Holiday Crinkle Cookies

October 31, 2015

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: This holiday cookie recipe is easy, delicious, cute and crinkly. Regan Baroni

Food52 Review: These holiday crinkle cookies are old-school (in a good way). As my kitchen filled with the scent of baking chocolate, I remembered the cookies my grandmother used to make. Regan Baroni's recipe makes cookies with a slighty crisp edge and a fudgy middle. I refrigerated the dough overnight, resulting in perfect crinkles in the cookies. Beware the powdered sugar shower you get from each bite, a sign of a cookie well enjoyed! FrozenFoodie

Makes: about 40 cookies


  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
In This Recipe


  1. In a medium bowl, mix the cocoa, granulated sugar, and vegetable oil.
  2. Beat in eggs one at a time and stir in vanilla.
  3. In a separate large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; then stir into the cocoa mixture.
  4. Cover the dough and let cool in fridge for at least 4 hours. (This step is incredibly important to get the crinkles in the cookies)
  5. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  6. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and roll dough into 1-inch balls.
  7. Coat each ball with confectioners sugar before placing on the baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.
  9. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool and enjoy!

More Great Recipes:
Cookie|Christmas|Easter|Halloween|Hanukkah|Thanksgiving|Valentine's Day|Holiday|Dessert

Reviews (74) Questions (0)

