Sunday, January 16, 2011

Chocolate Crackles


I’ve been eyeballing these cookies since I first saw a recipe for them in a special Martha Stewart holiday cookie magazine printed back in 2006 and again in her Cookies Cookbook. Every time I’ve looked through my magazine, these Chocolate Crackles have always leapt off the page and said make me. Make Me. MAKE. ME.

But I didn’t listen until now. I don’t know why it took me so long, but man, I’m glad I finally did.

They are yummy and soft and just plain pretty. But mostly yummy. Oh and chocolatey of course. Very, very chocolatey.

So really that’s all you need to know, right?


Start out with 8 ounces of bittersweet chocolate. Oh yeah.


Melt the chocolate in a saucepan over another pot of simmering water. Then set aside to let cool.


I transferred it to a heatproof plastic bowl so it could cool a bit more quickly.

And yes, I tested the temp with my finger. And maybe more than once. : )


While the chocolate cools, mix together the flour, cocoa baking powder and salt…


… until it’s all combined and beautiful.

Set aside and beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs. Mix in vanilla.


And then add the melted chocolate.


Add half the flour mixture, some milk and the rest of the flour mixture.

Don’t worry. I’m going to give you a link to the recipe.

Right now. And again at the end, too.


Once it’s all mixed together, divide the cookie dough into four equal parts. Wrap each part in plastic wrap and refrigerate for a couple of hours or until firm.

Now, my cookie dough seemed much more like thick cookie batter, so I also placed it in the freezer to get it a little firmer.

When ready to use, unwrap one section at a time.


I divided it into 12 pieces with a knife because I found that if I handled it too much, the “dough” was starting to melt from the body temperature of my hands.

But dividing it this way ended up working out pretty good.

Grab one of the small pieces of dough and quickly roll into a 1 inch ball. Every few you roll, rinse and dry your hands to avoid them sticking to your hands too much.


Roll it in granulated sugar and then roll it in powdered sugar and place on a baking sheet.

Like so.


Here’s the different stages for reference.

P.S. The recipe link only mentions using one of the sugars, but the one in my magazine calls for both. So I’d do it that way.


Wow. It was tempting to just leave them like this.


But then I wouldn’t get to see them do this after they baked.


They are just so pretty.


And so so good.

Martha Stewart’s Chocolate Crackles

I love trying new things and then crossing them off my “to bake” list.

How about you? What was the last new thing you baked?

Allison said...

Those are my mom’s favorite cookies! I love baking them during the holiday season and adding a little sprinkle of peppermint crumbs (smashed candy canes) to the top. It adds a little color and still tastes so yummy!

January 20, 2011 12:12 PM
Kiran said...

This is really similar to a great recipe I have that also includes black pepper. A great spicy chocolate cookie that you would never guess was pepper!

January 20, 2011 12:36 PM
Ani said...

They look so good! Martha is my hero! you take such lovely pictures!

January 20, 2011 01:20 PM
Debbie Trevino said...

I bake Peanut Butter Munchies. They are a soft chocolate outside and creamy peanut butter filling. They are the most requested cookie I make. Here is the link
It is a Reeses Peanut Buter Cup in cookie form.

January 20, 2011 03:58 PM
Tammy said...

A local bakery makes these and they are my favorites! I made banana bread with my daughter this last weekend. Next goal is cinnamon rolls like my mom used to make. Love your site!

January 20, 2011 04:01 PM
rose said...

i have a very similar recipe of these from culinary school- but they have almond meal and coffee extract, and no cocoa. we called them Earthquake Cookies. one of my favs!!!
and next time- just scoop the dough out with an ice cream scoop or melon baller so they don’t melt from your hands. ;)

January 20, 2011 05:46 PM
Tara said...

I haven’t made it yet, but I fully intend to make a guava cake in the next week! I had no idea such a thing existed!

January 20, 2011 06:33 PM
Becki D. said...

