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Sourdough Molasses Crinkle Cookies

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Collage image of platters of crinkle top sourdough cookies with title text overlay.

These sweet and spicy sourdough molasses crinkle cookies are glittery, festive, and so much fun.

The presentation is guaranteed to wow!

Everyone from Santa to grandma will be begging you for the recipe (and a little sourdough starter) so they can make them too. 

A plate of glittery, sugar coated sourdough crinkle cookies with festive mushroom and bead garlands.

This recipe was inspired by the sourdough chocolate chip cookies from The Boy Who Bakes. Probably one of the best sourdough recipes on the internet!

It starts with browned butter and that’s really all we need to know because that’s the best place to start!

Brown and white crinkle cookies on a red platter with bead garland and greenery.

Crinkle-top cookies are really beautiful with their sparkling glittery sugary crust. They look like an icy frosted landscape or like the festive Amanita mushrooms that have become such a fun holiday collectible. 

We have been collecting mushroom tree ornaments for close to 15 years, so these cookies really fit the holiday theme around here!

A plate of molasses crinkle cookies with an Amanita mushroom garland.

Brown and white crinkle cookies on a red platter with bead garland and greenery.

Sourdough Molasses Crinkle Cookies

Yield: 60 1-ounce cookies

A soft, spiced molasses cookie with a crunchy sugary top.


  • 226 grams butter (2 sticks)
  • 220 grams organic granulated cane sugar
  • 220 grams molasses
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 240 grams sourdough starter at 100% hydration
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 430 grams all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 100 grams organic granulated cane sugar, for coating cookies


  1. Add the butter to a small pot and melt over medium heat. Stir occasionally. Let the butter cook until it develops a golden-brown color and a toasted smell. Set the butter aside to cool completely.
  2. In a large bowl cream the browned butter, sugar, and molasses with an electric or stand mixer. Scrape down the sides of the bowl occasionally. I use my stand mixer with the paddle attachment.
  3. Once the butter mixture is light and fluffy, you can beat in the egg yolks one at a time. Scrape down the sides of the bowl between each addition. Make sure each egg is fully incorporated and the mixture stays light and fluffy.
  4. Add the sourdough starter and vanilla and beat the mixture again until everything is well combined. Let this mixture rest while proceeding with the next step.
  5. Measure all the dry ingredients, including the spices, into a large bowl and whisk them together well.
  6. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir them gently with the paddle or dough whisk until just combined.
  7. Cover the bowl and refrigerate this mixture for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.

Baking the Cookies

  1. Preheat your oven to 350℉. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Pour the coating sugar into a small bowl.
  3. Using a 1-ounce scoop or spoon, scoop the dough and roll it into a ball. Flatten each ball slightly and dip one side in the sugar. Press the cookie dough down into the sugar so you get a nice even coating.
  4. Place the cookies sugar side up on a baking sheet leaving plenty of space around each cookie.
  5. Just before baking dip each cookie in sugar again, ensuring a nice thick coating that will crinkle when baking.
  6. Bake the sheets one at a time in the center of the oven for 8 to 10 minutes.
  7. Let the cookies cool on the sheet pans for several minutes before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.

Freezing the Dough

This recipe makes a lot of cookies so you might want to freeze some or all of the dough unbaked. Roll and coat the cookies with sugar and place them close together on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. You can make many layers on one sheet if you use parchment to separate them. Cover the sheet loosely with plastic wrap and place them in the freezer. Once completely frozen you can move them to a freezer bag for storage. These cookies bake wonderfully from frozen. Just follow the same time, temperature, and baking instructions starting at step 5 above.

    Crinkle top cookies on a red platter with text overlay.


    Wednesday 22nd of November 2023

    So much sugar.....they look so good though. Could coconut or date sugar be used? Could honey or maple syrup be used--add more flour?


    Tuesday 7th of February 2023

    Could this be adapted using a gluten free starter and gluten free flour? I’m imagine a 1:1 blend may still require an adjustment with the liquids 🤔 but I don’t know

    Butter For All

    Thursday 9th of February 2023

    Hey again!

    That's a good question. I'll be perfectly honest. I don't have much experience baking with gluten free flour or gluten free starter. If you do want to play around with it, I suggest making a small batch by halving or even quartering the recipe. .


    Saturday 24th of December 2022

    Could I add cocoa powder to these to make them chocolatey? Would any other adjustments need to be made?

    Butter For All

    Friday 30th of December 2022

    Hi again, Emily!

    Good question. I would try replacing 50-100 grams of flour with cocoa powder, and probably leave out the spices. I think it's a good idea and I will probably try it too!


    Tuesday 20th of December 2022

    Thank you for the recipe. It's hard at this time of year to enjoy everbody's sweets and treats when I cannot tolerate flour that hasn't been slow fermented. This sounds wonderful. PS I grew up not far from you, where the McKenzie converges with the Willamette.

    Butter For All

    Tuesday 20th of December 2022

    Hi Lalia,

    I completely understand!I personally think these cookies are best after fermenting in the fridge for 24 hours! So yay!

    This is truly a beautiful and magical area, the rivers are glorious. I hope you get back to visit now and again.

    Have a really wonderful holiday,


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