Cream cheese is the secret ingredient in these rich, velvety smooth cream cheese cut-out cookies. This ingredient twist on traditional sugar cookies makes these popular melt-in-your mouth cookies stay soft for days.
BEST CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES
These cookies bake crispy, but they soften a little after the rest. And whether you decide to enjoy them as they are or decorate them with icing, these cream cheese cut-out cookies are delicious either way.
WHAT ARE THE INGREDIENTS FOR CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES
- Cream Cheese – I use Original Philadelphia Cream Cheese
- Large Egg
- Orange Zest (optional)-recommended – I love how orange flavor transformed this flavor of this cookie
- Vanilla Extract
- Baking Powder
In this cut-out cookie recipe I use baking powder to leaven the cookie dough. In a bowl whisk baking powder, salt and all-purpose flour.
PREPARING THE DOUGH
In the mixing process it’s important that ingredients are at room temperature. If you try to beat cold cream cheese into soft butter, you’ll most likely add up with lump of cream cheese in the butter.
At medium-high speed, cream room temperature butter until smooth, for about two minutes (steps 1-2), and then beat in room temperature cream cheese (steps 3-4). Beat until well combined and smooth. Then gradually beat in granulated sugar and cream for about 3 minutes, until fluffy. (steps 5-8).
Now you can gradually beat in egg, orange zest, and Vanilla Extract (steps 1-5). Now it’s time to add the flour mixture. Turn the mixer to medium-low speed and add flour in 3 additions, scraping the bowl few times (steps 6-8).
This dough is a bit softer than the cookie dough for my classic cookie dough. However, you can add one more tablespoon of flour if you find it overly sticky. Remember, it will firm up in the fridge, so don’t go heavy with the flour.
ROLLING OUT THE DOUGH: ACHIEVING THE PERFECT COOKIE THICKNESS
If you plan on making cookies 2-3 days from now, then wrap the disk in food wrap, place it in a zip-loc bag, refrigerate the whole disk, or freeze the dough for up to 3 months.
If you plan on making cookies in several hours or next day it’s okay to roll the cookie dough between two pieces of parchment or silicone mats to about 1/4 inch thick (for decorated cookies) and you can go a little thinner for plain cookies, if you prefer.
To ensure cookie dough is evenly rolled out I use rolling guides.
CHILLING THE COOKIE DOUGH
This dough is softer than traditional cut-out cookies. That’s why chilling is important Chill the rolled-out cookie dough is important, chill the rolled out dough for at least an hour.
CUTTING OUT SHAPES
I used a heart cutter to cut out cookies. If you are looking for some inspiration on how to decorate heart cookies look at my step-by-step decorated heart cookies.
Place cookies onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or perforated mat.
BAKING COOKIES: TEMPERATURE
Bake cookies in the preheated oven at 350F for about 9 to 11 minutes, until the edges are light golden brown. Cookies come out with crispy edges, as they cool and rest they soften. And they are amazing!
After letting cookies cool on the baking sheet for a minute, transfer cookies on cooling rack to cool completely.
HOW TO STORE CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES
Store cookies in an airtight container. They keep well for 2 weeks at room temperature. I guarantee, you’ll be making another batch in couple of days.
CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES SUCESS TIPS
- How do I know when cookies are baked? Bake cookies until the center of the cookie has risen, or until golden brown around the edges if you prefer your cookies this way.
- My cookies spread too much, how can I prevent it?
- Don’t use silicone mat to bake cut out cookies, use parchment or perforated mat.
- Butter that is too soft can cause spreading.
- Don’t place unbaked cookies on a warm baking sheet. Try not to overcrowd your baking sheet.
- Can I use spices? Yes, absolutely. You 1/2 to 1teaspoon of spice like cinnamon or cardamom.
- What icing can I use to decorate? You can use royal icing, glaze, fondant and even buttercream.
- Do you have more questions about cut-out cookies? My ultimate guide to cut-out cookies covers frequently asked questions.
DECORATED COOKIES IDEAS
- Beginner’s Guide To Cookie Decorating
- Soccer Ball Cookies
- 20 Decorated Flower Cookies via Sweet Sugarbelle
- Easy Buttercream Halloween Cookies
- Simple Christmas Cookies
Cream Cheese Cut Out Cookies
- 1 handheld mixer or stand mixer
- 1 mixing bowls
- 1 baking Sheet, I love US brand
- 2 parchment or perforated mat
- 1 cookie Cutter
- 1 spatula
CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES
- 3 cup all-purpose flour (430 grams)
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup butter (170 grams)
- 1/4 cup cream cheese (60 grams)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200grams)
- 1 large egg
- 1 tbsp orange or lemon zest (optional)
- 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
CREAM CHEESE CUT OUT COOKIES
- Whisk flour (3 cups), baking powder (1/2 teaspoon), and salt (1/2 teaspoon), and set aside.
- On medium-high speed, cream butter for about a minute and beat until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until smooth and well combined, about a minute. Then add granulated sugar (1 cup, 200 grams), and beat for 2-3 minutes until fluffy.Beat in one whole egg, then add one generous tablespoon of orange zest and Vanilla Extract.On medium-low speed, in three additions, beat in the flour mixture gradually. Scrape the bowl a few times in the process.If the dough appears too sticky, add one more tablespoon of flour.Turn the cookie dough onto a lightly dusted work surface. Gather it into a disk,
Rolling Out Cookies
- Roll the cookie dough between two sheets of parchment or silicone mats. Use 1/4-inch rolling guides for decorated cookies. Slide the rolled out dough onto a tray and chill for at least an hour.
Cut Out Cookies
- Cut out as many cookies as possible. Re-roll the scraps. Transfer cookies onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or perforated mat.
- Bake cookies at 350F (180C) for 9-10 minutes, until golden around the edges.Let cookies cool on the baking sheet for a minute, then transfer them onto a cooling rack and let them cool completely.