While Snickerdoodles are often shrugged off as a simple Christmas cookie recipe, they’re always a favorite on cookie trays. It’s amazing how a basic cookie dough rolled in cinnamon sugar and baked to perfection can be so addicting.
Growing up we baked everything from scratch. I mixed cookie dough with a wooden spoon at 5 and the very first time I was allowed to put them in and take them out of the oven, I was 9 years old, making this very recipe.
Our favorite and “most-made” cookies were chocolate chip cookies and snickerdoodles. Every Christmas they were two of the cookies that made THE LIST. Out of 6-9 types of cookies we ALWAYS made these and they ALWAYS made it into the cookie tins for the mailman and trash man.
I added another favorite to my Christmas cookie list, Eggless Molasses Ginger Cookies, but when I need cookies for a cookie exchange I go straight for this good old tried and true snickerdoodle recipe. No one can resist a Snickerdoodle. But before you start baking, there are a couple things to address so your Snickerdoodles turn out the best they can be.
Do I have to use butter?
I prefer using butter in most cookies. There’s truly no reason to short yourself here. However, if you want to swap it out for another fat, I recommend shortning. Margarine isn’t a great substitute in this recipe from my experience. I usually bake with salted butter because that’s what I grew up doing. I included options for salted and unsalted butter so you can use the one you are used to baking with.
Can I leave out cream of tartar?
Suuuuure. But not really. One of the things that makes Snickerdoodles soft and snickerdoodly is the cream of tartar. The texture and flavor won’t be the same if you skip it. You can also substitute cream of tartar with lemon juice or white vinegar. For every 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar substitute 1 teaspoon lemon juice or white vinegar. Do you want lemony Snickerdoodles? I certainly don’t.
While Snickerdoodles are often shrugged off as a simple Christmas cookie, they’re always a favorite on cookie trays. It’s amazing how a basic cookie dough rolled in cinnamon sugar and baked to perfection can be so addicting.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minutes
- Total Time: 22 minutes
- Yield: 3 dozen cookies 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Cookies
- 1 cup salted butter*, softened
- 1 and 3/4 cup sugar, divided
- 2 large eggs
- 2 and 3/4 cups unbleached flour (all-purpose is fine also)
- 2 tsp. cream of tartar**
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350°F***.
- Cream sugar, eggs, and butter until fluffy.
- In separate bowl mix together flour, cream of tartar, salt, and baking soda.
- Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and mix until well incorporated.
- Chill dough for 30 minutes.
- Roll into 1-inch balls.
- Roll dough balls in cinnamon sugar mixture.
- Bake on ungreased cookie sheets for 10-12 minutes.
- Remove from cookie sheet immediately.
- Try to let cool before eating. I dare you.
* If you use unsalted butter, add an additional 3/4 teaspoon salt.
**You can substitute 1 teaspoon lemon juice or white vinegar for each 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar but you really don’t want to skip this ingredient. It’s part of what makes Snickerdoodles, well, Snickerdoodles.
***If you chill the dough before baking, preheat oven about 15 mintues before baking cookies.