Graham Cracker Cookies
Chewy Graham Cracker Cookies are made with crushed graham crackers and ground cinnamon. They are sweet fall cookies that are perfect for munching alongside a cup of hot tea or a favorite fall coffee drink. This recipe is quick to make (no chilling and no mixer required) and a great addition to your fall favorites.
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I recently used a graham cracker base cookie in two of my favorite copycat cookie recipes here on the blog (Crumbl’s Smore’s Cookies and Crumbl’s Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies). The graham cracker cookie was so good on its own that I opted to make a few tweaks and publish here as a solo recipe.
The flavor of these chewy fall cookies is a bit reminiscent of a soft snickerdoodle cookie, but the brown butter adds a deep nutty flavor that is irresistible paired with the notes of cinnamon. They are so good!
Four Reasons You’ll Love This Recipe for Graham Cracker Cookies
- Once opened, graham crackers go stale quickly. This cookie recipe is great for using up leftover graham crackers before they go stale. Note: only use crackers that still taste good eaten on their own.
- Brown butter is sensational in baked goods–if you haven’t yet tried it, you must. This is a great easy recipe to give it a try. Yum.
- The recipe doesn’t require softened butter, is mixed completely by hand (no electric mixer needed), and is a no-chill recipe that you can bake immediately.
- Fall cookies are often thought of as pumpkin cookies. But not everyone likes pumpkin. Here’s a fall cookie you can add to your recipe box that has the flavors of fall without the ubiquitous pumpkin!
Basic Supplies for Baking Cookies
If you don’t bake a lot, it’s worth spending a bit of time making sure your kitchen has everything you will need before you begin a recipe. Here are a few of my top must-haves for every baker.
Though this recipe doesn’t require an electric mixer at all, I do love my hand mixer for quickly creaming together butter and sugar in many other recipes.
Good sturdy cookie sheets (I line mine with parchment paper) are essential too. A cooling rack allows cookies to cool quickly without overcooking.
A kitchen scale is helpful for getting ingredient quantities right every time. It’s far more accurate than measuring cups and saves washing up the measuring cups as you bake too!
Cookie storage boxes are also helpful. I purchase these inexpensive generic boxes from Target and they are handy for storing the many batches of cookies that appear around our home or for transporting cookies during the holidays.
I could go on and go, but that’s a start!
Ingredients You Will Need
Unsalted Butter – Use unsalted butter. We are going to brown the butter (which starts with melting it) so there’s no need to soften it ahead of time. Super handy! After the brown butter cools we add a bit of water to replace some of the moisture that evaporates during the browning process.
Granulated Sugar and Light Brown Sugar – we’ll use a mix of sugars here as the brown sugar adds some additional chewiness to the cookies.
Egg + Egg Yolk – These cookies needed extra egg to achieve a soft and chewy texture. You’ll use one egg as well as one egg yolk. Use the discarded egg white in an omelet or another recipe.
Note: Take the eggs out of the fridge before you begin to brown the butter and they should be close enough to room temperature by the time you are ready to add them in.
Vanilla Extract – adds extra flavor to the cookies.
All-Purpose Flour – I use all-purpose unbleached flour for my cookie recipes. Measuring it accurately is very important for the final taste and texture of the cookies. Weighing the flour is preferred, but you can also spoon it into a measuring cup and level it off with a butter knife if you don’t have a kitchen scale. I like to gently aerate the flour by mixing it briefly with a whisk before spooning it into a cup to make sure it’s not overly packed.
Graham Crackers – use honey or cinnamon graham crackers, full sheets. The crushed graham cracker crumbs replace part of the flour in the recipe.
Ground Cinnamon – Used in the cookie dough and for the cinnamon sugar coating.
Baking Soda & Salt – The baking soda ratio in these cookies provides beautiful crackled tops!
How to Make Graham Cracker Cookies
This is just an overview–find the complete printable recipe at the end of the post!
Brown the butter
We’re going to brown butter on the stovetop for these cookies. You can check out my How to Brown Butter post for more detail on how the process works. Also try using brown butter in my S’mores Cookies recipe!
After the butter is browned (the printable recipe below includes complete instructions), pour it immediately into a large heat-proof bowl and allow to cool for ten minutes.
Add a teaspoon of water (the butter will bubble, so be careful!) and stir in completely.
Prep for baking
Set the oven to 350°F and line a few baking sheets with parchment paper.
Mix together the cinnamon sugar topping (2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon) in a shallow bowl and set aside.
