Dive into the season of holiday cheer with festive and chewy Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies. Made with an outer sugar layer, these treats are perfect for enjoying alongside a big mug of hot cocoa.
Easy and perfectly sweet red velvet crinkle cookies
Holiday baking is officially upon us! In addition to the annual cookie staples like chocolate chip, maple pecan oatmeal, and gingersnap cookies, this year called for a new tradition: red velvet crinkle cookies!
These cookies are full of festive cheer with their beautiful red color and delicious chocolatey flavor. They’re made with baking staples like flour, cocoa powder, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. They become red velvet with the addition of red food coloring and the perfect sugary outer layer!
Ingredients in red velvet crinkle cookies
Ready to gather your ingredients? The great thing about this recipe is that it uses so many pantry staples. You likely already have most of what you need!
- Flour: First up is 2 cups of all-purpose flour. This base is going to give the cookies the perfect texture, so be sure to measure the flour carefully.
- Cocoa powder: Next up is 1/4 cup of dutch cocoa powder. This is going to add a chocolate flavor.
- Baking soda: To ensure that the cookies bake properly, use 1/2 tsp of baking soda.
- Baking powder: Then, follow the soda with 1 tsp of baking powder.
- Salt: Add extra flavor by including 1/4 tsp of salt. You’d be shocked at the difference salt makes in baked goods!
- Butter: Now for the butter! Use 1/2 cup (1 stick), softened. Let it sit out for about an hour before baking so it’s nice and soft when mixing.
- Brown sugar: Achieve a deliciously sweet flavor by including 3/4 cup of brown sugar. You can use light brown sugar or dark brown sugar.
- White sugar: Then, follow the brown sugar with 1/4 cup of white granulated sugar.
- Eggs: 2 large eggs will be used to help the ingredients bind together properly.
- Vanilla: Then, throw in 1 tsp of vanilla extract.
- Red food coloring: To make red velvet cookies, we’ll use 2 tsp of red food coloring.
- Sugar mix: Last but not least, you will need 1/2 cup of white sugar and 1/2 cup of powdered sugar. This will be used for the outer layer of the cookies.
Tools used to make this recipe
You’ll need some kitchen tools to create this recipe. I like to gather everything before I begin for an easy prep process!
- Large bowl
- Hand mixer or stand mixer
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
- Small bowl
- Cookie scoop (optional)
- Wire rack
- Measuring cups: 1/4 tsp, 1/2 tsp, 1 tsp, 1/4 cup, 1/2 cup, 3/4 cup, and 1 cup
How to make red velvet crinkle cookies
Red velvet cookies are made just like any other cookie recipe. We’ll start by mixing the dry ingredients before combining them with the wet ingredients, chilling the dough, and baking! This recipe yields 36 cookies and comes together with 15 minutes of prep time.
To begin, grab a large mixing bowl and whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
Then, use a hand or stand mixer and combine the softened butter with the brown and white sugar until the mixture becomes creamy. Add the eggs, vanilla, and red food coloring. Beat until combined.
Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture until a dough forms and the flour is completely mixed in.
Let the batter chill for at least 4 hours. Overnight is preferred.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet or two with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, combine the white sugar and powdered sugar to create the sugar topping.
Roll 2 tbsp of dough into balls at a time, and then roll in the powdered sugar mixture until completely coated. Place the cookie dough balls about 1 inch apart on the baking sheets.
Bake for a total time of 12-14 minutes, or until the cookies become crackled. Let cool for 10 minutes and then transfer to a white rack to continue cooling.
Storage is easy! Leftover red velvet crackle cookies can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for up to about 5 days. To keep them fresher longer, store in the refrigerator.
Why didn’t my crinkle cookies crack?
One of the most surprising causes of non-crinkling cookies is expired baking powder! Be sure to check the dates on pantry staples before using.
A second reason is placing the dough in the oven before it’s fully preheated. Be sure to wait until the oven reaches 350°F before placing the baking sheets inside.
What makes cookie dough crack?
Red velvet cookies achieve a “cracked” surface as a result of the ingredients and chilling the dough! The outer sugar layer also helps the cookies crack as the dough spreads in the oven.
Why do my homemade cookies get hard?
Cookies get hard and stale as time goes on. To keep them soft longer, one of my favorite hacks is to store them with a slice of bread! The cookies soak up the bread’s moisture, causing the bread to dry out — not the cookies.
Should you chill cookie dough before baking?
In this recipe, yes! Not all dough requires chilling before baking, but in this recipe, chilling allows the dough to expand slower and reach the perfect crinkled texture.
An extra special mix-in idea
Want to take your red velvet crinkle cookies to the next level? Mix in white chocolate chips! This is a popular addition to red velvet cookies because the white chocolate flavor tastes so good alongside the cocoa powder!
If you liked this recipe, you’ll want to try these!
More treats, coming right up! If you’re in the mood for some more holiday baking, try one of these recipes. Chocolate pecan pie, anyone?
- Best Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe
- Healthy Gingerbread Bundt Cake
- Paleo Chocolate Pecan Pie
- Healthy Gluten-Free Linzer Cookies
Photos by Moriah Sawtelle and recipe by Erin Antoniak.
- 2 cups flour
- 1/4 cup dutch cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp red food coloring
- 1/2 cup white sugar + 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, cream softened butter with brown and white sugars until creamy. Add in two eggs, vanilla, and red food coloring and beat until combined.
- Slowly add in flour mixture until dough forms and no flour remains.
- Let batter chill at least 4 hours or overnight (preferred).
- Once ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, combine white sugar and powdered sugar.
- Using 2 tbsp of dough, roll into balls. Roll each dough ball into powdered sugar mixture until completely coated. Place about 1 inch apart on baking sheet.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes or until crackled. Let cool 10 minutes before moving to wire rack to cool the rest of the way.
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