74 Reviews

megan.oldenburger December 21, 2018
Hi- initially before refrigeration should the dough seem more like brownie batter? I followed directions exactly and that’s how it seems right now before refrigeration...any help would be appreciated!
Valérie T. December 26, 2018
Hi, merry Christmass! <br />Its should be firm, not sticky. <br />Just made some. Mmmm
Renee L. December 19, 2018
I'd like some thoughts on how to best store cookies for Christmas. Thank you!!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 20, 2018
Hi Renee! You can store them well wrapped at room temperature for several days, or you could even freeze them! Hope this helps! :) Enjoy!
Tobi H. December 19, 2018
I make these cookies every year around the holidays. My family loves them! I usually add mini chocolate chips, powdered espresso & double the recipe. Once baked, I store most of them in the freezer to take out as needed - ensures perfect texture retention every time!
Melinda January 21, 2018
These cookies looked great but, taste terrible. I probably won't try a cookie recipe again that uses oil rather than butter.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 20, 2018
Oh no! So sorry these didn't workout for you. I haven't had any problems with the taste. Some other readers suggested other things like adding walnuts or crushed peppermint candies. Maybe that might help? Happy Holidays!
Shelley C. January 13, 2018
I made these for Christmas and they were really good. I rolled half of them in crushed peppermint candies and half in confectioners sugar.
Eunice December 26, 2017
I just made these during my holiday baking extravaganza & I must say that these are definitely a new favorite! I bake for joy and to give away, but rarely eat the finish product other than 1 or 2. These cookies I wanted to keep the whole batch for myself!<br /><br />I followed the recipe exactly, with 2 changes: I added candied ginger bc I had some (& it went amazing with the chocolate!) & I refrigerated the dough overnight, bc I didn't have time to bake that day. I let my dough sit at room temperature out the fridge for about 30ish minutes before using a 1inch cookie scoop and portioning out the dough and then rolling them into perfect balls. My dough was not sticky whatsoever and kept their from perfectly. I baked for 10 minutes and slight flattened the cookies with my spatula after baking before transferring them to the cooling rack. <br /><br />The cookies fresh out of the oven have the most wonderful outside crunch with a warm cake/brownie like inside texture. Safe to say, its amazing & the 1 inch portions make it easy to just have one sweet snack, if you have the self control!
Shelley C. January 13, 2018
I also refrigerated the dough overnight and I had no problem. I’m going to have to try candied ginger. Brilliant idea!
mraerb December 20, 2017
Pretty fool proof recipe. Would add finely chopped walnuts next time.
Maddie December 18, 2017
Wonderful recipe. Followed recipe perfectly, except the chilling time. I was on a time crunch so I refrigerated the dough for 3 hours, not 4. They came out delicious & with perfect crinkles!
Pamela December 17, 2017
So trying to make cookies today and it seems like dough is powdery and doesn’t form one ball. Is that the way it’s supposed to be? Also going to bake in high altitude tomorrow
Bentley December 17, 2017
Such a good, classic and easy recipe! The only thing I would keep in mind for next time since I haven't made these before is to not shake off the powdered sugar before putting on the cookie sheet. It's super tempting to do so, but definitely let it happen :)
Teresa December 13, 2017
I want to make this recipe but I'm new to high altitude baking. Has anyone made these at over 4,000 feet, and if so with what modifications? Thank you!
lizs December 13, 2017
I made these yesterday for a potluck, and they are *so* good! And easy!<br /><br /> I forgot to get powdered sugar, so I coated them in cocoa instead, which helped cut the sweetness. And I sprinkled them with just a little bit of Maldon sea salt as soon as I took them out of the oven.<br /><br />Thanks!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
Hi Lizs! The addition of Maldon sea salt is going to be my next tweak! Great idea! Thanks for your feedback!
Kim December 19, 2017
What kind of cocoa did you use? I made these and though very good I just find them a tad too sweet with the powdered sugar.. thanks!
lizs December 20, 2017
I just used Hershey's. The salt on top also helped! :)
brigitte December 13, 2017
I made these cookies yesterday exactly as directed, left in fridge overnight. Perfect results. Delicious cookie, plan on making again. Thanks so much!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
I'm so glad you loved the recipe, Brigitte! Thanks for your feedback!
Liz December 12, 2017
These are wonderful! Tonight, I am adding a little pulverized candy cane to the powdered sugar. Thanks!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
Hi Liz! Ohhhhh... that sounds really really good. Thanks for the idea! :)
Valérie T. December 12, 2017
Oh my! Way to good. Made second bath and added some chilli for a little kick. Both delish. Thank you so much deff will make more.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
Ok, I LOVE the idea of adding chili powder for a little kick... spicy/chocolate combo. Great insight! Thank you for your comment!
Valérie T. December 18, 2017
Next time I will quarter the recipe and play with the amount of chilli as I do not want to put to much if you get my drift :-). Love your recipe, Ta.
Valérie T. December 12, 2017
Oh my! Way to good. Made second bath and added some chilli for a little kick. Both delish. Thank you so much deff will make more.
Kathryn December 11, 2017
These cookies are a hit! The flavor is rich without being too rich. I, too, let the dough chill overnight and had no issue with stickiness or other consistency issues. These are definitely entering the line-up of tasty, elegant, and simple holiday treats.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
Hi Kathryn! I'm so glad you loved the recipe! Thanks for your feedback!
Amanda F. December 10, 2017
I just made this for the first time and they are delicious. I left the dough in the fridge overnight and I did still have some issues with stickiness, and my cookies spread pretty far - BUT, like I said, delicious. I do recommend using parchment paper instead of a silpat, as the ones I made on a silpat stuck a bit whereas the ones I made on parchment came right off.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
This is great feedback, Amanda! Thank you for your insight! I'm glad you enjoyed the recipe!
Brittany W. December 8, 2017
My dough looks like a thick brownie batter. Not sure why. Hoping chilling in the fridge helps or it may need more flour.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 13, 2017
Hi Brittany! Did chilling in the fridge help? I know that the 'chilling' process is really important for the batter. I hope it worked out for you.
Michael B. December 8, 2017
Question - do you think subbing out the eggs for something else to make the cookies vegan would work? I'm imagining applesauce or aqua fava. Thanks!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 8, 2017
Hi Michael, I haven't tried to make this a vegan recipe, but I imagine that the applesauce or aqua fava would work. I'd be interested to hear how this turns out if you try it. Thanks for the suggestion!
Shona B. December 8, 2017
Can I sub butter for the oil?
Author Comment
Regan B. December 8, 2017
Hi Shona - I haven't tried using butter with this recipe, but from what I've read online, you should be able to use butter instead of the oil. You may get a different texture, but I'd be interested to hear your experience if you try it. Thanks for the great question!
Denise December 16, 2017
Would love to get an update if the butter worked?
