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!
Sugar Cookie Icing Ingredients
- Powdered sugar. Also known as confectioners sugar or icing sugar. For best results , sift it to remove any lumps before using.
- Milk. I use whole milk, but any variety will work instead. Just note that if you are using a lower-fat milk you may need less than the recipe calls for, as it is thinner.
- Vanilla extract. If you want pure white icing I recommend using a clear vanilla extract.
- Light corn syrup. Not to be confused with high fructose corn syrup, this ingredient gives my sugar cookie frosting a glossy, shiny finish and helps it to to set firmly. If you must leave it out, Ive included notes in the recipe on how to do so, but for best results I recommend using it. Dark corn syrup could work but will add a muddy color and additional flavor to your icing. Outside of the US, you may be able to find glucose syrup, which should work instead.
- Food Coloring. Of course this is optional, but for festively decorated Christmas sugar cookies, youll probably want to add a bit of color. I love and use gel food coloring for best results . Liquid or powder food coloring will work, but may not be as vibrant.
As always, this is just an overview of the ingredients used here and why they were chosen. For the full sugar cookie recipe with amounts and detailed instructions, please scroll down to the printable recipe.
SAMS TIP: Dont have time to decorate? Skip the sugar cookie frosting and just sprinkle colorful sanding sugar over the cookies before baking!
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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Tips For Making The Best Sugar Cookies Recipe
One of my biggest tips is to make sure you care for your final baked cookies! If you put the sugar cookies into a tupperware right after they have cooled a few minutes on the pan, they will stay softer longer. Letting sugar cookies sit out is what makes them get dry and crunchy. Dont do it! Put your treasure into a tupperware or ziplock asap!
Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe
Everyone needs an Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe! These are literally melt-in-your-mouth delicious and our go-to sugar cookie dough. It is perfect for decorating Christmas sugar cookies.
We love festive holiday treats like melt-in-your-mouth Snowball Cookies, soft Chocolate Chip Cookies, and of course Baklava. These beautifully decorated sugar cookies are a beautiful addition to the Christmas cookie platter.
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.
My name is Natalya and I run a food blog Momsdish. I love simple dishes that use minimal ingredients. During the holidays, I love baking but I hate making messes. This recipe for sugar cookies gives me the best of both worlds perfect cookies and an easy clean-up. Im so excited to share this recipe with you!
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The Best Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies
Im doing dishes in the kitchen when all the sudden I hear the saddest, most piercing cry come out of 4 month old Valentine. Slightly panicked, I ask Eric what happened, and he said, I kissed her. Oh the drawbacks of having a beard. This actually happens all the time. Poor baby faced Valentine!
I went running last week for the first time in a very long time I ran for 20 solid minutes and probably only went a mile and a half.
Anyway, when I got home both of my big toes were killing me, and since then they have developed dark bruises underneath my nails. You know what this means, right. Get new shoes? Learn how to run the right way? No. Listen people, its a sign. The sign says DONT EVER GO RUNNING AGAIN KAREN.
Instead, eat alllll the sugar cookies.
Christmas Sugar Cookies With Easy Icing
These are my absolute favorite cut-out Christmas sugar cookies! My recipe for sugar cookies promises flavorful cookies with soft centers and crisp edges. Youll enjoy this easy glaze icing, too. Its a wonderful alternative to royal icing and makes decorating hassle-free!
Lets kick off the holiday baking season with classic decorated Christmas cookies. Nothing beats Christmas sugar cookies made from scratch and I know youll love this particular recipe. Were using my classic sugar cookies and dressing them up for the holidays.
Trust me when I say this is a sugar cookie recipe you need to try. Its taken me awhile to find that perfectly soft-centered, yet slightly crisp edged recipe. The cookies maintain their cookie cutter shape while baking and have a nice flat surface for decorating. Theres no crazy ingredients, so this recipe is easy and approachable for everyone.
I love royal icing, but it can be pretty particular sometimes. You need a very precise consistency in order for the royal icing to pipe and set appropriately it definitely requires patience.
