Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe  (2024)

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.

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (1)

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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. I’m so excited to share this recipe with you!

Sugar Cookies

Whether you are planning a cookie making party for the holidays or whipping up a batch for a friend’s birthday, you need a sugar cookie recipe that you can rely on. These cookies taste amazing, keep their shape and are perfect for eating plain or decorated with frosting and sprinkles. Let’s get started!

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (2)

Tips For The Best Sugar Cookies:

Sugar cookies may seem simple, but there are a lot of bad recipes out there! After much trial and error, I feel confident that I have mastered the art of the sugar cookie. Here are all the best tips and tricks I have gathered throughout the years:

Rolling Out Sugar Cookies Dough

Roll your dough out directly on a silicone baking mat or piece of parchment paper so you do not have to transfer your delicate shapes onto a baking sheet later. You can cut your shapes out right atop the mat and make your life a bit easier.

How Thick Should Sugar Cookies be Rolled Out?

Roll your dough out to about ¼-inch thick. This is the sweet spot. You’ll have cookies thick enough to keep their shape, while also thin enough to promote even baking.

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (3)

Avoid Crumbly Dough

Crumbly dough makes for misshapen cookies that are prone to uneven baking. To prevent this, don’t overmix your dough. You want the dough to be as smooth as possible. However, if you do get a crumbly texture, add ½ tbsp of water, or milk to the batter and incorporate it until it remoistens the dough.

Avoid Overbaking

10 minutes might seem like a very short baking time for cookies. But, trust me, do not overbake them! At around 10 minutes, the edges of the cookies should just start to turn golden brown. This is the time to pull them! If you continue baking, you risk compromising that signature tenderness of a perfect sugar cookie.

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (4)

Storing Sugar Cookies

The great part about this recipe is that it can be made a couple of days in advance and the cookies will still retain their freshness. Below, I will share how you should store them and also how you can freeze your dough or baked cookies for later munching!

Storing Cookies at Room Temperature:

Store baked sugar cookies on the counter in an airtight container. They will keep for up to a week. Remember, if you have decorated your cookies, it is best to store them between layers of parchment paper to prevent sticking and/or destroying your designs.

Freezing Baked Sugar Cookies:

To freeze baked sugar cookies, first, make sure that you allow them to cool completely. Then, stack the cookies in an airtight container between layers of parchment paper. Freeze cookies for up to 2 months. When you are ready to eat them, allow them to thaw in the fridge overnight.

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How to Freeze Sugar Cookie Dough:

To freeze your sugar cookie dough, roll it into a ball or a log. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store it in an airtight container or freezer bag. The dough will keep for up to 2 months before you need to use it. When you are ready to bake, allow the dough to thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Then, make sure it reaches room temperature before you shape your cookies and bake them.

How to Make Sugar Cookies

  • First, you will combine your flour, baking powder and salt together in a small bowl and set the dry mixture aside.
  • Using a stand-up or handheld mixer, beat your butter, sugar and vanilla extract together until smooth and creamy.
  • Slowly beat flour into the butter mixer until it is fully incorporated.
  • Divide the dough into two equal parts and roll out each piece to ¼-inch thickness.
  • Use a cookie cutter to cut out your favorite shapes or freeze your dough for later use.
  • Bake the cookies and allow them to cool.
  • Decorate the cookies as you please or gobble them up plain!

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How to Decorate Sugar Cookies:

To decorate sugar cookies, you can make your own homemade royal icing which makes a great sugar cookie icing, add food coloring, then pipe it on with a squeeze bottle or little zip bags (handy and inexpensive for cookie decorating parties), or you can purchase an icing decorating kit with pre-made frostings in a variety of colors which makes it really easy. Don’t forget the Christmas sprinkles and crushed candy canes.

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (7)

More Holiday Cookie Recipes

These are our best-loved (and reviewed) Christmas cookies to fill up your holiday cookie platters. These are well-loved by all ages and you’re sure to find some new favorites in this list. Looking for more Christmas recipes and inspiration? Check out our Christmas archives here.

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe

4.99 from 563 votes

Author: Natalya Drozhzhin

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe (9)

Everyone needs an Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe! These are literally melt-in-your-mouth delicious. I am positive these Christmas cookies will win you over.


Prep Time: 20 minutes mins

Cook Time: 10 minutes mins

Total Time: 30 minutes mins


Servings: 40 cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, (large)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, (measured correctly)
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt


  • Preheat oven to 350 °F with a rack in the center. Whisk together flour with baking powder and salt in a small bowl and set aside.

  • Using a stand-up or handheld mixer, beat the butter together with sugar. To the mixture add vanilla extract and egg and beat to combine.

  • To the butter mixture, add flour in 3 parts until fully incorporated.

  • Divide the dough into two equal parts. On a lightly floured surface, roll into ¼-inch thickness. Use a cookie cutter to cut out your favorite shapes.

  • Bake cookies on a parchment or silicone-lined baking sheet at 350˚F for 10 minutes, or until the edges are just beginning to turn golden.

  • Let the cookies cool for about 5 minutes on the baking sheet before moving them to a wire rack to cool completely and decorating with cookie icing.