I made these tonight to take to a dinner date tomorrow. Um. These are amazing. And are very likely to be the death of my diet. Oopsie.

January 20, 2011 08:47 PM
sharyl said...

i love chocolate crackles! though, i know them as chocolate crinkles. but whatever they wanna call this, its super yummmm!

January 20, 2011 09:08 PM
Beads said...

OMG they look absolutely delicious!!

January 20, 2011 09:21 PM
Beks said...

I haven’t baked anything new for ages because, I lost my baking mojo!
However over Christmas I did manage to whip up some chocolate bars as presents. They were Nigella Lawson’s sweet and salty crunch nut bars. They were blogged about by
They’re absolutely delicious.

January 21, 2011 09:24 AM
Ella said...

Ohhhh those look gooooood! I think I had one of those once, and I loved them! =) The last thing I baked was a batch of caramel squares, but they don’t really taste like caramel that much, so I call them brown sugar squares ;P And they are so ridiculously easy to make and yet so delish! Anyways, I’m definitly going to try to make these!

January 21, 2011 10:09 AM
Jenni said...

I got a Star Wars cookbook for Christmas from my boyfriend and I made Wookiee Cookies! Warm and soft and delicious!

January 21, 2011 02:39 PM
Matthew said...

I made these twice for Christmas. The firs batch I made I added some red and green sugar to the powdered sugar. They

January 21, 2011 02:48 PM
Diana said...

I had a birthday this week and baked myself a cake – your ‘Moist Yellow Cake’ from the ‘Finally I Found it Post’ – complete with pink frosting (although my pink frosting was more a ‘Pepto Bismol Pink’ instead of the pale pink I was going for. Delicious none the less. I made it on Wednesday and there’s only one lonely piece left. It tasted great!!

January 21, 2011 03:41 PM
Lizzie said...

Puttin these on my list! Yummy!

January 21, 2011 03:58 PM
ophir said...

I made those so many times and every time it was soooo GOOD!
I love them.

January 21, 2011 04:25 PM
Kara said...

Goodness that brings back memories when I was a kid I accidentally ate one of those cookies raw because I wasn’t paying attention to what they were and I was hungry ^^;

For some reason my mother didn’t notice.

January 21, 2011 08:48 PM
teri said...

I’ve made these for years now, but mine are originally called mint snowcap cookies, the recipe calls for mint chips to be incorporated into the dough but the finished cookie looks exactly like this picture! Started making them when my son was young, he started calling them mint juleps, he had no idea what a real mint julep was, and to this day now that he is grown and married he still ask me to make him some mint juleps at christmastime!

January 21, 2011 11:11 PM
Sparky said...

the last new thing i made was your peanut butter fudge! so it wasn’t really the last thing i BAKED, but it sure was delicious!

January 22, 2011 04:07 PM
Jennifer Klaussen said...

Focaccia Bread – going in the oven RIGHT NOW!

January 22, 2011 04:41 PM
Emily said...

Cakeballs! I just made my first batch last night and they didn’t stand a chance when I took them to work :)

January 22, 2011 05:13 PM
Rebecca W said...

Browned butter, lime and cranberry muffins from my friend Jot the Baker, talk about amazing!

January 22, 2011 07:07 PM
Tawny @ The Year of The Cookie said...

i’ve seen a lot of recipes for these and haven’t tried them yet.. but now I think I need to!

January 23, 2011 12:28 AM
Amiyrah said...

The last thing I made was sweet potato cheesecake. I kind of made it up; couldn’t find a good enough recipe. Next is sweet potato muffins lol. My little princess doesn’t like the sweet potato puree baby food I made so now I have to use it up somehow.

January 23, 2011 12:50 AM
Mglòria said...

Delicious!!! I would like to it someones this afternoon while I look sun says goog nignt!

January 23, 2011 11:30 AM
Collette Berriman said...

