If you have ever had the opportunity to stay at WaterColor Inn located in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, along 30A, then you can attest to the unmatched experience — white sandy beaches, beautiful pine forests along Western Lake, the sunset-level Adirondacks on each private balcony. It’s an intimate experience like no other. If you’ve stayed at WaterColor Inn, then you’re also familiar with their nightly turndown service, which includes a freshly baked treat, the choice of which is at the whim of Pastry Chef Nicholas Clark.

Chef Clark has served as Pastry Chef at WaterColor Inn and at its award-winning restaurant, FOOW, for the past five years. There, he delights guests with inventive treats, each one following a theme – whether it’s a nod to the destination or to a summertime memory. One of Chef Clark’s most beloved recipes is the Graham Cracker Cookie Turndown Treat, which he created himself. “I wanted a cookie that reflected the destination’s Southern hospitality, with a take on a classic summertime staple that is reminiscent of s’mores and beach bonfires,” he shares.

Having been on the turndown treat rotation for about a year, the Graham Cracker Cookie Turndown Treat is definitely a guest favorite. “They’ll tell us that one is simply not enough,” Chef Clark continues. “They’re always delighted to find them in their room after a long day at the beach. After all, who doesn’t love a nighttime treat?”

Now you can enjoy this tasty turndown treat anytime — whether you’re enjoying a stay at WaterColor Inn or not. Below is the recipe for the Graham Cracker Cookie Turndown Treat courtesy of Chef Clark. Whip up a batch of these, and bedtime won’t come soon enough!

The Graham Cracker Cookie Turndown Treat is a guest favorite at WaterColor Inn in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. Chef Clark is sharing this amazing recipe with us today. Image: St. Joe Hospitality


Turndown Treat: Graham Cracker Cookie Recipe

Pastry Chef Nicholas Clark of WaterColor Inn
This recipe is for the popular turndown treat created by Pastry Chef Nicholas Clark at WaterColor Inn in Santa Rosa Beach.
4.07 from 15 votes
Course Dessert
Servings 24 cookies


  • 2 cups Butter Softened
  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • 3 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 3 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 2 tsp Baking Soda

Cinnamon Sugar Mixture:

  • 2 cups Granulated Sugar
  • 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon


  • Cream butter & sugar together on medium speed for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add egg yolks & extracts blend until homogenous.
  • Add already mixed dry ingredients; blend until it comes together & let chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven 325°F.
  • Line a sheet pan with parchment.
  • Scoop 2 oz. portions onto baking tray.
  • Lightly press down on each cookie.
  • Use cinnamon sugar mixture to toss each cookie just before baking.
  • Bake for 6-8 minutes rotating half way & bake for additional 6-8 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes of the cookies resting, place them onto wire racks to cool completely
Tried this recipe?Rate it above to let us know how it was!


Here are three more AMAZING cookie recipes to try:

Kitchen Sink Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies

These cookies are hearty, and the almond flour takes the sweetness of the dough down a level, allowing the other sweet ingredients to shine. This is the cookie you’ll want for dessert, but also for breakfast with your coffee. Find this recipe HERE.

Find the recipe for these Kitchen Sink Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies HERE.

Chai Tea Shortbread Cookies

This recipe from our archives comes from Big View Bakery in Charlotte, NC. With just a few key ingredients, you’ll be enjoying this delightfully zen recipe in no time. Find the recipe for the Chai Tea Shortbread Cookies HERE.

Chai cookies|styleblueprint.com

Find the recipe for the Chai Tea Shortbread Cookies HERE.

The Easiest Peanut Butter Macadamia Nut Cookies

We asked Certified Holistic Chef Laura Lea, of LL Balanced, to share one of her favorite low-sugar recipes that satisfies the craving without the post-consumption sugar crash. Find the recipe for these tasty treats HERE.

Laura Lea's dessert — Peanut butter macadamia nut cookie

Find the recipe for these Peanut Butter Macadamia Nut Cookies HERE.


Find more amazing recipes in our archives. Click HERE.