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Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe For Every Holiday
Ive had this sugar cookie recipe on the blog for years now, and Ive been surprised at the level of traffic on this recipe for EVERY holiday. People just want sugar cookies for every occasion! They are a classic! Ive picked out a few of the holidays and linked to cookie cutters that would work for each one, just in case youre looking for some cute ones. Sugar cookies are so fun to make all year long!
How To Make The Sugar Cookie Dough
Step 1: Add the 4 sticks of butter and 2 cups of white sugar to your mixer. A word about the butter, we use Sweet Cream Salted Butter when we are baking and I think it tastes great with these sugar cookies too. The butter needs to be softened but still cold. A prime culprit for dry sugar cookie dough is butter than is too warm and soft. I let the butter sit out on the counter for just under an hour before I start making the cookies this seems to be the perfect amount of time for me. The butter is still cold to the touch but you can press into the stick with your fingers. In the past, when in a rush, I have softened the butter in the microwave but inevitably the dough that I get is on the crumbly side.Step 2: Cream the butter and sugar until it is completely mixed Step 3: Add 2 tablespoons of vanilla and 2 eggs. I know that sounds like a lot of vanilla but this recipe needs a little extra moisture and the cookies will taste great.Step 4: Mix the cookie dough until light and fluffy
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Think Sugar Cookies Are Just For The Holidays Think Again Learn How To Make Sugar Cookies From Scratch That You Can Enjoy All Year Long
When it comes to simple joys, you cant do much better than a classic sugar cookie. And learning how to make sugar cookies yourself so you can have this sweet treat anytime is essential for home bakers of any skill level.
And before you asknope, sugar cookies do not have to be the time-consuming cutout and decorated kind. You can make these as drop cookies, and nothing is simpler than a good drop cookie.
My Favorite Soft Sugar Cookies
So I feel like Im a tad bit late with these cookies, since I just missed Christmas and all, but the truth is that sugar cookies are good all year round. In fact, next to a good Snickerdoodle, chewy sugar cookies are a total favorite of mine any day of the week. I feel like Cutout Sugar Cookies are the Christmas version of a sugar cookie while a classic drop cookie, like this one, is the year round version, you know?
And as with any classic, simple cookie that doesnt hide behind frosting or anything, it really needs to be just right. Soft and chewy for days, my friends. I dont want some cookie thats great for a day or so and then you have to toss them. No, these will call to you from the kitchen counter until theyre all eaten and it could be 4 or 5 days later .
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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.
Can You Freeze Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies
Bless us all, yes! So much yes. You can bake all throughout November to get Christmas cookies ready, or bake weeks before that wedding youre providing treats for. Trust me, I always do this!
- Remove your cookies from the oven and let them set up on the pan for 5 minutes.
- Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
- Transfer cookies to a cold pan.
- Put the whole pan in the freezer for 1-2 hours
- Transfer the frozen cookies into a large food storage container.
- Store for up to 2 months if they are unfrosted. I would only do about 4 weeks if they are already frosted. More on that below.
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Tips For The Best Cookies
Although this soft sugar cookies are super easy to make, there are a few simple tricks you can use to make sure that your cookies come out perfectly. Heres what I recommend:
- Make sure your butter is the right temperature. Room temperature can be a little misleading if your house is too warm or too cool. Your butter shouldnt be so soft that your finger goes right through it if you press on it, but it should also be able to make an imprint. If it wont, or it barely does, its likely too cold still.
- Be sure to use just two tablespoons of brown sugar. It adds just enough additional moisture to the cookies to help them spread correctly and stay soft and chewy for days!
- Dont over mix the dough after you add the flour. It can over develop the gluten and cause the cookies to not spread as nicely or be tough.
- Make sure your cookie dough balls are 1 1/2 tablespoons each or youll want to adjust the baking time. I also found that size to be just right for spreading well.
How Do You Make Sugar Cookie Mix Better
Add in more of everything . A common complaint with store-bought dough is that its too sweet, so some Food52.com commenters suggest adding in a little bit extra of all the ingredients, minus the sweetener. Add the pre-made dough to a mixer and add a few shakes of flour, salt, baking soda, butter, etc.
