A secret ingredient makes these sugar cookies the SOFTEST and most flavorful cookies of your life! And they even hold their shape after baking, so you get exactly what you want instead of sad blob cookies.
I’m 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 (like, pre-pregnancy…) I ran for 20 solid minutes and probably only went a mile and a half. (Picture a slug glorping along on the sidewalk and you pretty much have an idea of me running.)
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, it’s a sign. The sign says DON’T EVER GO RUNNING AGAIN KAREN.
Instead, eat alllll the sugar cookies.
I’m super excited to share this recipe with you guys today! I’ve 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.
Recently Mel from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe posted these White Velvet Sugar Cookies, which has cream cheese in the dough. I was super excited to try cream cheese in my recipe, and it worked out beautifully. The 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 a few times and didn’t make frosting every time, and I enjoyed the cookies all by themselves. They are sweet but not overwhelming. (The frosting takes care of that.) They have tons of flavor from the butter, and almond and vanilla extracts.
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. (Although I have many friends who create delicious works of art using royal icing, like my friend Glory at Glorious Treats. Just look at these! Or these!! So amazing.)
I researched a bunch of my favorite blog’s sugar cookie recipes for sugar cookie tips, because I’m actually kind of a newbie at this sugar cookie business. Kristyn from Lil’ Luna suggested on Instagram stories the other day (I’m a little obsessed with Instagram stories, anyone else??) that sugar cookies ought to be rolled out to about 3/8 inch so that they are nice and thick when they go in the oven. I’ve never rolled them that thick before and it made a huge difference!!
This is 3/8 inch. Thiiiiick.
Don’t forget to put some flour on your cookie cutter. On the right: I use my finger to get the excess flour/dough off the outside of the cookie cutter. I used a knife to get it out of the corners of the shamrock.
I like to use a pastry brush to get the flour off the tops of the shaped cookies. The one on the right is already baked. It still looks like a shamrock!
Here’s another example. Snowflakes, not snow blobs.
On the left: this is half the dough rolled out. On the right: all the cookies from an entire batch. How many you get depends on what shape cookie cutters you use.
Here’s the bottom of a baked cookie. It’s not browned at all and okay, okay, you may want to let it go a minute or two longer than this, especially if you plan to gift them to someone (as opposed to eating them over the kitchen sink, which was my plan for this cookie.) Also, do you see that dark spot in the center of the cookie? Perfectly under baked. Yum.
I read over on my friend Kayley’s blog (The Kitchen McCabe) that 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. Genius! (I also learned this frosting technique from Kayley, (below) I’ll show you how to do it on Friday when I publish the buttercream recipe that goes with these cookies. Kayley did an ombre Easter egg, it’s so gorgeous! I’m not a great froster, Kayley’s the one with the skillz.)
Did I mention I decided to tackle all the holidays at once? Scroll past the recipe to see Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, 4th of July…
I’ve figured out my absolute favorite buttercream frosting to top these cookies with and will be sharing the recipe on Friday, so stay tuned!
Are you an expert with sugar cookies? Do you have any other tips for amazing sugar cookies? SPILL!
Here are some other holiday cookie ideas for later in the year!
More frosted cookies you will love!
Coconut Frosted Sugar Cookies with Strawberry Hearts << if you are desperate to make today’s recipe before I post the buttercream frosting on Friday, use this frosting. It’s amazing.
Lemon Crinkle Cookies with Lemon Frosting << SOOO lemony!!
More sugar cookie recipes for you to check out!
White Velvet Sugar Cookies from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe
Soft Sugar Cookies from Lil Luna
Super Soft Sugar Cookies from The Kitchen McCabe (frosting technique)
Best Sugar Cookie Recipe Ever from In Katrina’s Kitchen
Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies from Shugary Sweets
Sugar Cookies from The Girl Who Ate Everything
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