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A stack of melt in your mouth buttery vanilla sugar cookies

Soft and Chewy Vanilla Sugar Cookies


  • 4 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups granulated sugar (plus more for rolling - *see note)
  • 12 tbsp butter, melted
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract OR almond extract


  1. In a medium size bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the sugar, melted butter, vegetable oil and softened cream cheese on high for 60 seconds, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a time or two.
  3. In a small bowl or large measuring cup, whisk the eggs, milk, vanilla, and lemon or almond extract. Add to the dough and beat for 30 seconds longer, until well combined.
  4. Swap the whisk attachment for the paddle attachment on your mixer and add the dry ingredients, mixing on low just until it forms a moist dough. (Or, stir by hand with a wooden spoon.)
  5. Refrigerate the dough for at least 30 minutes and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silpat baking mat.
  7. Roll 30 teaspoon-size balls of dough in your palms, then roll each little ball of dough in sugar or sprinkles (see the ideas listed above and below this recipe for flavoring the sugar or using sprinkles or colored sugar), place on the baking sheet and flatten slightly.
  8. Bake for 9 minutes. The trick here is to take them out of the oven when they are just slightly underdone. They should look mostly set, especially around the edges, but the centers will look a bit underdone.
  9. Cool on a wire rack.


Roll sugar cookies in plain granulated sugar, or:

  • Cinnamon sugar (1 cup granulated sugar with a couple teaspoons of ground cinnamon)
  • Cardamom sugar (1 cup granulated sugar with 1-2 teaspoons of ground cardamom)
  • Black pepper sugar (1 cup granulated sugar with 2 teaspoons ground black pepper. Soooo good. I'm serious. Try it. You'll see.)
  • Colored sanding sugar and sprinkles. For the cookies pictured here, I used CK Pink Sanding Sugar and a couple of pink and purple mixes from Fancy Sprinkles.
  • Blueberry sugar. If you find yourself with some leftover blueberry flavored sugar after tossing blueberries around in granulated sugar to make blueberry pancakes, these cookies are the perfect way to use it up!
  • Prep Time: 60 minutes (includes 30 minutes in the refrigerator
  • Cook Time: 9 minutes per sheet of cookies

Keywords: cookies, sugar cookies, easy cookie recipe