Dark Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are a holiday favorite and go by many names, such as Earthquake Cookies, or Snow On The Mountain Cookies
No matter what you choose to call them, they are, in my opinion, the perfect cookie! My recipe is from our family cookbook and my grandmother Maxine always called them “Snow on The Mountain Cookies”. It wasn’t until later I learned they are more commonly called Crinkle Cookies. We always made them for Christmas but they are fantastic all year round!
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What are Chocolate Crinkle Cookies?
These cookies are a super fudgey dark chocolate cookie that is rolled in powdered sugar before baking. When they bake the top of the cookies burst a little and so they look like a snowy mountain.
The beauty of Chocolate Crinkle Cookies is that they are a cinch to make, and are almost foolproof. These are great to make with kids because of their simplicity. Fair warning: they are a bit messy to make because of the powdered sugar, but that is half the fun!
How to make Chocolate Crinkle Cookies:
Plan to make these ahead of time because they need to chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours.
Step 1: Melt the chocolate
NOTE: The easiest way to melt the chocolate is in the glass bowl you will be using for the whole recipe. Just pop in the microwave and heat in 30-second increments. It’s very important to stir after each 30-second heat because the chocolate will hold it’s shape for a while, even when heated. Once you give it a stir it will likely already be nearly melted within one minute.
Alternately, you can melt the chocolate gently over a double boiler on the stove.
Step 2: Combine Dry Ingredients
Combine flour, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl and set aside. No need to sift the flour but give it a stir to remove any lumps.
Step 3: Combine Wet Ingredients
After you have melted the chocolate add the sugar, vegetable oil (or shortening), and Vanilla Extract. This will help cool the chocolate.
A note about shortening: My original recipe from my grandmother calls for Crisco shortening which was a very common ingredient in her day. I have successfully made these with vegetable oil, but they are fluffier with Crisco. You can choose what works best for you.
Step 4: Add the eggs
Add the eggs one by one. Adding eggs one by one allows the batter to really absorb the eggs, so don’t skip this step. This is important in nearly any baking recipe. Gently combine after each egg addition.
Step 5: Add dry ingredients
Finally, add the flour mixture and gently blend until completely combined. Do not overmix! Too much stirring after adding flour can make any baked good less tender.
Step 6: Cover Batter and Chill for 4 – 12 hours
This dough is very sticky and must be chilled. Once you start rolling the cookies try to work quickly. The dough should still be cold when the cookies go into the oven. If they aren’t cold they will become flat while baking.
Baked goods need to chill in the refrigerator for a few reasons:
- Cold dough makes handling easier. This dough is sticky!
- Cold fats (oil or butter) melt less quickly allowing the cookie to hold it’s shape in the oven.
- Resting the dough allows the flour to absorb all the moisture (from the eggs and oil) which results in a more even cookie. Crispy on the edges and softer in the middle.
Step 7: Rolling and Baking the Cookies
Sift powdered sugar into a shallow bowl to remove lumps.
Using a small cookie scoop, or two small spoons, working in batches, roll dough into small balls, about 1″ in size
Roll the entire ball into powdered sugar. Make sure to coat the entire cookie. Place on baking sheet about 2″ apart. Do not flatten!
Bake for about 10-11 minutes. Cookies will lose most of their shine when they are finished. Allow to rest on baking pan for 1-minute then transfer to a wire cooling rack to finish cooling for about 15-30 minutes.
How to store and freeze Chocolate Crinkle Cookies:
Be sure to let the cookies cool completely for at least 30 minutes. I find the best way to store them and preserve the beautiful look of the cookies is to store them on their side, instead of on top of each other, in an air-tight container.
These cookies freeze very well after they are baked, in an air tight container, for up to 3 months.
You can also store the rolled cookie dough in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let them thaw for about 10 minutes, roll in powdered sugar, and bake as directed above.
Ready to make your own Vanilla Extract?
It’s super easy and we have a great recipe to help you.
Ready to try some other sweet treats?
- Easy Drop Sugar Cookies are great year around and adding gorgeous sprinkles make them ideal for any holiday
- One Bowl Espresso Brownies are super fudgy and rich
- Baked Churro Donuts are the perfect combo of a churro and a no-yeast donut with lots of cinnamon and sugar
- Mexican Wedding Cookies have a soft melt-away texture and a nutty flavor
Dark Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted
- 2 cups sugar
- ½ cup vegetable oil or shortening melted and cooled
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- Combine flour, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl and set aside.
- Melt chocolate in a large microwave-safe bowl in 30-second increments, stirring until melted, or melt in a small pan on low heat.
- Add to melted chocolate the sugar, vegetable oil (or melted shortening) and vanilla. Mix well until combined.
- Add in eggs, one by one, mixing after each addition.
- Add in flour mixture, stirring gently until fully combined. Do not over mix!
- Cover and chill dough overnight or at least 4 hours.
- Once the dough is fully chilled preheat oven to 375°F
- Prepare 2 baking sheets by lining with parchment paper or lightly greasing.
- Sift powdered sugar into a shallow bowl.
- Using a small cookie scoop, or two small spoons, working in batches, roll dough into small balls.
- Roll entire ball into powdered sugar. Make sure to coat the entire cookie.
- Place on the prepared baking sheets. Do not flatten.
- Bake for 10-11 minutes. Cookies are done when the sides are firm and the tops are just slightly shiny. Rest on the baking sheet for 1-minute.
- Cool completely on wire rack. Store in a covered container.