Perfect Sugar Cookies Recipe – the best chewy sugar cookies with vanilla cream cheese frosting and festive sprinkles!
Perfect Sugar Cookies with sweet vanilla cream cheese frosting make an appearance on our holiday table each year. This is the cookie we leave for Santa ( along with oats for the reindeer! ). They are chewy, with slightly crispy edges and can be dressed up for any theme and occasion. I adapted my Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies recipe to get the same perfect texture and look. These cookies are bound to become a family favorite!
These Sugar Cookies are perfect for a few reasons: they are super easy to make, the can be frosted and decorated with sprinkles or enjoyed plain. They are chewy, sweet with slightly crackly tops and frosted with my favorite cream cheese frosting.
HOW TO MAKE PERFECT SUGAR COOKIES
Sugar cookies are most often made with white granulated sugar, butter, egg, flavor extract, flour and baking soda. It is important to let the butter soften in room temperature before creaming for the best texture of the cookie. Creaming butter and sugar for 3 minutes lets the mixture aerate and bake properly. I also highly recommend using almond extract along vanilla extract. It gives the cookies delicious flavor! The ready dough can be scooped, rolled in your hands into a smooth ball and placed on a baking sheet ( cookie nr. 1) ; rolled in your hands, placed on baking sheet and gently pressed with a bottom of a glass ( cookie nr. 2 ) OR dropped right at the baking sheet ( cookie nr. 3) and baked. Cookie nr.2 will be bigger which gives you more surface to decorate. You can also roll the dough balls in white granulated sugar before placing on baking sheet. My favorite frosting for cookies is made with cream cheese and not an overwhelming amount of powdered sugar, just enough to make the frosting spreadable.
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PERFECT SUGAR COOKIES RECIPE
The best chewy sugar cookies with vanilla cream cheese frosting and festive sprinkles!
This recipe makes 24 cookies.
- 4 oz. cream cheese softened
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1.5 cup powdered sugar see note
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with electric hand mixer for 30 seconds. Add sugar 1/2 cup at a time and cream for 3 minutes.
- Add egg and both extracts to butter mixture and mix until incorporated.
Add dry ingredients, in 3 parts, to butter mixture and mix until incorporated.
- Scoop the dough with a medium size cookie scoop ( 1 and 1/2 tablespoon size ) and roll in your hands into a smooth ball. Place cookie balls on a prepared baking sheet. If desired, press gently with the bottom of a glass ( see note ).
- Bake cookies for 8 to 10 minutes ( see note ).
- Cool for 3 to 4 minutes, then transfer onto a cooling rack. Cool completely before frosting.
- To make frosting: in a medium mixing bowl, beat butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add vanilla and mix well. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time and beat for 2 to 3 minutes. You don't have to use all 2 cups, just until you are happy with the texture.
- Frost completely cooled cookies and decorate with sprinkles OR enjoy plain.
Baking time for these cookies is between 8 to 10 minutes. Every oven is different so check the cookies at 8 minutes and if needed add one minute at a time. For me the magic number was exactly 9 minutes.
To properly measure out flour: stir the flour a few times in the container you keep it in, then spoon into measuring cup and level out with knife.
Please note that the butter should be really soft, not just room temperature to touch. It should be so soft, that you need a knife to scrape it off the wrapper. It will ensure proper creaming with sugar.
I use 1 and 1/2 cups of powdered sugar in my frosting but you can use as much as 2 cups, just until you reached the desired texture.
You can roll the dough balls in white granulated sugar before placing on baking sheet. My favorite frosting for cookies is made with cream cheese and not an overwhelming amount of powdered sugar, just enough to make the frosting spreadable.
MORE CHRISTMAS COOKIES:
Holiday Sugar Cookie Bars from Averie Cooks
The Best Cut-out Sugar Cookie Recipe from In Katrina’s Kitchen
Red Velvet Sugar Cookies from Wine & Glue