I may have posted this before, but I'm posting it again because my sister recently asked me for it, and I said, "Go look it up online. All snickerdoodle recipes are the same." But it turns out they aren't. Some use (gasp) Cornstarch (YUCK), which makes them dry and starchy (duh). Almost NONE include milk. And none use the technique my mom taught me--which makes the cookies what they are. Even HER recipe has different ingredients and instructions than she actually used.
I've only found snickerdoodles like my mom makes one time outside our family--and they came from Mom's cousin! So this is either Idaho style or Packard style--I don't know which.
So here it is, the BEST SNICKERDOODLE RECIPE anywhere.
1 c butter or margarine, softened
2 c sugar
1/4 c milk
1 tsp vanilla
3 3/4-4 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2-1 c sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Blend in milk and vanilla. Scrape sides down and mix it again so it all mixes thoroughly. Put in (in this order and WITHOUT mixing between) 3 3/4 c flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix well. Add the rest of the flour ONLY if the dough is too sticky to work with. Mix the remaining sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls, rolling each ball in the cinnamon-sugar mix to completely coat it. Place on a greased cookie sheet and, using a smooth-bottomed cup or glass, flatten each ball--but not too much (1/4-1/2 inch thick is right). Dip the glass in the cinnamon sugar every other cookie or so (otherwise, it gets sticky). Bake at 375 for 7-10 minutes. They still look not quite done when you take them out--they should be golden on the bottom, and maybe around the edges, but still very light and puffy on the top. They fall when they cool--that's how it's supposed to be. The finished cookies should be soft and chewy, with a distinctly vanilla flavor, even the next day (if they last that long). Last time I made these (yesterday), the recipe made about 6 dozen cookies. I remember doubling the recipe as a teenager and getting about 12 dozen, so I think it's pretty consistent.
This is my FAVORITE cookie of all time.