These snickerdoodles are my go-to crowd pleaser cookie! This soft and chewy snickerdoodle recipe takes just 20 minutes from start to finish, but these cookies are so good, no one will ever know how incredibly easy they are to make!

a snickerdoodle cookie standing straight up on its side surrounded by more cookies laying flat and a cinnamon stick, with a white cup of milk and bowl in the background

The Best Snickerdoodle Recipe

The perfect snickerdoodle cookie should be chewy, soft, and have just the right amount of cinnamon sugar flavor. It should also have an ever so slightly tangy flavor paired with the perfect amount of sweetness.

With all of that in mind, I baked, tested and tweaked this classic snickerdoodle recipe until I knew it was spot on. 

More good news – no chilling required! While some recipes call for chilling the dough, this one does not. This recipe yields the perfect texture and thickness of the cookie without the need for chilling the dough, meaning you can curb that cookie craving quicker!

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a white plate rimmed with red full of snickerdoodle cookies with one ripped in two pieces on top, surrounded by more cookies, christmas ribbon and sitting on top of a red, green and white plaid towel

Now, I am sharing the best snickerdoodle cookie recipe with you, so you can have homemade snickerdoodle cookies any time you want, in just 20 minutes! Plus, I’m spilling all my best tips that make these easy snickerdoodles foolproof.

What is a Snickerdoodle?

Classic snickerdoodles are soft, chewy cookies coated in a cinnamon-sugar mixture. Cream of tartar gives these cookies a slight tang, balanced well with the sweetness of the cookie and giving them the distinct flavor that snickerdoodles are known for. 

close up on a pile of snickerdoodle cookies with a bowl of cinnamon sugar

Snickerdoodle Ingredients

One of the best things about these chewy snickerdoodles is that they are made with simple ingredients that you likely already have in your kitchen. Get the full recipe with measurements and instructions in the recipe card below.

  • All-purpose flour
  • Cream of tartar
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter: softened to room temperature
  • Granulated sugar
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla extract

Rolling

  • Granulated sugar
  • Ground cinnamon
close up on a pile of snickerdoodle cookies with a bowl of cinnamon sugar

Substitutions in recipe for Snickerdoodles

These chewy snickerdoodle cookies always receive rave reviews when made as-is. If you need so substitute something, here are some ideas:

  • Remove cream of tartar: The cream of tartar in this recipe gives the cookies their signature tang. If you don’t have any, or need to replace it for another reason, you can replace the 2 teaspoons cream of tartar and the 1 teaspoon baking soda with 2 teaspoons of baking powder. Then, you can add just a splash of lemon juice or white vinegar to still have a bit of a tang.
  • Gluten-free snickerdoodle cookies: You can make these with gluten free flour. I recommend King Arthur’s Gluten Free Measure for Measure Flour. Use it as a one for one substitute for regular flour.
a sheet pan lined with a silicone baking mat with balls of snickerdoodle cookie dough in rows on it, with a cookie scoop and bowl of cinnamon sugar on the baking sheet, and two of the dough balls coated in the mixture. Beside the pan, a glass measuring dish with remnants of cookie dough in it and under the pan, a green, red and white plaid kitchen towel

How to make Snickerdoodles

There are just 8 steps in this easy snickerdoodle recipe, which can be completed in just 20 minutes start to finish, half of which is the bake time! Keep reading to get the full recipe in the recipe card below.

  1. Prep oven and baking sheets. Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  1. Mix dry ingredients. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Set this aside.
  1. Mix butter and sugar. In a separate large mixing bowl, using a mixer, cream together the softened unsalted butter and granulated sugar until it becomes light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes. 
  1. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract, mix until well combined.
  2. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Gradually add the dry ingredients mixture to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.
  3. Combine sugar and cinnamon. In a small bowl, mix together the granulated sugar and ground cinnamon for rolling the cookies.
  1. Prepare cookie dough balls. Shape the cookie dough into 1-inch balls (you can use a cookie scoop for uniformity). Roll each ball of dough in the cinnamon-sugar mixture until it’s fully coated. Place the coated dough balls on the prepared baking sheets, leaving space between each for spreading during baking.
  2. Bake and cool. Bake the cookies for 8-12 minutes or until the edges are set and the center is puffy. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and sprinkle additional cinnamon sugar on each cookie if desired. Let the cookies cool for a few minutes on the sheets before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
a hand dipping a cookie dough ball into a white dish of cinnamon sugar on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat with rows of cookie dough balls on it

Homemade Snickerdoodles tips

For perfect snickerdoodles every time, follow these tips:

  • Be careful not to over bake. You want to bake these just until the edges are set and the center is puffy, about 8-12 minutes. For a chewier cookie, remove them from the oven while they are still soft and let them sit on the baking sheet for one minute, and then place them on a cooking rack to finish cooling.
  • Properly measure the flour. In baking it’s always essential to measure the flour properly. See my tips below for correctly measuring flour.
  • Use a cookie scoop to make uniform size dough balls. To ensure they all cook evenly and look the same, use a cookie scoop to make your dough balls.
  • Don’t use hot baking sheets. If making more than one batch, let the baking sheets cool or use a different baking sheet. If you place the cookie dough balls on a warm or hot baking sheet, the cookies may spread before they have time to set up and bake properly.

