In partnership withChallenge Butter

Snickerdoodle Meltaway Cookies

published Nov 30, 2023
Snickerdoodle Meltaways

Buttery, cinnamon-scented cookies with a meltaway powdered sugar coating.

Makes30 (2-inch) cookies

Prep35 minutes

Cook15 minutes to 20 minutes

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Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food: Jason Schreiber

What’s your holiday cookie personality? Take our quiz, then discover 10 brand-new delicious cookie recipes, featuring some of The Kitchn’s favorite bakers.

When holiday baking season arrives, the variety of cookies you can make (and eat!) is seemingly endless. My favorite cookies have always been the ones that are easy to make, are full of flavor, and have a great texture. This year, Snickerdoodle Meltaways are at the top of the list. These are a fresh take on two traditional cookies: classic Cinnamon Snickerdoodles and Meltaway Cookies, which are little buttery cookies coated in powdered sugar. And they’re fairly simple cookies to make since you don’t have to chill the dough, roll it out, or deal with cookie cutters.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food: Jason Schreiber

Snickerdoodle Meltaways are butter-forward, so using a high-quality ingredient like Challenge Butter is key to their deliciousness. Because Challenge Butter is churned daily with the freshest cream from its local family farmer-owned dairies, this freshness comes through in these melt-in-your-mouth treats.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food: Jason Schreiber

Challenge Butter has been a high-quality staple in kitchens since 1911. The company prides itself on flavor, consistency, and purity. These things make a difference, especially around the holidays when baked goods are such a big part of gift-giving and celebrating. Their high standards really come through when you want to make stellar cookies, cakes, and pies.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food: Jason Schreiber

Why You Should Bake with Unsalted Butter

This Snickerdoodle Meltaways recipe calls for unsalted butter rather than salted butter. Why use unsalted butter in baking? Bakers generally prefer unsalted butter so they can keep control of the salt content and adjust it to every bake’s unique variables. By using unsalted butter instead, you have complete control over the flavoring of your cookies since it’s being added in separately. It’s best to save salted butter for spreading onto toast or baked potatoes.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food: Jason Schreiber

Tips for Making Snickerdoodle Meltaways

  • Make sure the butter is softened. The butter needs to be soft and at room temperature to cream nicely into the sugar. If you forgot to take it out of the refrigerator, here are three ways to soften the butter more quickly.
  • Coat the cookies while they’re still warm. Make sure you set a 10-minute timer after the cookies come out of the oven to remind you to toss them in cinnamon powdered sugar. Warm cookies help the sugar to stick and melt just a little bit. Toss them once more in the sugar after they’re completely cooled for that distinctive meltaway cookie look.
  • Don’t toss the extra cinnamon sugar. Use leftover cinnamon sugar to dust over cake or French toast, sweeten coffee, or make frosting when you want a hit of sweet cinnamon flavor.

And for more holiday cookie recipes, take our personality quiz to see what cookie from our full collection of this year’s recipes you should bake next!

Snickerdoodle Meltaways

Buttery, cinnamon-scented cookies with a meltaway powdered sugar coating.

Prep time 35 minutes

Cook time 15 minutes to 20 minutes

Makes 30 (2-inch) cookies

Nutritional Info


  • 2 sticks

    (8 ounces) Challenge Unsalted Butter

  • 1 1/4 cups

    powdered sugar, divided

  • 3 teaspoons

    ground cinnamon, divided

  • 1/2 cup

    granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1

    large egg yolk

  • 2 teaspoons

    vanilla extract

  • 2 cups

    all-purpose flour


  1. Place 2 sticks Challenge Unsalted Butter in the bowl of a stand mixer (or large bowl if using an electric hand mixer). Let sit at room temperature until softened.

  2. Arrange 2 racks to divide the oven into thirds and heat the oven to 350ºF. Meanwhile, line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Place 1 cup of the powdered sugar and 2 teaspoons of the ground cinnamon in a small bowl and stir to combine.

  3. Beat the butter with the paddle attachment on low speed until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the remaining 1/4 cup powdered sugar, remaining 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute. Stop and scrape down the attachment and sides of the bowl with a flexible spatula.

  4. Add 1 large egg yolk and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and beat on low speed for 1 minute. Add 2 cups all-purpose flour and beat on the lowest speed just until combined and a soft dough forms, about 1 minute.

  5. Scoop the dough out in level 1-tablespoon portions and roll each portion into a ball. Place on the baking sheets, spacing them at least 1 1/2 inches apart, up to 20 per sheet.

  6. Bake for 10 minutes. Rotate the baking sheets between racks and from front to back. Bake until the tops of the cookies are dry and the bottoms are light golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes more.

  7. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes. While still warm, place each cookie in the cinnamon sugar, toss until completely coated, and return to the baking sheets. Reserve the remaining cinnamon sugar. Let cool completely, about 15 minutes more. Coat again in the cinnamon sugar.

Recipe Notes

Make ahead: The dough balls can be frozen until solid, then stored in a zip top bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. Bake from frozen for the same amount of time. You can also freeze the fully baked cookies without powdered sugar; thaw completely before coating in powdered sugar.

Storage: Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.