My children all wanted a Guinea Pig this past Christmas, but not knowing whether this would be a long term love affair or a quick fling – as with the fish, mice, kittens and parakeets, I was reluctant to commit. We were fortunate enough to have dinner with friends right after the kids had written their Santa lists, and our friends happened to arrange the perfect match. It so happened they knew of someone looking for a loving home for a delightful Guinea Pig named Snickerdoodle. The kids were thrilled, and she continues to be adored, played with and loved and is seriously as sweet as her namesake.
The first time I made these cookies I picked the kids and their friends up from school.  However I was surprised to find them all huddled in the basement, and it wasn’t until I was driving home and talked with my husband that I gained clarification – we were in the middle of a tornado watch. My daughter, who is frightened during a thunderstorm, was terrified – so of course we baked cookies. The boys and their friends thought they were the most delicious treats ever and the next time they came over, I baked up another batch, but used a different recipe.
Apparently all snickerdoodles are not created equal – although the cookies were devoured quickly and thoroughly both times, I think the addition of butter and brown sugar in the first batch helped make them richer and more flavorful.


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided use
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Heat the oven to 375F. Grease cookie sheets.
In a medium bowl, cream together the butter, shortening and sugars, reserving 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar. Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt, stir into the creamed mixture until well blended. Add vanilla.
In a small shallow bowl, stir together the two remaining tablespoons of sugar with the cinnamon. Roll the dough into balls one inch in diameter, and then roll each dough ball in the sugar mixture.
Place cookies two inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until cookies are slightly crisp at the edges. Remove from sheet and allow to cool on wire racks.

Recipe adapted from At Home in Arkansas, Brown Sugar Bakeshop, Little Rock Arkansas


1 cup shortening
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 3/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar

Heat oven to 400F.
Mix shortening, sugar and eggs thoroughly. Blend flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Stir into shortening mixture. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Roll in mixture of 2 teaspoons sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Place 2 inches apart on baking sheet and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

Recipe adapted from Colins Cookbook, 2008