Here is the very basic sugar cookie recipe I like to use for my cut out cookies. I like to use 1 whole tablespoon of flavoring, mainly vanilla extract or almond extract(this one pairs especially well with my Fresh lemon royal icing), on occasion I make lemon sugar cookies, adding lemon zest and lemon extract.
I always use unsalted butter for baking and cooking.
Basic Sugar Cookie Recipe for Cut out Cookies
- Sift together flour, baking powder, add salt, set aside.
- In a small dish whisk together egg and vanilla extract, set aside.
- In a mixing bowl cream together room temperature butter and sugar, about 5 minutes, scrape the bowl twice. Butter creamed with sugar should be light and fluffy.
- Gradually add vanilla egg mixture, beating anywhere from 30 seconds to minute until well mixed in.
- Now gradually in 3 additions add flour. Lower the speed of your mixer to low. Scrape the bowl well after the last addition and beat just until flour is combined.
- Scrape the cookie dough into a large bowl, and using your hands knead the cookie dough for about 30 to 60 seconds, until dough comes together.
- Wrap the dough in a plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight(8hours) or minimum 4hours.
- Preheat oven to 375F(190C)
- Divide cookie dough in half. Roll one half of the cookie dough into about 1/4 inch thick, between 2 pieces of parchment paper using rolling guides on each side of the dough.(2 painter's sticks glued together on each side, or 2 pieces of 1/4inch molding)
- Cut out as many cookies as you can. Place the cookies on a light colored baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Chill the cut outs in the fridge for about 15 minutes, or in the freezer 8 minutes.
- Bake for 9minutes, depending on the oven, turn the sheet once half way through the baking.
- Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 5-7 minutes, transfer to cooling rack.
- Store in the airtight container for up to 2 weeks or freeze undecorated cookies between pieces of wax paper in a large freeze safe container, for up to 2 months.
- Decorate cookies as desired with royal icing or other medium that you use.
Sugar Cookie Recipe and Baking Tips Video Tutorial
How to roll the dough and cut out cookies?
Roll one half of the dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper.
I bake my cookies at 375F(190C). Know your oven and use temperature that works for your oven and your cookies.
- These cookies will keep if properly stored for up to 2 weeks, from the time they were baked.
I've had people tell me they had them for longer and they tasted great.
Cookies can be layered in a freezer safe container between pieces of wax paper and frozen for up to 2 months.
What Boxes to use to package/display cookies?
I personally use boxes from www.brpboxshop.com , they sell their boxes in bulk, 100 pieces and I love them. I really like their brown boxes 10"x7"x1" boxes, lid and bottom is sold separately. If you are not certain which goes with what, be sure to call, folks at brpboxshop are very friendly, always willing to help out.
If you are looking for smaller amounts, you can try Nashville Wraps, they sell these cookie boxes in the set of 50 pieces.
If you are a seasonal cookie maker you can use cookie tins that are available at discounted prices during holidays or visit your local bakery perhaps they'd be willing to sell you couple of their boxes for a small fee.
Craft stores carry small bakery boxes as well. You can also use Take-out Containers and Jars for smaller cookies.