How to Properly Measure Flour

The most accurate way to measure flour is to use a kitchen scale, weighing it in grams. 

If you don’t have a kitchen scale, follow this method. 

  • Aerate the flour with a whisk or spoon. Flour becomes heavy and compact as it sits. Aerating is the same as fluffing the flour, but not the same as sifting it. Do not sift the flour unless the recipe specifically calls for it.
  • Use a spoon to sprinkle the flour into the measuring cup. Do not tap the cup against the counter, as this will compact the flour.
  • Use the back of a butter knife to level off the excess.
a stack of snickerdoodle cookies with a bite taken out of the cookie on top, and more cookies and a cinnamon stick surrounding it

How to Store Snicker Doodle Cookies

Once the cookies have cooled completely, store them in an airtight container or ziploc bag for 4-5 days. To keep them soft, you can place a piece of bread in the container with them. This trick is known to keep the cookies moist and soft.

Freezing Snickerdoodle Cookies

These cookies also freeze well! You can either freeze the baked cookies or freeze the dough:

  • To freeze the finished cookies: Allow them to cool completely first. Place them in an airtight container or freezer-safe bag for 3-4 months. I recommend writing the date and baking instructions on the outside of the bag. When you’re ready to have them, thaw them overnight in the refrigerator.
  • To freeze snickerdoodle cookie dough: Complete all steps in the recipe through #7 and be sure to coat the balls in the cinnamon sugar mixture. Line the dough balls up on a baking sheet (they can be close since they won’t be cooked right now), and place the baking sheet in the freezer. Once the dough balls are completely frozen solid, transfer them to a ziploc bag or airtight container. These freeze well for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to bake them, remove them from the freezer and let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before baking.
rows of snickerdoodle cookie dough balls lined up on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat

Snickerdoodles Recipe FAQs

Why is there cream of tartar in snickerdoodles?

Cream of tartar is used to give snickerdoodles a very subtle tangy flavor, which balances well with the sweetness and cinnamon flavor. 

Why are my snickerdoodles flat and crispy?

Snickerdoodles may come out flat and crispy if too much butter is used, or not enough flour. Be sure to follow the butter measurement in the recipe exactly, and properly measure the flour. Follow my tips above for the best way to correctly measure flour.

Why don’t my snickerdoodles crack?

A cracked appearance in the cookies happens due to chemical reactions during baking. Lack of cracking can be due to your dough becoming too warm or using older or not enough baking soda. Another common reason for lack of cracking is the cinnamon sugar coating not being applied evenly or thoroughly.

Are snickerdoodles supposed to be undercooked?

It is best to take snickerdoodles out of the oven while they are still slightly undercooked, which creates a chewier cookie. To achieve this, take the cookies out of the oven and leave them on the baking sheet for one minute, then transfer to a wire cooling rack. 

Why are my snickerdoodles sour?

If your snickerdoodles are too sour, you may have added too much cream of tartar. It does give the cookies a subtle sour-tangy flavor, but it should not be over-powering and should balance nicely with the cinnamon and sugar.

More Cinnamon Dessert Recipes

a pile of snickerdoodle cookies with a bite taken out of the cookie on top

Snickerdoodle Cookies

4.75 from 4 ratings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 24 cookies
These snickerdoodles are my go-to crowd pleaser cookie! This soft and chewy snickerdoodle recipe takes just 20 minutes from start to finish, but shhh… these cookies are so good, no one will ever know how incredibly easy they are to make!

Ingredients

  • 2 ¾ cups plus 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour, 345 grams
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, equal to 2 sticks
  • 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Rolling

  • 3 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 400°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  • In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Set this aside.
  • In a separate large mixing bowl, using a mixer, cream together the softened unsalted butter and granulated sugar until it becomes light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract, mix until well combined.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients mixture to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Be careful not to overmix.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the granulated sugar and ground cinnamon for rolling the cookies.
  • Shape the cookie dough into 1-inch balls (you can use a cookie scoop for uniformity). Roll each ball of dough in the cinnamon-sugar mixture until it’s fully coated. Place the coated dough balls on the prepared baking sheets, leaving space between each for spreading during baking.
  • Bake the cookies for 8-12 minutes or until the edges are set and the center is puffy. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and sprinkle additional cinnamon sugar on each cookie if desired. Let the cookies cool for a few minutes on the sheets before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.

Notes

Baking snickerdoodles at 400ºF helps create that characteristic crackly exterior and soft, chewy interior. The higher temperature allows the cookies to quickly set on the outside while maintaining their softness inside. 
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Beth
Calories: 186kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 36mg, Sodium: 102mg, Potassium: 68mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 14g, Vitamin A: 260IU, Vitamin C: 0.01mg, Calcium: 10mg, Iron: 1mg
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