Snickerdoodle Cupcakes: Cupcakes with a Surprise Inside

Snickerdoodle cupcakes were on my to-bake list as soon as I found out that the snickerdoodle was Bride 2.0’s favorite cookie. I’m by no means the first person to make a snickerdoodle cupcake. Among many others:

  • Culinary Concoctions by Peabody made snickerdoodle cupcakes (well, really muffins) that I’ve been told by Sara at Cupcake Muffin are absolutely amazing. They look really simple to make and seem to be very close to the cookie.
  • I Heart Cuppycakes made snickerdoodle cupcakes twice – once with a cake mix and once without. They are vanilla cinnamon cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting.

While those snickerdoodle cupcakes sounded great, I opted to do things my own way.


My snickerdoodle cupcakes are burnt sugar cupcakes with a snickerdoodle cookie baked into them, topped with a cinnamon penuche frosting and another snickerdoodle cookie.

Snickerdoodle Cupcake Reviews

The very first taster – The first taster of the snickerdoodle cupcake was a friend of mine with whom I was playing a game of spades. As soon as she started eating the cupcake, she lost all ability to concentrate on the game. I took this as a good sign, but I really didn’t need to guess for long about her opinion of the cupcake. She “oohed and ahhed” for quite a few minutes about not only the flavor, but how amazing it was that there was a cookie baked in the middle. She was this cupcake’s number one fan!

The other spades players – The other spades players also loved the snickerdoodle cupcakes. It was speculated that Bride 2.0 would pick them.

Bride and Groom 2.0 – Bride and Groom 2.0 thought that the snickerdoodle cupcakes were too dry. They both said that the cupcakes tasted exactly like the cookie, but felt that the cookie didn’t really work in cake form. They did, however, both love the cinnamon penuche frosting.

Me – I thought they were delicious. However, I was a bit frustrated that the cookie blended into the cake so much. Despite my first taster’s comments about the cookie being such a nice treat in the cupcake, I could hardly tell where the cookie ended and the cake started. If I looked, I could see where the cookie was – which was neat – but it tasted just like the cake. Like Bride and Groom 2.0, I adored the frosting!

The Snickerdoodle Cupcake Recipe

I made the snickerdoodle cupcake recipe by slightly modifying How Stuff Works’ caramelized sugar cake. I have reprinted it with my modifications below.

Makes 24 cupcakes

  • 1 1/2 C granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/2 C boiling water
  • 2 eggs, separated
  • 2 1/4 C all-purpose flour
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 C (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 C milk
  1. Heat 1/2 C sugar in heavy 8-inch skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is melted and golden brown.
  2. Reduce heat to low.
  3. Gradually add boiling water into sugar mixture; continue cooking until sugar is dissolved, stirring constantly. You need to stir really quickly here to keep the sugar from glomming up.
  4. Beat egg whites in medium bowl at medium speed with electric mixer until soft peaks form.
  5. Gradually add 1/2 C granulated sugar, beating at high speed until stiff peaks form; set aside.
  6. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl; set aside.
  7. Beat butter and remaining 1/2 C sugar in large bowl until light and fluffy.
  8. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla extract.
  9. Gradually add sugar syrup, mixing until well blended.
  10. Add dry ingredients to butter mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.
  11. Fold in egg white mixture.
  12. Fill cupcake liners halfway full.
  13. You could pop these into the oven at 375 F for 20 minutes right now, but if you want the cookie baked into them, read on.

The Snickerdoodle Cookie Baked in the Middle of the Snickerdoodle Cupcake

snickerdoodle1To bake a snickerdoodle cookie into the cupcake, make a tablespoon-sized ball of a your favorite snickerdoodle cookie dough recipe and roll it in a cinnamon / sugar mixture. Then, press the ball into the half full cupcake liners.

Bake at 375 F for 25 minutes or until the top bounces back when touched lightly. As you can see above, they look kind of ugly before they are frosted. However, it’s also sort of fun to see the cookie popping out. I almost didn’t want to frost them.

The Cinnamon Penuche Frosting

I fell in love with penuche frosting when I made my quinoa cupcakes. I used the same recipe that I used on those cupcakes, only I added cinnamon to make it more snickerdoodly.

I got the original penuche frosting recipe from Southern Food on

  • 1/2 C butter
  • 1 C brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 C milk
  • 1 T ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 C sifted confectioners’ sugar
  1. In a saucepan, melt 1/2 C butter.
  2. Add the brown sugar.
  3. Bring to a boil and lower heat to medium low and continue to boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Add the milk and cinnamon and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.
  5. Cool to lukewarm.
  6. Gradually add sifted confectioners’ sugar. (I would highly recommend sifting this confectioners’ sugar. It’s such a pain to sift, but it ensures that the frosting will be extra smooth.)
  7. Beat until thick enough to spread. If too thick, add a little hot water.

The Snickerdoodle Cookie on the Top

I topped my snickerdoodle cupcakes with a snickerdoodle cookie from Wholly Wholesome bakery. I could have topped them with my own cookies, but I had lots of extra Wholly Wholesome cookies and they did look pretty cute!

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