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The Ultimate Guide To Cut Out Sugar Cookies
The best, SOFT cut out sugar cookie Ive ever made! Customizable for any occasion, these soft & thick cut out sugar cookies are perfect for Christmas, Valentines, and birthday cookies! Ill walk you through tips on how to roll out the dough to avoid spreading & sticking, as well as give you my favorite, easy frosting recipes.
Update: Be sure to watch my in-depth VIDEO tutorial below where I walk through the crucial steps in preventing your cookies from spreading. Its a longer form video, but one where I share it ALL!
Over four years ago, I shared a post on my familys favorite cut out sugar cookies and by some miracle, that post went viral and continues to be the most popular recipe on the site. It uses powdered sugar, is soft, and has a delicious flavor to boot. But as time has gone on and Ive tested TONS more sugar cookie recipes, I ended up concocting a new cut out sugar recipe that has become my new favorite.
The original recipe is still delicious and loved by many of you , but I have found this one to spread even less, which allows us to get them really THICK.
- Original: All powdered sugar, more butter = a buttery, slightly flakey texture.
- This New Recipe: Granulated Sugar, Less Butter = a thicker, softer, more moist texture.
Before we dive into the recipe, I want to talk about what you can do to make a perfect cut out sugar cookie. Because believe it or not, theres more to it than just the recipe.
How To Freeze These Cookies
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.
Whether youre looking for an alternative to a cutout sugar cookie, or simply looking to cure a craving for a good soft and chewy Sugar Cookies, these are sure to be your new favorite easy sugar cookie! They stay soft for days and have the ultimate chewy-factor!
NOTE 5/16/19: Due to feedback about the cookies not spreading well, the recipe has been slightly changed and updated.
- 1/4 cup sugar
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Buttercream Frosting Versus Royal Icing
Ive figured out my absolute favorite buttercream frosting to top these cookies with! This simple recipe has a few secret ingredients that give it the best, most nuanced flavor. I love it!
But I know, I know, some of you are going to want to stack these cookies for shipping. No, you cant use buttercream if youre doing that. You need royal icing and a royal amount of patience. THESE cookies are meant for jamming into your mouth immediately with a sticky, soft, glorious buttercream that will get all over your fingers. No apologies. If you insist on using royal icing , be very careful not to break the cookies. These cookies are much more delicate than your average sugar cookie, meaning they break easier when shipping.
What Makes These The Best Sugar Cookies
I tested SO many versions of these sugar cookies, Im pretty sure my mother in law , thought I was losing my mind. Id be all, Just one more version! and then a week later theres still new batches on the counter.
But seriously, I love a good old fashioned soft sugar cookie. Like, for reals. So it just had to be right. And Im happy to say these are it. These sugar cookies are:
- Not too thin
- And they stay good for DAYS.
In fact these soft sugar cookies are dangerous because you want to keep eating them all! Lets talk about how to make them.
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Easy Sugar Cookies For Christmas
Theres something spectacular about a simple, yet perfect, soft sugar cookie.
Today Im going to show you how to make sugar cookies that will make your head spin. I bake The Best Sugar Cookie Recipe for holidays and parties regularly, and have used this recipe as a base for all sorts of sugar cookie variations.
Ive been asked for The Best Sugar Cookie Recipe more times than I can count, always with a statement like, These are just sugar cookies, right? OMGeeeeee. Ive got to have the recipe.
Why Is This The Best Sugar Cookie Recipe
The dough comes together quickly with simple pantry ingredients.
It does NOT need to be chilled.
The recipe can be doubled easily.
Cookies hold their shape with very little expanding when baked.
Baked cookies freeze well.
The recipe I am giving you makes a large batch of dough because I like to bake many cookies. Also, I like to roll and cut my cookies fairly thickto hold a lot of frosting.
Incorporating the last cup of flour may look dry and look crumbly. Turn out the dough onto your countertop and work with wet hands and/or more flour until the dough is smooth and ready to roll.
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