Rootbeer Cookies

This recipe has taken over the world! Well, not really, but it could. I’ve seen a whole bunch of people post their rootbeer cookies on their blogs. It’s so much fun for me to see my recipe being made by other folks.

I know I posted this over at Make and Takes, but I wanted to post it over here, too, so I can have it on hand when I don’t feel like wading through my recipe binders.

I posted this recipe awhile back (like in 2006 when I first started blogging) sans photos. That was back in the days when I didn’t have a fancy camera. I thought I’d post a how-to because I already took the pictures, why not? (And there’s another reason to be disclosed at a later date…it’s something I’ve been working on for a few years. Don’t worry, it won’t be too much longer and you’ll know what I am talking about.)

Okay, I’ll be honest. Not everyone likes these. It takes a very special person with a very special appreciation. I am one of those people, as are several of my close friends, my sisters, and my husband’s cousins.

Let me just say this: Don’t knock it ’til you try it.

Rootbeer Cookies
from my mom’s friend


For cookies:
1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups dark brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. rootbeer extract
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup water (optional–only use if dough is too dry)

For frosting:

1 cup butter
3 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp. rootbeer extract
a few tablespoons hot water


For cookies:
Cream butter and dark brown sugar until very light and fluffy.  Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the rootbeer extract. Whisk dry ingredients together. Add a little at a time to the creamed mixture. Add the water only if the dough is too dry. 

Chill for at least an hour. Roll into small balls (about 1″ diameter). Or if you’re like me, maybe you want to use a small ice cream scoop because it’s easy. Place them far enough apart so they can spread without touching each other.  Whether you roll them or scoop them, flatten the tops a bit before you bake them if you like the cookies to be flatter. If not, it’s fine. They are good a little thicker, too.

Bake at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes, rotating cookie sheet halfway through.

For frosting:
Beat butter on high with an electric mixer until it is fluffy. Add a little powdered sugar and the rootbeer extract. Beat until smooth. Add remaining powdered sugar alternately with a little hot water until a nice spreading consistency has been reached.

Frost the cooled cookies and let stand for the frosting to set up. (It should dry a bit on the top.)

How-to pictures:

Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs and rootbeer extract.

Add dry ingredients a little at a time, mixing well after each addition.

The dough should be sticky like this.  Add water if dough is too dry.
Chilled dough is much easier to scoop.  I like a mini-ice cream scoop.
The cookies spread quite a bit, so leave plenty of space between them.
Flatten the tops for thinner cookies, or leave as is for thicker cookies.

Note: If you don’t like rootbeer, leave out the extract. They are a great base for chocolate chip cookies and leave room for more varieties. We like to add maple flavoring and pecans. Recently I posted a recipe using the cookie dough sans RB extract with hazelnuts and toffee bars. I’ve also done white chocolate, bittersweet, and dried cherries–with and without nuts. Dried apricots and cranberries would be good, too. Or leave ‘em plain. The choice is yours.

12 Responses to “Rootbeer Cookies”

  1. Laura April 26, 2009 at 4:10 am #

    I made these after seeing your recipe on Makes and Takes. They are so yummy!!!. After posting it on my blog I had someone suggest to use the cookies and make ice cream sandwiches with them. I think it was an excellent idea!

  2. hannah April 26, 2009 at 4:28 am #

    Mmmmm!! In my dreams…we are neighbors and I eat all your leftovers.

  3. b. April 26, 2009 at 4:54 am #

    I am practically your neighbor…don’t be surprised to find me on your doorstep begging for leftovers.

    This recipe may cause me to shop on the Sundy.

  4. pinkstripes April 26, 2009 at 6:30 am #

    I’ve never heard of root beer extract. The cookies sound delicious, so I will probably get the extract sometime in the near future.

  5. Cafe Johnsonia April 26, 2009 at 10:20 am #

    Laura–My friend suggested that idea to me four or five years ago after I brought them to her family. What a great idea! I’ve been working on getting the cookies right so they’d work for ice cream sandwiches. The last time I made them, they were too hard out of the freezer and the ice cream squeezed out all over. Not that they weren’t good. :) I’m still trying. It’s on my list for the summer. Glad you like them!

    Hannah–you can eat my leftovers anytime! You, too, B.

    Pinkstripes–you should try it. You’d be surprised. I use the extract to make ice cream, too, and homemade rootbeer.

  6. Netts Nook April 26, 2009 at 1:52 pm #

    Wow Your cookies look great. Thanks for sharing.

  7. liz April 26, 2009 at 3:35 pm #

    aw! I remember when you came over one night and we ate a fresh batch just for us.

    I miss you. I could have really used a girl’s night like that this week. even without the cookies.

  8. Power Kites Sale April 27, 2009 at 2:56 am #

    I’m gonna try this one out because i think its gonna be great.

  9. emilio April 27, 2009 at 4:17 pm #

    still my all time favorite! come make some for us again.

  10. Kelly April 27, 2009 at 6:52 pm #

    I too saw your recipe on Make and Takes and have posted the recipe for my family on my recipe blog with a link to your site for the recipe as well!
    Hope some of my friends come and visit your site! I have subscribed now and am having fun reading all your recipes!
    Thanks soooooo much for sharing!
    You can see my pics of my batch of cookies at

  11. kamailesfood April 29, 2009 at 4:15 am #

    These cookies look great! My husband is a huge root beer fan. I bet he’ll love these. (PS. The ice cream sandwich suggestion is awesome!)

  12. ~~louise~~ August 19, 2009 at 11:35 pm #

    First time here and boy oh boy, I must confess, I’m sure liking it! This recipe for Root Beer Cookies sounds so intriguing, I just had to “grab” your recipe link to include in a post I did today celebrating Charles E. Hires. Hope you don’t mind.

    Any left? I sure could use one (or two) about now. Thanks for sharing…

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