Zesty Lemon Snickerdoodles

These cookies bake crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, with a delicious citrus twist and a crunchy cinnamon-sugar coat. An absolute Christmas killer! They smell absolutely heavenly when being baked. Fairly easy to make and the kids will love rolling them in the cinnamon-sugar before you bake them! Excellent with hot tea, milk, and coffee. They're great for dipping and stay crispy after dunking!

Prep Time:
25 mins
Cook Time:
10 mins
Additional Time:
5 mins
Total Time:
40 mins
18 cookies


  • 1 ¼ cups white sugar

  • ¾ cup salted butter, softened

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

  • 3 egg yolks

  • 3 tablespoons lemon zest

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar

  • 2 tablespoons white sugar

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease 2 cookie sheets and set aside.

  2. Beat 1 1/4 cups sugar, butter, and oil together until creamy. Beat in the egg yolks, lemon zest, and vanilla.

  3. Combine flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar in a separate bowl. Sift until combined. Add the dry ingredients to the butter and sugar mixture in 2 batches, stirring with a wooden spoon until just combined.

  4. Mix 2 tablespoons sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a small bowl. Shape the cookie dough into walnut-sized balls and roll them in the sugar mixture until thoroughly coated. Space cookies 2 inches apart on the baking sheets.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven until edges are golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Allow the snickerdoodles to cool on the baking sheets for 2 to 3 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack.

Cook's Notes:

After step 4, you may choose to refrigerate the cookie dough for 30 minutes, and during the last 10 minutes of refrigeration, preheat the oven. Use a little bit of pressure when rolling the cold dough in the cinnamon-sugar to encourage proper coating. Do not flatten the cookies before baking. Add 1 to 2 minutes to the baking time.

Use orange zest instead of lemon, or mix the two. I would not consider using an extract in place of the zest due to liquid imbalances.

If you want, you can use a colored sugar in the coating mixture for a festive holiday decor.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

229 Calories
12g Fat
29g Carbs
2g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 18
Calories 229
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 6g 29%
Cholesterol 55mg 18%
Sodium 126mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 11%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 16g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 1mg 7%
Calcium 14mg 1%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 42mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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