I made these cookies this week and they are AWESOME! My kids love them! Not messy to make at all and so easy. I kept my batter in the freezer and just baked them a doz at a time. Who needs to buy cookies when you can make them as easily as this? Thanks for sharing!

January 23, 2011 12:10 PM
Laura said...

Wow – completely different chocolate crackles to the ones we make in Australia! Here we use rice bubbles (krispies haha), cocoa and copha and set them. These look amazing – ill have to try them! :)

January 23, 2011 02:49 PM
Lena Goodwin said...

Saw this post, marched into the kitchen and made them. Amazing!

January 23, 2011 04:24 PM
Janet B said...

The last thing I baked was french silk chocolate pie, for a co-worker’s birthday last week. I did 2 – a sugar free version since she’s diabetic, and a regular one.

Chocolate crackles are my very favorite cookie. I use the recipe my mom always used, which calls for oil instead of butter. It’s really really good. I like using only powdered sugar to roll them in. That way you get bigger patches of white against the dark. They’re so pretty.

January 23, 2011 08:30 PM
Amber H said...

Cookies n Cream Fudge :) yum!

January 23, 2011 10:00 PM
Agnes said...

These look amazing! …hmmm the last thing I made was an assortment of cupcake pops inspired from your book:

brought ‘em to my work and they loved it :)

thanks Bakerella!

January 23, 2011 11:48 PM
Kathy said...

These cookies are the best! We’ve were introduced to them back in the late 60′s. My brothers named them “Mildew Cookies” and the name stuck!

January 24, 2011 02:15 AM
Tiffany Defa said...

I made these with milk chocolate chips instead of the bittersweet chocolate and they were delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

January 24, 2011 11:43 AM
Jenny @ Bakography said...

Just made these and blogged about them! They are TO DIE FOR! My favorite recipe from you to date. Even better than the super easy peach crunch cake!

January 24, 2011 02:28 PM
Joen said...

Thank you sharing this recipe. I’ve loved this cookie since I was a little girl and now that I’ve started baking I would love to make it.

January 24, 2011 06:23 PM
Stephanie F. said...

These were VERY yummy!
My cousin called them Earthquake cookies :)

January 24, 2011 11:06 PM
Laura Fredlund said...

The last thing I baked was a chocolate sour cream cake a couple weeks ago. :) Next thing on my list: my first cake pops! I got your book today, and I CANT WAIT to try them!

January 24, 2011 11:18 PM
Cissy said...

I make these every year for Christmas, my family calls them Turds in a Snowbank!

January 24, 2011 11:55 PM
Betty said...

You’ve been such an inspiration to me and baking. Without you, I wouldn’t have the motivation to keep on baking. I made the chocolate crackles, the chocolate bowls, the brookies and a lot more. I’m still dying to try the cake pops though!

January 25, 2011 01:48 PM
maman perdue said...

I tried the recipe. Unfortunately, my balls melted and I finally had just one flat huge cookie ! Even after a couple hours in the freezer, when I start rolling balls, it melts really quickly. I think my conversion of cups into grams where not quite right ! Or maybe one of you have another explication ? Thanks anyway for you blog which brings a lots of ideas.

January 25, 2011 02:32 PM
Wendy said...

My favorite cookies of all time are Chocolate Crackle Tops! I grew up with these (42 years ago). My babysitter used to make them, and Snickerdoodles which are my other all time favorite! Thanks for bringing back the memories!

January 25, 2011 04:08 PM
Sarah @ Scissors and a Whisk said...

That’s *so funny* because I have Martha Stewart’s Cookies (well.. and cupcakes..) book, and I bookmarked the page for the Chocolate Crackles as well! A loooot of other pages too, but regardless, I’ve been wanting to make this, and you motivated me to do so :) The last thing I baked… hmm… some toffee white chocolate chip macadamia nut cookies for my fiance :D

January 26, 2011 10:25 AM
Jenny @ Bakography said...

