Chewy chai-spiced cookies

A grown-up cookie that’s packed with flavour!

I’ve always loved snickerdoodle-type cookies and can’t believe how many variations of this classic recipe there are out of there. When I thought about creating a new, slightly ‘grown up’ cookie for my holiday entertaining, I turned to my recipe box and thought about adapting several recipes. This new creation which is a hybrid of a sugar cookie and a snickerdoodle is packed with flavour thanks to the generous flecks of chai-inspired seasonings, with just a bit of a peppery zing. I love that they are soft and chewy too. Note that you can halve all the ingredients to make a smaller batch; to halve the egg, simply crack it into a half-cup measure, beat it with a fork, then remove half the beaten egg and discard it.

Chewy Chai Spiced Cookies


  • 2 3/4 cups (685 mL) flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) salt
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) baking powder
  • 1 3/4 cups (435 mL) white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (5 mL) freshly ground cardamom*
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons (12.5 mL) ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (7.5 mL) ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 mL) very finely ground black pepper
  • 1 cup (250 mL) softened (but not melted) butter
  • 1 teaspoon (2.5 mL) vanilla extract
  • 1 egg

*Buy a small handful of green cardamom pods then crack them open, extract the seeds and grind them in a mortar and pestle. You will find this ground cardamom to be much more flavourful and aromatic than what you can purchase pre-ground at the store.

Chewy Chai Spiced Cookies Dougballs


  • In a large bowl, combine flour, salt baking soda and baking powder; stir to blend and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl combine sugar, ground cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and black pepper. Remove 1/4 cup of the mixture and save it for rolling the dough balls prior to baking the cookies.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or use an electric mixer), beat the butter and sugar mixture until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • Add vanilla and egg; beat until well blended.
  • Add the dry ingredients in three parts, blending after each addition. Note that the mixture will be a bit crumbly in texture, but it will come together when you work the dough with your hands.
  • Cover the bowl and let dough rest, to hydrate the flour, for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Using your hands, shape the dough into 1 inch balls, rounding them by rolling between your palms.
  • Roll each dough ball in the sugar and spice mixture then place the balls on the lined baking sheet, about two inches apart. With your hand or a spatula, flatten the balls so they are about 1/2 inch thick.
  • Bake for 8 minutes; let rest on baking sheet for 2 minutes before carefully transferring to wire racks to finish cooling.
  • Store in a tightly covered container at room temperature for up to three days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Makes 3 – 4 dozen cookies depending upon the size of your dough balls.

Chewy Chai Spiced Cookies

Author: Paula Roy

Welcome to my kitchen! I love simple dishes prepared with passion and am always seeking to find new methods to make food as fun and flavourful as possible. If you enjoy this space be sure to check out my Rogers TV Ottawa cooking show, Paula Roy's Favourite Foods, available on local cable, streaming and a dedicated playlist on Rogers TV's YouTube channel.

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