Monday, December 18, 2017

No Stress Christmas Sugar Cookies

Nothing says holiday baking like sugar cookies! It's a classic, and must do on most kids' holiday lists. However, every time I attempt to do this, I end up with my feet aching and slightly grumpy. Wasn't this supposed to be fun and bring up fond memories?! My original recipe was extremely time consuming, reminded me that I'm horrible at rolling out dough, and I usually ended up with a stomach ache from trying to eat the dough instead of taking the time to bake it. (don't judge, you know you've done it too...)

Finished Christmas cookies

Why I like this recipe:

  • The dough is made in one quick and easy step, by using the food processor for mixing. 
  • Rolling the dough is done before chilling, which completes a majority of the steps before cutting and baking. This is especially great if you are cooking with children. 
  • No flour is needed for rolling out the dough, so you aren't cleaning flour out of your kitchen for months on end. 
  • The butter should be cold and straight out of the fridge, so you can get started on making the cookies right away.
  • You can use the the freezer to accelerate cooling the dough, making the prep time significantly shorter. 
Stress free Christmas Cookies

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract, optional as this might not be kid friendly
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 16 Tbsp unsalted butter, cold and diced in 1 inch pieces
  • Icing - see here for recipe
In the food processor, add the sugar and blend for 30 seconds. The sugar should be fine and you may see a sugar "dust" coming from your food processor. Add the chilled butter to the food processor and blend until the sugar and butter forms a ball, approximately 30 seconds. Add the egg, vanilla, salt, and almond extract and process for 10 seconds. Then add the flour, baking powder, and baking soda and blend for 30 seconds. The dough will be ready once the flour is completely combined and the dough is together, but still slightly crumbly. 

Cookie dough rolled out

On a piece of parchment paper, split the dough in half, putting one half to the side. Smooth the other into an oval shape, slightly pressing it down until it is ready to roll. Place a piece of parchment paper over the top of the dough, and roll it out to your desired thickness (mine is a 1/4 of an inch). Then take the other half and repeat, rolling the dough out between two pieces of parchment paper. Place the dough in the fridge for at least an 1.5 hours. If you are in a hurry, the dough can be put in the freezer for 30 minutes. 

Cookie dough with cookie cutter

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees, and take the dough out of the fridge. Gently peel back the top layer of parchment paper and then place it back on the dough. Flip it over, and gently peel back the bottom layer of the parchment paper. Taking off the top layer of parchment will make it easier for removing the cookies. Cut the dough with your favorite cookie cutter, and place on a rimless cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. (If you don't have a rimless cookie sheet, flip your rimmed baking sheet upside down). 

Star Christmas cookies

Bake the cookies for 14 - 17 minutes, depending on the size. I found that smaller cuts take a shorter time, so watch those carefully. Once you see the cookies are slightly golden brown around the edges, transfer them from the oven (still on the parchment paper) to a wire rack and cool until they are ready for icing, approximately 10 minutes. Decorate the cookies and serve!
No Stress Christmas Sugar Cookies


  1. We are super deep in gingerbread cookies this season. Just yesterday my little one asked of sugar cookies. Will try this recipe next.

    1. It is a really great recipe for kiddos! Makes most of the prework you normally do by yourself all done before the kids are in the kitchen and anxious to start cutting and decorating! Enjoy!