This is the best sourdough snickerdoodle cookie recipe! These cookies are exactly what you are looking for ... soft centers, chewy texture, crispy edges, and loaded with cinnamon. The addition of your sourdough discard gives them even more tang!
Create a sweet holiday treat, the classic snickerdoodle, using your sourdough discard with this perfect sourdough cookie recipe!
What could be more inviting during the holidays than freshly baked sourdough cookies?
There's no need to chill the dough before baking the cookies. The cookie dough can be mixed and baked right away.
You also have the option of letting the cookie dough long-ferment in the fridge for up to 3 days to get the most benefit of your sourdough starter.
Ingredients needed to make sourdough snickerdoodle cookies
- unfed sourdough starter - This recipe was developed as a way to use sourdough discard to avoid food waste, but it can be made with an active sourdough starter as well.
- unsalted butter - The recipe calls for softened butter, but I've used melted butter when I was short on time, and it worked really well.
- vanilla extract - Vanilla extract compliments the flavor combination of cinnamon, sugar, and butter.
- cane sugar
- all-purpose flour
- cream of tartar - Cream of tartar is used in place of baking powder because it is more acidic. This contributes to the slight tang of Snickerdoodle cookies and helps make the cookies chewy.
- baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon
Helpful tips for success
- The dough should not be sticky. Dust with a small amount of extra flour while the dough is in the bowl if it is sticking to your fingers when you touch it.
- This cookie dough does NOT need to be chilled before baking. However, you can let the dough chill for a few days for a long-fermented cookie.
How to make sourdough snickerdoodles
This cookie recipe can be made with an electric hand mixer, a stiff spatula, or a stand mixer using the paddle attachment.
If you plan to bake the cookies right away, preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Step 1: Make the cookie dough
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, cream of tartar, baking soda, and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon.
In a separate medium-sized bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until the sugar is almost dissolved.
Add the sourdough starter discard, egg, and vanilla extract to the bowl and continue mixing until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Step 2: Shape the cookies
Make the cinnamon-sugar mixture by mixing ¼ cup of sugar with 2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon in a small bowl or plate.
Use a cookie scoop to portion the dough into 32 balls. Roll a portion in your hand to create a smooth ball. Roll it around in the cinnamon sugar coating making sure to cover the entire dough ball.
Arrange 12 cookie dough balls onto the baking sheet spaced evenly apart.
NOTE: If you are baking the cookies at a later date you can portion the dough and keep it covered in the fridge or freeze until you are ready to bake.
Step 3: Bake
Bake the cookies for 11-12 minutes or until they are puffy and a light golden brown color.
Step 4: Cool
Transfer the baked cookies to a wire rack and allow them to cool before serving.
Make-ahead, storing, and freezing instructions
How to make sourdough snickerdoodles ahead of time
You can prepare this dough three days ahead of baking. It's handy to shape it into dough balls before chilling it in the fridge as the batter will firm up. Keep the covered dough in the fridge to prevent it from drying out.
How to store leftovers
Keep the baked cookies at room temperature in an airtight container, such as a cookie jar, or plastic bag for up to a week. For longer storage, transfer the cookies to a freezer-safe container and freeze them for up to 3 months.
How to freeze unbaked cookie dough
Place cookie dough balls on a sheet without rolling them in cinnamon sugar. Freeze on the tray for an hour, then transfer to a ziplock bag. The dough can be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.
When baking, thaw the desired portions in the fridge, roll in cinnamon sugar, place on a baking sheet, and bake!
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- ¼ cup (50 g) sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- If you're ready to bake the cookies now, set your oven to 375°F (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. (See notes for baking at a later date.)
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, salt, cream of tartar, baking soda, and 2 teaspoons of cinnamon.
- In a separate bowl, beat the softened butter and sugar until the sugar nearly dissolves. Add the sourdough discard, egg, and vanilla, mixing until smooth. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, stirring until just mixed.
- Combine ¼ cup of sugar with 2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon on a plate or in a bowl. Use a cookie scoop to make 32 dough balls. Roll each into a smooth ball and coat it evenly in the cinnamon sugar. Place 12 balls on the baking sheet, ensuring they're evenly spaced.
- Place the cookies in the oven and bake for 11-12 minutes until they puff up and turn a light golden brown. Move the baked cookies to a wire rack and let them cool before serving.