Why This Recipe Works

For a gluten-free take on chocolate crinkle cookies that lived up to their name, we used a combination of unsweetened chocolate and cocoa powder (plus a little espresso powder) for a deep, rich chocolate flavor. Using brown sugar instead of granulated lent a more complex, tempered sweetness with a bitter molasses edge that complemented the chocolate. A combination of both baking powder and baking soda was key to achieving the hallmark crinkly look. As the cookies baked, the baking soda created bubbles of carbon dioxide that caused the dough to spread (leaving behind those crackly tops), while the baking powder provided lift without deflating. Although these cookies looked great, they were just a little too delicate and crumbly. We knew that adding xanthan gum would prevent the cookies from crumbling apart, but we also intuited that it would cause the cookies to spread less, creating a cakier, less fudgy texture. To test our instinct we baked up two batches, one with the addition of xanthan gum alone and another with xanthan gum and 2 tablespoons of water. The cookies with just the added xanthan gum were indeed too cakey. The cookies with the xanthan gum and water, on the other hand, held together and maintained their fudgy texture. To ensure these cookies were easy to shape and looked perfect every time (the dough was quite sticky), we rolled the cookies in granulated sugar first, followed by confectioners’ sugar.


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4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
5 ounces (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons) ATK All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour Blend (see related content)
1 ½ ounces (1/2 cup) Dutch-processed cocoa powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
10 ½ ounces (1 1/2 cups packed) brown sugar
3 large eggs
2 tablespoons water
4 teaspoons instant espresso powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ½ ounces (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
2 ounces (1/2 cup) confectioners' sugar
Nutritional Information


Per Serving (Serves 22)

  • Calories 167
  • Cholesterol 31 mg
  • Fat 5 g
  • Sodium 91 mg
  • Saturated 3 g
  • Carbs 27 g
  • Trans 0 g
  • Dietary Fiber 2 g
  • Monounsaturated 1 g
  • Sugar 20 g
  • Polyunsaturated 0 g
  • Protein 2 g

The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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Makes 22 Cookies
To make these cookies dairy-free, substitute vegetable oil for butter.

1. Microwave chocolate and butter in bowl at 50 percent power, stirring occasionally, until melted, 2 to 4 minutes; let cool slightly. In separate bowl, whisk flour blend, cocoa, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and xanthan gum together.

2. In large bowl, whisk brown sugar, eggs, water, espresso powder (if using), and vanilla together until no lumps remain and mixture is very smooth. Whisk in cooled chocolate mixture until well combined. Stir in flour mixture with rubber spatula until dough is completely homogeneous. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rest for 30 minutes. (Dough will be very soft and sticky.)

3. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Place granulated sugar and confectioners’ sugar in separate shallow dishes. Working in batches, use 2 soupspoons to portion out 2-tablespoon-size pieces of dough and drop into granulated sugar. Coat each piece of dough with sugar, then roll into rough balls. Transfer balls to confectioners’ sugar, roll to coat evenly, and space 2 inches apart on prepared sheets.

4. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until puffed and cracked and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will look raw between cracks and seem underdone), about 12 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking.

5. Let cookies cool completely on sheet before serving. (Cookies can be stored in airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.)