First off, I have a disclaimer. I'm not a professional baker by any means. I often cut corners or use shortcuts to save money or time, and I tweak recipes to make it work for me. I probably don't do things "the correct way", but I make a lot of cookies and goodies, and they usually turn out pretty delicious anyway. It's kind of like math to me- who cares how you get the answer, as long as it's right? (Don't cringe, math teachers. I was never very good at math anyway!)
So, today, I'm sharing with you my favorite Snickerdoodle recipe. I have tried many over the years, and this one produces deliciously yummy, soft cookies covered with just the right amount of cinnamon and sugar. I originally found in in Essential Mormon Celebrations, and have tweaked it just a little.
Gather your ingredients. Here's what you'll need:
1 3/4 C. Sugar (divided)
1 C. margarine or butter, softened
2 3/4-3 1/4 C. flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare your cookie sheets. The recipe says 400, so you can do that if you want, but here's my secret to perfect cookies every time---
Bake cookies at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, no matter what the recipe says. When I do this, my cookies turn out exactly how I like them, 99 percent of the time. They are nice and firm on the outside, moist and chewy (but not doughy) on the inside. I use a typical electric oven, so you may have to adjust for your own, but be brave and give it a try on a test batch. (What's the worst that could happen? If they're not quite baked, just bake them a few more minutes. Or eat the dough. Yum.)
1. Soften your butter or margarine. I hardly ever bake with butter, mostly for money reasons. My favorite substitute to bake with is Imperial margarine, but I'm sure others are good too. You can leave it out until it softens or put it in the microwave for about 15 seconds. Just don't melt it.
2. In a large bowl, cream together 1 1/2 cups sugar, your butter/margarine, and your eggs.
You'll know it's ready when it looks like this:
3. In another bowl, sift together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. (** I hardly ever do this, because I'm lazy. I usually just dump it all together in one bowl. You should probably follow the directions, but my cookies turn out great anyway.)
Combine dry ingredients with creamed mixture. Don't overmix. (** I use my Kitchenaid, but you can do this by hand. Some people swear by hand mixing, but again, I'm lazy.)
4. In a small bowl mix together 1/4 cup sugar and your cinnamon. Set aside.
Shape dough into 1 inch balls.. I find my dough to be pretty sticky. You don't want to add too much flour, so you can do two things. Either put it in the fridge to chill for an hour or so, or you can do what I do-- break out the cookie dough scoop.
Mine is a 1 inch scoop, so I fill it and scrape it on the side of the bowl to flatten it.
Then I release the dough into the cinnamon/sugar mixture, and lightly roll it around with my fingers.
Place it on your cookie sheet. (** I use a silicon mat from Wilton on my cookie sheets. It saves me from having to clean cookie sheets, and it keeps the bottoms of the cookies from getting too well-done. Love it.)
Bake the cookies, as discussed above, for 10 minutes. When they come out of the oven they will be all puffy,
But if you let them sit for a few minutes, they will flatten out and crackle across the top, just like a perfect Snickerdoodle will.
These are best served warm or on the same day you make them, though they also freeze well. Store any leftover in an airtight container.
I bet your kids would love you if you made these for them! Here's a printable recipe:
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