cookies/ holiday treats

Super Soft Cut-Out Sugar Cookies

Out of all the holiday cookies out there, these super soft cut-out sugar cookies should be on your list of things to bake every single year. They’re buttery, super soft, and easy to make! Plus, they’re excellent to use with cookie cutters and they keep their shape! Christmas may be right around the corner, but you still have time to make this delicious holiday classic!

Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Overhead shot of Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Image Credit: Beyond the Butter, LLC
Super Soft Cut-Out Sugar Cookies – Christmas may be right around the corner, but you still have time to make this delicious holiday classic!

helpful tips for the perfect cut-out sugar cookies

Here are a few helpful baking tips to help perfect your super soft cut-out sugar cookies!

  • Roll Out then Chill. To help make things easier for you later on when you go to cut out your cookies, roll out the sugar cookie dough on some lightly floured wax paper before placing it in the refrigerator. Take whatever size jelly roll pan or cookie sheet that will fit in your refrigerator, and roll the dough out so it fits nicely within that size pan or sheet. Layer each roll out of sugar cookie dough with the wax paper so they don’t stick to each other. 
  • Chill the Cut-Out Sugar Cookie Dough. In order to prevent your dough from spreading as it bakes, it’s good to chill the dough for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour. If you choose not to roll your cookie dough out first before chilling, chill the dough for a minimum of 2 hours. 
  • Use Flour As Needed. Even with using chilled dough, I like to dip my cookie cutter or cookie stamps into a little flour before cutting them out. You’ll more than likely have scraps of dough after you cut out your shapes. Make sure you roll it out on a lightly floured surface. If you find the dough is sticking, go ahead and add more. Remember—the longer the dough sits out the more it’s likely to stick to the surface you’re using for rolling the dough.
  • Don’t Over Bake the Sugar Cookies. The recommended baking time for this super soft cut-out sugar cookie recipe is 7-8 minutes, or until lightly browned. Overbaking sugar cookies can leave them a darker brown, brittle, and hard. 
Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Overhead shot of Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Image Credit: Beyond the Butter, LLC
Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Overhead shot of Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Image Credit: Beyond the Butter, LLC

how to make easy cut out sugar cookies

The recipe for this cut out sugar cookies comes together very quickly. Whisk together your dry ingredients (except for the confectioners sugar) then set them aside. Next you will beat together the butter, egg, and vanilla and almond extracts. Slowly add in the confectioners sugar, then your dry ingredients. That’s it!

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Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Overhead shot of Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies | Image Credit: Beyond the Butter, LLC

super soft cut-out sugar cookies

  • Author: Jennifer
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes (does not include chilling time)
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes (doesn’t include time for cooling or decorating)
  • Yield: 34 dozen cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Desserts

Description

These Super Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookies have been a family favorite since I was a kid. They are super soft, not too sweet, and so easy to make with cookie cutters! If you’re a cookie artist in search of that perfect sugar cookie recipe, look no further!


Scale

Ingredients

sugar cookies

sugar cookie glaze

  • 2 cups Confectioners Sugar
  • 2 tbsp. Light Corn Syrup
  • 2 1/2 tbsp. Milk (I used Fat Free)
  • 1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 tsp. Almond Extract
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Food Coloring (I used McCormick’s brand of food coloring)

royal icing

additional items needed

  • Cookie Cutters (mine came from Michael’s and A Touch of Finland)
  • Sanding Sugars
  • Small Piping Bags or Plastic Piping Bottles (piping tips do not have to be used with the bags. I just snipped mine off when I ready to start decorating)
  • Assorted Cookie Decorations (check out my Homemade Gingerbread Houses post for decorating ideas)

