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Turn your holiday candy into gluten-free snickerdoodles

Why is it that after almost every holiday, you’re left with a candy hangover? Try as I might to avoid buying holiday candy, I just can’t seem to do it.

I end up with countless bags of candy for the trick-or-treaters who never came, bowls of red and green M&M’s and smashed Reese’s that were shoved inside a plastic egg. After the holiday bustle dies down, I have more candy than even I want to eat. The best way to get rid of candy? Baking! I pound all the old, melty, rejected holiday candy into tiny pieces to brighten up my favorite snickerdoodle recipe.

Image: Erin Plunkett/SheKnows

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Anyone who is gluten-free knows about the dreaded desserts at a dinner party. You sit and watch everyone enjoying gooey brownies and perfectly frosted cakes while trying not to drool like a puppy. I found the best way to avoid this is to offer to bring dessert. These candy-speckled snickerdoodles are the perfect combination of crunchy and chewy, so you’ll have all your gluten-eating friends wanting more.

Image: Erin Plunkett/SheKnows

I love to divide this cookie dough into small sandwich bags in the freezer — that way you can pull them out at a moment’s notice. Just let them thaw slightly, roll in some cinnamon and sugar, and you’re ready to go! The crunchy cinnamon sugar on the outside of the cookie blends perfectly with the small bits of chocolate candy. I love using a combination of M&M’s, Reese’s and Snickers.

Image: Erin Plunkett/SheKnows

Gluten-free, candy-speckled snickerdoodles recipe


  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups coconut flour
  • 3/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1-1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup crushed chocolate candy
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon


  1. Combine the butter, cream cheese and sugar into a mixture and beat until it’s light and fluffy.
  2. Add the eggs and vanilla, and be sure to scrape down the bowl and mix well.
  3. Add the dry ingredients, while alternating with the milk.
  4. Add the crumbled candy pieces and mix until you have a firm dough.
  5. At this point, you can freeze the dough if you so choose.
  6. Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small mixing bowl.
  7. Roll the cookie dough into small balls, and then roll in the cinnamon sugar mix.
  8. Press the cookies down, so they are slightly flattened.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8 – 12 minutes.
  10. Let them cool completely on a baking rack.

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