You have just landed on the best soft sugar cookie recipe that is moist and chewy like those from the bakery. One batch makes 24 cookies that are melt-in-your-mouth good (scratch that, heavenly), ready in less than 30 minutes, and perfect for frosting and decorating. Plus you don’t even have to roll out the dough!
Depending on your level of decorating skills, you can use royal icing or buttercream frosting to bring the sugar cookies to life. I really like using the copycat Lofthouse frosting recipe. It’s simple and you can make them for any occasion by adding a couple of drops of gel food coloring. You could also go with a classic cream cheese frosting that everyone loves.
If you are making these for the holidays, be sure to check out my Candy Cane Cookies. Very similar to the sugar cookies, but they are topped with a homemade peppermint frosting. We also make cut-out sugar cookies for Valentine’s Day that the kids always enjoy.
Why You’ll Love This Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe
- Makes 24 cookies, so it’s great for crowds.
- Can be served with or without frosting.
- No need to roll out the dough!
- Soft and chewy like professional bakery cookies.
- Perfect for decorating and holiday cookie parties.
What Ingredients do I Need for Chewy Sugar Cookies?
- butter – I like to use salted butter. Just be sure you allow enough time for it to come to room temperature.
- vanilla and almond extract
- granulated sugar
- light brown sugar – when measuring, be sure to pack it down.
- eggs – you’ll need one room-temperature egg, plus the yolk of another.
- all-purpose flour
- baking soda and baking powder
- Lofthouse frosting and sprinkles (optional)
Pro Tip: Letting your butter soften and eggs come to room temperature before making the cookie dough helps with the overall texture and makes mixing easier.
How to Make The Best Soft Sugar Cookies
PREP: Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven.
MIX THE COOKIE DOUGH: Combine the flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. Use an electric mixer or stand mixer to beat the butter. Add the extracts and sugars, then continue mixing. Mix in the eggs then add half the flour mixture. Once combined, add the remaining dry ingredients.
ROLL THE COOKIES: Use a cookie scoop to make the cookie dough balls. Place them on the baking sheet, then slightly press them down.
COOK AND SERVE: Bake for 8 to 9 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer them to a wire rack to cool. Frost and decorate if desired.
- Pressing the cookie dough down makes them spread out more evenly but you don’t have to do this. However, if your cookie dough is cold I would highly recommend it.
- Make sure your baking powder and soda have not expired. These two ingredients react in the dough so they will rise and be light and fluffy.
- Creaming the butter and sugar is very important and helps to keep the sugar cookies soft.
- If desired, you can roll the cookie dough balls in table sugar. This will make them a little crispier around the edges but may change the texture just a bit.
- You don’t have to chill the dough for this recipe.
- If you are making these for a holiday cookie decorating party, I recommend baking them the day before so kids don’t have to wait for them to cool.
Pillsbury earned the record for decorating the most sugar cookies in one hour in 2015. They recruited shoppers at the Mall of America and turned out 1,169 cookies!
Keep leftover sugar cookies in an airtight container for up to 5 days on the counter.
Once they have cooled, keep them on the baking sheet and flash freeze for 30 minutes. Then transfer them to a freezer bag for up to 3 months. It’s best to freeze unfrosted cookies.
Wrap the raw cookie dough in a layer of plastic wrap then in a freezer bag. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before baking the cookies.
The Best Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe
- 1 cup salted butter softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg + 1 large egg yolk room temperature
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Lofthouse frosting and sprinkles optional
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line sheet pans with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer, beat the butter until light and fluffy (about 1 minute).
- Add vanilla and almond extracts, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Beat in until well combined.
- Add the egg and egg yolk. Beat for 3-4 minutes on high speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally to fully cream the wet ingredients.
- Add ½ of the flour mixture and beat in on low speed just until combined. Add the other half of the flour mixture and beat in until combined. Do not overbeat.
- Scoop 2 ½ tablespoon size balls of cookie dough. Roll between your fingertips to form smooth balls. Place balls on prepared sheet pans, spaced 2 inches apart. Press down the center of the ball, just slightly.
- Bake for 8-9 minutes or until cookies have just a hint of brown around the bottom edges and are set on top. Allow to cool for 3-4 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.
- Frost cooled cookies and garnish with sprinkles, if desired.