The Best Sugar Cookies

This easy-to-follow recipe makes six dozen of the best sugar cookies ever! These are quick to roll out, and great for decorating year round.

12 sugar cookies, decorated as snowmen, on a cooling rack.

I know a lot of bakers who took a long time to find their go-to cookie dough, and I sure had to kiss a lot of frogs to find this recipe! I’ve been making these sugar cookies every Christmas with my children for over 10 years. There is no better recipe!

I have used this for so many different occasions. The photo above is from Christmas, but this is a crowd-pleaser for all holidays, parties, and just a day that ends in “y”!

Each batch makes six dozen cookies (depending on the size of cutter you use) and they roll out perfectly every time. They have truly earned my award for The Best Sugar Cookies. 

Ingredients for The Best Sugar Cookies

It is almost dangerous how simple these cookies are. It makes it a bit too easy to make them on a whim, but I don’t mind! 

For the cookies themselves, you need butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, flour, butter emulsion or extract, baking powder, and salt. Butter emulsion can be omitted, but you can find it in the grocery store or craft store.

The ingredients for sugar cookie recipe, shot from above

You will want to use a standard baking sheet for these, lined with parchment paper. Any decorations will require additional ingredients, and I have some ideas for that down below. 

The process shots for creating the sugar cookie dough, before it is chilled.

How to Make // The Steps

  • First, cream together the butter and sugar until it is really light and fluffy.
  • Then, add the eggs and the vanilla and butter extracts.
  • Finally, add the dry ingredients and mix until well.
  • Once your dough is ready, wrap it in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for 3-4 hours before rolling and baking. I prefer to let it chill overnight if possible!
Sugar cookie dough, rolled out on a flour-coated surface, ready to be cut into shapes.
  • Once chilled, roll and cut the cookie dough using your favorite cutter, or just the rim of a glass. 
  • Place the cookies on the parchment-lined baking sheet, and put these in a preheated 350Β° oven for 8-10 minutes. 
  • Note: These should come out light, so remove before edges brown. 
Sugar Cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet

Why does this recipe make the Best Sugar Cookies?

  • Each batch gives you a ton of cookies, making it easy for events. 
  • The dough freezes exceptionally well, which means it’s easy to pull out for a few cookies on a Sunday night! 
  • This dough rolls out like a dream.
  • The cookies taste incredible every time. 
Sugar Cookies in process of being decorated and turned into snowmen. Fondant and frosting are nearby, ready to be added.

Decorating, Storing, and Gifting

Decorations: Naturally, the sky is the limit when it comes to decorating the best sugar cookies.! This is my hands-down favorite sugar cookie glaze and I use it almost every time I make these. A little food coloring and a piping bag give you a world of choices! 

For the Fondant Snowman cookies pictured, I used pre-colored fondant to make snowmen. I cut out white fondant circles about the same size as the cookie, then used the same cutter to cut out colored fondant for hats, and cut the pieces in half, cutting a thin strip for the trim. Using a paintbrush and water, I “glued” them onto the white base and then rolled the face and pom-pom. I alternated the colors and added detail using the back of a knife. I love how they came out.

Freezing: This is super easy to halve if needed. But since these are The Best Sugar Cookies ever – I like to keep some around. You can freeze half of the batch in plastic wrap, or you can pre-roll portions of dough and freeze them between layers of parchment paper. 

Storing: In an air-tight container these will be just fine on the counter for a few days – but make sure to keep them out of the sun, so the icing doesn’t melt! If you want to put these in the fridge, they will last a few extra days. 

Gifting: I love giving the best sugar cookies as gifts. I do recommend gifting them carefully, using parchment paper between cookies, so they don’t break apart in transit.

Nine sugar cookies shaped like snowmen faces, with different colored hats.

Originally published in March 2010, revised December 2020 with updated images and updated recipe card.

12 sugar cookies, decorated as snowmen, on a cooling rack.

Sugar Cookies

Yield: 6 dozen
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 23 minutes

This easy-to-follow recipe makes six dozen of the best sugar cookies ever! These are quick to roll out, and great for decorating year round.



  1. Cream together the butter and sugar until it is really light and fluffy. Add the eggs and the vanilla and butter extracts. Add the dry ingredients and mix until well.
  2. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.
  3. Roll the dough out and cut using your favorite cookie cutter.
  4. Bake the cookies in a 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes. Do not brown the edges.


This dough freezes well. Divide in half, wrap well, and keep in the freezer until ready to use.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 72 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 128Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 49mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 2g

All information and tools presented and written within this site are intended for informational purposes only.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

Oh hey there!