I made these for my husband and his co-workers. They DIED over them! Thanks for the delish recipe!

January 26, 2011 03:04 PM
maeve said...

OMG these guys look sooooo cool i can’t wait to try’em out!

January 26, 2011 05:20 PM
bev said...

I have been making these since the mid-60′s. The recipe is in the original Betty Crocker Cookie Cookbook. I made them this year for our cookie exchange…a big hit. LOVE THEM!!

January 26, 2011 11:37 PM
Jan said...

I am new to your website/blog. I’m a little behind the time, but had to try these. And I was NOT disappointed. So delicious. Thanks for the idea.

January 27, 2011 02:35 PM
Noelle said...

Love your recipies!!! Going to try your pillow cookies :) yummy…

January 27, 2011 02:36 PM
Lois said...

Oh my, your making me hungry!

January 27, 2011 06:22 PM
Catherine said...

I also love trying new things and crossing them off my “to bake” list! The last new things I baked were your cake balls! I made red velvet and strawberry and both were a hit!

January 27, 2011 10:27 PM
Johanna said...

At first I thought that you had made miniature rye loafs because those cookies really look like finnish rye loaf.

January 28, 2011 09:39 AM
Jessica H. said...

I love chocolate crackle cookies! They’re one of my favorite desserts and yours look great. I can’t wait to try your recipe!
The last new thing I baked was an Alvin-and-the-Chipmunks cake plus matching cupcakes for my 3-year-old’s birthday party.

January 28, 2011 03:17 PM
Rose said...

I’ve made these before! They’re delish :)
The last things I baked was a Sea Salt Foccacia and a Dutch Apple Pancake. The pancake was ridiculously easy and scrumptious, perfection for a late brunch.

January 29, 2011 04:12 PM
karen said...

Don’t know where, or why, MARTHA got the idea to rename and claim these cookies, but they’re from the Betty Crocker Cooky Book (published in 1963) and are called chocolate crinkles. My mom has been making them ever since.

This is now one more reason I scrutinize anything Ms. Stewart throws out there to everyone.

Great idea to post the recipe though, because they’re definitely a hit whenever made, but, which you’d given credit where it was/is due.

January 29, 2011 06:02 PM
carina said...

I just made these yesterday and they are amazing! So easy! I almost didn’t make them because they seemed like other crackle cookies I’ve tried and didn’t really like but I am soooo glad I did! They are perfectly sweet and not so chocolaty that you would get sick of them fast. They’re perfect!

January 30, 2011 06:31 PM
Holly said...

You made these look so good that I had to try them. They were delicious. Thanks!

January 30, 2011 09:46 PM
Tara said...

I made Pioneer Woman’s Oatmeal Crispies from her cookbook! SOOO delicious!

January 31, 2011 03:31 PM
Megan said...

Just made these today for fun- super delicious! These were so moist and chewy but the double layers of sugar gave it a nice crust. Going back for thirds! :)

January 31, 2011 03:59 PM
Danielle said...

I recently tried two new recipes: 1) S’mores Brownies (OMG), and 2) Homemade Kit Kat bars (OMFG).


Consumed: My Culinary Adventure

February 2, 2011 09:31 AM
Bakspecialisten Jessica said...

Oh my, lookin’ good! :)

February 3, 2011 02:00 PM
nini said...

hi bakerella!

this tastes awesome and i love your website!!!

quick question tho, my cookies didnt turn out as flat as yours..any idea why?and the sugar are starting to brown..


February 4, 2011 12:35 AM
Jessica said...

OMG I made these cookies and they are like heaven!!
It took a little while to translate the recipe in dutch (amounts) but it was worth it!!

February 4, 2011 12:05 PM
ziboo said...

Thanks for this cute recipe, it was soooooo yummy !!!
I even translated it in French on my blog to share with others n_n

February 7, 2011 03:27 PM
jessica myers said...

