Learn how to make your own custom fortune cookies at home with this step-by-step tutorial. These from scratch fortune cookies are perfectly crispy, slightly sweet, and filled with your own custom message!

Homemade fortune cookies with a custom message "I love you" sticking out of one that is broken open


  • Skill Level: Intermediate

While fortune cookies are often associated with the end of a meal at a Chinese restaurant or Chinese New Year celebrations, they’re actually more traceable to 19th-century Japan and 20th-century America.

Fortune cookies are delicate, thin cookies, folded into a crescent shape. They’re made from a very thin batter that is similar to a tuile cookie batter. While they may seem intimidating, fortune cookies are actually fairly simple to make when equipped with the right tools and a tried and true recipe.

There are 4 main steps to making fortune cookies: making the batter, dropping spoonfuls of batter onto baking sheets and spreading it into thin circles, baking the cookies, and stuffing/folding the cookies. Besides folding up the warm cookies, I love creating the fortunes or messages to go inside each! 

Why I love homemade fortune cookies

  • The fortunes in these cookies are totally customizable. Share a joke, wish a happy birthday, tell someone you love them, brighten the day, or even propose!

  • These cookies are the perfect addition to a special event or holiday, like Valentine’s Day.

  • Each cookie is a simple yet impressive homemade way to tell my husband, family, and friends that I love them!

  • They’re easy and quick to make once you learn the folding technique.

Tips for Making Custom Fortune Cookies

My recipe and baking method for fortune cookies are quite simple, but the technique for folding each cookie can be tricky. With a little bit of practice, homemade fortune cookies can be easy to make! For fortune cookie success, follow these tips for making the best fortune cookies:

Tip #1: Print and Cut the Fortunes Before you Start Baking

Pile of homemade fortune cookies

Print (or write) your own fortunes and cut them into thin rectangle shapes before you start making the batter. Once the cookies are baked you only have a few seconds to get the fortunes stuffed inside and the cookies folded before they set and harden. Once this happens, they become impossible to shape.

Have fun and get creative with the messages inside each cookie – write a birthday message, love note, or even pop a proposal inside! For fortune inspiration, I found this list of wise and funny sayings that are common in mass-produced fortunes cookies.

Tip #2: Make Sure the Batter is Really Thin

Spreading batter out thin for homemade fortune cookies

Spread the batter in a very thin layer onto the baking sheet. The batter should be so thin that you can almost see through it. This is what makes the cookies ultra crispy. 

If you find this thin batter difficult to spread out, you aren’t alone! To make it easier to spread, use the back of a spoon to spread out the drop of batter into a 3.5-4 (9-10cm) inch circle. The batter does not need to be in a perfect circle.

Tip #3: Only Bake Two Cookies at a Time

Adding a custom fortune inside a homemade fortune cookie before folding and shaping.

These cookies require quick work! When they come out of the oven, they must be folded within 15-20 seconds to achieve that traditional fortune cookie shape. Because of this, I bake two cookies at a time (unless I have another person helping).

Tip #4: Wear Gloves 

Placing fortune cookies into a muffin tin after shaping to help them hold their shape while cooling

Because these cookies need to be folded immediately, they’re very hot to the touch! My hands can handle a lot of heat, but if needed, wear gloves so you don’t burn your hands.

Tip #5: Watch the Video Tutorial

In my fortune cookies video tutorial, I walk you step-by-step through the process, showing exactly what the batter should look like and how to fold each cookie into the classic fortune cookie shape.

It may take a few tries to perfect the fold, but they become easier with practice. Stick with it!


What flour should I use for fortune cookies?

Some fortune cookie recipes only call for all-purpose wheat flour, but I like to use a combination of wheat flour and rice flour. The addition of rice flour ensures that the cookies will give that classic crispy snap once broken into.

If you don’t have rice flour or can’t find it at the store, you can easily make your own at home with one ingredient: rice! Grind white rice in a food processor or blender at high speed until very fine and powdery. Simply tap the rice flour through a mesh strainer to remove any clumps and then use it in the recipe.

What gives fortune cookies their flavor? 

Fortune cookies are slightly sweet and most often flavored with vanilla extract and, in this recipe, a hint of almond. Some fortune cookie recipes also call for sesame oil in the dough which gives the cookies a unique flavor.

Why do fortune cookies last so long?

You might notice that the fortune cookies you receive at a restaurant or buy at the store last forever! Mass-produced commercial fortune cookies are packed with preservatives to maintain a lengthy shelf life. As with most homemade baked goods, these fortune cookies are made without preservatives so they will go stale much more quickly than the pre-packaged version.

What size should the fortunes be?

Cut printed (or written) fortunes into pieces of paper no larger than 2 ¼ x ½ inches (6 x 1.25 cm).

How to store fortune cookies

Room temperature: Store fortune cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. After 5 days, they will start to harden and turn stale.

Freezer: Freeze fortune cookies in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight at room temperature.


If you enjoyed this recipe, try these other recipes that are perfect for Valentine’s Day.

Yield: 18-20 Cookies

How to Make Fortune Cookies

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Total Time 26 minutes

Follow this recipe for delicious and fun-to-make fortune cookies! Customize the fortunes inside each cookie to celebrate a birthday, anniversary, or any special occasion. These cookies are super crispy, slightly sweet, and feature a hint of almond.


  • 60 grams (½ cup) all-purpose flour
  • 18 grams (2 tablespoons) rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 100 grams (½ cup) granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 60 grams (about 2 large) egg whites
  • 42 grams (3 tablespoons) canola or vegetable oil
  • 42 grams (3 tablespoons) water
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • paper fortunes, hand-written or printed *optional


Note: For best results, watch the video tutorial above to visualize what the batter should look like and how to fold each cookie.

  1. Preheat the oven 325°F/165°C.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour (60 grams/ ½ cup), rice flour (18 grams/ 2 tablespoons), cornstarch (1 teaspoon), sugar (100 grams/ ½ cup), and salt (¼ teaspoon).
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk the egg whites (60 grams/ about 2 large) vigorously using a hand whisk until frothy. Set aside.
  4. Into the bowl with the dry ingredients, add the oil (42 grams/ 3 tablespoons), water (42 grams/ 3 tablespoons), vanilla extract (½ teaspoon), almond extract (¼ teaspoon), and the frothy egg whites. Stir the ingredients with a rubber spatula until it comes together into a thin smooth batter. The batter should easily run off the spatula into the bowl and should be as thin as crepe batter. If the batter is too thick you can add a a few drops of water at a time until it is thin and runny.
  5. Prepare a sheet pan by spraying it with non-stick spray or lining it with a silicone mat. Do not use parchment paper. Use a ½ tablespoon measuring spoon and drop a spoonful of batter onto the greased baking sheet. Use the back of the spoon to spread out the batter into a thin circle about 3.5-4 inches (9-10 cm) in diameter. Drop a 2nd spoonful of batter onto the sheet pan and repeat this step. If you are making these alone, I highly suggest only baking 2 at a time. Keep reading and you'll see why.
  6. Bake for 9-11 minutes until golden brown.
  7. Remove from the oven and immediately use a spatula to release it from the pan. Add a paper fortune into the center of the cookie, fold in half, and pinch to seal. Fold the cookie over the edge of a cup or coffee mug and then place it into a muffin tin to cool completely. This will help keep the shape of the cookie. You need to work very quickly during this process because the cookies will start to set and harden as soon as they come out of the oven.
  8. After completely cooled, store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.


Recipe adapted from PopSugar Fortune Cookies

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