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Here is my reader favorite recipe for soft and thick snickerdoodles. These soft-baked snickerdoodle cookies only require about 30 minutes start to finish! 

one snickerdoodle cookie

Snickerdoodles are a timeless classic, just like a good batch of chocolate chip cookies or peanut butter cookies. Like drop sugar cookies wrapped in a cinnamon sugar hug, these irresistible cookies never go out of style. My recipe yields the softest and thickest snickerdoodles you’ll ever taste. I like to call them snickerdoodle pillows because they are perfectly fat and puffy! Much too often you’re left with flat, crispy, and thin cookies. The only remedy is to submerge them in a tall glass of milk. But what about starting out with a kitchen tested recipe for soft-baked snickerdoodles? You’ve come to the right place. 🙂

How to Make Soft Snickerdoodles

How do you make snickerdoodles puffy and soft? The secret’s in the ratio of butter to leavener to flour to egg. Don’t use shortening here; you’ll miss the flavor of butter. Slightly under-baking the snickerdoodles also guarantees a softer cookie. Take them out of the oven after about 10-11 minutes. This will keep the interior of the cookie soft and chewy.

These snickerdoodle cookies aced the true “soft test” meaning they remained soft on day 2! In fact, they were still soft on day 4. (And I’m surprised there are any leftover by that point, but I was trying to make a point!) Since they remain so soft, snickerdoodles are the perfect cookie for gift-giving. I know there are many snickerdoodle lovers out there!

Snickerdoodle cookies

stack of snickerdoodle cookies

Why is Cream of Tartar in Snickerdoodles?

Instead of baking powder, use cream of tartar and baking soda in snickerdoodles. Sure, you could use 2 teaspoons of baking powder instead of the cream of tartar + baking soda, but then you won’t really have a snickerdoodle. Cream of tartar adds a unique tangy flavor to the cookie, which sets it apart from sugar cookies and makes it a classic snickerdoodle. We use it for the best flavor in maple pecan snickerdoodles also. It’s absolutely delicious!

No Cookie Dough Chilling!

Great news! You can skip the cookie dough chilling step with this snickerdoodle recipe. There’s enough flour in this cookie dough to create a strong and sturdy cookie without the crutch of chilling the dough first. There’s also no fancy-pants ingredients required. These snickerdoodles are EASY. Shortbread cookies are another easy no chill recipe to keep in your back pocket.

snickerdoodle cookies on a brown plate

If you’re looking for another snickerdoodle favorite, here are my pumpkin snickerdoodles. And are you craving cake? Here’s my snickerdoodle cake & swirled snickerdoodle cupcakes recipes.

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stack of snickerdoodle cookies

Soft & Thick Snickerdoodles

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Here is my reader favorite recipe for soft and thick snickerdoodles. These soft-baked snickerdoodle cookies only require about 30 minutes start to finish! No dough chilling required.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar*
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks or 230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 and 1/3 cup (267g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Topping

  • 1/3 cup (70g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats (always recommended for cookies). Set aside.
  2. Make the topping: Combine the granulated sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl.
  3. Make the cookies: Whisk the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl.
  4. In a large bowl using a hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and granulated sugar together on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Beat on medium-high speed until combined. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. With the mixer running on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in 3 different parts. The dough will be thick.
  5. Roll cookie dough into balls, about 1.5 Tablespoons of cookie dough each. I recommend this cookie scoop. Roll the dough balls in cinnamon-sugar topping. Sprinkle extra cinnamon-sugar on top if desired. Arrange 3 inches apart on the baking sheets.
  6. Bake cookies for 10 minutes. The cookies will be very puffy and soft. When they are still very warm, lightly press down on them with the back of a spoon or fork to help flatten them out. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. Cookies remain soft & fresh for 7 days in an airtight container at room temperature.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: There are a few options here! First, you can prepare the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Make sure that you let it come to room temperature before rolling and baking the cookies. You can also freeze the cookie dough balls. Roll the dough into balls then freeze the balls for up to 2-3 months. You can freeze the cookie dough balls with the cinnamon sugar coating or without, but I recommend freezing without the topping. When you are ready to bake, remove the balls from the freezer, let sit for 30 minutes, pre-heat the oven, then roll into topping. You can also freeze the baked cookies for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  2. Cream of Tartar: Cream of tartar is required for this recipe. Please see the text of the post for more information.
  3. Extra Egg Yolk: To bring this dough together so it isn’t quite as crumbly use 1 large egg, plus 1 extra large egg yolk. I’ve been doing this recently and the snickerdoodles taste even softer, moister, and richer.
  4. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: snickerdoodles

stack of snickerdoodles

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Add a pinch of Cardamom to the cinnamon-sugar coating. Wow,WOW! So good.

