Sunday, December 8, 2019

Snickerdoodles with a Twist

What is a snickerdoodle?
Old-fashioned snickerdoodles are chewy sugar cookies coated in a cinnamon-sugar mixture. The batter is basic and easy to make.There is a difference between a sugar cookie and a snickerdoodle. They share the same basic ingredients – flour, butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. However, there is one distinctive ingredient that a snickerdoodle has that a sugar cookie doesn’t, and that is cream of tartar.
The addition of 5 spice powder to the cookie batter elevates the taste to a whole new level. 5 spice powder gives the cookies a hint of licorice-like flavor due to star anise, with sweet and warm flavors from the cinnamon and fennel. Note using the spice does not overpower the cookie taste.
My new favorite cookie of 2o19
5 Spice Snickerdoodle
Recipes makes about 32 cookies depending on the size of your dough balls. The cookies have a crunchy outside and cakey like inside. 
Holiday recipe options include: Using green or pink sanding sugars following same directions as listed below.  
  • 2- 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1- 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon five-spice powder 
  • 1 teaspoon ground Saigon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1- 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 
  • 3/4 cup red, pink or green sanding sugar (available in baking section Michaels or JoAnn Fabric) or as crystal sugars (grocery store) 
  • Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven; preheat to 400 degrees. Whisk the flour, cream of tartar, 1/2 teaspoon each five-spice powder and cinnamon, the baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Beat the butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time until combined. Beat in the vanilla, then reduce the speed to low and beat in the flour mixture until combined.
  • Place dough in freezer for 20 minutes for easier handling when rolling into balls. 
  • Mix the red sanding sugar and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon each five-spice powder and cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll the dough into balls (about 2 tablespoons each), then roll them in the red sugar mixture. Arrange 3 inches apart on 2 unlined baking sheets.
  • Bake, switching the pans halfway through, until the cookies spread, crackle in the centers and are lightly golden around the edges, 9 for larger cookies, 8 minutes for smaller ones. Do not over bake. Let cool 10 minutes on the baking sheet, then remove to a wire cooling rack. 
Cream of tartar gives the snickerdoodle its traditional tangy taste and adds to the chewiness of the cookie. If you want to make snickerdoodles without cream of tartar, you can substitute the cream of tartar AND the baking soda with 2 teaspoons of baking powder. 
Five Spice Powder is a seasoning blend of ground spices, appearing as a dry brown powder. In Chinese cuisine, it is most often used to flavor braised or roasted meat, fish, and poultry dishes, and may be included in marinades and rubs. The seasoning is a blend of cinnamon, cloves, fennel, star anise, and Szechwan peppercorns. Some recipes also contain ginger, nutmeg, and licorice.


  1. Snickerdoodles are my most favorite cookie! Thanks for sharing at the What's for Dinner party! Have an awesome week.

  2. Sounds delish. I’m be adding this to my Holiday baking. Thanks for the recipe!


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