These easy Frosted Sugar Cookies are my favorite sugar cookie recipe for every holiday! They’re soft, thick, delicious and topped with buttercream frosting! They are super easy to make and so fun to cut out and decorate!
This is my great grandmother’s recipe for sugar cookies. It’s super easy and delicious! Keep reading if you want to know how to make bakery style cookies!
THESE SUGAR COOKIES ARE:
- FLAVORFUL: Flavor them with vanilla extract, almond extract or a combination of the two!
- BUTTERY: As sugar cookies should be!
- THICK: Cutting them out 1/4 inch thick makes nice, thick cookies that hold their shape.
- SOFT AND TENDER: They stay soft for days!
- FUN TO DECORATE: Use your favorite cookie cutters, sprinkles, and frosting and decorate them as you like!
- PERFECT FOR ANY HOLIDAY: Whether you make them for a holiday or just for an everyday treat, they are perfect for any occasion!
Below are notes on some of the ingredients. For a full list of ingredients, see recipe below.
- Flour: Use all purpose. Spoon it into your measuring cup then level it with the back of a knife.
- Butter: Unsalted. Leave the butter on the counter for about an hour.
- Eggs: You will need 2 large, room temperature eggs.
- Vanilla extract: For flavor.
- Almond extract: I love the flavor that comes from using both vanilla extract and almond extract. That said, you can substitute more vanilla extract for the almond extract.
- Freeze dried strawberries: These add color and flavor. Most grocery stores carry them. Find them in the nuts and dried fruits section.
HOW TO MAKE THESE EASY SUGAR COOKIES
Please see complete recipe below for detailed measurements and baking time.
- Make the cookie dough.
- Divide the dough in half.
- Roll the dough out. Roll it out to 1/4 inch thick. It’s much easier to roll the dough out before chilling it. I roll mine out on parchment paper. Place the parchment paper on a baking sheet.
- Chill. Chilling the dough keeps the cookies from spreading too thinly while baking.
- Cut into shapes.
- Bake: Bake the cookies for 8-11 minutes.
- Decorate: Once cookies have cooled completely, decorate them!
TIPS FOR MAKING SUGAR COOKIE DOUGH
Sugar cookies are a super useful and easy cookie recipe to know. Here are a couple of tips for success!
- USE ROOM TEMPERATURE BUTTER: Leave the butter on the counter for about an hour. If you’re short on time or forgot to leave your butter out, check out this article on how to Soften Butter Quickly from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
- ACCURATELY MEASURE YOUR FLOUR: Dredging your measuring cup in flour packs the flour and causes you to use too much. Too much flour makes your cookies dry and prevents them from spreading. It’s best to spoon the flour into your measuring cup, then use a knife to level it off.
DECORATING SUGAR COOKIES WITH BUTTERCREAM
I love decorating sugar cookies with buttercream. It’s delicious, looks pretty and is so much easier than royal icing.
To frost the cookies, spread or pipe it on. This buttercream is a pretty cream color and is delicious as is. That said, here are two options for coloring your frosting.
OFFSET SPATULA: I like to use my offset spatula to frost these cupcakes. A regular butter knife definitely works too.
Transfer the frosting to the bag and place the tip directly over the cupcake. Apply pressure to the bag as you pull directly up and away. When you release, you’ll make a star/petal-like design.
Pipe around the edge of the cookie then fill in the middle. Make sure to pipe each “petal” close together so you don’t end up with gaps.
HOW TO COLOR THE FROSTING
FREEZE DRIED STRAWBERRIES: For pink or red with red specks. Just ground some in a food processor or blender. You can also place the freeze dried strawberries in a zip lock bag and crush them with a rolling pin.
FOOD COLORING: I recommend gel food coloring. It provides the best color. It also doesn’t affect the consistency of the frosting the way traditional food coloring can.
WHAT CAN I DECORATE SUGAR COOKIES WITH?
Freeze dried strawberries: Sprinkle crushed freeze dried strawberries on top of frosted cookies! You can also place bigger pieces of freeze dried strawberries on top of the cookies. Some of them are heart shaped, so they are perfect for Valentine’s Day!
Sprinkles: Use any of your favorite sprinkles!
Strawberries: Add a sliced strawberry with or without the green tops! Strawberry slices can also be shaped with a small knife to look like hearts!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT SUGAR COOKIES
Chilling the dough helps cookies keep their shapes while they bake.
It’s best to roll the dough to 1/4 inch thick or a little less than 1/4 inch. If you roll the dough out much thinner than that, it will tear more easily when you’re cutting it out.
Yes. After rolling out and wrapping the dough, it can chill overnight.
Frosted Sugar Cookies
FOR THE SUGAR COOKIES
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 14 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract or substitute with more vanilla extract
FOR THE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 1/4 teaspoons vanilla
- 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar sifted
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- a pinch of salt
- food coloring optional
- freeze dried strawberries crushed (for coloring)* I recommend using 2 tablespoons crushed freeze dried strawberries for half of the buttercream recipe or 1/4 cup for the entire frosting recipe. You can add more or less depending on the color pink you wish to achieve.
- Freeze dried strawberries crushed or whole: Sprinkle them on top of frosted cookies for added flavor and a pretty topping!
- Strawberries: Chop them halve them or cut them into hearts.**
FOR THE SUGAR COOKIES
- In a medium bowl, whisk to combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or using a large bowl and hand held mixer, beat the butter and sugar on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg followed by the egg yolk, vanilla and almond extracts. Beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
- Turn the mixer to low and alternatively add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix on low until combined.
- Divide the dough in half. Roll out each half on baking sheets lined with parchment paper lightly sprinkled with flour. Roll the dough in any shape to about 1/4-inch thick.
- Cover each baking sheet with plastic wrap and place them in the fridge to chill for 2 hours. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350 F. take the dough out of the fridge. Lift the parchment paper off the tray and onto the counter. Carefully run a long knife carefully between the parchment paper and the cookie dough. Use cookie cutters to cut out the cookies. Place the cookies 2 1/2 inches apart on parchment paper lined baking sheet. Re roll dough and cut out cookies, using up all the dough.
- Arrange cookies on baking sheets 2 inches apart. Bake for 8-11 minutes or until light golden brown around the edges. Transfer cookies to a wire rack. Allow cookies to cool completely before frosting.
FOR THE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
- Beat the butter and vanilla until it’s creamy. With the mixer on low, gradually add the powdered sugar followed by the milk, vanilla and salt. Turn the speed up to medium and beat until smooth and fluffy.