Chocolate Crinkles


Chocolate crinkle cookies! Chocolate dough rolled in powdered sugar and baked into a festive black and white cookie. Perfect Christmas cookies!

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Please welcome guest author Garrett McCord as he shares some of his best-loved holiday chocolate crinkle cookies.

One of the best parts about any holiday—be it Christmas, Thanksgiving, a birthday, Diwali, Columbus Day, whatever—is that you get an excuse to eat some of your favorite foods. For me, that means chocolate.

Now, I’m generally not a big chocolate eater during the year, but when December rolls around it’s totally game on. The chilly weather and holiday spirit just make me crave it for some reason. That craving means I’m whipping up old favorites like chocolate peppermint bark cookies, truffles, and homemade hot chocolate.

It also means it’s time to make those adorable looking cookie fiend favorites, chocolate crinkles.

These chocolate crinkles are a holiday staple in winter, but are great any time of the year. Soft, devil’s food-like cakey cookies are rolled around in confectioner’s sugar. When they bake the dough rises and the chocolate dough peeks out in little crinkled fissures beneath the white sugar.

Crinkles are easy-peasy to throw together and make for a flashy addition to any cookie platter. A warning though: these cookies are so good and chocolaty they may not make the cocoa cravings go away. In fact, they might just make them worse. ;)

Chocolate Crinkles Recipe

  • Prep time: 4 hours, 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Makes approximately 50 cookies

If you want, you can jazzify these cookies in a number of ways. Add some cinnamon to confectioner's sugar. Roll the cookies around in colored sprinkles or sugars.

For something a little more exotic, pulse the confectioner's sugar in a food processor with 2 teaspoons of Earl Grey, chai tea, or matcha powder.


  • 1 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups white granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar


1 Beat together cocoa powder, white sugar, vegetable oil: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or beat by hand with a wooden spoon) beat together the cocoa powder, white sugar, and vegetable oil until it comes together into a shiny, gritty, black dough of sorts.

2 Add eggs, one at a time, add vanilla: Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing for 30 seconds each. Add the vanilla and beat in thoroughly.

3 Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, espresso powder: In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder if using.

4 Beat dry ingredients into cocoa oil mix: Mix into the chocolate mixture on low speed until just combined. Do not overbeat.

5 Cover and chill: Cover the dough with plastic wrap and chill the dough for four hours or overnight.

6 Roll dough into balls, roll into powdered sugar, place on cookie sheet: Preheat the oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the confectioner's sugar in a wide bowl.

Using a rounded teaspoon get clumps of the chilled dough and roll them into 1-inch (2.5 cm) sized balls using your hands.

Roll the balls in the confectioner's sugar and place on the cookie sheets (you should be able to get 12-16 on each sheet).

7 Bake: Bake at 350°F for 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool a minute or two on the sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

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Garrett McCord

Garrett McCord is a professional writer and recipe developer whose work has appeared in many print and online publications such as Gourmet Live, Saveur, Huffington Post, Smithsonian, and NPR. Past clients also include numerous food companies, wineries, and distilleries. Garrett writes about cocktails on his website, Coupe de Grace.

More from Garrett

181 Comments / Reviews

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Did you make it? Rate it!

  • Sharon

    I have two questions. I’m planning to make these in the next few days:
    1) Can I use a cookie scoop to form these?
    2) I’m wanting to fold in crushed peppermint bits. Would that work well with this dough?

  • Sara S

    What type of cocoa powder did you use, natural or Dutch processed? Thank you!

  • tash

    I did make these with a few alterations. I added 1 cup of semi-sweet mini chocolate chips and I added cinnamon to the icing sugar. It was delicious!


  • Lena

    Beautiful cookies! I subbed melted butter for the vegetable oil and left them in the fridge overnight. My oven is in Celsius and only dials in 10-degree increments, so I tried baking them for about 14 minutes at 170 degrees Celsius. Overbaked the first batch but the second batch was wonderful! Beautiful crinkles, light texture, and rich chocolatey goodness!

    Just a few notes:
    1. When it says cakey, it MEANS cakey! If you’re looking for gooey cookies then this is not the recipe for you. But otherwise, these cookies have a wonderfully light texture! Don’t know how to call the texture otherwise :)

    2. Don’t overbake or the powdered sugar will melt and the cookie will become dry! I checked on them often after the 8 minute mark and baked them at 170 degrees Celsius for 10~12 minutes. Still worked just fine, though my oven isn’t calibrated and results may differ according to climate.

    3. Keep your hands cool while rolling the dough into balls! I kept an ice pack covered in plastic wrap on hand so I could cool my hands whenever the batter started to stick. And don’t forget to chill the dough between batches! The temperature makes a huge difference in how sticky this stuff gets :)

    4. The taste can be a bit bland, even though it’s sweet and chocolatey. I added cinnamon powder to my powdered sugar and it was great! Far better than just plain powdered sugar. I’m considering stirring in chocolate chips next time I make these.

    Or maybe some sea salt sprinkled on top?

    In any case, wonderful and easy holiday cookies. Will make again and again!


  • Anne Vanacore

    Disappointed. Followed recipe exactly. Chilled overnight. Dough was very crumbly hard to form a ball. Will try again using melted chocolate instead of the powder.

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