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Chocolate Crinkle Cookies (Small Batch)

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These Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are chewy, fudgy, and filled with double chocolate.  Along with the molasses crinkle cookies, these cookies are a must for your Christmas baking and to include in a festive cookie swap!  The small batch recipe yields 8 perfectly sized cookies with a double roll in powdered sugar.

A small batch of holiday cookies arranged on a wire cooling rack with a powdered sugar dusting.

Chocolate Holiday Cookies

Is it just me, or when I see the chocolate crinkle cookie, I immediately think Christmas cookie?  These cookies always seem to grace the cookie box I receive from family along with some variety of chocolate peppermint cookie.  And this year – I am excited to be the one baking and sending the delicious gifts!

The cookie gets its name from the crinkled texture – a phenomenon that happens when the sugar in the caramelizes before the rest of the cookie bakes and crinkles the cookie.  Additionally, the generous roll of properly chilled cookie dough through powdered sugar will contribute to the mesmerizing crinkle.

The Origins Of The Chocolate Crinkle Cookie

So, what is the big deal with these cookies?  Well – I couldn’t really find where the cookies originated from.  I know they are in the Betty Crocker Cooky Book.  And I’ve seen they are popular outside of the U.S. 

Aside from that, there is not much else documented about the history of this chocolate yummy.  Did they happen by accident?  Did someone drop their double chocolate cookie into a bowl of powdered sugar and discover these little cuties?  We may never know … 

Holiday chocolate cookies in a stack set on a table with a bowl of chocolate chips.

What Makes These Chocolate Crinkle Cookies The Best?

All the not-so-helpful history lesson aside, I highly recommend the chocolate crinkle cookie as part of your Christmas cookie repertoire – if it isn’t already.  And while I will never be one to tout a recipe as the best, it is hard to top a cookie that is:

  • Double chocolate – We are using cocoa powder and chocolate chips in this recipe.  
  • Fudgy – For the reasons above.  There is a lot of chocolate in these cookies.
  • Perfectly chewy – I’m a sucker for a soft and chewy cookie.  And I have the flourless chocolate cookies to thank for that!
  • Easy to make – Yes – you do need to chill the dough.  But the cookies are worth it.
  • They stay soft – Which makes them great for shipping and including in a cookie exchange!  Pair these with the sparkle sugar cookie blossoms and you may be even more popular than Santa!
  • They’re not a sugar cookie – I love sugar cookies, but sometimes you want some chocolate at Christmas too!
A chocolate Christmas cookie with a bite stacked on top of another cookie.

Everything YOu Need To Make The Cookies

Two good things (in my opinion) about these chocolate crinkle cookies – you may already have all of the ingredients and equipment needed to make them.  

Ingredients

  • Granulated sugar – good old white table sugar
  • Dark brown sugar – we are using this to keep the cookies soft and moist, and dark brown sugar will add a little more flavor.
  • Canola oil – oil instead of butter in this recipe.  I’ve tried both and prefer oil.  It keeps the cookies soft and chewy.  And, my preference is canola oil vs. vegetable oil.  I have found vegetable oil leaves a flavor.  
  • Egg – for binder and texture.
  • Vanilla – flavor, flavor, flavor!
  • All-purpose flour – I have only tested the recipe with AP flour. 
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – I use Dutch process cocoa for these cookies, and it is my go-to for almost all of the chocolate baking recipes on the blog.
  • Baking powder – to give the cookies lift.
  • Salt – flavor enhancer.
  • Chocolate chips – more flavor, flavor, flavor.  And a little texture.
  • Powdered sugar – these cookies wouldn’t be the classic crinkle cookie without it.

Baking Equipment

  • Baking sheet 
  • Parchment paper – I have tried a silicone baking mat and parchment for these cookies.  Parchment paper works great and you don’t have to wash it when you’re done.
  • Cookie scoop – my go-to cookie scoop is a medium #40.  I highly recommend a cookie scoop because it gives you the same size cookie so they bake evenly.  Plus, it’s just easier to scoop cookie dough.
A stack of holiday cookies with powdered sugar coating next to a glass of milk.

Tips For Making A small batch Of fudgy Chocolate Cookies 

  • Use dark brown sugar – It will impart extra flavor into the cookie.
  • Cookie count – The number of cookies you are able to get out this recipe depends on your cookie scoop.  Which leads me to …
  • Use a cookie scoop – I use a #40 scoop and got 8 cookies.  And (most importantly), a cookie scoop just makes portioning and scooping cookies easier.
  • Chill the doughThis is a must.  The cookie dough is sticky and next to impossible to scoop and roll into balls if it isn’t chilled.  And the powdered sugar will evaporate when baked if the dough isn’t chilled.  I recommend at least an hour in the refrigerator.
  • Lots of powdered sugar – I coat my chocolate crinkle cookies twice with the powdered sugar.  Sure, some may fall off when you got to eat them, but the flavor is awesome with the chocolate cookie!
  • To make a larger batch – I do have a standard size batch of chocolate crinkle cookies on the blog. Note – the ingredients in the large batch are slightly different than this small batch.  The large batch is all brown sugar.  Which yields a slightly chewier and slightly sweeter cookie.  I wanted to test a variation with this small batch with brown sugar and granulated sugar.  Which yields a cookie that has a slightly crispier edge and perhaps not as sweet.  Both cookies are still fudgy and delicious.
Single chocolate crinkle cookie on a table.

faq’s: How To Make Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

Can I double the recipe to make a larger batch?

