Chocolate crackle cookie, crinkle cookie, brownie cookie, wagon wheel. Whatever you call it, this cookie is a chocolate dream come true, with its fudgy chocolate center and powdered sugar that melts on the tongue.
In my childhood memories, I remember the chocolate crackle cookie fondly. In eastern Idaho, they call the cookie, “The Wagon Wheel”. Years later as an adult, I made the recipe from the family recipe box. It was NOTHING like I remembered. It wasn’t fudgy enough, it wasn’t chocolatey enough, and it wasn’t sweet enough. So what’s a gal to do with a memory? Recreate the recipe until it matched my recollections, of course. Memories can be so sweet, can’t they!
The Hidden Problem
The problem with this variety of cookie is that the powdered sugar hides what the chocolate crackle cookie dough looks like when baked. This cookie recreation needed some serious effort so you know when you bite into it that the cookie tastes just as good as it looks, all pretty and powdered sugar-coated. I have tasted far too many on refreshment tables that looked good and tasted lackluster. Remember the name of this website – Taste Before Beauty. There’s a reason for that name.
As I fired up my creative baking skills, I knew I wanted to bring the moisture, fudginess, and chocolate flavor of a really good brownie to this cookie. Without those qualities, it just isn’t worth getting powdered sugar all over your black shirt with every bite. It took a few tries, but once I found the right match for my childhood memories, I haven’t touched the recipe to tweak it since.
I think one of the most important things I have learned over the years as I have baked with cocoa is to never underestimate its ability to thicken or set up a baked good. You can overbake chocolate goods very quickly. This chocolate crackle cookie should be pulled out of the oven shortly after it “cracks”, and then the cocoa will help to set up the cookie as it cools.
I heard once that you should pull a brownie out of the oven as soon as you smell it. I’m not sure if that’s entirely true, but I usually pull brownies out of the oven within a few minutes of that irresistible brownie smell, and miraculously the brownies set up and become chewy and fudgy. This recipe for our chocolate crackle cookie will do the same. You’re welcome.
Products I Love to Use When Making the Chocolate Crackle Cookie
- ¼ C (2 oz) salted butter
- ¼ C (2.2 oz) vegetable oil
- 2 ⅛ C (15 oz) white sugar
- ¾ C (3 oz) cocoa
- 4 large eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 C (9 oz) all-purpose flour
- 1 C (4.5 oz) powdered sugar for rolling
- Preheat oven to 375*F.
- Cream butter and sugar. Add oil and cocoa, then eggs and vanilla.
- Mix in the dry ingredients. Dough will be wet and sticky.
- Using a #30 cookie dough scoop, drop balls of dough into powdered sugar. Place completely powdered cookie dough balls on parchment-lined cookie sheet.
- Bake 6-8 minutes, then cool.
- The dough will be very sticky and wet looking, almost like a brownie batter. As long as you have measured the ingredients correctly, it will bake up properly.
- Do not overbake these. Pull them out after they crack and the cracks only appear partially shiny and no longer totally raw. The ingredient cocoa will help the cookie to continue setting up as it cools. If they are dry inside, they have been overbaked.