Nutrition Per Serving

96kcal Calories12g Carbs1g Protein5g Fat3g Saturated Fat16mg Cholesterol17mg Sodium43mg Potassium1g Fiber5g Sugar148IU Vitamin A16mg Calcium1mg Iron

  • Full Nutrition Label
  • Nutrition Disclosure

Nutrition Facts

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe

Amount per Serving



% Daily Value*






Saturated Fat



































Vitamin A















* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Course: Cookies, Dessert

Cuisine: American

Keyword: sugar cookies

Skill Level: Easy

Cost to Make: $

Calories: 96

If you make this recipe, I’d love to see pics of your creations on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! Hashtag them #natashaskitchen

Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe  (2024)


What is the trick to sugar cookies? ›

From the dough to the baking to the icing, our guide will leave you with the perfect sugar cookie this holiday season.
  1. Opt for Room Temperature Eggs. ...
  2. Splurge on "Pure" Vanilla Extract. ...
  3. Whisk the Flour. ...
  4. Chill the Dough. ...
  5. Refrain from Overmixing. ...
  6. Go Easy on the Flour. ...
  7. Bake on Parchment Paper.
Dec 16, 2014

What to add to sugar cookie mix to make it better? ›

Easy Add-In: After creating the dough according to the sugar cookie mix instructions, Add 2 tablespoons of sour cream to create a tangier, cakier and all-around more flavorful cookie. Flavor Twist: For a punchier twist, swap the water in the sugar cookie mix instructions for rum, bourbon or coffee liqueur.

What happens if you don't add enough sugar to cookies? ›

When you decrease the sugar in a cookie recipe, you won't just get a result that's less sweet. You'll get cookies that are harder, drier, crumblier, and spread far less. It was also interesting to note that decreasing the sugar also yielded 1 less cookie dough ball.

Should sugar cookies be hard or soft? ›

The very best sugar cookies are soft and tender. → Follow this tip: One of the keys to great sugar cookies is mixing the dry ingredients only until they're just incorporated, and not a second longer. Once the dry ingredients are added, less mixing equals more tender cookies.

How long should you chill sugar cookie dough? ›

Bake cookies on parchment paper: Sometimes greasing a baking sheet can cause sugar cookies to spread. Instead, use parchment paper to prevent sticking and help the cookies keep their shape. Don't let the dough get warm. Notice the dough needs to be chilled for at least 2 hours.

What is the best thickness for sugar cookies? ›

Place each portion onto a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. Use more flour if the dough seems too sticky. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.

How to fancy up sugar cookies? ›

Take plain sugar cookies up a notch with exciting mix-ins like chocolate chips, rainbow sprinkles, toasted chopped nuts, chopped dried fruit or M&M's. Add these after blending your butter and egg into the sugar cookie mix. This is our favorite hack for holiday Pillsbury cookie dough.

How to level up sugar cookies? ›

think of a basic sugar cookie as a blank canvas, and play with flavors until you find a few combinations you like.
  1. Add some citrus zest to the dough. ...
  2. Top the cookies with sugar and cinnamon before putting them in the oven. ...
  3. Substitute up to half the regular flour with almond flour, and add 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract.
Dec 29, 2017

Why do my sugar cookies taste so bland? ›

The ingredients you used could be the culprit – using different sugars, melted butter, baking powder or baking soda can alter a cookie's texture and taste.

What does vanilla do in cookies? ›

Vanilla does offer more than just a bit of floral flavor. Sometimes it's a flavor enhancer and sometimes it's a flavor balancer. But to be honest, unless it's a vanilla cookie, it's not a true dealbreaker. Especially if you're making cookies that have lots of other flavors going on, like coconut or dark chocolate.

What makes cookies fluffy and not flat? ›

Flour adds fluff and texture to the cookies. Adding too little flour can cause cookies to be flat, greasy, and crispy. Most recipes assume you'll use all-purpose, but if you want a lighter, crumblier cookie texture, choose one with a lower protein content such as cake-and-pastry flour.

What happens when you add too much butter to sugar cookies? ›

An excessive amount of butter makes it where the flour is unable to absorb the combined fat, which causes the cookie to spread too widely and the sugar to carbonize more easily because it's surrounded by too buttery a dough.

Do you put sprinkles on sugar cookies before or after baking? ›

You can also try adding sprinkles to your cookies before baking, but depending on the recipe, they may melt in the oven. Try it out with one cookie before committing to an entire batch.

What happens if you don't chill cookie dough? ›

Chilling dough does several things: It provides ample time for the sugar to dissolve and the flour to hydrate, and some argue it helps deepen the flavor of the dough altogether. But the truth is, the primary reason bakers chill their dough is to prevent cookies from spreading too much.

What helps sugar cookies keep their shape? ›

Sandwich your dough between two sheets of parchment, roll, then freeze; it makes cut-out cookies a breeze! If you plan to store it for only a few hours or days, there's no need to overwrap the baking sheet; for longer storage, wrap the entire baking sheet tightly with plastic wrap before freezing.

How do you get sugar to stay on sugar cookies? ›

Decorate After Baking

In order to add colored sugar to baked cookies, the sugar needs something to adhere to. Icing is the perfect choice. Bake and cool the cookies as directed by the recipe. Ice the very cool cookies with your favorite icing and top with your choice of colored sugar.

Why do my sugar cookies spread and lose their shape? ›

When your oven temperature is too high the fats in the cookie dough will melt much faster than they would with the normal baking temperature. This means that before the dough has time to bake and set the butter as spread out already and you will end up with flat and shapeless cookies.

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