It's that time for holiday baking! These Homemade Grinch Cookies have a crinkly sugar exterior and a buttery, soft almond-flavored interior. No need for a cake box just your pantry staples will do - let's get baking!
The Story Behind the Cookies
What's your favorite holiday movie? The Grinch is definitely one of my favs. Not only is it funny, but it sends a good message: life's about joy, generosity and love. A message straight from the heart 😉
I think a lot of people love that scene from the movie when the Grinch's heart grows 3 sizes and he realizes what Christmas is all about. So I thought, why not make a cookie dedicated to that message.
A lot of folks have already created their rendition of Grinch themed holiday cookies. Many of the recipes use boxed cake mix, so we're doing a homemade edition!
I think the crinkle of the cookies is an absolute must when imitating the Grinch. Makes sense, right? 🙂
Tips for Making Crinkle Cookies
To get that crinkle where the cookies spread just enough to get cracks with sugar still coating the top with a soft interior can be a challenge, but we're up to any kind of cookie challenge! Here's some tips to get that gorgeous crinkle look!
- Chill the dough beforehand. The cold dough on the inside will take longer to bake, while the exterior will bake to crispy perfection!
- Roll the dough in sugar first, then powdered sugar. This is a great food science tip! Sugar attracts water, so it draws out the moisture from the inside so that you get that lovely crinkle on the outside. You want to use granulated sugar too (not just powdered sugar) to help the powdered sugar stick and not melt while baking.
- Set the oven rack closer to the top part of the oven so that the exterior of the cookie bakes faster than the interior.
Crinkle cookies are often baked around Christmas time, and they're usually chocolatey fudgy goodness. While these cookies aren't chocolate flavored, they do have a fudgy brownie texture!
I used almond extract, ( I love a good buttery almond cookie during the holidays!) but you can also use vanilla extract if you prefer it.
How to Make the Cookies Green
Matcha powder! Jk! No thanks - there's a time for matcha but this ain't it. Just good ol' food coloring will do that trick.
Add the food coloring once the dough is made and mix it on low speed until it's well incorporated.
How to Add a Heart to the Cookies
There are multiple options here! You can buy pre-made candy hearts, cinnamon hot candies or you can do what I did because the store didn't have those options - use red frosting or icing!
A few tips for drawing on those hearts:
- Use a fine point piping bag or icing tube.
- Use a toothpick for help with getting the tip at the bottom of the heart
- Icing doesn't stick well to powdered sugar, so remove some of the powdered sugar where you plan to draw the heart.
Recipe Tips & FAQs
Yes, definitely! I wouldn't let it sit longer than overnight, but you can let it sit overnight and make them the next morning.
Nope! I'm sure it depends on the brand of food coloring, but I used one made by Betty Crocker and the color of the dough compared to the cookies looked the same!
Homemade Grinch Crinkle Cookies
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- ½ cup room temperature unsalted butter (1 stick)
- 2 room temperature eggs
- 2 teaspoons almond extract
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- green food coloring
- ¼ cup sugar
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- red icing (optional)
- red sprinkle hearts (optional)
- Beat the sugar and butter together until creamy (about 3 minutes on medium speed).
- Add eggs one at a time and almond extract.
- Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl and gradually add into the mixer.
- Add food coloring until you get the desired color of green.
- Cover and refrigerate the dough for 2 hours.
- When ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fareinheight and move the oven rack to a higher level.
- Take the dough out of the refrigerator and roll 1.5 tablespoons of dough into balls.
- Coat the dough in granulated sugar and then in the powdered sugar.
- Place 2 inches apart on a lined baking sheet and bake on the upper oven rack for 10-13 minutes or until you notice air bubbles escaping in between the crinkles of the cookies.
- Let cookies cool completely before icing or adding the heart sprinkles.
- Baking on a higher baking rack, helps the cookies get a crispy exterior while the inside says soft.
- Instead of icing, try heart candies or cinnamon candies.
- If icing the cookies, remove the powdered sugar where you plan to pipe the heart to help the icing stick well. Use a toothpick to help get sharper lines.
- The dough can be chilled overnight.
(Nutrition values are calculated by third-party software and an estimate that can vary based on product brands and cooking methods.)