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This easy Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodle recipe is the cookie of your dreams! A soft and chewy cinnamon sugar cookie filled with a melty, gooey caramel center. Eat them warm for soft, pull apart caramel or cooled for a chewy center.

Stack of caramel stuffed snickerdoodle cookies broken in half to show the caramel centers.
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Classic snickerdoodle cookies are great, right? But why have a snickerdoodle when you can have a big soft chewy caramel stuffed snickerdoodle cookie instead?!

These may look like an ordinary cookie, but a delicious buttery caramel surprise is waiting inside!

Whether you are baking for the holiday season or are just looking for a cookie that has a super fun twist, this is the best cookie recipe that is certain to wow everyone–if you share, that is!

If you love all things cookies, make sure to check out these pumpkin spice molasses cookies, iced shortbread cookies, or these cream cheese snowball cookies!

Why You Will Love These Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodles:

  • They are soft and chewy and also ooey gooey! Snickerdoodles are known for their soft and chewy texture, but adding a soft caramel to the middle of the cookie dough makes these another experience in texture!
  • A fun way to enjoy a classic cookie. Sometimes the same old cookie gets boring. This an easy way to change it up a bit!
  • Great to bring to parties, cookie exchanges and more. These caramel filled cookies are for more than just your Christmas cookie tray. They are going to wow the crowd of any party, bake sale, fall or holiday party and so much more!
Caramel filled snickerdoodle cookies arranged on surface with flaked salt and caramels placed around them.

Recipe Ingredients:

  1. flour: all purpose flour, spooned and leveled or if you have a kitchen scale, measure the flour for best results.
  2. butter: Unsalted butter, softened to room temperature. Softened butter will make a slight impression when gently pressed into with your finger. If the butter completely caves in or is super soft, it has softened too much. If you need your butter to soften quicker, cut it up into smaller pieces. That should speed up the process.
  3. eggs: large eggs, room temperature for best results
  4. sugar: regular granulated white sugar for these caramel-stuffed snickerdoodle cookies. No brown sugar is needed.
  5. vanilla: use a high quality vanilla extract versus imitation if possible.
  6. baking soda: I will surely say this again, but make sure it is fresh and not expired. This can impact your recipes.
  7. cream of tartar: this is what gives Snickerdoodle cookies their signature flavor and soft texture, don’t skip it!
  8. cinnamon: don’t skimp on the cinnamon! You can certainly add a bit more than the recipe calls for if you are a big fan and want more than just a light sweet cinnamon flavor.
  9. salt: sea salt is our preference but table salt will work as well
  10. caramels: I have tested these cookies with a variety of caramels. The Werther’s Soft or Werther’s Chewy Caramels the best but they are a touch longer than the Kraft caramels so I press them down into more of a cube/squared shape so they fit the best. The Werther’s tend to stay softer than the Brach’s or Kraft brand.

Why Do Snickerdoodles Call for Cream of Tartar?

Cream of tartar is essentially a powdered acid that is a byproduct of wine making. It has a variety of powers in cooking and baking, but in the case of snickerdoodles, it adds a tang to the flavor to balance the sweetness and also helps keep the cookies soft and chewy.

No cream of tartar? That doesn’t mean you can’s have these caramel filled snickerdoodles. I also found that you can substitute 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder for 1 tsp of cream of tartar.

Step-By-Step Instructions:

  • Whisk together flour, salt, cream of tartar, baking soda and cinnamon until combined in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • In a separate, large bowl, cream the softened butter and sugar for 3-4 minutes or until light and fluffy using an electric hand mixer or standing mixer with paddle attachment (flat edge attachment).
  • Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix until fully incorporated.
  • Add the dry ingredients mixture into the wet ingredients about 1/3 at a time and beat until dough starts to form and flour is incorporated. For best results, chill this dough for 20-30 minutes. This will make sure the dough is cool enough so it will not spread when baking the cookies.
  • After chilling the dough, use a medium cookie scoop (about 1.5 tablespoon) to form cookie dough balls. Press thumb into the center to make an opening for the caramels.
  • Remove caramels from wrapping and press to form into a square like shape. Press a soft caramel into the hole and roll the cookie dough until the caramel is covered and centered.
  • Roll the cookie dough balls in cinnamon-sugar mixture and arrange on a parchment lined cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until the edges are set and center is slightly puffed and starting to settle back down.
  • Add a sprinkle of flaked sea salt to the caramel stuffed snickerdoodles cookies after baking for a salted caramel snickerdoodle cookie!