Make the dough
Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar to the brown butter mixture and use a wooden spoon to stir well until fully combined. Mix in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract until combined.
Add the flour, graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt to the butter mixture and mix until combined. Dough will be just a bit crumbly, but should come together easily.
Shape the cookies
Use a 1.5 tablespoon cookie scoop to scoop out about 20-21 cookies. Shape each scoop into a ball and roll in the cinnamon sugar. Arrange evenly on the baking sheets. Flatten tops lightly with your fingers.
Bake one sheet at a time until cookies are puffed, crackled, and look set on the edges.
Below you can see the difference between the puffed cookies fresh out of the oven (left) and the flattened cookies after they have cooled for 10-15 minutes (right).
Can I Make the Cookies Larger?
These cookies are 2.5″ in diameter. If you’d like to make larger cookies, simply use a larger scoop (up to 3 tablespoons) and bake cookies for an extra 2-3 minutes. Don’t forget to flatten the tops before baking.
Slightly larger cookies tend to be even more chewy in the centers which is always yummy!
More Tips and Tricks
Dry cookies? This graham cracker cookie recipe is one of my favorites, but if the cookies have baked up dry then over-measuring the flour is usually the culprit. Pick up a kitchen scale and you will LOVE it. It will allow you to measure the flour accurately for perfect cookies every time.
Can I use stale graham crackers? Graham crackers tend to go stale quickly after opening. This recipe will taste best with fresh graham crackers so if the crackers are not still tasty on their own I would skip adding them to these cookies.
Variations: Try using a homemade pumpkin spice blend in the dough (simply replace the cinnamon) for a bit of a flavor twist.
Can’t get enough cookies? Don’t forget to check out my library of Cookie Recipes including a lineup of Crumbl Copycat Recipes.
How to Freeze Cookie Dough for Later
If you wish to prepare the cookie dough and then freeze for later, follow the following steps:
After portioning out the cookies and rolling them in cinnamon sugar, “flash freeze” them by arranging the cookies on a parchment-lined cookie sheet and allowing to freeze until solid (or at least hard on the outside).
Then, add all the cookie dough balls into a gallon size freezer safe storage bag (don’t forget to date and label) and freeze for up to 1-2 months.
To keep things simple, I usually take out the bag of frozen cookie dough and allow to thaw in the fridge overnight before baking as the recipe instructs.
How to Store the Cookies
Store cooled cookies at room temperature in an air-tight container for up to five days.
How to Freeze Cookies for Later
For long-term storage, baked and cooled cookies can also be frozen for 1-3 months in freezer-safe packaging. Thaw cookies you plan to eat at room temperature–and don’t refreeze.
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Graham Cracker Cookies
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon water
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed 3.5 ounces
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar 2.3 ounces
- 1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour 6.65ounces
- 4 sheets graham crackers, crushed fine (full sheets) about 66g
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
Cinnamon Sugar Coating
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- First, we'll brown the butter. Melt a stick of butter slowly on medium low heat in a saucepan or skillet. Once melted, turn the heat up a bit and watch the butter closely and stir frequently using a wooden spoon. The butter will be bubbling and popping as the water is evaporating out. Once this slows down you need to keep a close eye as the next step is the browning of the milk solids. Once the milk solids are beginning to toast, you'll start to notice tiny bits of brown forming in the pan. Swirl the spoon around the pan a few times more and remove it promptly from the heat.
- The butter should have swirls of browned bits in the bottom of the pan and is now ready to use. Note: Butter can go from toasted to burnt quickly, so watch closely. Pour the browned butter (every bit!) into a large heat proof bowl and allow to cool for ten minutes.
- Carefully add 1 teaspoon of water to the bowl of butter and stir in (butter will bubble).
- Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper and set oven to 350°F. Mix together the cinnamon sugar coating (2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon) in a shallow bowl and set aside.
- Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar to the brown butter mixture and use a wooden spoon to stir well until fully combined (1 minute). Mix in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract until combined.
- Add the flour, graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt to the butter mixture and mix until combined. Dough will be a bit crumbly, but should come together easily.
- Use a 1.5 tablespoon cookie scoop to scoop out about 20-21 cookies. Shape each scoop into a ball and roll in the cinnamon sugar coating. Arrange evenly on the baking sheets. Flatten tops lightly with your fingers.
- Bake one sheet at a time for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are puffed, crackled, and look set on the edges. Cookies will flatten as they cool.