Caramel Brown Butter Snickerdoodles

This snickerdoodle recipe is a “best of” in our family and we worked long and hard to perfect it. It’s a riff on this classic snickerdoodle that we experimented with for months. One thing we really dislike are FLAT, THIN snickerdoodles — and we discovered the foolproof way of avoiding it was to use pudding mix. This ensured the cookies bake up nice and puffy, but still tender on the inside. They’re bakery worthy, so when we saw this caramel pudding mix on the scene for the holidays, we knew we had the perfect spot for it…caramel snickerdoodles!

The combination of browned butter and caramel in these cookies heighten the classic snickerdoodle to something EXTRA.

Two quick notes about these — 1) they don’t spread much at all. They bake up very puffy. So don’t worry about placing them super far apart on your cookie sheet. Pile ’em on! 2) Err on the side of underbaking. They will absolutely firm up while cooling. Because the dough is so dense, it’s easy to overbake these — and then they get hard. I always do a test batch of 2 or 3 cookies first, and let them cool, to nail the baking time.

I found the caramel pudding mix at Walmart. The last time I went though, they were out so I had to order online. Walmart was cheapest, but Amazon was faster. 🙂


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (3.4 ounce) box instant CARAMEL pudding mix
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs

1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon


In a medium bowl, Whisk together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, cinnamon, salt and pudding mix. Set aside.

To brown the butter, heat a thick-bottomed skillet on medium heat. Add butter, whisking frequently. Continue to cook the butter until melted. The butter will start to foam and browned specks will begin to form at the bottom of the pan. The butter should have a nutty aroma. Watch the butter carefully because it can go from brown to burnt quickly. Remove butter from the heat and let cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the brown butter and sugars. Mix until blended and smooth. Beat in the eggs until combined. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Roll dough into tablespoon sized balls. In a small bowl, combine the cinnamon and sugar. Roll the balls in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place dough balls on a large baking sheet that has been lined with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper. Make sure the cookies are about 2 inches apart.

Bake the cookies 8-10 minutes or until the cookies begin to crackle and the centers don’t jiggle. Cool the cookies on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, or until set. Transfer cookies to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

Perfect Brown Butter Snickerdoodles

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