Recipe: Delicious and Fluffy Sugar Cookies + Frosting

Recipe: Delicious and Fluffy Sugar Cookies + Frosting

Get ready for some amazingly delicious and fluffy sugar cookies! We make these year-round but they are especially fun during the holidays. I love this recipe for two reasons; (1) make-ahead; you don’t have to make this an all-day event. Make the dough now and decorate tomorrow, and (2) your 4-year-old can frost the cookies and it still looks like they were decorated by a pro.

Sugar Cookie Recipe

Ingredients:
5 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon salt (1/2 teaspoon if using salted butter)
1 cup sour cream, room temperature
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Step 1: Make the Dough
• In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients of flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

• In a second large bowl, with an electric mixer, combine the wet ingredients. Cream the sour cream and butter at low speed; add sugar, eggs, and vanilla and mix until well combined (no butter lumps).

• Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, mixing until well combined. The dough will be sticky. This might be too sticky for some mixers so you may have to continue to mix by hand with a wooden spoon.

• Divide the dough onto two pieces of plastic wrap. Flatten the dough, wrap tightly and refrigerate 1-2 hours until chilled. This dough can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for a month.

Step 2: Roll, Cut, and Bake
• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

• Line baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

• Generously spread flour on your counter to prevent dough from sticking. Rub flour on your rolling pin. Place one of the chilled pieces of dough on top of the floured surface and sprinkle the dough with more flour. Starting at the center, roll the dough out to one edge; return to the center and roll the dough to the opposite edge; continue in a similar fashion until the dough is even and ¼” thick. You may need to continue to apply flour to the rolling pin and dough as needed.

• Dip your cookie cutter in flour so it will not stick and begin to cut your cookies. Add to your baking sheets.

• Bake 2 sheets at a time for 8-10 minutes. You may need to rotate or swap your pans during baking to ensure they bake evenly. Bake them just until they are cooked all the way through but haven’t started to brown on the bottom. If you want these cookies to be soft and fluffy then it is important that you don’t over bake them.

• Transfer the cookies to a baking rack. Allow them to cool completely prior to frosting.

Border & Flood Icing

This icing recipe will make you look like a pro. You’ll need some special tools to accomplish this mission. Besides a mixer and mixing bowls, you’ll also want a funnel and squeeze bottles. Also, be sure to clear some space. Iced cookies need at least one undisturbed day to dry. This icing keeps well so you can spread your decorating out over the course of 1-3 days.

Border Icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon almond extract (or extract flavor of your choice; peppermint, vanilla, etc)
2 to 2 ½ tablespoons milk (may substitute water)

• The border icing should be thick. If you drizzle a little from your spoon the ribbon should hold for a few seconds before dissolving back into the icing. It should be just thick enough to pour in your funnel easily, but stiff enough to set in place. To make, place the powdered sugar, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons of milk in the bowl and mix until smooth. You may need to adjust by adding additional milk or powder sugar until it is the desired thickness. You may add food coloring to your border, but I normally leave this white so the kids can flood with colors.

• Next, transfer the icing in the squeeze bottle using a funnel. Spoon the icing into the funnel. You may need to squeeze the bottle to create a vacuum so the icing can be sucked in. Additionally, you might want to use a skewer to assist the icing into the squeeze bottle.

Flood Icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon almond extract (or extract flavor of your choice; peppermint, vanilla, etc)
2 ½ to 3 tablespoons milk (may substitute water)
Food Coloring

• The flood icing should drizzle easily but should still be fairly thick. If you drizzle a little from your spoon the ribbon should immediately melt back into the icing. To make, place the powdered sugar, vanilla, food coloring, and 2 ½ tablespoons milk in the bowl and mix until smooth. You may need to adjust by adding additional milk or powder sugar until it is the desired thickness.

• Next, transfer the icing into the squeeze bottle using a funnel. Pour the icing into the funnel. The icing should thin enough to funnel easily into the bottle.

• Repeat to make as many batches/colors as necessary to decorate your cookies.

Decorate:
• Draw the borders around the cookies with your border icing. Trace the outline of each cookie and create any desired outlines of shapes within the cookie. Hold the bottle vertical with the tip of the bottle slightly above the cookie. Squeeze gently with consistent pressure so the border width is the same throughout the cookie. This icing should draw like a pen. Thicker lines are better than thin lines for separating areas of the flood icing. It’s best to allow the border to dry a bit prior to flooding. I like to do this part at night without the kids’ help. Then I bring them in to close the deal with the flood icing.

• Flood the cookie with your flood icing. Using the bottle of flood icing, fill the interior of the cookie. Use the tip of the squeeze bottle to push the icing into the corners and edging of the border icing. You can also make the icing look like marble. After you flood the entire cookie, drop dots or a line with a contrasting color. Using a toothpick, run it through the icing to marbleize.

• Allow the cookies to dry. The cookies need about 24 hours to completely dry. Once dry the surface of each cookie should be completely smooth and resistant to nicks or smudges. Once they are dried completely you should be able to stack the cookies.

Enjoy!


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