Basic Sugar Cookie Recipe

Lots of you know that I am pretty new to this blogging thing.  I’m still  learning every day.  One of the big things I’ve learned along the way, it that it doesn’t make sense to have a cookie decorating blog without a cookie recipe, SO finally, I am posting one.

Keep in mind, this is the recipe I prefer.  You don’t have to use this particular recipe to make beautiful cookies.  Use the one that works best for you and adapt it to your personal taste.

What I can say for this recipe is that it’s easy, which is just my style.  I’ve always said, I am not a baker, as much as an artist who happens to use cookies and icing as my medium.

It works great for me.  I like it, and I have made thousands of cookies using this recipe.
So here it goes..

Basic Sugar Cookie

Basic Sugar Cookie


  • 1 c. {two sticks} of REAL unsalted BUTTER, softened
  • 1 1/2 c. confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2-3 tsp flavoring {pick what you like, I prefer almond}
  • 2 1/2-2 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt


  1. Cream together softened butter and confectioner’s sugar. Crack the egg into a separate bowl, and add the flavoring. I use emulsions, but extract also works well. Add that to the butter sugar mixture and mix until the egg is thoroughly incorporated. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt, then add little by little to the mixture. I can tell the dough is ready when most of it sticks to the paddle. When I touch it, it has a little give, but does not stick to my fingers.
  2. Roll out on parchment to about 1/4 an inch thick, use flour for dusting as necessary. Then, cut and bake at 400 degrees for 7-8 minutes. This version makes 2-2 1/2 dozen, doubled, it makes 4-5 dozen.


The dough DOES not need to be refrigerated. That’s why I like it.

The dough needs to rest a little after mixing, it will firm up a little bit after a minute or two

The recipe doubles well

Baking times are approximate. You must KNOW your oven. Watch them the first few times you bake them. Get a thermometer, and do not over bake. If the cookies are browning you have gone too far.

This dough can be flavored any way you like.

The cookies freeze well

There is a lot of leavener in these cookies. This is not a typo. The general rule is less leavener so they don’t spead, but I’ve never been one to follow the rules.

This recipe does spread a little. If you don’t like that add a little flour. Speaking of flour, start with 2 1/2 cups. Add another 1/4 of a cup if the dough seems to sticky.

If you don’t like salt, leave it out altogether. If you only have salted butter, use that and reduce the salt.

I prefer decorating day-old cookies. They are less likely to leach oil back into your icing if they have had a day or two to “dry out”. They are still soft, however.

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  • I prefer decorating day-old cookies.  They are less likely to leach oil back into your icing if they have had a day or two to “dry out”.  They are still soft, however.
I use this for all my cut-out cookies.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
If it doesn’t work the first time, KEEP practicing.  That is the key.
GOOD LUCK and happy baking!

Join The Discussion


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  1. 421
    YN Choy says:

    1 c. {two sticks} of REAL unsalted BUTTER, softened
    1c for this equal to how mang grams?

  2. 422
    Ashley Gibson says:

    I absolutely love this recipe! I made some starfish cookies for my daughter’s birthday and they were a huge hit! Your royal icing is SO good! I did have a question, though. Some of my cookies rose more in the middle than anywhere else. How do you keep your cookies flat? Did I not roll my dough out enough?

  3. 423

    Hi, I made your cookies 2 weeks ago and it was it hit! My friends and family loved them, couldn’t get enough! =) Thank you for sharing. Will try decorating soon!
    Wrote about it on my blog:

    Again, thanks!

  4. 424
    Cori says:

    this has become my go-to recipe for cut out cookies- I absolutely love it! I do have a question though- you had mentioned the cookies freeze well, does the dough freeze well also?

  5. 425
    Yvette says:

    I just happened upon your blog through Pinterest. Thank-you for sharing. I can’t wait to try this recipe. I normally read personal finance blogs, but yours will be one of the few that I follow that are not in that category.

  6. 426
    kim says:

    this is the best recipe I’ve used for making cookies!! random question though…. do you have a suggestion for doing these gluten free? I’m hosting a baby shower for an anti-glutiet… :-/

  7. 427
    amna asim says:

    400° is equal to how many degrees in centigrade i bake cakes at 180 °

  8. 428
    Yulia says:

    I loved the cookies, but with the icing, they came out a bit too sweet for our taste. Would the dough still work if I cut back on the sugar? Maybe to 1 cup?

  9. 428.1
    Shigenori says:

    This “free sharing” of intiomafron seems too good to be true. Like communism.


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