Sugar Cookies

How many of you make sugar cookies with your kids for the holidays?  You know, those cookies with the ABUNDANCE of sugar sprinkles that makes the cookie very crunchy and sends your kids into a frenzy like this after they've eaten just one?

We do.  And there's one recipe that I follow every year that gives me perfect, soft cookies every time.  It was handed down to me by my Great-Aunt Elaine.  Elaine is my Grandma Cook's sister.  And I'm pretty sure this recipe was given to her by my Great-Grandma Mair, their mom.  Yup, another heirloom recipe that I just absolutely adore.

Something I have learned over the years of making cookies is that the key to these is that you refrigerate the dough overnight and DO NOT roll the dough out too thin.  I even measure the thickness of the dough, every single time.  If they are too thin they'll be crunchy.  You want them soft and flaky.  And addicting.  And I love to use  Wilton's® rubber grip cookie cutters so I don't destroy my hands when I cut them out.

With the frosting, I suggest using it when it is room temperature.  It's not a glaze or a fondant frosting to make them look super pretty.  It's a good, creamy buttercream frosting.  But the nice part about the cookies is that they aren't super sugary so a rich frosting isn't going to destroy you.  But that's okay, the kids can destroy you with those sugar sprinkles afterwards.  It's amazing to me that Santa isn't a diabetic!  :)

Great-Grandma Mair's Sugar Cookies


1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cups sour cream
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
3 cups flour

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2-3 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
3 Tbs. milk


1. In a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, and vanilla.  Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until incorporated.  Add sour cream and beat on low speed until combined.

2. Add baking soda, baking powder, salt, and 1 cup flour.  Mix on low speed until flour is incorporated.  Add remaining flour, one cup at a time, and mix until flour is incorporated.

3. Lay 2 sheets of plastic wrap on the counter.  Divide dough in half and form each half into a ball.  Place balls on plastic wrap and flatten into a round about 1 inch thick.  Chill in the fridge overnight.

4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line large baking sheets with parchment paper.

5. Lightly flour the countertop and the top of the dough. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to ¼-inch thickness. Using cookie cutters, cut out the cookies and place on prepared baking sheets. Bake for 7 minutes, until cookies are slightly golden around the edges. Immediately transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Cook cookies completely before frosting.
6. To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and vanilla extract. Slowly beat in powdered sugar and the pinch of salt. Once smooth and creamy, add in heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, then beat at medium-high speed for a minute or two until light and fluffy. Add food coloring, if desired, and beat until combined.
7. Once cookies have cooled completely, frost and add sprinkles, if desired. Allow frosting to set, then store in an air-tight container.

Makes 3-4 dozen cookies