Well, hello there! I’m Bree Hester, the Boston-based blogger and food photographer here at Baked Bree. Here you can get lots of weeknight meal inspiration, eat more plant-based meals, and still indulge in a decadent sweet treat. Baked Bree is a place where you will find great recipes and inspiration for your next family adventure.

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This Post Has 77 Comments

  1. Maria

    The cookies look perfect and what cute photos!

  2. leah

    two quick questions: 1) what temp did you bake them at? 2) parchment paper on cookie sheet? Thanks!

  3. Sarah

    Hey! Great looking cookies! I was wondering though, how many cookies does this make approximately? It looks like a huge amount!

    1. bakedbree

      It is hard to say because it depends on the size of your cutter, but usually it fills 4 cooling racks full of cookies. I would say about 6 dozen normal size cookies?

  4. Becky

    What temperature do you bake these at? Thanks!

    1. bakedbree

      350. I will fix the post. Thanks for letting me know.


    PERFECT!!! Please publish your frosting recipie – and how much dye and when to add sprinkles and are the cookies completely cool or slightly warm and Thank YOU!

    1. bakedbree

      I will do that. I am going to try to make a video also.

  6. Kelly

    Can you share your icing recipe for these as well? Thanks a bunch.

  7. Suzanne

    I am always looking for new recipes for sugar cookies. Can you tell me if these are soft?

    1. bakedbree

      Not really soft. They are really good for cut out cookies. It also depends on how thick you roll them out too.

  8. Valerie

    I really like to make these, but I only have Vanilla essence. Can I use that instead of vanilla extract, and how much?

    1. bakedbree

      Yes, but I have no idea how much. A Tablespoon?

  9. Joanne

    I had to come back to make sure the recipe I have in my recipe book is the “prince”. I like that the edges stay white/ or the color of the dye when you bake them!

    1. bakedbree

      I love this recipe Joanne, I have tried a few others and always come back to this one.

  10. Karin

    what happens if i don’t chill the dough? i know it’s a big to-do in the preparation, ’cause i heard some don’t need it, is it really not needed?

    1. bakedbree

      It is needed when you cut the dough. It helps the cookie retain their shape.

  11. athena

    Would this recipe also work for slice and bake?

    1. bakedbree

      It should be just fine.

  12. Jessica

    Can I use reg butter and cut down on the salt or can I use crisco?

    1. bakedbree

      Yes, but I would not use Crisco.

      1. Celeste

        I only have salted butter, so just to clarify — can I just swap salted for unsalted, or do I also need to omit or reduce the salt? Thanks!

        1. bakedbree

          I would half the salt.

          1. Celeste

            Thank you! You’re so sweet to reply!

  13. Melissa

    Hey! πŸ™‚ Looks like a great recipe. But are they still kind of sweet without frosting? My SO doesnt like frosting so yeah~

    1. bakedbree

      Yes, but not overly.

  14. Helen

    How much butter is 2 cups (in grams)?

    1. bakedbree

      Please use a cup to gram converter. Google it and you will find many options.

  15. Krystal

    I tried these, added everything but too dry and crumbly πŸ™ not sure what happened

    1. bakedbree

      I am not sure either. Made you forgot an egg?

  16. Lina

    Thank you so much for sharing your recipe, I made some Xmas cookies with my 3yr old daughter and it was a hit! Super easy and so good! I just wish we didn’t have to wait 3hrs ( it’s a lifetime to a eager 3yr old baker)! This is now our go to cookie recipe for all occasions! πŸ™‚ happy holidays & god bless!

    1. bakedbree

      thank you! I love this dough and have been making it for years. I hope that you will be making it for years too!

  17. Angie

    Threw away most of the dough awful to roll out when refrigerated…the taste of the cookie is not that good..maybe when I add icing they will be better..

    1. bakedbree

      Sorry, I have never had a problem with this dough and I have been making it for years.

  18. Margaret

    Made these cookies last evening and this will be my go to recipe. The dough is not at all fragile and very easy to move from cutting surface to cookie sheet. Love them. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. bakedbree

      I am so glad! I love this recipe. I have tried others and always come back to this one.

  19. Christina

    These are PERFECT. Perfect, perfect, perfect. I cannot stress that enough. They were a little tough to roll out, but not terrible. They taste amazing and they hold their shape incredibly. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

    1. bakedbree

      Thank you! This is my all time favorite recipe for sugar cookies. Did you let the dough sit for a bit before you tried rolling it out? That might make it easier to roll.

  20. Samantha

    I made two batches of this today, and I am so sad about how it is turning out. The first batch I added all 7 cups of flour right away, and it could not be more dry. It is just little crumble balls. I still squished it together the best I could and refrigerated it. I took it out to roll it, and it’s been sitting out for over an hour and still HARD as a rock! I finally got it to roll a little – and it just crumbled to nothing.

