sugar cookies for dummies

When I got an email from Jessica at Life As Mom about a good old- fashioned link party I was excited. Until I saw the theme. I am a creature of habit and during one of my baby-moons I shared ALL my favorite recipes.

BUT! I finally remembered that I just found a dummy proof recipe for sugar cookies. Seriously. For YEARS I have told my children to make cut out cookies with grandma because I just couldn’t figure it out.

This recipe rocks! The dough comes together perfectly and is sturdy enough for dummies but light enough to make a yummy cookie.  The thinner you make them, the crunchier they are.  I like them crunchy myself :).


  • 1/2 c butter, softened
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla
  • 2 c flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt


Preheat oven to 375 degrees and put parchment paper on your cookie sheets.

Cream butter in a large mixing bowl and add sugar.  Beat until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla, mixing well.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt.  Add flour mixture to butter mixture. Blend well. Dough will be very stiff.  The dough pictured below actually needed a smidge more, but once I started rolling it out on the floured counter, it was perfect.

sugar cookie third of recipe

Divide dough in thirds or in half.

sugar cookie dough thickness

Roll each portion to 1/8 thick on a lightly-floured work area; you could also try using powdered sugar :).

sugar cookies cut and wiggled

Cut with cookie cutters.  Tip — after pushing down cookie cutter, wiggle it slightly side to side.  This makes it easier to move to cookie sheet.  I also like to use a super thin, metal spatula to wiggle the cookies free from the counter.  The one pictured is from Pampered Chef.  Place cookies approximately 2 inches apart.

Sugar Cookies for Dummies

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool on wire racks.  Frost and decorate as desired.

Makes 2-4 jelly roll pans of cookies. Number depends on size of cookies, but between 2 and 3 dozen.  If you want to freeze, freeze after cooking but before frosting.  Make the glaze below when ready to decorate & eat!

cookie cutters on floor

And because I’m all about real here (in case you couldn’t tell by my non-Pinterest worthy non-food blogger photos), this is what my dining room looked like after searching for Christmas cookie cutters.  That’s approximately 120-some cookie cutters on the floor, under the dining room table and into the living room, courtesy of the 17 month old :).



Sugar Cookie Glaze


The frosting is the perfect compliment. It’s not a frosting so much as a glaze that hardens, making them easy to transport. And because its not frosting & drawing, it’s super easy to let imperfection reign here. Glaze + sprinkles = happy :D.

sugar cookie decorating


  • 3 Tblsp commercial meringue powder
  • 2 c powdered sugar
  • 1/2 c + 2 Tblsp warm water
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • food coloring


Beat on high for 3-5 minutes.  You need a mixer; do not try to do this one by hand.

Divide into bowls and add food coloring.  Spread with butter knives or frosting spatulas.  It has kind of a melted marshmallow type thickness.  But much easier to deal with & less sticky.

Make when ready to use.

This recipe makes the perfect amount of glaze for the cookie recipe above. I divided mine into 4 colors and had very little left over.


Holiday Sweets & Savory Treats

If you are in search of more awesome recipes for Christmas, check out the rest of the ladies in the Holiday Sweets & Savory Treats Blog Hop!

Holiday Sweets

Holiday Sweets

Nutter Butter Snowman Cookies from Mom’s Tool Box

Cherry Snowball Christmas Cookies from I’m an Organizing Junkie

Chocolate Chunk Toasted Pecan Oatmeal Cookies from Life Your Way

Chocolate Peanut Brittle from The Happy Housewife

Chocolate Peppermint Brownie Trifle from Mom Endeavors

Double Chocolate Candy Bar Pretzel Bark from Lynn’s Kitchen Adventures

Easy Black Currant Scones from Good Cheap Eats

Frozen Inspired Vanilla Raspberry Bites from Bargain Briana

Gumdrops from Hoosier Homemade

Microwave Caramel Corn from Ashley Pichea

Old Fashioned Christmas Cookies from Mommy Hates Cooking

Snickerdoodle Puppy Chow from Smockity Frocks

Sugar Cookies for Dummies from Happy Little Homemaker

The World’s Easiest Christmas Candy Ever from Money Saving Mom

savory treats

Savory Treats

Bacon and Spinach Frittata Bites from Life as MOM

Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus from Jo-Lynne Shane

Bacon-Wrapped Water Chestnuts from The Finer Things in Life

Black Bean and Avocado Salad from Kitchen Stewardship

Cheesy Pesto Crescent Bites from Andrea Dekker

Easy Cheesy Vidalia Onion Dip from Balancing Beauty and Bedlam

Homemade Sausage Balls from The Humbled Homemaker

Kale Spinach Bites from For the Love Of

Spiced Nuts from Modern Mrs. Darcy

Toasted Pecans from My Blessed Life

Trio of Cream Cheese Appetizers from Eat at Home Cooks

White Cheddar Cranberry Bites from Parenting Miracles


Do you like to make cut-out cookies?  How do you decorate yours?

Jen S.

6 Comments on Sugar Cookies for Dummies

  1. Lynn
    2 December 2014 at 11:22 PM (8 years ago)

    Sugar cookies are a must make every holiday for my family. They are our favorite Christmas cookie. Thanks for sharing your favorite!


    jen Reply:

    My family loves them, too, but until I found this, I just couldn’t do it. The girls are SOOOOO excited. We’ve made them several times, now.


  2. Marie
    2 December 2014 at 4:09 PM (8 years ago)

    That’s awesome. I have been looking for a good homemade sugar cookie mix for a long time, hate having to buy them!!
    And the cookie cutter trail is adorable!! Funny how kids like our stuff better than their toys at that age, I could never keep my 3 out of the tupperware cupboard!


    jen Reply:

    The 4 year old helped :). If I let the older ones play in the tupperware, they TOTALLY would. Thanks for stopping by!


  3. Amy of MomsToolbox
    2 December 2014 at 11:00 AM (8 years ago)

    These look great! I especially like your idea to use powdered sugar instead of flour to keep things from sticking. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing.
    Amy of MomsToolbox´s last blog post ..Nutter Butter Snowman Cookies & Best Party Recipes for Sharing


    jen Reply:

    Thanks for stopping by! I’m loving the nutter butter snowman cookie idea. LOVE nutter butters :).


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