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I’m sharing with you today my very favorite cookie in the entire universe… the cookie I’ve loved the most since I was just a little girl:  Snickerdoodles.

My mother made this recipe often when I was growing up, so I suppose I became enamored with them at a very early age. The draw most certainly must have been the sugar and cinnamon exterior, or the crunch of the cookie, or maybe it was the intrigue of the craggy cracks formed within the cookie…

…or maybe it was the tangy flavor of added Cream of Tartar.  I’ve seen a few recipes for Snickerdoodles floating around that don’t have any Cream of Tartar in them.  Just so you know… those aren’t snicker doodles!  Traditional Snickerdoodle recipes knix baking powder and use a combination of baking soda and cream of tartar as a leavening agent instead.  But Cream of Tartar does much more than that… it imparts a tangy flavor to the cookie, making it recognizable as “the Snickerdoodle.”

There’s are a couple more ingredients that make a Snickerdoodle a Snickerdoodle for me.  The first is shortening.  I’m not one to ever really use shortening in any recipes, let alone cookie recipes.  But for these cookies, they are the key to making them crispy and wonderful.

And of course a good roll in sugar and cinnamon is the key to the crunchy, cinnamony sweet exterior.

When they’re baked, Snickerdoodles crackle apart.  It’s their signature look.

You know how every fingerprint is unique?  Every crackly Snickerdoodle is unique too.  They just sort of crack every which way.  Okay by me.

Gosh I love these guys.  How about you… are you a Snickerdoodle fan or do you have another classic favorite?


These bring back childhood memories. I love the flavor that the cream of tartar gives in this cookie recipe.

Yield: 3 dozen cookies

Prep Time: 20 min + chilling time

Cook Time: 10 min


1 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
2 large eggs
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup granulated white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together shortening, sugar and eggs.

2. In a separate bowl, sift dry ingredients together and stir into wet mixture. Chill dough in refrigerator until firm, at least 1 hour.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

4. In a small bowl, mix the cinnamon/sugar. Use your hands to roll cookie dough into small balls (about 1 1/2 Tablespoons each). Roll balls in the cinnamon/sugar, and place on ungreased baking sheet- about 2 inches apart

5. Bake 8-10 minutes until cookies are flattened and look crinkly. Let cool on cookie sheets at least 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.


*For the rolling sugar: You'll have leftover sugar to throw away after rolling. I call for more than needed because I like to have a good puddle to roll them around in. Use less sugar if you don't want the waste.


If you’re a fan of other Snickerdoodly things, here are some other recipes that might interest you:
Brown Butter Snickerdoodles
Toffee- Chip Snickerdoodles
Maple Snickerdoodles
Snickerdoodle Cupcakes
Snickerdoodle Blondies

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Lori Lange of Recipe Girl

Meet The Author: Lori Lange

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  • lisabelle wrote:

    I’ve made the snickerdoodles but I put a little chunk of a snickers bar inside before rolling…. delicious!

  • Michele wrote:

    oh these are great snickerdoodles and soooo simple. Great recipe..thank YOU!

  • Ashley@BakerByNature wrote:

    Oh Lori… I’ve NEVER had a snickerdoodle: i’m so ashamed!! Time to get baking a batch, eh?

  • Kristen wrote:

    Snickerdoodles are my most fave cookie too, but I hardly ever make them. Now I’m totally craving them!

  • Alison wrote:

    It is so funny because I made these this week too!!! I got a recipe from an old Betty Crocker cookbook that was little different then yours above but still used cream of tartar which I had to go to the store to get 🙂 Mine was half shortening and half butter which I thought was interesting because I don’t remember that in other recipes. They are my husbands favorite ones so they were a special treat for him when he got home from work. I think that they are yummy too but I would always pick something with chocolate first 🙂

  • sinsumama wrote:

    OK…..Thanks LORI…..:)

  • sinsumama wrote:

    Hi Lori, can i substitute the shortening for butter? My son LOVES snicker-doodle cookies but I’m a little eerie @ shortening.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      It will probably work out okay, but since I don’t use butter in the recipe, I can’t say for certain. You won’t get the same crispy texture that shortening gives it.

  • Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen wrote:

    Snickerdoodles are my little guy’s favorite and I can’t resist them fresh out of the oven!

  • Lisa wrote:

    Can butter flavored shortening be used??

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Sure- I’m pretty sure that’s what I used.

  • grace wrote:

    it should come as no surprise that these are my favorite cookies. 🙂

  • Karen @ Sugartown Sweets wrote:

    As I was reading your post, I learned something new! I did not know Cream of Tartar imparted a tangy taste! I’ve just googled it, and I had no idea of the different uses for this ingredient that I’ve NEVER used! It’s now at the top of my shopping list. Thank you 🙂

  • Heather @girlichef wrote:

    Snickerdoodles have always been a favorite of mine, as well. I think I’m way past due for making a batch. Thanks for the reminder…my tummy is growling!

  • Kiran @ wrote:

    I’ve never tasted snickerdoodles before but I want to, right now 😀 It’s a very cute name and looks so delish!!

    Temptations, ha!

  • Bunny wrote:

    Oh my they look so good !

  • Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts wrote:

    Snickerdoodles are just a classic! My son is obsessed with cinnamon, so these are hit in our house. I love them made into a sandwich cookie with Nutella in the middle!

  • Mary Miller / A Passionate Plate wrote:

    I love Snickerdoodles! I grew up in a house that always had a full cookie jar, and most of the time it contained homemade Snickerdoodles. I think my mom made them so often because the ingredients were cheap and the recipe was easy. Plus, we all loved them. Beautiful pictures!

  • Rachel @ Not Rachael Ray wrote:

    These look perfect!

  • Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers wrote:

    I love Snickerdoodles, there one of my favorite cookies! Just a perfect, simple recipe!

  • Heather wrote:

    Does cream of tartar get old? I think I have my little jar for about 2 years now??

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      I did a little google search on that, and apparently it has an indefinite shelf life if it’s kept tightly closed and away from heat. That being said, I try to replace all of my spices w/in one to two years of purchase (depending on the spice).

  • Claire wrote:

    Snickerdoodles are my favorites!!!! And you’re right about cream of tartar….there is a distinct flavor that it imparts. Gotta uses cream of tartar. 🙂