- One batch makes 48 large cookies, which makes this recipe great for cookie exchanges, gatherings, and sharing.
- Easily customizable with food coloring and toppings, this is one sugar cookie that fits the bill for every occasion!
- Quick and easy to whip up, these treats are an excellent way to get the kids involved in the kitchen.
- A family favorite, these soft sugar cookies make for superb cookie platter additions, holiday gifts, or lunchbox treats.
- All-Purpose Flour – Just simple, unbleached flour will do. To make your cookies gluten-free, feel free to use a 1:1 gluten-free all-purpose flour instead.
- Baking Powder and Baking Soda – When combined, these two create the soft, fluffy, tender consistency we’re looking to achieve.
- Salt – Used to enhance the rest of the ingredients.
- Sugar – Regular granulated sugar is used to sweeten the cookie dough, and confectioner’s sugar (also known as powdered sugar) forms the pillowy frosting.
- Butter – Used in both the cookie dough and icing for an ultra-rich taste.
- Eggs – Necessary to add structure to the cookies, helping them keep their shape.
- Vanilla Extract – For the best results, use high-quality pure vanilla extract.
- Milk – This is used to thin out the frosting. We recommend opting for whole milk for a more indulgent flavor, but any variety you have on hand, including dairy-free milk options, can be used.
How to Make this Soft Sugar Cookies Recipe
- Combine the dry ingredients. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Beat. Add the sour cream, sugar, butter, eggs, and almond extract to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until the ingredients are well combined.
- Fold. Using a spatula, gently fold the dry ingredients into the bowl with the sour cream mixture until they are smooth and fully combined.
- Chill. Cover the bowl, and place it in the fridge for about an hour or until the dough is firm enough to roll out – it’s important to chill the dough for easy rolling cutting.
- Form the soft sugar cookies. On a lightly floured working surface, divide the dough into quarters. Roll them out one at a time until they are roughly ⅓ inch thick. Then, use a cookie cutter to cut out circles.
- Bake. Place the cookies on a parchment paper or a silicone-lined baking sheet. Bake until the cookies are fluffy and pale golden in color. Take care not to over-bake these.
Fluffy Buttercream Frosting
The buttercream frosting here is light, fluffy, and perfect for piping! Use any food coloring and sprinkles you’d like, in order to create the perfect look for any occasion throughout the year.
- Using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, whisk the butter until it is light and fluffy. Mix in the sugar until smooth.
- Then, add the remaining ingredients except for the milk, and whisk on medium-high speed. Slowly mix in a tablespoon of milk at a time until your desired consistency is reached.
- If desired, stir food coloring into the frosting. Then, frost your cookies, and decorate them with sprinkles, candy pieces, and more.
Pro-Tips for Soft Sugar Cookies
- Use room temperature ingredients. Allowing your butter and eggs to come to room temperature will allow for easy mixing and a softer texture.
- Don’t overmix. You’ll want to combine the ingredients in the dough just until they are smooth. Continuing to mix will overwork the gluten causing your cookies to be dense and tough.
- Keep the dough cold. We highly recommend keeping any dough you aren’t working with in the fridge. This will make it easier to roll out and shape the cookies and allows for more even baking.
- Space out the cookies. Unlike thumbprint cookies or spritz cookies that don’t change much as they bake, these soft sugar cookies will grow and spread in the oven. Therefore, we highly recommend spacing them about 2 inches apart to prevent them from molding together as they cook.
Make Ahead and Storage Options
Baked Cookies: Stored in an airtight container, baked and frosted cookies will stay fresh at room temperature for up to 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Alternatively, you can wrap each Lofthouse cookie individually, and freeze them for 2-3 weeks. If you do plan on freezing them, we recommend leaving the frosting off until just before serving.
Cookie Dough: To prepare in advance, prepare the dough, cover it in a bowl, and store it in the fridge for 2-3 days. Or, for a longer-lasting option, shape the cookies, and place them on a baking sheet in the freezer until they are solid. Then, transfer them to a sealable bag for up to 3 months.
Frosting: Keep leftover or pre-made frosting in an airtight container in the fridge, it will stay fresh for 3-4 weeks. Just be sure to let it come to room temperature before spreading it on your cookies.
More to Bake and Eat
- Lemon Pudding Cookies – Full of irresistible lemon flavor, these pudding cookies are perfect for sharing with friends.
- Soft Funfetti Cookies – Festive and tasty, this dessert can be made ahead of time and baked in minutes whenever a craving hits.
- Thick, Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies – Even tastier than your local bakery’s, these are the most scrumptious oatmeal cookies we’ve ever had the privilege of sinking our teeth into.
- Chewy M&M Cookie Bars – Made with all the flavor of M&M cookies but so much easier to create, these bars are always a crowd-pleasing dessert.
- Andes Mint Cookies – Tender, chocolatey, and full of refreshing mint flavor, these treats are a dream come true!
Servings: 48 cookies
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to combine. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium speed, beat the sour cream, sugar, butter, eggs, and almond extract until well combined.
Using a spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the sour cream mixture until fully combined. The dough will be somewhat sticky. Cover the bowl, and chill the dough in the fridge for an hour or until it is firm enough to roll out.
Lightly flour a working surface. Divide the chilled dough into four even quarters, and roll out one quarter at a time, keeping the remaining dough in the fridge until ready to use. Roll each quarter to ¼ inch thickness, and use a cookie cutter 2-inch in diameter to cut out circles.
Preheat the oven to 250F, and position the rack on the lower middle position.Arrange the cookie circles on parchment or silicone-lined baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between each cookie. Bake 8-10 minutes or until the cookies are a light golden-pale color. Do not over-bake!Cool on the cookie sheet 10-15 minutes before transferring the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Make Frosting: In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk the butter for 3-4 minutes or until it is light and fluffy.Add the sugar, and continue to whisk until well combined. Add the almond extract, vanilla extract, and salt, and whisk on medium-high speed until fully incorporated.Add one tablespoon of milk at a time until the desired consistency is achieved. If desired, whisk in food coloring.
Once cookies are fully cooled, frost the cookies, and top with sprinkles.
- Frosted cookies can be kept at moderate room temperature in airtight container for a few days.
- Unfrosted cookies can be wrapped airtight and frozen for a couple of weeks. Leftover frosting can be chilled in airtight container for future use (will need to come to room temp before using.)
- If you enjoyed this recipe, please come back and give it a rating ♡
Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 195kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 117mg | Potassium: 15mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 287IU | Vitamin C: 0.04mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg
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