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Suzie's sugar cookies

Suzie's sugar cookies
Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

Beyond the colorful decorations and after the initial rush of sugar, holiday cookies are about memories, tradition and sharing with those close to us. Be they humble or ornate, our baked goods are used to celebrate and give thanks — ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, plus chilling and decorating times | Makes approximately 2½ dozen (3-inch) cookies

Sugar cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup superfine (baker's) sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (12.75 ounces) flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Step 1In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until well blended, 3 to 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined, then beat in the vanilla extract.

Step 2In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Beat the dry ingredients into the butter mixture to form a dough, then cover and refrigerate the dough until well-chilled, preferably overnight.

Step 3Heat the oven to 350 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to a thickness of one-fourth inch. Use various cookie cutters to cut out desired shapes, and space the cookies a couple of inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

Step 4Bake the cookies until the edges are lightly browned and the cookies are set, 10 to 12 minutes (time will vary depending on the size and shapes of the cookies), rotating the cookies halfway through for even coloring. Cool completely before frosting.

Lemon buttercream

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 4 cups (approximately 1-pound box) powdered sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons milk, more if needed
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon extract
  • Food coloring, as desired

Step 1In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in milk as needed to thin; the icing should be creamy but not runny. Add lemon extract to taste. This makes approximately 21/4 cups buttercream. Color the buttercream with food coloring as desired to decorate the cookies, then set the cookies aside to dry before serving.

Note: "My mother made these cookies only once a year for Christmas, and somehow, only on Christmas Eve, after she had sent us to bed. They magically appeared in the morning. As time went on and it got to be too much for her, I stepped up and made them for the family." - Sheri Miyamoto


Avis Hatheway's wild rice dressing
Avis Hatheway's wild rice dressing



Tomato Consomme
Tomato Consomme

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