdoodle cookie recipe is delicious, easy to make, and turns out perfect every time!
I’ve mentioned it before, but one of my main goals on the blog is to update and share some of my favorite classic recipes with you. Because while everyone loves over the top desserts every now and then, you just can’t beat a classic. Today’s snickerdoodle recipe is one that took me several attempts to get just right, but it’s by far the best snickerdoodle recipe I’ve ever tried!
What Exactly Is A Snickerdoodle?
Snickerdoodle cookies are similar to sugar cookies since they’re soft, chewy, and flavored with vanilla. The main difference is that a snickerdoodle uses cream of tartar which adds a little but of tanginess to the cookies and then they are coated in a cinnamon sugar mixture.
And yes, they’re just as delicious as they sound! In fact, I made a test batch of cookies and sent them with my husband to work and they were gone by the end of the day. Now that’s when you know a recipe is good!
Ingredients For This Recipe
For this recipe, you’ll need just a few simple ingredients. Here’s a simple breakdown of each ingredient and what it does in these cookies:
- All-Purpose Flour: When it comes to creating thicker snickerdoodle cookies you need a slightly higher amount of flour in your recipe, so you’ll be using three cups of flour.
- Cream Of Tartar: Adds that classic tanginess we all know and love when it comes to snickerdoodles. This is also one of the ingredients that reacts with the baking soda.
- Ground Cinnamon: There’s some cinnamon in the cookie dough for flavor and in the cinnamon sugar coating too.
- Baking Soda & Salt: The baking soda helps lift the cookies and the salt balances out the sweetness.
- Unsalted Butter: This is what gives your cookies that beautiful, buttery flavor. If using salted butter, reduce the salt to 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon.
- Sugar: Traditionally snickerdoodle cookies are made with just granulated sugar, but I prefer to use a mix of granulated sugar and brown sugar. The brown sugar adds moisture to the dough, keeps the cookies soft, and makes them chewy.
- Egg & Egg Yolk: I found that two eggs were too much, so there’s one egg and one egg yolk. You can save the leftover egg white and use it in these candied pecans or these strawberry turnovers.
- Vanilla Extract: For flavor, pure vanilla extract is always best.
How To Make Snickerdoodle Cookies
To make this cookie dough, you’ll start by whisking together your flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and salt. This will help ensure that everything is evenly dispersed when you mix it into the wet ingredients.
Next, you’ll cream together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Once the butter and sugars are well combined, mix in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. I suggest stopping at this point to scrape down the sides of your bowl and mix again to ensure that all of the wet ingredients are well combined.
Then, you’ll add the dry ingredients to your wet ingredients and mix them together until just combined. The mixture may seem a little crumbly when you first start mixing in the dry ingredients, this is normal, just keep mixing and I promise the cookie dough will come together.
Once you’ve mixed up the cookie dough, I suggest letting it chill for at least 1 hour. The dough chilling allows the butter to firm back up so the cookies bake up thicker and don’t spread as much. Dough chilling is almost always a must for thicker cookies, so don’t skip this step!
Once the dough is chilled, you’ll measure out the cookie dough and roll each ball of dough in a cinnamon-sugar mixture. One important thing, make sure to only measure out about one tablespoon or 1 and 1/4 inch balls of cookie dough.
I find that balls of cookie dough any larger than one tablespoon don’t tend to bake up nearly as thick. If you don’t have a one tablespoon cookie scoop, just measure the first few scoops of cookie dough with a measuring tablespoon, then you can eyeball the rest from there!
Do I have to use cream of tartar?
The cream of tartar is one of the ingredients that reacts with the baking soda in these cookies. If you don’t have any on hand, you may replace the cream of tartar and baking soda in this recipe with 2 teaspoons of baking powder.
Why are my cookies flat?
There are a couple of reasons that these cookies can turn out flat. First, if the butter is too warm the cookies will spread more in the oven. If you experience your cookies spreading too much, simply chill the rest of the cookie dough longer. The second reason could be because your baking soda isn’t fresh. I wrote a full post explaining the difference between baking soda and baking powder here which also explains how to test your baking soda to ensure that it’s fresh. I also recommend using a silicone baking mat if have one, the mat helps to grip the cookies better so they don’t spread as much in the oven.
- When measuring your flour, don’t scoop it out of the container with the measuring cup. Instead, stir the flour around, spoon it into your measuring cup, and level it off with the back of a knife.
- The cookie dough may seem a little crumbly once you add the dry ingredients, but this is normal! Keep mixing the dry ingredients and the mixture will come together just fine.
- Make sure to chill the cookie dough for at least 1 hour so the butter is chilled when the cookies go into the oven. This will prevent the cookies from spreading too much and ensure a thicker cookie.
- Be sure to measure out the cookie dough, you only need one tablespoon of cookie dough per cookie. You can either use a one tablespoon cookie scoop or a measuring tablespoon. Each ball of cookie dough should measure about 1 and 1/4 inches wide.
More Cookie Recipes To Try!
- Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Soft Peanut Butter Cookies
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Thumbprint Cookies
- Classic No-Bake Cookies
Soft and Chewy Snickerdoodle Recipe
For the cookies:
- 3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour, spooned & leveled
- 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (230 grams, or 2 sticks) unsalted butter softened
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) light brown sugar packed
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the cinnamon sugar coating:
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, ground cinnamon and salt until well combined. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together for about 1-2 minutes or until well combined. Mix in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract until well combined, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats and set aside.
- Remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator. Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop or measuring tablespoon, scoop the cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Each ball of cookie dough should measure about 1 and 1/4 inches once you roll it into a ball.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the 1/4 cup of sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon for the coating. Roll each ball of cookie dough into a ball, then coat in the cinnamon sugar mixture and place back on the baking sheets, making sure to leave a little room between each one.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the tops of the cookies are set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5-10 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.