  2. Made these exactly as directed (did not read blog explanation just skipped to recipe, sorry!). I am NOT a baker and they came out perfect! They weren’t uniform in size/ shape/ thickness, which could just be my lack of skill but they tasted exactly how I wanted them to and the texture was exactly as described. 5/5 stars!!! If I need to bake cookies again, I’d go to this recipe! Glad there were a few leftovers!!!

  3. My entire family is snickerdoodle lovers. I’ve had a favorite recipe for years but this one tops it!!! I love that I don’t have to plan time to refrigerate the dough. They are soft, fluffy, done in the center and have the prefect amount of cinnamon. Thank you!

  4. I had to chill the dough and come back to it a bit later to bake. They were slightly less fluffy, but turned out great and it actually made the dough a bit easier to work with.

  5. Is 375 a mistake? I baked as directed for 10 minutes and the bottom of the cookies were burnt to a crisp! I reduced the heat to 350 and they came out much better.

    1. Hi Hannah, we usually bake these at 375. It could be that your oven is running a bit hot–do you have an oven thermometer to check? Another possible reason could be the type of baking pan you’re using, and what you’re lining it with. But if they turned out well for you at 350, then definitely bake them at 350 again next time!

  6. Been baking for years this recipe is amazing !!!! New family favorite by far !!!! Followed recipe and they came out PERFECT !!!!

  7. I’m a very inexperienced baker – do you think it would be okay if I halved the amount of cinnamon in the cookies, and put an equal amount of nutmeg in? The recipe looks so good I’m scared to change anything lol

    1. Hi Charlotte, the cookies will not have as much of that classic snickerdoodle taste without all of the cinnamon, but if you enjoy the taste of nutmeg you can certainly do half and half.

  8. Snickerdoodles have been a family favorite since childhood. I misplaced my recipe so made these until I can get our recipe from my mom. Might not be getting it from her after all! These turned out amazing! Perfectly soft and chewy and fluffy thick. Just as yummy day two. I wish I didn’t run out of sugar, I would have made another batch right away. Thank you for the recipe!

  9. I seem to have issues with the inside of the snickerdoodles. Despite following the recipe exactly, they seem to be ‘wet’ish on the inside. Am I over mixing? I also add a few raisins, could that be changing the texture? I may be over-thinking, I guess. They taste wonderful and always get eaten, despite me thinking I have done something wrong.

    1. Hi Sharon! Do they seem under-baked? Are you allowing them to fully cool? They may just need an extra minute or two in the oven. Adding raisins wouldn’t be an issue.

    1. Cream of tartar adds a unique tangy flavor to the cookie, which sets it apart from sugar cookies and makes it a classic snickerdoodle. See the paragraph in the post above titled “Why is Cream of Tartar in Snickerdoodles?”

  10. Hi Sally do you think I could put Jamaïcain spice in the recipe and top it of with cinnamon & sugar?

    1. Hi Colette, You can certainly try it for a different flavor cookie.

  11. This is a brilliant recipe! So easy and quick to make and the cookies came out perfect.

  12. These are great snickerdoodles, i make them as part of my Christmas baking presents. I was just wondering though, i lived in the UK for a time & they dont sell baking soda, what can be used in place of that? Also they sell plain flour or self rising, which would be better?

    1. Hi Sandy, You should be able to find Bicarbonate of Soda in the UK and you’ll want to use plain flour. Enjoy!

    2. Hi. Can these be made into large cookies like your large CC recipe? If so, can you please advise on amount of dough per cookie and cooking time?
      Thank you!

      1. Hi Ella, you can make larger cookie dough balls (anywhere up to 3 tablespoons of dough should work) and bake them for slightly longer. We’re unsure of the exact bake time, but keep a close eye on them and remove when the edges are starting to slightly brown. Enjoy!

