The Best Sugar Cookie Recipe
Here is a little recap of why this recipe is the recipe you need. Why it is, indeed, perfect and the best!
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- 2 1/2cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2tspbaking soda
- 1 1/2cups granulated sugar
- 1cup unsalted butter,softened
- 1large egg
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
- In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt, set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer cream together butter and sugar until well combined.
- Mix in egg, egg yolk and vanilla.
- Add in flour mixture and mix just until combined.
- Scoop dough out using a medium cookie scoop and drop onto baking sheet, spacing them 2-inches apart.
- Bake in preheated oven 9 – 11 minutes, they should appear slightly under-baked. If baking two batches at once then rotate pans halfway through baking.
- Cool on pan 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Store cookies in an airtight container.
The Best Soft Sugar Cookie
Im super excited to share this recipe with you guys today! Ive been working on this post for a while now. The recipe is adapted from my sister-in-law Sandi. I wrote it down in pencil in a notebook years ago and have been tweaking it ever since. They are good sugar cookies, for sure, but I was on the hunt for a secret ingredient that would make them next-level.
Heres the thing. Sugar cookies for me MUST be super soft. No crunchy edges please. I want a THICK cookie with a THICK layer of frosting. And please, none of this royal icing business. Give me the goods. Go buttercream or go home.
So, here it is. A sugar cookie that is moist and soft and does not dry out or crunch! Its magical! How is it done? Cream cheese. I know, what?? Didnt our grandmas only use butter for sugar cookies? Why yes, yes they did, and guess what, their cookies were hard and crunchy )
We are still using butter, oh yes. But we are replacing half of the normal amount of butter used in sugar cookies with dreamy creamy cream cheese. The resultant cookies are tender and soft and have a delicious flavor, with a tiny bit of a tang from the cream cheese. I tested this recipe several times and didnt make frosting every time. I enjoyed the cookies all by themselves. They are sweet but not overwhelming. They have tons of flavor from the butter, as well as the almond and vanilla extracts. Lets dig into the details!
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How To Mix Cooke Dough
Mixing cookie dough doesn’t require as delicate a touch as mixing cake batter or quick bread, but it’s still important to get it right. Some cookie recipes require a creaming step in which the fat and sugars are beaten together until light-colored and fluffy. Other cookie recipes require a sandy texture, so the fat is cut into the flour. Over-mixing can incorporate too much air into the dough, resulting in flat, overly spread-out cookies. Always read through and follow the recipe instructions.
Make Ahead And Storage
- The cookie dough can be made ahead and refrigerated or frozen. If going this route I recommend reducing the flour to 2 1/4 cups .
- Just thaw frozen cookies in the fridge before baking.
- Store baked cookies in an airtight container.
- Baked cookies can be stored at room temperature, the fridge or the freezer.
- Theyll last at room temperature about 3 days, in the fridge for about 1 week and the freezer up to 3 months.
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Sugar Cookie Tips & Tools
Before I leave you with the recipe, let me suggest some useful sugar cookie tools. These are the exact products I use and trust in my own kitchen:
- Silicone Baking Mats or Parchment Sheets
- Rolling Pin
- Food Coloring: Liquid food coloring can alter the consistency of the icing, so I recommend gel food coloring. For the pictured cookies, I used a few drops of dusty rose and 1 drop of sky blue.
- Piping Tips/Squeeze Bottle: If youre using royal icing, I recommend Wilton piping tip #4 for outlining and flooding. This is a wonderful basic piping tip to have in your collection. If youre using my easy glaze icing, I recommend using a squeeze bottle.
- Piping Bag: If youre using royal icing and a piping tip, you need a disposable piping bag or reusable piping bag.
How Do You Ice Sugar Cookies For Beginners
We recommend making buttercream icing for beginners. Icing sugar cookies as a beginner is a steep learning curve. If you get frustrated, you can easily use a knife to put the icing on the cookie. Start by learning how to use piping tips by watching videos. Try out 2-3 tips to see if you can improve your skills. Once you get better at piping buttercream, you can learn how to decorate cookies using royal icing. It will be another learning curve when you use royal icing. From learning how thin to make your icing for flooding, to having colors blend together if theyre piped too quickly, youll take awhile to feel comfortable decorating sugar cookies.
