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Cinnamon and sweetness abound in this simple Snickerdoodle Layer Cake! A snickerdoodle crumble and snickerdoodle cookie filling are placed between four layers of delicious cinnamon cake. It’s all coated in cinnamon buttercream for one incredible cake that would be perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas!

The Ultimate Cinnamon Dessert: Snickerdoodle Cookies + Cake

Cinnamon is one of my favorite spices. For me, it’s difficult to have too much cinnamon in a dish. That’s why snickerdoodles have long been a favorite when it comes to cookies.

I’ve used snickerdoodles in a variety of sweets previously, but I’ve never made a cake with them. That is about to change! This cake is a cinnamon lover’s dream come true. It has a fantastic mix of layers and textures. The velvety cake, softly crunchy snickerdoodle crumble, and snickerdoodle cookie filling combine to create the most incredible cake-and-cookie hybrid. For genuine snickerdoodle fans, this Snickerdoodle Layer Cake is a must-try.

Ingredients

Snickerdoodle Cake Layers

  • 2 1/2 cups (325g) all purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup (112g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (310g) sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups (300ml) milk

Snickerdoodle Crumble

  • 1 1/2 cups (225g) snickerdoodle cookie crumbs*
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Snickerdoodle Filling

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups (375g) snickerdoodle cookie crumbs
  • 1 cup (115g) powdered sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1–2 tbsp milk or water

Snickerdoodle Buttercream*

  • 1 cup (224g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup (189g) shortening
  • 8 cups (920g) powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2–3 tbsp (45-60ml) water or milk
  • 4 snickerdoodles, cut in half

Instructions

  1. Prepare two 8 inch cake pans with parchment paper circles in the bottom and grease the sides. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C).
  2. Combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a medium sized bowl and set aside.
  3. Add the butter, oil, sugar and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl and beat together until fully creamed and light in color and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not skimp on the creaming time.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing until mostly combined after each. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.
  5. Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until mostly combined.
  6. Slowly add the milk and mix until well combined.
  7. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until combined and smooth, but do not over mix. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.
  8. Divide the batter evenly between the cakes pans and bake for 32-36 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few crumbs.
  9. Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool for about 2-3 minutes, then remove to cooling racks to cool completely.
  10. To make the snickerdoodle crumble, preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare a cookie sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
  11. Combine the cookie crumbs, flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Add the melted butter and toss until well coated.
  12. Spread the mixture evenly onto the cookie sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes, or until lightly golden.
  13. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool for about 5 minutes, then use a fork or something similar to toss the mixture and break it up. Allow to cool completely.
  14. To make the snickerdoodle filling, add the butter to a large mixer bowl and beat until smooth, then stir in the cookie crumbs.
  15. Add the powdered sugar and mix until well combined.
  16. Add the cinnamon, vanilla extract and salt and mix until well combined.
  17. Add some milk or water, as needed to get a smooth consistency. It’ll be on the thick side.
  18. To make the snickerdoodle buttercream, beat the butter and shortening together until smooth.
  19. Slowly add half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
  20. Add the cinnamon, vanilla extract, salt and 2 tablespoons of water or milk and mix until smooth.
  21. Slowly add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add additional water or milk, as needed to get the right consistency of frosting.
  22. To put the cake together, use a large serrated knife to remove the domes from the top of the cakes so that they’re flat. Next, cut each cake horizontally to make 4 layers of cake total. See my tutorial for leveling and torting a cake for additional help.
  23. To build the cake, place the first layer of cake on a cardboard cake circle or a serving platter.
  24. Spread about a third of the snickerdoodle filling (about 3/4 cup) into an even layer on top of the cake layer. Your filling should be thick enough that it will stay in place. If it isn’t, too much liquid was added to it and thinned it out.
  25. Sprinkle an even layer of the snickerdoodle crumble over the filling, about 6 tablespoons. Press the crumble down into the filling and spread a very thin layer of buttercream frosting over the crumble so that the next cake layer will stick to it.
  26. Add another layer of cake, filling and crumble and then another layer of each, for three layers of each. For help moving the thin cake layers around, I find a cake lifter to be helpful.
  27. Add the final layer of cake on top, then frost the outside of the cake with the remaining snickerdoodle buttercream frosting. Refer to my tutorial for frosting a smooth cake, if needed.
  28. To decorate the cake as I did, press cookie crumbles into the sides of the cake, along the bottom third of the cake. Pipe tall swirls of frosting around the top edge of the cake and top with more cookie crumble and snickerdoodles that have been cut in half.
  29. The cake is best when stored in an airtight container and eaten within 2-3 days.

Notes

  1. The snickerdoodle cookie crumbs are made by crushing up snickerdoodles. I added mine to a food processor. The number of cookies you need will largely depend on the size of your cookies. I used about 35 medium sized cookies to get the 4 cups (600g) of crumbs you’ll need.
  2. This amount of snickerdoodle crumble gives you plenty of crumble to use for decorating with.
  3. You could reduce the amount of buttercream needed if you don’t plan on decorating the cake the same way – with tall swirls of frosting on top.

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