I feel like I should do a whole series on “the best” of every popular kind of cookie. I did a little sugar cookie research a few years back, found a good base recipe and started tweaking it from there. 

I think I also could write a love letter to almond extract. It’s just everything when it comes to sugar cookies. They taste so flat without it, and the flavor in this recipe is so well-rounded; I don’t think they even need frosting (although go ahead and frost and decorate them up!). 

This also makes an absurd amount of cookies. I made these for our New Year’s brunch as a small dessert, and had a ton leftover. Like, I should probably freeze the rest, but we probably won’t and just try to think about those New Year’s resolutions next week, right? I’m not a fan of cutting baking recipes in half. If you want less cookies, make the whole batch of dough and wrap half the dough in plastic wrap and freeze for another time. 

Some notes on this recipe: I’m going to keep beating the drum, but refrigerate your cookie dough! Your cookies will be flat and thin if you don’t. That time in the fridge gives the butter plenty of time to set back up and you’ll have light, chewy cookies. 

Read on for the recipe!

(Also, click here if you want the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies ever!) 

The Best Sugar Cutout Cookies
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  1. 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  2. 2 cups granulated sugar
  3. 1 cup confectioner's sugar
  4. 4 eggs
  5. 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  6. 2 tsp. almond extract
  7. 5 cups all-purpose flour
  8. 2 tsp. baking powder
  9. 1 tsp. salt
  1. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt and set aside. (You can just use a wire whisk to mix all of these together)
  2. Cream butter and sugars in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer. Mix it well. Beat in the eggs and the extracts and scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula. Slowly add the flour mixture. Cover and chill the dough at least an hour (you can let it go overnight).
  3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Roll out the dough on a floured surface (about a half inch thick). Cut into shapes and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment.
  4. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes and let stand on the cookie sheet for about 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely then store in an airtight container.
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