The last new thing I baked was molasses cookies. Who knew they would be so yummy! I think molasses by itself is disgusting, but my hubby loves it. So one day he called saying he was having a really bad day so I whipped up a batch of the cookies and was so surprised at how yummy they were. I dipped mine in hot coffee! The hubby loved them too!

February 10, 2011 10:48 AM
Sarah P. said...

Ohhhhhh, Happy Valentine’s Day to us with these crackles. YUMMMMMM! :) Thanks for sharing!

February 14, 2011 06:58 PM
Michelle said...

My mom makes these same cookies, but when she takes them out of the oven she puts a Hershey’s kiss in the middle of each cookies. The extra chocolate makes them that much better.

February 17, 2011 05:45 PM
Kathy said...

Fudgy brownies in cupcake liners in a convection oven from Perfect Light Desserts :) ahh were they good for my sweet teeth!

February 22, 2011 12:19 AM
Janis said...

These have been a favorite of mine SINCE that picture in 2006! lol. I make them every year!!! :) Yours look delicious!

February 23, 2011 03:50 PM
Mary said...

You can mix some cinnamon in the granulated sugar before rolling. Yum!

March 22, 2011 12:43 PM
Xime said...

Hey, Bakerella!
I found your website a few years back and since then, it’s become one of my favorite websites to visit since the moment I turn on my computer(:
You’ve opened so many doors for me!
I never knew about Martha Stwart and I didn’t know the existance of cake pops until I saw the little chickens (which are so cute by the way) and the sheep’s.
I always loved cooking, and then I decided to trust your recepies which turned out to work great for me.
I adore the “Ridicously Easy” pie and tomorrow I invited some girlfriends over to make a “cooking club” in the afternoon, and we’re baking your recipe and by Martha Stewart.

You re-lived my passion, you made it come alive with your inspiration and enthusiasm.
I fell in love with your recipes and your pictures!
Two of the things that move my life are photography and cooking and you put them together to make something special and unique!
You teached me a lesson without you even knowing it(:
I absolutely LOVE your blog and I visit everyday to see what you’ve updated and how’s it going lately.
I hope to hear more from you soon.

Best regards!
Xime Ibáñez (Mexico City)

March 31, 2011 10:09 PM
Fiona said...

I’m from Holland.
One thing I don’t understand.
If you make them into a ball, do you have to flatten them and then put them into the oven?
Please answer quickly, because I want to make them for Motherday when me gonna do High tea. :D

April 29, 2011 03:48 PM
Fiona said...

They look so delicious!
aaaah. <3

April 29, 2011 03:50 PM
Aubree Smith said...

Can these cookies be made ahead of time and just set in the freezer?

May 12, 2011 11:00 AM
Jeni said...

My mom use to make these when I was a kid except she adds walnuts – we call them Chocolate Pixies. These are still my favorite holiday cookie but now I make them myself :)

May 16, 2011 08:40 PM
addicted to baking said...

now they r on my “to bake” list which just keeps getting bigger and bigger

May 21, 2011 03:44 PM
Emmanickel said...

These were soooooooo GOOD! They were chocolatey and the perfect texture. They were DELISH!

July 3, 2011 02:50 PM
Hira Faheem said...

you didn’t mention the baking temperature??
after preheating oven at max temperature, at what degree should we bake them?

August 16, 2011 11:19 AM
Ali said...

Hi! Thanks for the info about rolling these in granulated sugar before the powered sugar. I just baked two trays of these, one with the granulated sugar and one without. The ones with the granulated sugar roll first have a much better look. On the others the powered sugar has melted and so they are not so white.

Better go and put them on a wire rack to cool!

August 24, 2011 07:34 AM
Natasha said...

My mom and I make these cookies every year for our neighborhood’s Christmas cookie exchange! I absolutely love them! They ( and their dough) are completely irresistible! So happy to see them on your site!

August 26, 2011 06:39 PM
jennifer said...