Jacque December 20, 2017
I made some yesterday 1:1 butter melted, i chilled the batter for 24 hours. They came out amazing! Everyone is loving them.
nancyg November 7, 2017
I want to make these close to Xmas & send a tin to Florida. My question is, how long do these keep ? Thanks for any help. Nancy
Author Comment
Regan B. November 7, 2017
That's such a great idea! I would say they'll last about a week. Hope this helps!
Bevi December 27, 2016
These were a big hit as part of my holiday cookie bags. Chewy, a chocoholic's dream, and very pretty.
Author Comment
Regan B. November 7, 2017
What a great idea to add them to holiday cookie bags! Sounds fabulous to get a variety in one. I'm happy they were a hit! <br />
Willi G. December 23, 2016
These are extra good if you use dark chocolate cocoa powder!
Author Comment
Regan B. November 7, 2017
This is a really great suggestion! Thank you for the tip! :)
Judy E. December 21, 2016
Yum! Mine spread out but I'm not complaining. This is the first time I've made them and they are so good!
Author Comment
Regan B. November 7, 2017
I'm so glad you liked them! They are perfect for this time of year!
Martin December 20, 2016
Yai! So I made these. They do look quite splendid, but I feel they are too sweet. Maybe if you are a chocolate fan you will like these. They are very rich, but if I make them again I will put 1 1/2 cup of sugar. Otherwise, I enjoyed the simplicity of the recipe. Thanks for sharing
Author Comment
Regan B. November 7, 2017
Thank you so much for your feedback on these! I agree, they are definitely for chocolate lovers. You can definitely ease back on the sugar, if you prefer. Be sure to let me know if you have any other suggestions. Thanks again! :)
sosayi December 16, 2016
I made these cookies last night. I decided to make a few right away and save the rest to rest in the fridge for 4 hours as requested. Honestly, I got really good crinkles from the cookies I made right away and they tasted good. Looking forward to the rest, but I don't think waiting is as vital as the recipe suggests
Author Comment
Regan B. December 17, 2016
Thanks so much for your comment! This is good information. I haven't tried to make the cookies without the 'chilling in the fridge' step because I have heard from other people's experiences that the chilling is what helps get the good crinkles. Since I'm usually making the cookies for something or someone, I haven't wanted to risk it. But, I'll give it a try to test it out. Thanks so much!
Judith D. December 15, 2016
My husband has gluten issues so I had to make some changes but they still turned out great. I used 1/2 cup GF flour and 1 1/2 cup Quinoa flour. I also had to sub in some brown sugar as I was short on regular white. I was a little heavy-handed with the rolling-into-balls part so they took a bit longer to bake, but they turned out great-delicious and chewy.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 17, 2016
Hi Judith!! Thanks for your comment! I love that you shared your delicious-sounding GF version! Sounds so good!
Sara K. December 15, 2016
I have made these cookies three times in less than a week for different holiday functions and every time they've come up perfectly! I couldn't ask for a better recipe. They are just the right consistency, slightly fudgy and cakey. Thanks for a great go-to cookie recipe!
Author Comment
Regan B. December 15, 2016
Hi Sara! I'm so glad you're enjoying the recipe! I'm making them again next week! Enjoy and happy holidays!
Kerry December 11, 2016
How long can I make the dough ahead and keep it in the fridge for? Or is it better to freeze the cookies after baking?
Author Comment
Regan B. December 11, 2016
Hi KY! I chilled my dough for four hours before baking, but I believe you can chill it overnight for convenience and to ensure that the dough is ready and workable. Hope this helps! <br />
hilda December 20, 2016
Hi KY! I've made these cookies a bunch of times and have left the dough overnight, you shouldn't have any issues.
Nichole P. April 21, 2016
I love this recipe, and get tons of compliments whenever I make them! I've tried the recipe as directed, and most recently had to make some small subs (used Bob's Red Mill gluten-free flour because I was out of my usual, and had to sub in 1/4 c brown sugar because I only had 1 3/4 of white on hand), and both versions turned out beautifully! Thank you for such a delicious and easy recipe!
Author Comment
Regan B. April 23, 2016
Hi Nichole! I'm so glad the recipe is a success for you and your family & friends! It's a favorite in my house too! Thanks for the substitution tips - I may try the gluten-free flour next time!
Rachel C. December 25, 2015
My cookies turned out very dry and flat (flatter than the first photo on this recipe!). I followed the directions exactly; does anyone know what could have caused this?
Rachel C. December 25, 2015
Perhaps relevant: when I was working with the cookie dough out, it had the consistency of a thick brownie batter and didn't retain its ball shape on the cookie sheet.
Author Comment
Regan B. April 23, 2016
Hi Rachel - I'm so sorry for my delayed response on this recipe. Did you cool the dough for at least 4 hours before trying to roll them into the balls? That is a super important step that I missed the first time I tried to make them. I hope it works out better for you next time.
Patty K. December 22, 2015
Worked really well for me. Beautiful. Rolled well after puffing up a bit in the fridge. I waited like 6-8 hours before rolling. I found that the balls were prettier when I coated them more generously w confectioners sugar. I also liked them less flat since they were more brownie-like that way.
Author Comment
Regan B. April 23, 2016
Oh my, so sorry for my delayed response, Patty! I'm so glad you enjoyed them! They're definitely one of my favorites!
Uyen P. December 15, 2015
Just made these and followed the directions to the t. The dough balls do not flatten as pictured. I took them out after 9 minutes, gently flattened them with my fingers and popped them back in for another 2 minutes. Bottom line, these look fancier than your average brownie squares, but taste better with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Author Comment
Regan B. December 19, 2015
Hi Uyen! <br /><br />The first picture is not mine - I agree they are much flatter in that picture. The second picture (with the powdered sugar falling) are more accurate of the thickness that I had with my batch. I'm glad you enjoyed them! The vanilla ice cream sounds like a fabulous addition.
hilda December 7, 2015
Hi! I tried making these but even after they were refrigerated for 5 hours, the dough didn't really lend itself to roll into balls (it was sticky). Is this how it's supposed to be? The taste still seemed right, it's the texture I think I got wrong..
Author Comment
Regan B. December 19, 2015
Hi Hilda! <br />Sorry for my delay in responding to your comment. I actually made these again recently and wasn't able to replicate the sticky issue that you had... Hmm... did you roll the balls right after pulling them from the fridge? The only thing I can think of is that if they were sitting out for a bit and got to room temperature it could have made them harder to handle? Sometimes, when I've had sticky dough issues, I put a little flour on my hands and it seems to help a bit. Hope you have better luck next time!
Chef D. November 24, 2015
Cookies :)
Haley S. November 20, 2015
These are so delish. Can't wait to put them in our regular rotation at home.
Regine October 31, 2015
I mean balls.
Author Comment
Regan B. October 31, 2015
Hi Regine! Yes, you will roll the dough into balls and they will spread as they bake. I love these cookies - I hope you do too! Enjoy!
Regine October 31, 2015
You say to roll into balla but on picture they look flatter. Do they spread as they bake? Is texture like a shortbread or softer, etc.? Just curious. I want to make them.