These fudgy and chewy Chocolate Crinke Cookies are a delicious treat at Christmas!
We bake a lot of cookies in the lead up to Christmas, and whilst we tend to recreate old favourites like Gingerbread Sablé or Swiss Walnut Christmas Cookies for the sake of tradition, I always try to sneak in a few new recipes to keep things fresh and exciting. My Reindeer Cookies have proven to be quite popular already, but I always think there is room for another chocolate cookie 🙂
When I was flicking through my small collection of Christmas cookbooks, I came across several recipes for these Chocolate Crinkle Cookies and I was instantly intrigued by how beautiful they looked, by how they resembled snow-capped mountains (which we can already see in the distance from our home).
In fact, the British call them Snowcap Cookies, whilst the Americans more commonly refer to them by the more descriptive Chocolate Crinkle Cookies.
My first attempt didn’t turn out so well – the cookies failed to crinkle. MAJOR fail!! My second attempt (from a different cookbook) rose and crinkled beautifully, but the icing sugar coating looked yellow and cakey.
At this point, any normal person would have thrown in the towel. But given the simple pantry ingredients required for these cookies (especially the use of oil instead of butter!), I was determined to do some further midnight experimenting. There is something oddly relaxing about baking in the middle of the night when everyone else is asleep!
And so it turns out – I think – that the type of icing sugar used in this recipe is quite crucial. I typically use a soft icing sugar which contains cornstarch to make it soft and less lumpy, which means there is never a need to sift it. But my batches of cookies with this type of icing sugar yielded unattractive results; my guess is that the icing sugar started to melt into the cookie dough and the chocolate dough, in turn, stained the icing sugar a pale yellow.
But my batches using pure icing sugar gave perfect results. I’m not a culinary scientist, but I would recommend that, for this recipe, you use pure icing sugar for best results.
It’s also important to chill the cookie dough for long enough so that it is thoroughly cold when you start to roll them into little balls.
And the verdict? My family loved them. They are more like little fudgy brownie bites than a traditional crunchy chocolate cookie. But I think that is what makes them perfect at this time of the year alongside the more traditional Christmas cookies. If you know someone who doesn’t like the spices normally present at this time of the year, and especially someone who doesn’t like gingerbread, then you need to make them these Chocolate Crinkle Cookies.
Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 30 mins plus resting time
- Yield: Makes 20 to 24 cookies
- 3/4 cup (170 g) granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup (150g) plain flour, sifted
- 1/2 cup (60g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/2 cup (90g) pure icing sugar (powdered sugar) (see Notes below)
- In the bowl of stand mixer, and using the flat paddle attachment, beat together the sugar, oil, and vanilla extract until just combined. The mixture should be thick and gritty.
- Add the eggs, one at a time. Beat for 1-2 minutes until the mixture looks pale and thick.
- Slowly beat in the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder (if using), baking powder, and salt. Mix until the ingredients are well-combined. The mixture should be somewhat wet, more like a very thick cake batter than a normal cookie dough.
- Scoop the mixture onto a large sheet of clingfilm and wrap it up firmly into a ball of dough. Place the mixture into the fridge for at least 2 hours to firm up, but overnight is best.
- When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
- Line a baking tray with baking paper.
- Place the icing sugar into a small bowl.
- Remove the cookie dough from the fridge.
- Pinch off small pieces of dough and roll them into small balls the size of a walnut. Place them onto the baking tray, and space them apart by about 4 cm or 2 inches.
- Roll each ball of dough in the icing sugar until they are thoroughly coated. It is important that there is plenty of icing sugar as some will melt into the cookie dough, but the excess icing sugar will form the nice powdered effect on the cookies.
- Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies have risen and crinkled like in the photos.
- Remove the tray from the oven and leave the cookies on the tray for about 5 minutes to firm up before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
- It is important to use pure icing sugar in this recipe, so make sure you check the ingredients on the packaging. Some types of icing sugar contain starch or other ingredients to make it softer or less lumpy. If your icing sugar is very fine and doesn’t need to be sifted, chances are that it is not pure icing sugar. If you use anything other than pure icing sugar for coating these cookies, you might find that the cookies will not turn out the same – the icing sugar may turn a pale yellow instead of remaining white.
- The cookies will keep well for about 5 days in a covered container.
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If you have used this recipe, I would love to hear how it turned out! Please leave a comment below and share your photos by tagging @eatlittlebird on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and using #eatlittlebird