Instructions

sugar cookies

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Set aside.
  2. Using your hand mixer or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter, vanilla extract, almond extract, and egg until blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  3. Switch the mixer speed to slow and add in the Confectioners Sugar.
  4. Lastly, add in the dry mixture until completely blended.
  5. Roll the cookie dough to a thickness of approximately 1/4″ onto a lightly floured surface. I would suggest rolling it out onto some parchment paper which will make it easier to place onto the jelly roll pan or cookie sheet for chilling. If you need to add more flour so it doesn’t stick, that’s okay! Just make sure whatever jelly roll pan or cookie sheet you use will fit into your refrigerator. Layer each roll out of cookie dough with the parchment paper so they don’t stick together. Chill the dough for 30 minutes to an hour. Alternatively, you can shape the dough into discs (like you would for refrigerating pie crust), wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and chill for at least 2 hours.
  6. After chilling is complete, adjust your oven rack to the 2nd level position and pre-heat your oven to 375ºF. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  7. Flour your cookie cutters and cut out your shapes. Place about 1″- 1 1/2″ apart. If you prefer to decorate your cookies using only sanding sugars, now is the time to decorate them.
  8. Bake cookies for 7-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Allow to cool on the cookie sheets for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack using a spatula. Let them cool completely before dipping them in the sugar cookie glaze.

sugar cookie glaze

  1. Using your hand-held mixer or stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the confectioners sugar, light corn syrup, milk, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt until very smooth.
  2. Depending on how many colors you’ll need, you may need to divide up the glaze into separate bowls to make the different colors using the food dye.
  3. When ready to decorate, dip the top of the cookie into the glaze and allow any excess to drip off. Place on a wire rack with a paper towel underneath to dry. The paper towel is just there to catch any excess drip that runs off the cookie.
  4. When they’re dry to the touch, you can start to add the royal icing, sanding sugars, and other decorations to them. For me, I waited until they were completely dry so I could handle them a little better while piping on the royal icing. 

royal icing

  1. Using your hand-held mixer or stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the water and meringue powder on high until frothy. Switch the speed to low and add in 1 cup at a time the confectioners sugar. Beat on high once all the confectioners sugar has been incorporated.
  2. The icing should be like glue and should take some time to blend back into the bowl of icing. To test this just lift the head up on your stand mixer and allow the icing to fall back into the bowl. If it blends immediately back in with the icing then it’s too runny.
  3. If the icing is too runny, add a little more confectioners sugar. If it appears to be thicker than glue, add a tsp of water at a time to get to the glue-like consistency.
  4. Add the royal icing to a piping bag. You can choose to use a piping tip, but for this I just snipped a little bit of the tip off the bottom when I was ready to decorate.
  5. After decorating, allow to dry overnight completely. 
  6. You can keep these stored in an airtight container with wax or parchment paper in between the cookies so you don’t smoosh you decorations. Add in a slice of bread to keep them nice and soft.

Notes

I prefer to roll my sugar cookies out to a 1/4″ thickness. If you would like to roll them out thinner, make sure to pay attention to the time you bake them because they’ll bake faster than thicker rolled cookies.

If using a sugar glaze for your cookies isn’t your thing, you can always decorate the cookies with sanding sugar before you bake them! This option is less messy and possibly better for little kids who are just getting into cookie decorating. It’s how I learned to decorate sugar cookies as a kid!

After I added the glaze to the sugar cookies, I allowed them to full dry before adding the royal icing. 

This is a family recipe and was given to me by my late Grammy. Sugar cookie glaze recipe adapted from My Name is Yeh.

Keywords: super soft cut-out sugar cookies, sugar cookies, cut-out sugar cookies, roll out sugar cookies, cookies, holiday cookie recipes

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    Jeli
    December 24, 2018 at 11:09 AM

    Hi! I am trying to make these cookies for Santa today and just realized the instructions call to mix egg with the other ingredients, however there is no egg in the ingredients list. Could you please advise how many eggs are needed? Thanks so much!!! Love your recipes

    • Reply
      Jennifer
      December 31, 2018 at 9:53 AM

      Hi! I’m so sorry for just seeing your comment now! It calls for 1 large egg. I’ll make that correction in the ingredients list. Thank you so much for catching that!

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