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The Best & Perfect Sugar Cookies Recipe
I know you’ll love these soft cut out sugar cookies with crisp sides, smooth centers, and room for lots of decorating icing. Use your favorite cutters of cookies and try my classic royal icing
Why You’ll Love These Sugar Cookies
Sweet, thick centers
Irresistible buttery vanilla flavor
Leave plain or flavor with extras such as maple, cinnamon and more
Keep their form Plain surface to decorate
Stay sweet for days
How to Make Sugar Cookies with Icing
Make cookie dough.Only 7-8 ingredients are required. With so few ingredients, it’s important to closely follow the recipe. The cookie dough is based on creamed butter and sugar.
is the basis of the cookie and flavor is provided by the vanilla extract. For additional flavor, I almost always add a touch of almond extract and highly recommend that you try it too.
Flour is a simple addition to that, baking powder provides boost, and sweet salt balances. To create a perfect cookie, so many small ingredients do big jobs
Divide in two pieces. It is easier to roll out smaller pieces of dough.
Roll out cookie dough Roll it out to a thickness of 1/4 inch or less than 1/4 inch. If you have trouble rolling out the dough uniformly,
Chill rolled out cookie dough.Such cookie cutter sugar cookies will not hold their shape without chilling. Chill the cookie dough coming out for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days
The Trick is the Order of Steps
Remember that I roll the dough out of the fridge BEFORE? That’s my trick, and in the video tutorial above you can see me doing it.
Let me explain why I’m doing that. The cookie dough needs to chill in the fridge to keep the cookies from spreading over. Once you cook it, roll out the dough, then cool the rolled-out dough. (The dough is too soft to slice into shapes at this point.) Don’t chill the cookie and then try to roll it out because it’s going to be too cold and hard to deal with. Until rolling it out, I split the dough in half and strongly recommend doing the same thing. Smaller dough pieces are often easier to handle.
I know you're going to enjoy these soft sugar cookies as much as I do with smooth sides, dense cores, and space for lots of decorating icing. The size of the cookie cutter you use depends on the number of cookies this recipe produces. If you want to make a large crowd of hundreds of cookies, double the batch.
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
Beat the butter and sugar together at high speed in a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until completely smooth and creamy, around 2 minutes. Attach the extract of egg, vanilla and almond (if used) and beat at high speed for about 1 minute until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat up the bottom of the bowl as required to be combined.
Incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and blend until mixed. Dough is going to be relatively thin. If the dough tends to be too soft and sticky to roll, add 1 more spoonful of flour.
Break the dough into two equal parts. Place each part on a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or silicone baking mat that is lightly floured. Roll the dough out to around 1/4-inch thickness with a lightly floured rolling pin. So long as it is uniformly 1/4-inch thick, the rolled-out dough can be any shape.
One of the rolled-out dough's lightly dust with flour. Place a parchment on top of it. Put the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. (This avoids sticking.) Cover with aluminum foil or plastic wrap, then cool for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days.
Preheat oven to 350 ° F (177 ° C) when cooled. Place 2-3 wide parchment or silicone baking mats baking sheets. Remove the top dough part from the fridge carefully. If it sticks to the bottom, run your hand below it to help remove it, see me doing this in the above video. Cut the dough into shapes with a cookie cutter. Roll the remainder of the dough and continue to cut until all is used. Repeat with 2nd dough bit.
Set cookies 3 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake until lightly browned around the edges for 11-12 minutes. If there are hot spots in your oven, turn the baking sheet halfway through baking time. Enable cookies to cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet and then move to a wire rack to cool before decorating.
Decorate the cooled royal icing cookies or my simple icing glaze. Feel free to use liquid food coloring to stain any icing. For suggested decoration devices, see the article above. No need to cover the cookies decorated while waiting to pour the icing. If it is helpful, decorate the cookies directly on a baking sheet so that you can place the whole baking sheet in the fridge to help speed up the icing process.
Enjoy cookies right away or wait to be served by the icing packs. Such cookies are perfect for gifting or sending once the icing has been placed. When tightly wrapped at room temperature, flat or decorated cookies stay soft for about 5 days. Cover and refrigerate for up to 10 days for longer processing.