Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Week number 2 in our holiday cookie series is starting off with the ultimate Christmas cookie, my soft cut out sugar cookie recipe! This recipe is one I adapted from my grandmother’s classic sugar cookie recipe. I can’t remember a Christmas without these cookies making an appearance! 

I love this soft cut out sugar cookie recipe because they are delicious, but also because there is no refrigeration step! Hooray, I hate waiting for those. It takes longer to roll out the dough and cut it into adorable Christmas shapes than it does to actually mix the dough up.

Like most things I make, I mix this dough by hand but you can totally use a KitchenAid or a hand mixer {both of which would make a great Christmas gift!}. When it’s finished, the dough shouldn’t be sticky. It should be wet enough that you’ll need to lightly flour your rolling surface and rolling pin, but it shouldn’t stick to your fingers as you handle it.

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

The baking instructions in the recipe are for cookies that are about 1/4 of an inch thick. You can make them thicker or thinner if you like, just remember to adjust the baking time accordingly. I roll out the dough, cut out my shapes, and then lightly knead the leftover dough together and repeat until it’s gone, or almost gone, or someone {me. always me.} eats the last little bit 🙂 .

Keep in mind that the more you handle the dough, the tougher it will be, so keep the kneading and handling to a minimum. {PS: This cookie cutter set is adorable + practical shape wise. I need it in my life. Because really, icing the candy cane shape is poopy and no one knows what shape Santa on a sleigh is…}

Make this soft cut out sugar cookie recipe for the holidays! Soft and delicious with an easy icing recipe. Perfect for Christmas or anytime!

If you’re making these cookies with kids, just resign yourself to the fact that they will probably make tough cookies. But I promise the kids won’t care. They will have so much fun making the cookies they probably won’t even remember what they tasted like!

Which is what holiday baking with family is all about. I usually give Abram his own little piece of dough to play with while I make the rest. He thinks smashing it around and cutting it in tiny pieces with the bench scraper is a hoot. And he also snitches bites of it while he’s playing….which he may have learned from me…

I admit it, I’m a dough eater. Raise your hand if you are too! Andy thinks it’s gross.

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Icing these cookies is so easy you guys! Or actually probably most likely I’m just not fancy. I generally classify my icing skills as “rustic.” It makes me feel better about a little sloppiness. BUT – this icing is amazing.

It tastes great and once it sets you can totally stack these babies up and deliver ’em to all your friends. I HATE trying to store cookies you can’t stack.

#aintnobodygottimeforthat. For real.

Here is a little vid I had Andy take  of me icing one for ya. That way you can see the texture I go for and how *awesome* I am at icing cookies. #jk

You can actually customize the icing a bit as well. I like mine to be easy to spread but not so runny that it falls off the cookie. If you want it to be thicker and more fluffy, add less milk and whip it for a few minutes.

But it won’t set as well and you probably won’t be able to stack the cookies. As I type this, I’m starting to feel a little obsessive about being able to stack cookies…I didn’t realize this was such an important part of my life! This is why blogging is therapeutic.

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Anyways, back to the icing. I add quite a bit of vanilla to mine so the icing has a slight vanilla edge. I used some of my homemade vanilla extract for this batch of icing and I added the vanilla before I smelled it.

After smelling it, I realized that I may have used it prematurely. Meaning these cookies had a little more than some tasty icing going for them, if you know what I mean. Whoopsie…

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Also, my 1 cup measure has been missing for weeks. Like I’ve used almost an entire 25 pound bag of flour and I MEASURED IT ALL WITH A 1/2 CUP MEASURE OR A 1/3 CUP MEASURE. Do you know how much counting that is?!

I have a hard time keeping track of how much of something I’ve measured with a 1 cup measure. Double or triple that? I’m totally hopeless. You’re lucky these cookies posts made it here at all. BUT the reason I’m sharing this is because I FOUND IT! In the powdered sugar bin, thanks to these cookies. Basically I looked for it everywhere besides the powdered sugar bin. And I may have blamed Abram for losing it. On social media.


My dough scraper is still missing though. How is it even possible to lose kitchen tools? I amaze myself sometimes.

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Anyways, I hope you give this soft cut out sugar cookie recipe a try this holiday season! Don’t forget to check out the other posts in this series, Chewy Chocolate Crinkle Cookies, my French Butter Cookie Recipe and my recipe for pecan crescent cookies!

Soft Cut Out Sugar Cookie Recipe

Yields About 40 medium sized cookies

Make this soft cut out sugar cookie recipe for the holidays! Soft and delicious with an easy icing recipe. Perfect for Christmas or anytime!

20 minPrep Time

10 minCook Time

30 minTotal Time

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    For the Cookies
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cups sugar
  • 1 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • For the Icing
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk


    For the Cookies
  1. Sift dry ingredients together, set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together shortening and sugar.
  3. Add egg and vanilla, mix well.
  4. Add yogurt, mix well.
  5. Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined. The dough shouldn't be sticky to touch.
  6. Lightly flour a surface that you can roll the dough out on.
  7. Roll it out about 1/4 inch thick and cut into desired shapes.
  8. Place cookies on a greased or lined sheet pan and bake at 350 degrees F for about 10 minutes.
  9. When the cookies are done, they should be light and dry in color, barely browned on the bottom.
  10. For the Icing
  11. Mix powdered sugar and vanilla.
  12. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time until icing reaches desired thickness.
  13. Divide and color icing as desired.


• The number of cookies you get from this recipe will vary depending on how thick you cut them and how large or small your cookie cutters are.

• If you would like to make the cookies thinner or thicker, remember to adjust the baking time accordingly.

• Try and use cookie cutters that are all the same size, that way the cookies will bake evenly.

842 cal
2 g
194 g
15 g

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