I actually have a standard batch size recipe on the blog!

All I have is light brown sugar. Will that work?

Yes it will. The cookies may be slightly less chewy, but not enough to change the flavor.

What other oil do you consider neutral oil for the cookies?

Coconut oil, grapeseed oil, or sunflower oil.

Can I use natural cocoa powder instead of the Dutch cocoa powder?

You can certainly try it, but I find Dutch cocoa to have a stronger cocoa flavor, and it isn’t as acidic as natural cocoa.

My cookies don’t have as much powdered sugar crinkle like yours. What did I do wrong?

The cookie dough must chill. If the dough is too warm when you roll it through the powdered sugar, it will just evaporate into the cookie dough. Also – roll the cookie dough through the powdered sugar twice.

I see some recipes that roll the cookies through granulated sugar first, then roll through the powdered sugar. Why don’t you?

I’ve seen that rolling through sugar may help the powdered sugar stick and not absorb into the cookie. You can certainly try it, though in my experience, a properly chilled dough will suffice.

Can I freeze the cookie dough?

You can. I recommend still chilling the dough in the fridge then scooping the dough into balls. Then wrap tightly in plastic wrap or a Ziploc and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temp for 15 to 30 minutes.

Chocolate crinkle cookies arranged on a table.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies (Small Batch)

Yield: 8 Cookies
These Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are chewy, fudgy, and filled with double chocolate.  Along with the molasses crinkle cookies, these cookies are a must for your Christmas baking and to include in a festive cookie swap!  The small batch recipe yields 8 perfectly sized cookies with a double roll in powdered sugar.
Prep10 minutes
Cook10 minutes
Chill1 hour
Total1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil (or any neutral oil)
  • 1 large egg (room temperature)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch process
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (for rolling the cookies)

Instructions

  • In a medium mixing bowl, add the granulate sugar, brown sugar, and canola oil. Mix until combined. Add the egg and vanilla and mix until combined and smooth.
  • Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt over the wet ingredients. Stir just until no dry streaks remain. Note – I recommend sifting the dry ingredients over the wet ingredients to make sure there are no lumps – especially in the cocoa powder.
  • Stir in the chocolate chips until just combined. The dough will be sticky. Cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator to chill for at least an hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees and adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper.
  • In a shallow dish, add the powdered sugar.
  • Using a medium cookie scoop (I use a #40), scoop even portions of the chilled cookie dough and gently roll the cookie dough into a ball with your hands (the dough may still be tacky). Roll each cookie dough ball liberally through the powdered sugar – twice. Place the cookies at least 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Note – the number of cookies you get will depend on the size of the cookie scoop you use.
  • Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes – or until the edges are firm and the middle still looks 'un-done'. Cool the cookies on the baking sheet set on a wire cooling rack for 5 minutes. Then transfer the cookies to the wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!
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RECIPE NOTES

  • Chill the Dough – The dough needs to be chilled for at least an hour.  Otherwise, it will be too sticky to scoop and roll.  Plus, the powdered sugar will likely evaporate into the dough.
  • Servings – The number of cookies you get will depend on the size of the cookie scoop you use.
  • Freezing the Cookie Dough – Chill the dough first.  Scoop into cookie balls and wrap tightly in plastic wrap or a Ziploc and freeze for up to 3 months.  Thaw at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes before rolling through powdered sugar and baking.
  • Freezing Baked Cookies – Baked cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months.  Either in a Tupperware, or gently placed in a Ziploc bag.  Defrost the cookies at room temperature – may take 1 to 3 hours.
Check out the blog post for more Tips and FAQ’s!
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Erin Cernich
Nutrition information is calculated by a third-party and should only be considered an estimate and not a guarantee.
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about the author ...

I'm Erin and I'm all about desserts - and a little bit of butter!

I've tested, written, and photographed hundreds of recipes on my website. Here you'll find the tastiest small batch gluten free and traditional desserts - all homemade, all simple, and all for you! Click here to learn more about me!

4.80 from 10 votes (9 ratings without comment)

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2 thoughts on “Chocolate Crinkle Cookies (Small Batch)”

  1. 5 stars
    I made the crinkles according to the recipe and they were very good. Then I made them a second time using melted unsalted butter instead of oil and they were even better. I’m going to try adding a little espresso powder next time.

    1. Erin | Butter and Bliss

      Thank you Susan – I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed the cookies! I’m going to have to try them with melted butter and espresso powder – sounds delicious!

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