Chocolate Crackle Cookies

by | Nov 27, 2020

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Chocolate crackle cookies, crinkle cookies, brownie cookies, 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.

chocolate crackle cookie on a metal wire rack

About the Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

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!

chocolate crackle cookies on a wire rack
chocolate crackle cookies with one on top cracked open showing inside texture

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.

pile of chocolate crackle cookies on a plate
chocolate crackle cookies stacked on table

 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.

Chocolate Crackle Cookie Ingredients

  • Salted Butter
  • Vegetable Oil
  • White Sugar
  • Cocoa
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla
  • Salt
  • Baking Powder
  • All Purpose Flour
  • Powdered Sugar
chocolate crackle cookie ingredients in glass bowls

How to Make Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

  1. Preheat your oven to 375˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Add the powdered sugar into a bowl.
  3. Cream together the butter and granulated sugar. Add oil, cocoa, eggs, and vanilla. Mix until combined.
  4. Add in the dry ingredients. The dough will be wet and sticky.
  5. Using a #30 cookie dough scoop, or 2 tablespoon fulls, drop balls of dough into the powdered sugar. Roll around the dough balls until completely coated.
  6. Place the chocolate crackle cookie dough balls onto the baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 6-8 minutes, then cool. The cookies will start to set up once pulled out of the oven.
    lots of chocolate crackle cookies spread on a wire rack
    chocolate crackle cookie leaning against milk bottle

    Looking for more delicious cookie recipes? Try these:

    taste before beauty chocolate crackle cookies stacked on top of each other

    Chocolate Crackle Cookie

    Yield: 24 cookies
    Cook Time: 8 minutes
    Total Time: 8 minutes

    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.


    • 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


    1. Preheat oven to 375*F. 
    2. Cream butter and sugar. Add oil and cocoa, then eggs and vanilla.
    3. Mix in the dry ingredients. Dough will be wet and sticky.
    4. Using a #30 cookie dough scoop, drop balls of dough into powdered sugar. Place completely powdered cookie dough balls on parchment-lined cookie sheet.
    5. 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.

    chocolate crackle cookies pinterest pin


    Hi, I’m Missy. Welcome to Taste Before Beauty. For 28 years I’ve been developing recipes that taste delicious, before they look delicious.

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