The Best Sugar Cookies EVER!!!

Years and years ago I came across the most brilliant sugar cookie recipe ever. It is almost a cross between a sugar cookie and a shortbread cookie. I've never made these and not had people ask for the recipe. And, I actually used to make them and sell them from my home. There is something about a sugar cookie that people just can not resist! And, they are so incredibly versatile... you can shape them into anything. They can be cute and playful, sleek and modern... you can serve them at a birthday party, for tea or give them as favors at a wedding. Everybody loves cookies, and when they look like these and taste like these... what's not to love?!

Sugar Cookies Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened *you CANNOT substitute*
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 Tbsp vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder


Using a stand or hand mixer, beat butter until fluffy.

Add in sugar and beat until blended on low. Increase speed to high and beat until light and creamy.

Resume low speed, add in vanilla and egg. Whip to smooth consistency.

Add baking powder and sift in flour, beat until chunky. Once chunky, increase speed to allow for large ball to form.

**I don't actually own a sifter... but I do have a mesh strainer - works JUST as well!! **

You will need to use your hands to finish combining and form into large ball.

Separate into 2 balls, flatten and cover each disc with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.

Find a surface large enough to roll your dough out. I love to use our large wooden cutting board... it's raised, it's big enough and it stays floured well. You will need to flour your surface, your rolling pin and your cookie cutters.

Roll dough out to about 1/4" thickness.

Use cookie cutters of choice and cut as many as you can. Form a ball and re-roll as needed, flouring each time. Place cookies on cookie sheet and bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove cookie sheet from over, allow to sit 2 minutes and then transfer cookies to wire rack to cool.

Once the cookies have cooled completely you can ice them. I've used several methods to ice cookies over the years, depending on the degree of difficulty I intend for the final design.

These cookies have a royal icing piping and filling:

These cookies have a buttercream icing piping and a sugar flood:

These cookies are the same as the last one, but I ask added more buttercream decoration:

You can find SO many tutorials out there for decorating cookies and I am by NO MEANS an expert. And trust me - YOU can do THIS! I'm not very artistic by hand, and I do an OK job with these. Just trust in yourself and try!!

Here are the different icing recipes...
Royal Icing:

4 cups powdered sugar
3 Tbsp meringue powder
6 Tbsp water

Mix all ingredients until smooth and creamy. If too thick, add water (1/4 tsp at a time, a little goes a LONG way!). If too runny, add powdered sugar.

Flood Icing:

4 cups powdered sugar
5 Tbsp water

Mix all ingredients until smooth and creamy. If too thick, add water (1/4 tsp at a time, a little goes a LONG way!). If too runny, add powdered sugar.

Buttercream icing:

2 sticks butter, softened *NO substitutions*
3 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla

Whip butter with stand or hand mixer until creamy. Add in powered sugar slowly and at low speed. Whip until stiff peaks form. Add in milk and vanilla on low speed to avoid splatter then increase speed. Whip until creamy and light. If too thick, add milk slowly. If too thin, add more powdered sugar.

Happy Baking!!!