Simple Cinnamon Jumbles with Icing: Perfect for a Tea Party
Sneak Preview: Cinnamon Jumbles (aka Jubilee Jumbles) with Browned Butter Icing is a modern rendition of an old-fashioned soft cinnamon cookie (cake-like) recipe. You’ll love the frosting.
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What if you could walk into your grandmother’s house right now and go to her cookie jar? What would you hope to find?
I always looked for these Cinnamon Jumbles. Grandma made them frequently. Oh, how I wish I could walk into my Grandma’s kitchen right now and grab a couple. These cookies taste similar to hers, but they don’t look like hers did.
She dropped big blobs of dough on the cookie sheet. The lumps tended to grow together as they baked. So she cut them into squares. They were rather ugly–but still delicious.
Grandma wrote her recipe on the back inside cover of one of her cookbooks. It looks like she called them “Jubilee Jumbles.” I found a similar recipe in a Betty Crocker Cookie Book entitled “Cinnamon Jumbles.”
I have updated this recipe with substitutions for shortening and evaporated milk. They taste even better, in my opinion.
Try them for yourself. Frosted Cinnamon Jumbles go down r-e-a-l easy.
How are these soft cinnamon cookies different from Snickerdoodles?
Cinnamon is the star ingredient in both Snickerdoodles and Cinnamon Jumbles. However, the differences are significant.
- Snickerdoodles are chewy and crispy, especially when warm. They tend to flatten out as they cool. Cinnamon Jumbles are cake-like, soft, and tender and hold their shape like a little teacake.
- My Cinnamon Jumbles always have icing, in this case, Browned Butter Icing. Not everybody ices these cookies, but I highly recommend it. The frosting dresses them up and makes them a bit sweeter.
- Traditional Snickerdoodles don’t have icing. They don’t need it since you roll them in a cinnamon-sugar mixture before baking.
Ingredients and Substitutions
FLOUR: Substitute bleached all-purpose flour for unbleached flour in a one-to-one ratio.
BUTTER: The original recipe in Betty Crocker Cooky Book called for hydrogenated shortening, as in Crisco. Since many people don’t want to use it, real butter works just as well and tastes better. I don’t recommend using butter substitutes.
BUTTERMILK: If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, try one of these substitutions.
Use plain unflavored yogurt (2% or whole milk). Add milk until it is the consistency of buttermilk and measure as you would buttermilk.
A well-known substitution for buttermilk is one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice added to enough milk to measure 1 cup. Stir and let it stand for a few minutes before adding it to the recipe.
Do you have sour cream in your fridge? You have everything you need to make a buttermilk substitute! You can swap out buttermilk for a mixture of equal parts sour cream and water, whisked together until smooth. —Foodess.com
SUGAR: My preference is 100% granulated white sugar. As you can see in Grandma’s recipe, she used part brown sugar and part white sugar. Using brown sugar will make a darker-colored cookie and increase the moisture. Not a bad thing.
Valentine’s Day Cookies
Sprinkle the wet icing with colored sugar: Red or pink for Valentine’s Day or Christmas, green for St. Patrick’s, and orange and black for Halloween.
Another way to add variety is by using different flavors, such as chocolate or plain white powdered sugar icing. Try adding food coloring to white icing to match your party theme.
Substitute eggnog for the yogurt or buttermilk. Instead of baking soda, use one teaspoon of baking powder. When making the icing, use eggnog in place of the cream. In addition to the cinnamon already specified in the recipe, add 1/8-1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg.
Variations abound on the internet. Take a look: Applesauce Jumbles, Coconut, Butterscotch, Orange Cream, and Chocolate Cream Jumbles. Some people add chocolate chips, dried fruit, or nuts.
How to make Cinnamon Jumbles:
How to make Brown Butter Icing:
Parting thoughts: Did your grandmother make these cookies in some form or another? Have you ever tried them? If so, please tell me what you think in the comments below.
More recipes for frosted cookie lovers:
If you have questions or suggestions, email me privately for a quick answer: Paula at saladinajar.com. Hope to see you again soon!
Frosted Cinnamon Jumbles with Brown Butter Icing
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- ½ cup butter
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Cream shortening, sugar, and egg.
- Stir in buttermilk and vanilla extract.
- Blend in flour, soda, salt, and cinnamon. Combine until you can’t see any flour.
- Chill in the freezer for about 30 minutes or 1-2 hours in the refrigerator.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Use ice cream dipper to drop 1 tablespoon of dough onto a lightly greased baking sheet or use parchment paper (or Silpat).
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 8-10 minutes. When barely cool, ice with Browned Butter icing.
Brown Butter Icing:
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter (do not substitute margarine) in a small skillet using low heat on stove till golden brown. Be careful not to burn. If any solids turn black, start over. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
- Start out by adding about 1 tablespoon of milk into the butter. Stir in 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar and beat till smooth. Add milk as you go in very small increments until it is spreading consistency. Because icing becomes thick as it cools, stir in a small amount of milk if necessary to make icing spreadable. If you get it too thin, let it sit for a while or add more powdered sugar.
- Leftover icing is good on graham crackers or animal cookies.
Paula Rhodes, author
I’m a retired home economist, wife, mother, grandmother, and creator of Saladinajar.com. I believe you don’t have to be a chef to find joy in creating homemade food worth sharing. Here you’ll find time-saving tips, troubleshooting advice, and confidence-inspiring recipes to make life in the kitchen more fun, appetizing, and satisfying.