Recipe Tips and Notes:

  • If you want your caramel super soft and gooey, eat them fresh from the oven! Once these caramel stuffed snickerdoodle cookies cool, the caramel will be much chewier although not hardened. If you want the caramel to be extra gooey after they have cooled, pop them into the microwave for a few seconds and you are back in the game!
  • If possible, chill the cookie dough even if just for 15-20 minutes.This tends to help make these cookies more fail proof. It is easy for some ingredients to become too warm when making the dough. I like to test one cookie and see how it comes out. I have made them without chilling before and they are just more flat than the chilled cookies.
  • You can certainly skip the caramel as well. I hate to say this one, but you don’t have to add the caramels to these Snickerdoodles, but then that basically defeats the purpose, right?? But maybe you only add the caramel to some of the cookies, a bit of a compromise, right?

Storage Instructions:

For best results, eat these caramel snickerdoodle cookies within 2-3 days for the softest texture. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. They will keep for up to 5 days, but they may be less chewy after the first couple days.

I don’t recommend freezing these cookies after baking as the caramel can become a bit too hard and the texture doesn’t quite keep.

You can freeze cookie dough balls without the caramel centers and just add a couple extra minutes to bake time to bake from frozen if you have some extra cookie dough.

Caramel stuffed snickerdoodle cookies arranged on surface with sea salt sprinkled over top.

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5 from 7 votes

Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodle Cookies

This easy Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodle recipe is the cookie of your dreams! A soft and chewy cinnamon sugar cookie filled with a melty, gooey caramel center. Eat them warm for soft, pull apart caramel or cooled for a chewy center.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Chill: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 24 cookies (approx.)

Ingredients 

  • 1 c butter, softened
  • 1 ⅓ c sugar
  • 2 ¾ c flour, spooned and leveled, (365 grams)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 24-28 soft caramels

For Rolling Cookies

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Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350° F.
  • In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar using a hand or standing mixer until light and fluffy (about 2-4 minutes.). Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix until fully incorprated.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, salt, cream of tartar cinnamon and baking soda. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet and mix just until combined. For best results, chill dough for 20-30 minutes.
  • Using a 1 ½ Tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop cookie dough and roll into a smooth ball. Press thumb into the center of the ball to make an imprint. Unwrap caramel and form into cube like shape if needed.
  • Place caramel in the thumbprint and close the dough over top of it to make a ball. Make sure there is enough dough surrounding the caramel so that it doesn't melt through the bottom of the cookie completely. You can opt for just 1/2 of a caramel in each cookie if preferred.
  • Mix the sugar and cinnamon for rolling together and then roll each ball into the mixture to fully coat. Place on a cookie sheet (I always line mine with parchment) 2 – 2 1/2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until edges set and cookies are slightly puffy.
  • Cool on a cooling rack (don't worry, taste several when getting them there, I know that's what we are all gonna do!) and store in an airtight container.

Notes

  • If you want your caramel super soft and gooey, eat them fresh from the oven! Once these caramel snickerdoodle cookies cool, the caramel will be much chewier although not hardened. If you want the caramel to be extra gooey after they have cooled, pop them into the microwave for a few seconds and you are back in the game!
  • If possible, chill the cookie dough even if just for 15-20 minutes.This tends to help make these cookies more fail proof. It is easy for some ingredients to become too warm when making the dough. I like to test one cookie and see how it comes out. I have made them without chilling before and they are just more flat than the chilled cookies.
  • You can certainly skip the caramel as well. I hate to say this one, but you don’t have to add the caramels to these Snickerdoodles, but then that basically defeats the purpose, right?? But maybe you only add the caramel to some of the cookies, a bit of a compromise, right?

Nutrition

Calories: 217kcal, Carbohydrates: 32g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 35mg, Sodium: 185mg, Potassium: 78mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 20g, Vitamin A: 262IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 25mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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