Sugar Cookies With Buttercream Frosting
Making sugar cookies is one of our favorite holiday traditions. Personally, we love soft sugar cookies that are light and fluffy, which is why I absolutely love this soft sugar cookie recipe. Top them with buttercream frosting and you’ll have the perfect dessert for every occasion!
This recipe has been in the family for generations, and it is a must for the holidays. Not only are these cookies fun to make during the winter, but you can whip them up for any party or gathering during the year.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
These pillowy soft frosted sugar cookies are amazing. Here are just a few reasons why you’ll love this recipe as much as we do!
- They’re fun to make and decorate
- The buttercream frosting can be made in minutes
- You can cut the cookies into any shape you want
- Enjoy them year round for any holiday, party, or occasion
- Making these cookies doubles as a fun activity and a treat
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Best Buttercream Frosting For Cookies
There are a few tweaks that we make to our classic buttercream frosting recipe so that it has an ideal texture for decorating. Adding shortening to the buttercream allows it to hold its shape more, making it perfect creating beautiful frosting designs. If you’re looking for a buttercream frosting recipe for cakes and cupcakes, check out our Classic Buttercream Frosting Recipe.
With just a few basic ingredients, you’ll be able to whip up these cookies in no time at all. Here’s what you’ll need:
Shortening: You’ll need shortening for both the cookie dough and the frosting. Adding shortening to the frosting will help it hold its shape, making it perfect for decorating cookies.
Granulated sugar: What would sugar cookies be without sugar? Granulated sugar will sweeten your dough and help create the right texture.
Eggs: In baking, eggs act like a binder for ingredients as well as a source of moisture. They also help baked goods to turn out nice and fluffy.
Flour: For this recipe, we use all-purpose flour to make our soft sugar cookies. You can find all purpose flour at your local grocery store on the baking aisle.
Baking powder: Another ingredient that helps create the soft pillowy texture of these sugar cookies is baking powder. It acts as a leavening agent, helping the cookies to rise while they bake.
Milk: Keep your dough moist by adding milk. We recommend using 2% or whole milk in this recipe for best results.
Salt: Adding salt will help to bring out sweet flavors in the recipe and give more depth to the taste to your soft sugar cookies with buttercream frosting.
Vanilla: The rich flavors of vanilla make the perfect addition to both the cookie dough and the buttercream frosting. We recommend using pure vanilla extract for best results as opposed to imitation vanilla.
Butter: Salted butter is a key ingredient in this soft sugar cookie frosting. Butter adds flavor and helps bind other ingredients together, giving a creamy texture.
Powdered sugar: Powdered sugar is the main ingredient in buttercream frosting. It’s fine texture allows it to blend with the butter and shortening into a creamy frosting that tastes incredible.
How To Make This Recipe
prepare the ingredients
Before getting started, bring all of the ingredients to room temperature to ensure they combine fully and evenly when mixed. If you need a fast way to soften your butter, check out this post all about how to soften butter quickly.
for the cookies
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the shortening and granulated sugar for 2-3 minutes until it has a light and fluffy texture.
Then, add the eggs and milk and mix until combined.
Next, place the flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate mixing bowl. Whisk them together until fully incorporated.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture a little at a time, mixing between additions.
Mix just until the dough is formed. Finally, add the vanilla, and mix just until combined.
Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before rolling it out. When you’re ready to roll out the dough, start by covering your surface with flour to keep your dough from sticking. Use a rolling pin to roll out your dough (about ½ inch thick) and cut out your cookies.
Preheat the oven to 325°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place the cookies on the lined baking sheet and bake them for 12 minutes or until the edges are slightly golden brown. Let them cool completely (about 10-15 minutes) before frosting.
for the buttercream frosting
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and shortening until very light and fluffy in texture (2-3 minutes).
Add in the powdered sugar one cup at a time, mixing between additions.
Mix in the vanilla extract. Add in the milk or heavy cream as needed for a smooth and even texture. Add food coloring if desired.
Frost your sugar cookies and enjoy!
Sugar Cookie Tools: Click To View
Tips and Tricks
- Chill the dough. Make sure you let your cookie dough chill for at least an hour so it can easily be rolled and cut out before baking.
- Use flour to avoid sticking. When rolling out your cookie dough, cover your surface with flour to keep the dough from sticking to it. Flouring the rolling pin and cookie cutters may be helpful as well.
- Don’t overcook the sugar cookies. The best thing about these cookies is how soft and fluffy they are. Overbaking can cause the cookies to be hard and crunchy.
- Cool the cookies before frosting. It’s important to let the cookies cool completely to room temperature before frosting them. This keeps the frosting from melting and getting too runny.
Usually, we make tons of these sugar cookies during Christmas time, but the beauty of these amazing cookies is that you can enjoy them any time of the year. Here are some other shapes and holidays we love to make them for!
- Hearts, Lips, and Flowers for Valentines Day
- Clovers for St. Patrick's Day
- Numbers and Stars for New Years Eve
- Eggs and bunnies for Easter
- Flowers for Mother’s Day
- Animal Shapes
- Circles for a simple but classic treat
How To Store Leftovers
These soft sugar cookies with buttercream frosting are a great make ahead treat that’s simple and easy to store.
The sugar cookie dough can be prepped in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking. It can also be stored in the freezer for up to a month. If frozen, be sure to let the dough thaw before baking.
The cookies (frosted or unfrosted) can be stored at room temperature for 4-5 days in an airtight container. Let them cool completely after baking before storing.
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Soft Sugar Cookies with Buttercream FrostingDecember 23, 2021
- Piping Bags & Tips (optional)
- Food Coloring & Sprinkles (optional)
FOR THE COOKIES
- ⅔ cup shortening
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs room temperature
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoon baking powder
- ⅓ cup milk 2% or whole
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
FOR THE FROSTING
- ½ cup butter softened
- ½ cup shortening
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1-3 tablespoon heavy cream or milk as needed
FOR THE COOKIES
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together the shortening and granulated sugar for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and milk and mix to combine.
- Place the flour, baking powder, and salt in a separate mixing bowl. Whisk until fully incorporated.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture a little at a time, mixing between additions. Mix just until the dough is formed. Finally, mix in the vanilla extract.
- Chill the dough for at least 1 hour before rolling it out. When rolling out the dough, cover your surface with flour to keep your dough from sticking. With a rolling pin, roll out the dough (about ½ inch thick) and cut out the cookies.
- Preheat oven to 325°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place cookies on the lined baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes or until the edges are slightly golden brown. Let them cool completely (10-15 minutes) before frosting.
FOR THE FROSTING
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and shortening until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Add the powdered sugar one cup at a time, mixing between additions. Mix in the vanilla extract.
- Add in the milk or heavy cream as needed. Add food coloring if desired. Frost your sugar cookies and enjoy!
- Avoid overmixing your ingredients. After adding the flour, mix just until the ingredients are fully incorporated.
- Allow the cookie dough to chill for at least an hour so it can easily be rolled and cut out.
- Let the cookies cool completely to room temperature before frosting them. This keeps the frosting from melting and getting too runny.