Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Snickerdoodles

These past few days have been incredibly dreary here in Memphis. We've had a great deal of sleet, ice, and overall gloom, and I've found it very hard to motivate myself to do much of anything besides read, watch tv, and listen to The Smiths (a perfect accompaniment to this weather). But "the devil will find work for idle hands to do" (wow, I have to stop listening to The Smiths) and the one thing I did find time to do was make an excessive amount of Snickerdoodle cookies.

I had a moment of brilliance that inspired me to make these cookies: why not roll the cookie dough in pumpkin pie spice as well as cinnamon and sugar? Simple. Elegant. Brilliant. I was a bit nervous about it (messing with a classic can be risky business), but I found it a very welcome addition to what has to be my all-time favorite cookie. They still taste like snickerdoodles, but they are just the best snickerdoodles that you've ever had and you can't seem to put your finger on what makes them so good. This is the perfect time of year to give this recipe a try, but be sure not to tell your friends and family what makes these cookies so good. Everyone will just think that you make the perfect snickerdoodle cookies. Tell them that love is the secret ingredient. You'll be a Christmas hero.

I use the Joy of Cooking Snickerdoodle recipe. It's a great one, and it doesn't require shortening(read trans fat, the demon to doctors, nutritionists and mothers all over the world). Shortening is a necessary evil for things like pie crusts (as I recently learned to my dismay), but we can make a perfectly wonderful snickerdoodle cookie without it.

Feel free to top these cookies with a little cream cheese icing. It's the holidays. It's time to pull out all the stops.

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Snickerdoodles (by the Joy of Cooking, only the spices have been altered by me)
For dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs

Spice mixture:
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
a dash of ginger

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with baking spray.

Combine flour, tartar, baking soda and salt in a bowl and whisk together.

Beat butter and sugar in a stand mixer for at least five minutes on high.  You want this mixture to be light and fluffy. If you're unsure, beat for up to ten minutes.

Add your eggs to the butter and sugar mixture and beat until blended.

Add the flour mixture to the eggs, butter, and sugar and beat on low speed until just combined.

Shape dough into 1 1/4 inch balls (I like to use an ice cream scoop to shape my cookies. That way, they are all the same size and cook at the same speed). Roll dough in spice mixture. Place cookie dough balls on your cookie sheet (at least 2 inches apart) and bake for 12-15 minutes. The edges should be just slightly browned.

Enjoy a perfect cookie! You can keep the cookie dough in the fridge and bake whenever your sweet tooth strikes. The dough should keep for about two weeks, but it probably last that long!


  1. I thought that love was always the secret ingredient.

  2. I have a cold and I'm pretty sure these would cure it. Mail some to Nashville??