    The second batch I only added 6 cups of flour and the texture of the dough was much better. I just took that batch out of the fridge since I threw the other away, so I guess we’ll see how it is to roll in a couple hours.

    I’ve never had a recipe from you go this poorly! And from previous comments, some people don’t have issues with it so I’m wondering what the issue is! Hope the cookies make up for the frustrating day of baking them! πŸ™‚

    1. bakedbree

      That doesn’t sound right. I have made these cookies hundreds of times, and I have never had this happen to me. I am so sorry, I know how frustrating that can be!

      1. Samantha

        The cookies DEFINITELY redeemed themselves! Oh my goodness are they AMAZING. Honestly the PERFECT sugar cookie. Hold their shape perfectly, but stay softish… And the taste is so good.

        I’m making another batch today πŸ™‚

        And for me, I guess the key is only 6 cups of flour!

        1. bakedbree

          I am so glad!

  21. Gena

    I made these cookies for Valentines Day, and they were fantastic! I didn’t have butter, so I used margarine instead, and they turned out beautifully. I added a little extra flour to the dough ( about a 1/2 cup) and used a little flour to roll them out so they wouldn’t stick, and that seemed to help them keep their shape better during baking. I rolled the cookies out about a 1/4″ thick, baked them 8 minutes on an insulated cookie sheet and ended up with 5 dozen cookies. I will never use another sugar cookie recipe again!

    1. bakedbree

      I am so glad! I love this recipe too. I have tried others, but always come back to this one.

  22. Alex

    Just made these today, and they turned out great! The texture was perfect for making cut-outs. I rolled the dough out to 1/4″ thick and they cooked for exactly 8 minutes. I am excited to serve them at Easter, and am sure my family will love them! Thanks for the recipe!

    1. bakedbree

      I love this recipe too. I cannot use another because I know that it is so good.

  23. Rannie

    Hey, Bree! Question: What is the size of the eggs? Small, Medium or Large? I hope you reply..

    1. bakedbree

      I use large eggs.

  24. Tia

    are these soft and chewy or hard? im looking for soft cookies.

    1. bakedbree

      They are in between. They are soft in the middle, but made for decorating, so they need to be sturdy.

  25. jennifer

    I made these for my daughters birthday. I made number 1’s they were awesome , perfect not a single problem. And they were the best tasting ones I’ve had. Thank you for the recipe ps. They held up wonderfully during the decorating process.

    1. bakedbree

      I am so glad. I have tried other recipes, but this is the one that I always come back to.

  26. Laura

    They look great! When you are making half recipe, how many eggs do you use? Thanks!

    1. bakedbree

      Well, half of 4 is 2. I’d use 2.

      1. Laura

        Hahahahaha! I was completely sure I read 3 eggs in the recipe! Sorry!!

        1. bakedbree

          No problem, I thought that I had missed something. πŸ™‚

  27. Helen

    Have you ever frozen the dough and then used it later? Just wondering, if so, how that worked out. I am wanting to make this early for Valentine’s Day cookie decor party with my kids. Thanks.

    1. bakedbree

      All the time. I usually freeze half of the dough and use it another time. It makes A LOT of dough.

  28. Teresa

    Our church asks us to make cookies for the prisoners and I always struggle with an easy peasy recipe. This one will go down a treat.

    1. bakedbree

      This is the best sugar cookie recipe I’ve tried, and I’ve tried a lot. It tastes great, and is easy to roll out.

  29. judy

    I have been using this recipe since 1969 when I was married. Our family tradition at Christmas was to make these cookies and we would have a ball decorating them, even the girls’ dad. Both my daughters carry on the tradition with their kids. Great family bonding.

    1. bakedbree

      I love traditions like that. πŸ™‚

  30. amy

    Do you have a frosting recipe you recommend?

  31. Kate Evans

    Hi Bree,

    Just wanted to say thanks for this recipe! I’ve been using it now for a couple of years for our neighborhood holiday cookie decorating parties and it’s always worked great.


    1. bakedbree

      I am so glad! This is my favorite sugar cookie recipe and I always come back to it. It always works and tastes really good. I am so happy that it has become a tradition for you too.

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  33. Carolyn

    Hi! Do you bake your cookies on parchment paper?

    1. bakedbree

      I do. I’m lazy and don’t want to wash another pan.

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  35. Sara

    Can I half this recipe? Will it turn out the same?

    1. Bree Hester


  36. Ashley

    Is there a post on how to decorate these? We make them every year but usually just use different color glaze. This year the kids are wanting to decorate them (snowmen like above, trees, etc). Would making the glaze and putting it in a piping bag work or would it run?

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