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Easy Snickerdoodle Cookies Without Butter Recipe

Enjoy my popular Snickerdoodle cookie recipe – they are the best no butter cookies and cookies without butter!

cinnamon and sugar coated Snickerdoodle cookies

Last week I was craving some yummy cinnamon and sugar coated Snickerdoodle cookies like my grandparents used to make.

I was excited to make some when I discovered I was out of butter, one of the main ingredients in my recipe. Arggghh.

I’m a determined sort of gal so I scoured the web for a recipe for Snickerdoodle cookies without butter.  It wasn’t easy, but I eventually tracked one down!

I’m sharing my no butter cookie recipe with y’all below because they turned out so soft and delicious, that you would never guess they don’t contain butter. 

Turns out that Snickerdoodle cookies without butter might be even more delicious than those made with butter!

 How To Make Cookies Without Butter

I’m trying to make more of our snack foods as opposed to buying them, both to save money and keep scary ingredients out of our house.

This has been my go-to cookie recipe for a while now and it is so much easier to make compared to other cookies since it is butter free.

If you are wondering how to make cookies without butter, you’ll be happy to know that you make them just like any other Snickerdoodle cookie.

You mix up the dough, roll it into a ball in your hand, roll in cinnamon sugar to coat, and bake. 

The only challenge to making cookies with oil instead of butter is that they might flatten out too much if you place them on a hot pan. 

My suggestion is to use a cool pan each time.

This will help your cookies keep their shape and not flatten out!

No Butter Cookies Tips & Tricks

Set of 2 silicone baking mats

I bake ALL of my cookies on a silicone baking mat like this set of mats from Target.

I’ll never go back to dirty pans or parchment paper again. My silicone baking mat might be my most-loved kitchen item.

OXO Stainless Steel Small Cookie Scoop

I use a small cookie scoop like this one to get consistently sized cookies. This makes them cook evenly and all turn out perfectly every time.

Rolling the cookie balls in cinnamon sugar is a critical step in getting perfect cookies.

Yes, it is a bit time-consuming but I promise it is worth it. Don’t skip this step!

And last, the dough will seem a bit greasy compared to traditional cookie dough.

Don’t be alarmed – they will turn out fine. If they seem WAAAAYYY too greasy though, you may have under-measured your flour.

I suggest adding a tablespoon or two of flour and see if that helps. 

Follow the cookie recipe without butter instructions below for amazing results.

Why These Cookies Are Amazing

cinnamon and sugar coated Snickerdoodle cookies

First, these cookies are way cheaper to make than traditional cookies made with butter.

I knew that vegetable oil is cheaper than butter, but when I actually did the math I made a discovery: Butter is actually six times more expensive than vegetable oil!

So not only are these cookies with oil instead of butter delicious, but they are also frugal. 

To keep this cookie recipe without butter simple and easy to make with ingredients on hand, I have omitted the cream of tartar called for in some traditional recipes.

This ingredient is supposed to make the cookies rise better but I think you’ll find that these Snickerdoodle cookies without cream of tartar are plenty light and fluffy without it!

Some people claim that the cream of tartar gives Snickerdoodles a characteristic “tang”, but honestly I’ve never noticed that.

I have made this recipe with and without cream of tartar and I can’t tell them apart.

How To Get Thick & Chewy Butter Free Cookies

cookie recipe without butter snickerdoodles

Sometimes oil based cookies spread on the pan and turn out flat and hard. 

Here are my secrets to getting thick and chewy no butter Snickerdoodles:

First, be sure to roll the cookies into a ball and coat thoroughly with the cinnamon sugar mixture. 

Then place them on the pan at least 2 inches apart and slightly press them down with your hand. They should still be mostly in a ball shape. 

Be sure to bake them on a cool pan each time – a warm pan will make the cookies spread and flatten out. 

Do NOT overbake! They should still be soft when you take them out of the oven. They will finish cooking on the pan. 

If you follow these suggestions you will get nice thick cookies without butter. 