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How To Store And Freeze Sugar Cookies
Store these cookies on the counter in an airtight container for up to 4 days. If you want to extend their shelf life, you can pop the container in the fridge. The cookies will keep in the fridge for up to 7 days.
These cookies freeze nicely too! Just let the baked cookies come to room temperature, then pack them in a ziplock bag and freeze them. Thaw them in the fridge or on the counter when youre ready to eat them.
This Is A No Chill Sugar Cookie Recipe
In addition to all of the above, these sugar cookies have another major bonus the dough doesnt need to be chilled! Thats right there is no need for chilling the cookie dough or even pressing the balls flat. They spread perfectly on their own. These two features make these cookies perfect for spur-of-the-moment baking!
How To Make Sugar Cookies
Heres a dough recipe for semisoft sugar cookies. This recipe makes about 4 dozen cookies.
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 300ºF. In a large mixing bowl, beat softened butter and shortening with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. Beat mixture until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining flour.
Why Cook Sugar Cookies In The Air Fryer
If youre looking for an alternative to baking sugar cookies in the oven, why not try cooking them in the air fryer? Air frying is a healthy way to cook food and it doesnt produce any of the harmful chemicals that are released when you bake with traditional methods. Plus, air-fried cookies come out crispy and delicious perfect for satisfying your sweet tooth! So if youre looking for a new way to make sugar cookies, give air frying a try. You wont be disappointed!
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Basic Sugar Cookie Recipe
These simple, no-spread cookies are the perfect base on which to flex your decorating skills! Using just a handful of pantry staple ingredients, this recipe is one to keep on hand for any baking occasion.
Need some decorating ideas? Scroll down for an easy Christmas how-to video.
Basic Sugar Cookie Recipe
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How Long Should I Bake My Cookies
The baking should be done at 375 degrees F, 12 to 15 minutes after the baking. If you want crispy-cakey cookies, bake them at 425 degrees F until golden and crunchy on the outside, 8 to 10 minutes. If you are making chewy cookies, use 1 cup light brown sugar and 1/4 cup corn syrup instead of granulated sugar.
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How Thick Do I Roll Sugar Cookies
These sugar cookies remain soft because theyre rolled out pretty thick. Roll out the cookie dough to about 1/4 inch thick or just under 1/4 inch thick. Yes, this is on the thicker side and yes, this produces extra thick and soft cookies. If rolling out cookie dough doesnt sound appealing, try my drop sugar cookies instead.
How To Make Soft Sugar Cookies
The key to making soft sugar cookies is this- do not over bake them! This recipe will yield a very soft and chewy cookie as long as they are not over baked. Keep a close eye on the cookies, youll want to pull them out of the oven when the tops are no longer glossy and they have puffed up. If you wait until the edges start turning golden brown, they are overcooked!
Allow the cookies to cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack.
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The Dough Is Sticky And/or Crumbly What Can I Do
- The final dough really comes together and has a texture close to Play-Doh. Wet your hands if you need to. Turn out the dough onto a floured surface. Dont be afraid to use more flour and incorporate it in while you are kneading it into a smooth ball.
- Forget everything you know about sugar cookie dough. Dont be afraid of sprinkling more flour as you roll it out. Use the scraps! Mix them back into the unused dough and keep going.
How Do You Keep Sugar Cookies From Sticking
Using corn starch helps but the best way to prevent cookie dough from sticking is to roll out the dough between two layers of plastic wrap. This way theres no fuss and ZERO chance of sticking. Its always a good idea to flour your work surface well and move the dough often. I like to work on a pastry mat which can be lifted up and even transferred into the refrigerator.
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Tips From The Betty Crocker Kitchens
- tip 1 Choose your cookie sheets wiselylook for shiny aluminum sheets with no sides that allow air circulation for sugar cookies to bake evenly. Dark sheets absorb more heat, making it hard to control browning. Insulated cookie sheets slow down baking, providing control but also requiring longer bake times.
