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These red velvet crinkle cookies are cakey, chewy and perfectly sweet. This is an easy cookie recipe that’s ultra-festive thanks to the gorgeous red color!
These red velvet crinkle cookies are easy to make and totally gorgeous. The dough comes together quickly and the finished cookies have the perfect balance between cakey and chewy.
- Easy. There is nothing complicated about this cookie recipe. You’ll only need a few basic ingredients and the process is simple enough for kids to help with the cooking making.
- Perfectly sweet. Each ball of cookie dough is rolled in granulated sugar and powdered sugar before baking. This adds sweetness to the exterior of each cookie and also makes those gorgeous cracks!
- Soft + chewy. The addition of some cornstarch makes these cookies soft and chewy with an irresistible cake-like texture.
- Festive. The color of this cookies is pretty intense. I’d say the only cookies I make that are more colorful are my Baby Yoda cookies or my Cookie Monster cookies. The red hue is super festive and perfect for a holiday cookie platter.
Tips for Success
- Can I leave out the cornstarch? You can, but your cookies won’t be as soft or chewy. You may also need to adjust the baking time slightly. (I recommend using it.)
- Don’t skip the chill time. If you skip the chill time your cookies will spread more during baking and you’ll end up with flatter cookies.
- Need to see a step by step? The process for these cookies is similar to chocolate crinkle cookies. If you want to see how to shape the cookies, check out my quick video in that post.
- How do I tell when the cookies are done? The cookies are done when they have gorgeous cracks like the ones you see in my photo above. They will still be soft when they are done, but will firm up after they have cooled completely.
- Let them cool. The cookies need to cool for at least 5 minutes before you use a spatula to move them to a wire rack where they can finish cooling. If you try to move them sooner they will break.
- Watch the kiddos. This recipe is simple enough for even young children to help make the dough and shape the red velvet cookies. Just watch their hands. The red food coloring can come off on skin while rolling the dough so you’ll want to wash little hands before they go touching everything in your house.
- Counter: Store these cookies in an airtight – but not closed – container or on a plate covered with saran wrap. If you close the container, moisture from the cookies will impact the pretty sugar coating on the outside of the cookies. They will last for 2-3 days.
- Cookie Dough: You can freeze the cookie dough before it has been baked. Freeze the prepared balls of dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper until solid, then transfer to an air-tight, freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Thaw, then roll in the sugars and bake as usual.
- Baked cookies: I don’t recommend freezing the baked cookies. The sugar will get gummy during the defrosting process.
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ tablespoon cornstarch
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 ⅓ cup light brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- 5 teaspoons red food coloring, liquid food coloring (not gel)
- ½ cup granulated sugar, for rolling
- 1 cup powdered sugar, for rolling
- Mix dry ingredients. In a medium bowl combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cornstarch. Set aside.
- Cream butter and sugar. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and light brown sugar together until light and fluffy. You can also do this in a large bowl with a hand held mixer.
- Add eggs. Add the eggs to the butter mixture one at a time, mixing between additions.
- Add remaining wet ingredients. Add the milk, vanilla and food coloring. Mix until combined.
- Add dry ingredients. Add the dry mixture and mix on low speed until just combined. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl with a spatula to make sure everything is well incorporated.
- Chill. Cover your bowl with saran wrap and chill the dough for 1 1/2 hours.
- Prep your tools. Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the granulated sugar in a shallow bowl. Do the same with the powdered sugar.
- Shape the cookies. Roll about 2 tablespoons of dough into a ball. Roll each ball first in the granulated sugar, then in the powdered sugar. Make sure you get a thick coat of sugar on the dough. Place each ball on the prepared baking sheet and repeat until you have enough cookies to bake. I can usually bake 8 cookies at a time. There needs to be some space to allow the cookies to expand.
- Chill the dough. In between batches, chill the dough. This way it doesn't warm up too much and is still easy to roll.
- Bake. Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake your cookies for about 14 minutes, until nice cracks have formed. The cookies will still be soft when they are done, but will firm up as they cool.
- Cool. Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to finish cooling.