  13. The cookies came out of the oven nice and plump but then flattened out. They don’t look anything like the pictures. I’m also having this problem with other recipes, which I haven’t had in the past. Is it the creaming of the butter and sugar that I’m doing wrong? The cookies still taste fabulous!

    1. Hi Walter! You want to cream the butter and sugar together until they appear slightly lighter in color. If your cookies are collapsing after baking, they may simply be under-baked. A couple extra minutes may help for next time!

  14. Made these for my coworkers. I did pat down the cookie balls a little as I prefer them a little spread out. Patted them down again after baking. My coworker said it was the best snickerdoodle he ever ate. I am so happy with this recipe. Thank you Sally.

  15. I am 77 years old and have been baking since I was a child. I have never found the perfect Snickerdoodle recipe in all these years, until now. Yesterday I decided to try this recipe because it said “soft, thick Snickerdoodles” which is what I have been searching for for many years. None of those recipes turned out the way I wanted. When I baked my first “test” cookie, I knew I had found the PERFECT recipe!! I didn’t change a thing, followed the recipe exactly. The cookies are thick and soft and absolutely delicious. And I might add, “picture pretty” too!! Thank you for this wonderful recipe! It’s the only one I will make now as perfect can’t be improved upon!!

  16. These are so yummy and always get so many compliments! I was wondering if you can give me any tips though…
    The first time I baked them, they were perfectly thick and fluffy. Every time since, they go flat as soon as I pull them out of the oven. I’m definitely doing something wrong but can’t think of what. Any tips?

    1. Hi Rebecca! If the cookies are deflating, they my simply be underbaked. Try adding a couple minutes to the bake time!

  17. This is my go-to Snickerdoodle recipe. They are melt in your mouth delicious. My boyfriend LOVES these and always asks for them.

  18. Hey Sally! I love this recipe. I feel like I have made these 100 times and they are always a hit. I’m thinking about changing it up a little bit and adding some caramel sea salt baking chips into the recipe. Would I have to chill the dough now that I’ve added the baking chips?

    1. Hi Meg, adding those chips (yum!) shouldn’t change the chill time. Enjoy!

  19. Now, I know it says to flatten the cookies out while they’re still warm but, if you like pillowy snickerdoodles, do NOT smoosh these cookies before baking! Roll each cookie by hand & then roll in cinnamon mixture & place on cookie sheet still balled up! They’ll flatten enough as they bake & you’ll wing up with some soft, fluffy yummies!!!

    1. I just made the dough, and it’s a little crumbly. Once I work it together to roll into balls, ut seems ok. I didn’t over mix, but I used my hand mixer which doesn’t really have a very slow speed. Could that be the problem? I’m freezing the dough balls for the holiday, but hope these come out ok. Thank you!

  20. So good! Made them with my four year old and added mini chocolate chips. Will definitely make them again!

    1. Hi Rebekah! Brown sugar has more moisture than white and may change the consistency of the dough. We recommend sticking with the recipe as written for best results!

  21. These are really good snickerdoodles however I wanted fat and puffy cookies like your pictures but they went pretty flat, with a lot more cracks. I didn’t need to flatten them when they came out of the oven as they were already flat enough. Darn haha. Fyi I did use weight measurements and followed the recipe exactly. I will still use this recipe as they are still amazing! My old recipe spread even more so I’ll keep this one. Thank you

  22. Love the recipe! Made it once before and I want to again but just realized I only have salted butter. Do you think that’s ok or should I leave out the salt from the recipe? Thanks!

    1. Hi Lilly! If using salted butter, reduce the added salt to 1/8 teaspoon. Hope this recipe is a hit for you!

  23. This was my most-requested cookie at our last home, and now that we’ve moved it’s become a hit with new friends! My husband is begging me to try adding buttersctoch chips to a batch – is there a general rule for mix-ins in terms of how much I can add and still be fairly confident the cook time etc. will remain the same?

    1. Hi Jenn, We are so happy these are such a hit with your family! You can add 1-1.5 cups of butterscotch chips (or any different mix ins) into this cookie dough after you combine the wet and dry ingredients without making any other changes. Let us know if you try anything!

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