These Lemon Crinkle Cookies are the Lemon Dessert you NEED in your life! They are soft and chewy and full of bright citrus flavor. They’re like a cross between a perfect chocolate chip cookie and a gooey lemon bar, and every single bite is delicious.
You might have tried baking Chocolate Crinkle Cookies before, but if you like Lemon cookie recipes, then you definitely need to try these cookies! With lemon zest and freshly squeezed lemon juice, the citrus flavor really elevates these cookies to the next level. Add this cookie to your holiday baking; it is a nice alternative to the chocolate sweets on the platter.
These cookies reminded me of Lemon Bar desserts because they have a very similar flavor, but I actually like these Crinkle Cookies better. They are chewier, with just a little bit of crispiness on the outside, which is so satisfying to bite into. These are easily one of my favorite cookies to bake!
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What is in Lemon Crinkle Cookies?
For as much flavor as these Lemon Crinkle Cookies pack into every bite, it’s surprising how few (and how simple) ingredients are needed. You likely will have all of these ingredients in your fridge and pantry already!
Both fresh lemon zest and juice as used for this recipe. This gives these cookies the needed lemon zing that makes them so good.
Butter – Use room temperature butter for this cookie recipe so that it can be easily creamed with sugar. I use salted butter for this recipe, but you can use unsalted butter, but just add a bit more salt in then.
Sugar – Good old granulated white sugar is all you need for this recipe to balance out the tangy lemon.
Vanilla Extract – This rounds out the flavor in the cookies.
Egg – Use a room-temperature egg to help bind the dough together.
Lemon Zest – You’ll need a lot of lemon zest (this adds so much flavor) – probably 2 or 3 lemons. See our post How To Zest a Lemon for tips!!
Lemon Juice – After you’ve zested the lemons, cut them and juice them so you have fresh lemon juice.
Baking Soda – This is what makes the cookies puff up and “crinkle” while cooking. Don’t get confused with baking powder, as you need baking soda for this recipe.
Corn Starch – This helps keep the cookies soft and chewy.
Salt – It makes all the flavors pop.
Flour – White, all-purpose flour is perfect.
Powdered Sugar – Use this to roll the dough balls in before baking to give them that sugar icing look.
How to Make Lemon Crinkle Cookies
First, combine the Flour, Baking Soda, Salt, and Corn Starch in a medium bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, add the room-temperature butter and granulated sugar. Cream on low speed until light and fluffy. Then, add the lemon zest, lemon juice, egg, and vanilla. Mix until just combined, scraping down the sides as needed.
Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat on low just until the mixture is combined, scraping the sides as needed. The dough will be thick and sticky.
Cover the dough and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (and up to 3 days) – if you do not refrigerate the dough, the cookies will be flat and crunchy rather than soft and chewy!
After the dough has been refrigerated, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Using a medium (2 tablespoons) cookie scoop, scoop the dough into balls. As you scoop each dough ball, roll it in the powdered sugar before placing it on the prepared baking sheet.
Note: if the dough has been refrigerated for more than 3 hours, you may need to let it sit at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes before scooping so it is easier to handle.
Baking The Lemon Crinkle Cookies
Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges look set. The middle, between the crinkles, will still look a little sticky, but that’s fine.
Note: If you are cooking them in batches, place the unused dough in the fridge until you are ready to cook the next batch – the dough cooks best if it stays cool.
After baking, leave the cookies on the sheet pan for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to continue cooling. The cookies will deflate and look more “crinkly” as they cool. And they will firm up enough for you to get them off the cookie sheet.
Once the cookies have cooled, dig in! You will love the lemon flavors, the icing effect of the powdered sugar, and the soft, gooey center of the cookies. I can’t get enough of these cookies!
Recipe Pro Tips!
Great Tips for These Cookies
Chilling the Dough
This is an important step, as it you need to chill the dough to stop the cookies from spreading too thinly. The dough is also sticky and hard to work with at room temperature. So refrigerate for at least 3 hours or up to three days which is nice to have the dough ready when you are, but you need to have forethought for this recipe.
Baking Cookie Tip
Why are my crinkle cookies hard? This is from overbaking. Do not overbake these cookies!! They are supposed to be soft and chewy, just like their kin, the Chocolate Crinkle Cookie, which has a brownie-like texture.
Why are my crinkle cookies not crinkling?
The reason crinkle cookies crinkle is the baking soda. If your cookies aren’t crinkling number one, check your oven temperature that is correct, and then check that your baking soda hasn’t expired.
These cookies store well in an air-tight container at room temperature, but I always like to refrigerate them as they keep even longer. Just let them warm a bit at room temperature before serving.
Alternatively, they are also freezer safe. Just make sure you have them in an air-tight container. I also like to separate the layers with wax paper.
WANT MORE LEMON RECIPES TO GET THAT PUCKER GOING?
Here are some of our favorite lemon desserts and recipes. Lemon works great in both sweet and savory dishes making it a very versatile ingredient. We love the flavor of lemon all year round. It is great in the winter months, too, as it wakes up the taste buds.
- 2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon corn starch
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 generous tablespoons lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 1 cup powdered sugar (for rolling)
- Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and corn starch in a medium bowl and whisk together. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer, add the room-temperature butter and granulated sugar. Cream on low speed until light and fluffy. Add the lemon zest and juice, egg, and vanilla. Mix until just combined, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in the bowl of the standing mixer. Beat on low just until the dough is combined, scraping the sides as needed. The dough will be thick and sticky.
- Cover the dough and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (and up to 3 days). Do not skip this step, or the cookies will not work.
- After the dough has been refrigerated, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a medium size cookie scoop (about 2 tablespoons), roll the dough into balls. As you scoop each ball, roll it in the powdered sugar before placing it on the prepared baking sheet. Note: if the dough has been refrigerated for more than 3 hours, you may need to let it rest at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes before scooping so it is easier to handle.
- Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges look set. The middle, between the crinkles, might still look sticky, but that's fine. (If you are cooking them in batches, place the unused dough in the fridge until you are ready to cook the next batch - the dough works best if it stays cool).
- After baking, let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing them to a wire rack to continue cooling. The cookies will deflate and look more "crinkly" as they cool.
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Tongjude 3-Piece Silicone Spatula Set, Mini Brownie Serving Spatula, Heat-Resistant Cookie Spatula, Flexible Egg Turner, Nonstick Pancake Flippers, Kitchen Spatulas
Oven Safe, Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Baking Rack & Cooling Rack, 10 x 15 inches Fits Jelly Roll Pan
Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Commercial Baker's Half Sheet, 2-Pack, Silver
Nutrition Information:Yield: 18 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 168Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 174mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 0gSugar: 17gProtein: 2g
Recipe calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is estimation only. If you need nutritional calculations for medical reasons, please use a source that you trust.