Been eating these as far back as I can remember. My aunt called these chocolate crinkle cookies. Checked the recipe and its the SAME! They are great! But NOT martha’s… Just saying…

September 4, 2011 12:07 AM
Joex Villanueva said...

I’ve been reading from your site for I-don’t-know-how many-days now, and I love every photo, every post! I’ve started baking less than two years ago and I’m loving every baking moment of it =) However I’m always super busy and all the stuff I want to do related to baking at the end of the day I simply forget or put off for another “some other day.” Just now you gave me an idea, a “bake list” -and for someone like me with 101 things to do before the day ends, I think the simplicity of a bake list is genius. Thank you and I hope to see more of the fantastic things in your site =) God bless!

September 9, 2011 05:18 AM
Phoebe said...

I made these yesterday but my cookies didn’t flatten out very much?

September 13, 2011 01:25 AM
Leah said...

I made these and my whole family agreed that they were the best cookie they’ve ever had and begged me to make more! Unfortunately Ive run out of chocolate, time to go get more :)

September 13, 2011 03:37 PM
Miriam @ Overtime Cook said...

I’ve been searching for the perfect chocolate crinkle cookie- this one looks great!

September 20, 2011 01:21 AM
Lil eni said...

i made them and they are oh so good Yum!

September 21, 2011 12:18 PM
shari brooks said...

so fun! I have a version of these cookies on my site. We affectionately label them Earthquake Cookies! I loved them as a kid and my kids continue to enjoy them today. I’ve never used granulated sugar, only confectioner’s sugar. And, something that I’ve found, the longer you let the batter set in the fridge, the fuller the cookie. I’ve let the batter sit as long as 24 hours!

September 23, 2011 05:34 PM
Norway said...

Felt inspired and tried out this recipe this weekend. Delicious! But my crackles didn’t turn out as cute as yours here, mine turned out more flat. Any tips?

October 30, 2011 10:43 PM
Uggs Boots On Sale for Cheap said...

On the same theme as you. The last thing I baked was chocolate waffles….yummy!

November 10, 2011 06:28 AM
Cierra said...

i tried these and they r delicious i love u bakerella

November 19, 2011 05:00 PM
Anonymous said...

very nice cookies

November 27, 2011 06:57 AM
Katherine said...

I made these cookies the other day and they are a hit in my house! The only thing, the crackles were not as defined as the picture. Any suggestions on why?

November 29, 2011 04:06 PM
JENNIFER D said...

Love these cookies but we call them chocolate crinkles and my great grandmother use to make these every christmas and two years ago we found here receipe and I’ve made them every christmas since..

December 8, 2011 04:51 PM
aida sofia said...

I made them yesterday… they are absolutely delicious!!!! it’s like i’m eating a brownie in a cookie shape

December 16, 2011 12:37 PM
Taylor said...

I just finished Nigella Lawson’s Double Apple Pie. It’s complete sin, and I never want to see another apple in my life, but it is doubly delicious. Love your website!

December 24, 2011 12:44 PM
Marina(the baker) said...

Something about chocolate crackles are so adicting! I baked these for christmas and they were so good! Best chocolate cookies ever!!! :)

January 12, 2012 09:42 PM
Sarah said...

I tried making these and failed miserably. The sugar never dried and I didn’t know why! Instead of being white and powerdery it became a gluggy mess. Any suggestions?

February 23, 2012 12:06 AM
Mckenzie said...

Oh my goodness! I’m making these right now!

March 15, 2012 03:43 PM
Jaala said...

I saw a picture of Mexican Wedding cookies and HAD to try them – absolutely melt in the mouth divine!

April 21, 2012 09:27 AM
ashley said...

I tried something like this but it was strawberry lemon insted of chocolate it was REALLY filling and sugary but SOOOO yummy :)

December 15, 2012 10:47 AM
Denise & Laura said...

These look amazing!!

December 28, 2012 09:41 AM
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