Snickerdoodles have long been close to my heart. As a tiny kid, I remember sitting on a kitchen stool and helping my dad roll the balls of cookie dough in their cinnamon sugar coating. As a college student, my tastes matured – and I discovered these caramel filled snickerdoodles.Jump to Recipe
This recipe always makes me think of the flavors of autumn. The hint of cinnamon in the dough meshes with the deeper caramel flavor of the filling, offering a taste that is greater than the sum of its parts. When you add the texture of the classic snickerdoodle cinnamon sugar topping, you have a cookie that is hard to beat.
The best part? These cookies are not difficult to prepare. If you’ve made regular snickerdoodles – or perhaps gotten adventurous and tried my maple snickerdoodle recipe – you know that these cookies are easy enough for a child to prepare. The trickiest part is deciding how much to caramel to roll into the center of each cookie…and having the patience to wait for them to come out of the oven.
These caramel filled snickerdoodles are a “risk-averse” version of this recipe, which takes these cookies from great to spectacular. Alyssa Rivers at The Recipe Critic uses browned butter and a little bit of sea salt to make a much fancier (and pleasantly challenging) caramel filled snickerdoodle. Once you’ve mastered this basic version, I highly recommend trying her recipe!
- This recipe uses both brown and granulated (white) sugar. The brown sugar lends a fair bit of moisture to the recipe, which will make our snickerdoodles soft and chewy.
- For dry ingredients, this recipe uses flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, cinnamon, and just a hint of salt.
- For flavoring, this recipe uses both vanilla bean paste and ground cinnamon.
- Because these are snickerdoodles, we will also need a cinnamon sugar topping, made from (big surprise) granulated sugar and ground cinnamon.
- Possibly the most important ingredient in this recipe is Kraft caramel bits. In your baking aisle, near the chocolate chips, you will find bags full of caramels. (During the fall, they may also be in the produce section, near the apples.) The classic Kraft caramels are tiny cubes wrapped in plastic. Those work okay, but the caramel bits (1) do not require tedious unwrapping of plastic, and (2) let you vary the amount of caramel in each cookie according to your taste. Either the cubes or the bits will result in a delicious final cookie.
How to make caramel filled snickerdoodles
Cream together butter and sugars before mixing in the eggs and vanilla bean paste. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. Once your dry ingredients are completely combined, stir this into your butter mixture. Mix on medium speed until a firm dough has formed.
Form your dough into tablespoon-sized balls. Before rolling, flatten out each ball and fill the center with several caramel bits, or one caramel cube. I made this recipe 2 or 3 times in order to find the perfect ratio. While 3 caramel bits brings a nice caramel flavor, I recommend using 4-5 caramel bits (or more) in order to make sure the caramel flavor really carries through to the final cookie.
Wrap the dough around the caramel bits and roll the dough back into a ball, making sure the caramels are as close to the center of the ball as possible.
Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small, wide bowl. Roll each ball of snickerdoodle dough in the cinnamon sugar mixture before placing on a plate or cookie sheet.
Refrigerate your snickerdoodle dough for 15-30 minutes and preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. This refrigeration step is important! It will help prevent the final cookies from spreading while they are in the oven.
Once the oven has preheated and the cookie dough is relatively firm, place your caramel filled snickerdoodles on a prepared baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes.
Remove the snickerdoodles from the oven and allow them to briefly cool on their pan before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
And voila! Your cookies are done. Enjoy them with a cup of cold milk, a pumpkin spice latte, or all on their own.
I hope you enjoy these caramel filled snickerdoodles! How many caramels did you use in the center of your cookies? Did you make them for any special event? If you made these snickerdoodles at home, feel free to tag your pictures on social media with @WhiskAverseBaking, or leave a message in the comments below. You can also click the “Pin Recipe” button, to save this idea for later.
Caramel Filled Snickerdoodles
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup butter room temperature
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 3 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 cup caramel bits or caramel cubes, cut into halves
Cinnamon sugar topping
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- Cream together butter and sugars. Mix in eggs and vanilla bean paste.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. Once combined, stir this into your butter mixture. Mix until a firm dough has formed.
- Form your dough into tablespoon-sized balls. Before rolling, flatten out each ball and fill the center with 4-5 caramel bits, or one caramel cube.
- Roll each dough ball so that the caramel is at the center.
- Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small, wide bowl. Roll each dough ball in the cinnamon sugar mixture before placing on a plate or cookie sheet.
- Refrigerate your cookie dough balls for 15-30 minutes and preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
- Once the oven has preheated and the cookie dough is relatively firm, place your cookies on a prepared baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes.
- Remove promptly from oven and allow them to briefly cool on their pan before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.