Whip up a batch of these delightful Grinch Crinkle Cookies, perfect for adding a touch of whimsy to your holiday treats. With their vibrant green hue and a heart that's 'two sizes too small', these cookies are as fun to make as they are to eat.
Grinch Crinkle Cookies
Add a dash of mischief and holiday fun to your next cookie tray with these delightfully green Grinch Crinkle Cookies.
Their lively green color and Grinch theme perfectly complement other Grinch-themed treats such as Grinch Oreo truffles and a fun Christmas Grinch Charcuterie board.
Kids will get a kick out of these playful cookies that are perfect for holiday parties, cookie exchanges, or leaving out for Santa on Christmas Eve!
Ingredients for Grinch Crinkle Cookies
Vanilla or yellow cake mix: Choose a high-quality brand for better flavor. The type of cake mix can subtly alter the taste and texture of the cookies.
Oil: A neutral oil like canola or vegetable oil works best. It keeps the cookies moist without adding any extra flavor.
Eggs: Fresh, room-temperature eggs are ideal.
Green food coloring: Gel food coloring gives a more vibrant color with less liquid. Add gradually to reach the desired shade of green.
Powdered sugar: This is for rolling the dough balls in before baking.
Jumbo heart sprinkles: These are essential for the Grinch theme. Choose a size that's noticeable but not too large.
How to make
Prep: Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper.
Mix: In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the cake mix, oil, and eggs. Mix them on medium speed for about two minutes until you get a smooth, evenly mixed dough. If you don't have a stand mixer, a hand mixer or even a sturdy whisk can work.
Color the Dough: Add green food coloring to the dough. Start with a few drops, mix, and then add more gradually until you achieve the Grinch-green color you desire. Remember, the color will slightly fade during baking, so go a shade darker than your target color.
Chilling the Dough: Chill the dough in the refrigerator for about an hour, or in the freezer for 30 minutes. This step is important as it makes the dough easier to handle and helps prevent the cookies from spreading too much while baking.
Forming the Cookies: Once chilled, scoop out portions of the dough – about the size of a golf ball. Roll them in powdered sugar until they're well coated. This sugar coating will create the crinkled effect as the cookies bake.
Baking: Place the dough balls on your prepared baking sheets, leaving about two inches of space around each one. They will spread as they bake. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes. The cookies are done when the edges are set, and the centers are no longer shiny.
Adding the Heart Sprinkle: As soon as the cookies come out of the oven, gently press a heart sprinkle into the upper right corner of each cookie. This should be done quickly as the cookies start to set as they cool.
Cooling: Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for about five minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Here are some tips to make the best cookies:
- If you're new to baking, don't be afraid to experiment with the amount of food coloring to get the perfect Grinch green.
- Make sure your eggs are at room temperature.
- Don't skip the chilling step; it's key to getting the perfect texture and preventing the cookies from spreading too much.
- Be gentle when placing the heart sprinkles to maintain the cookie's shape.
- Use cake mix right out of the box without any extra ingredients added. The oil and eggs are all it needs.
- Make sure to chill the dough before rolling into balls. This helps prevent spreading and maintains the crinkly shape.
- Roll dough balls generously in powdered sugar before baking. The thicker coating will create more crinkles.
- Bake just until set around the edges. The centers should still look a bit underbaked.
- Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to wire racks. Letting them set helps hold their shape.
- Add the heart sprinkles as soon as cookies come out of the oven while the sugar coating is still warm. The sprinkles will adhere better.
- Use gel or paste food coloring to achieve vibrant green color. Start with just a drop or two and add more as needed.
- Refrigerate or freeze extra cookie dough balls to bake later for fresh cookies anytime. Let dough thaw slightly before baking.
- Store baked cookies in an airtight container at room temperature up to 5 days. Freeze for longer storage.
- Customize with other fun sprinkles or decorations in addition to the heart sprinkles. Get creative!
Storing Grinch Crinkle Cookies properly is important to maintain their freshness and texture. Here are some tips on how to store them:
Cool Completely: Before storing, make sure the cookies are completely cooled to room temperature. Storing them while they are still warm can lead to condensation inside the container, making the cookies soggy.
Airtight Container: Place the cookies in an airtight container. This will keep them from drying out and maintain their softness. If you don’t have an airtight container, a resealable plastic bag can also work.
Layering: If you need to stack the cookies, place a sheet of parchment paper or wax paper between each layer. This prevents the cookies from sticking to each other and helps retain their shape, especially the heart sprinkle decoration.
Room Temperature Storage: Store the container at room temperature in a cool, dry place. The cookies can be stored for up to a week.
Freezing for Longer Storage: If you want to store the cookies for a longer period, you can freeze them. Place the cookies in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag or container. This method prevents the cookies from sticking together. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.
Avoid Humidity: Keep the cookies away from humid areas in your kitchen, as moisture can soften them and affect their texture.
Separate from Strong Odors: Since cookies can absorb odors, keep them away from strongly scented foods when storing in the refrigerator or freezer.
By following these storage tips, your Grinch Crinkle Cookies will stay delicious and fresh, ready for you to enjoy whenever you crave a sweet, festive treat!
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use a different type of cake mix for this recipe?
Absolutely! While vanilla or yellow cake mix is recommended for its neutral flavor and color, feel free to experiment with other flavors. Just keep in mind that the color and taste might vary slightly.
How much green food coloring should I use?
Start with a few drops and mix well. Keep adding until you achieve the desired shade of green. Gel food coloring tends to be more vibrant, so you might need less than if you're using liquid food coloring.
Can I make the dough ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare the dough and keep it refrigerated for up to 2 days before baking. Just make sure it's well covered to prevent it from drying out.
Can I freeze these cookies?
Yes, Grinch Crinkle Cookies freeze well. Once cooled, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet to freeze, then transfer to a freezer-safe bag or container. They can be stored for up to 3 months.
How do I know when the cookies are done baking?
Bake them until the edges are set but the center is still slightly soft. They will continue to firm up as they cool. Overbaking can lead to hard cookies.
Can I use homemade cake mix instead of store-bought?
Certainly! If you have a homemade cake mix recipe, it can be a great substitute. Just make sure the consistency is similar to that of a typical boxed mix.
Grinch Crinkle Cookies
- 1 box vanilla or yellow cake mix
- ½ cup oil
- 2 eggs
- Green food coloring
- ½ cups powdered sugar for rolling
- Jumbo heart sprinkles
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment, set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the dry cake mix, oil and eggs. Mix on medium speed for about two minutes, until smooth.
- Add in the green food coloring and mix until desired color is achieved.
- Chill the bowl of dough in the fridge for 1 hour or the freezer for about 30 minutes. Dough should be cool to the touch and no longer sticky.
- Scoop out a golf-ball sized dough ball and roll in the powdered sugar. Place on the baking sheet. Leave about two inches around each cookie to allow for spread. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes. Edges should be set and the center no longer shiny. Immediately place the sprinkle heart on the cookie in the upper right corner - think the location of the heart in the body!
- Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before removing from the pan. Cookies will continue to set up as they cool.