- tip 2 If you dont have cooling racks, you can transfer the warm cut-out sugar cookies to a chilled cookie sheet lined with clean kitchen towels, or use a cooled wooden cutting boardanything to cool the cookies down quickly.
- tip 3 As you bake, be sure to allow cookie sheets to cool before you place fresh cutouts on them for the oven.
- tip 4 You can prevent cookie dough from sticking to the cookie cutter by dipping the cutter in flour between uses.
- tip 5 Cookie sheets should be at least 2 inches smaller than the inside of your oven so the heat can circulate completely around them. Be sure to arrange the oven racks before you preheat the oven, so that you can bake in the center of the oven. We recommend baking one cookie sheet at a time.
- tip 6 As an alternative to decorating with frosting, sprinkle cutter cookies with granulated or colored sugars before baking.
Prepare Surface & Dough
Sprinkle the ball of dough with about 1 teaspoon of flour then use your hands to gently knead the dough into a smooth ball. You should only do this for about 10 seconds, as overkneading the dough will cause the butter to soften too much and will cause spreading.
Once formed into a ball, use your hands to gently press the dough into a 2 thick disc. This will help flatten the dough so that when you use the rolling pin, the dough doesnt break apart.
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Can You Freeze Decorated Sugar Cookies
We dont suggest freezing decorated sugar cookies. If your cookies are topped with royal icing, the moisture from the freezer could cause your icing to weep or melt, ruining your hard work!
If your cookies are decorated, we suggest storing them in an airtight container at room temperature. They should stay fresh for about a week.
Looking for a festive baking project, but want to bake something more than a simple batch of cookies? Take a look through our list of easy Christmas cake ideas to get your mind in a merry mood. We highly recommend it
What is your favorite go-to cookie baking tip? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to tag us on Instagram @wiltoncakes so we can see your amazing cookie and baking projects!
What Is The Easiest Way To Decorate Cookies
The easiest way to decorate cookies is by putting sprinkles on the cookies right after they come out of the oven. As the cookies cool, the sprinkles will adhere to the cookie. Alternatively, you can flood your cookie with royal icing, then add sprinkles right after youve flooded it. Let the cookie dry and theyre ready to be packed away for safe keeping.
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Frequently Asked Questions About This Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe:
Can you decorate this easy sugar cookie recipe?
These sugar cookies bake up crackly, which isn’t the type of sugar cookie that you decorate with royal icing. If you’re looking for a small batch sugar cookie to decorate, I can absolutely help you there.
Can I double this small batch recipe?
Yes, you can absolutely double and triple this recipe, but be sure to follow the recipe exactly. This means use two egg yolks, not a whole egg, for a double batch. For a triple batch, use three egg yolks–do not use egg whites in this cookie recipe.
Can I use this recipe with cookie cutters?
This isn’t the sugar cookie recipe to use with cookie cutters. My Small Batch Cut-Out Sugar Cookies is the recipe you’re looking for. Don’t miss my Christmas Sugar Cookies that are made for that, too. If it’s fall, try my Cut-Out Gingerbread Cookies. A very basic Chocolate Chip Cut-Out Cookies recipe is fun for any time of year, too!
Is this easy sugar cookie recipe no chill?
Yes, absolutely! You do not need to chill this dough. Just melt the butter, stir together the dough, scoop out the cookies and bake.
While I always encourage humility, in this particular case, I feel confident saying I make the best homemade sugar cookies in the world, ever. They are soft, chewy, easy and quick. I understand this is a bold statement, but its one I am committed to stand behind for the rest of my life.
Best Sugar Cookie Recipe
Weve got a theme going on this week Called The Best.
Im sharing tried-and-true recipes Ive made dozens of times, because Ive never tasted anything better. Monday I posted the absolute best yeast roll recipe Ive ever made, and today Im sharing The Greatest Sugar Cookie Recipe Ever.
Learn How To Make The BEST Sugar Cookies With This Fun & Easy Homemade Sugar Cookies Recipe!
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How To Make This Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe
This recipe is based off the sugar cookie recipe in my third cookbook: Sweet & Simple: Desserts for Two, and so if you love a simple small batch recipes, you should really grab a copy. All of the recipe have less than 10 ingredients to make sweet, simple desserts.