Variations & Substitutions


You can use many different oils in this recipe

As you can find in the almost 100 comments below, there are MANY substitutions and variations you can make on these no butter cookies!

Here are some common substitutions people have tried and that appear to work:

• Using rice bran oil, olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil in place of vegetable oil

• Using almond flour or gluten free flour in place of all-purpose flour

• Substituting 2 packets of hot cocoa mix for 1/2 cup of sugar

• Replacing the teaspoon of vanilla extract with 1/2 tsp of almond extract

another cookie recipe without butter

I’ve created lots of variations on butter free cookies since this recipe is so popular!

Click here for my no butter chocolate chip cookie recipe.

And if you’d like to try a chocolate variation, check out my new chocolate cookies without butter recipe here.

Or check out this recipe if you are looking for a classic soft sugar cookie without butter.

As you can see there are many options for making Snickerdoodle cookies with oil instead of butter.

These butterless cookies even come together in 5 minutes and in one bowl (now that’s my kind of baking). Here is the recipe so you can give them a try. 

Check out these related posts:

I hope you enjoy this cookie recipe without butter!

Any questions? Please read through the comments below for answers or leave a comment below.

Yield: 4 Dozen

Easy Snickerdoodle Cookies Without Butter

Easy Snickerdoodle Cookies Without Butter

Easy Snickerdoodle cookies without butter. Classic cinnamon sugar cookies with oil.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • For Sugar Coating:
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Mix the oil, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. Add the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon on top, then mix everything together to form a thick dough. 
  3. Form the dough into walnut-sized balls and roll each ball in the sugar coating.
  4. Place cookies a few inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet, flattening them slightly if desired. 
  5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until slightly brown on the bottom. Do not overcook or they will be hard as rocks!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 101Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 54mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 0gSugar: 7gProtein: 1g
The best Snickerdoodle cookies without butter. Easy cookie recipe with vegetable oil instead of butter that makes delicious and soft Snickerdoodles. Substitute oil for butter in this easy recipe. #easyrecipe #snickerdoodles
One bowl, no-butter Snickerdoodles are the easiest and cheapest cookie to make!

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Friday 24th of May 2024

I make these all the time. Im back this time for a bridalshower tomorrow. Dough freezes good too

Leah Crocker Althiser

Friday 24th of May 2024

Hope they continue to work for you! Love that you keep coming back for the recipe. :)

Alyssa K.

Tuesday 21st of May 2024

I used olive oil in mine, so delicious! Crispy on the edges, chewy on the inside. Thanks for sharing !

Leah Crocker Althiser

Wednesday 22nd of May 2024

That's great! So glad they turned out well for you.

Rosemary Davis

Monday 20th of May 2024

Super easy,no mixer required.Mine were done in 8 minutes,the centers were slightly soft,bottoms were slightly brown. Very good!

Leah Crocker Althiser

Tuesday 21st of May 2024

So glad they turned out well for you Rosemary!

Sarita G

Tuesday 5th of March 2024

You know if you ever make any kind of homemade cookies and they turn out hard, anytime right out of the oven, next day, doesn't matter, put cookies in air tight container or ziplock bag and put a slice of white bread, can use wheat nut flavor may transfer to the cookies, the next day, your cookies will be soft and the bread will be hard. Just put a piece of parchment or wax paper between the bread and cookies if it touches a cookie it will likely be so soft it falls apart when picking it up. Just thought I'd share. Happy baking!!!!


Friday 1st of March 2024

I modified your recipe a little bit for Black Forest cookies. I added: 1/2 cup of Hershey dark chocolate powder 1 extra egg 1/ cup of Hershey chocolate syrup 5 oz of dried cherries 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

I sprayed the pan with oil spray. Baked at 375° for the full 10 minutes.

Oh,for the stuff to roll them around in. I used powdered sugar and Hershey dark chocolate powder. They are soft and delicious.


Monday 25th of March 2024

@Sheila, Oops. It's 1/4 cup chocolate syrup (optional)

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