The Best Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe

December 12, 2018 by Kristine Underwood

Last Updated on

This soft sugar cookie recipe is a must-bake for the holidays! The cookies are light and fluffy, making them perfect for homemade buttercream frosting! Follow my tips below to make the best sugar soft sugar cookies with frosting.

Ingredients you will need: unsalted butter, four, sugar, one egg, vanilla extract, almond extract, baking soda, and milk.

3 sugar cookies with buttercream frosting with sprinkles on a wire rack with a napkin and bowl of frosting behind

Hello again and happy holidays! It’s me, Kristine from Kristine in between and I’m back with another must-bake-for-the-holidays cookie recipe! This super soft sugar cookie recipe is the best ever!

I don’t know about you, but mom always made thin cut-out sugar cookies with frosting for our holiday cookies. And while I love cut-out cookies as much as the next girl; I have a deep appreciation for a thick and soft sugar cookie too! There’s just something about a cookie you can really sink your teeth into, am I right?

Well friends, this is thaaaaaaat cookie! And guess what? They’re so simple to make, you’ll want to add them to your list of holiday baking this year and for years to come.

How To Make Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe

Step 1:

To make this soft sugar cookie recipe, you start by creaming the butter and white sugar together until smooth

3 pictures of sugar cookies being made in a glass bowl. Right: creaming butter and sugar. Middle: adding egg and vanilla. Right: wet ingredients mixed.

Step 2: add the egg and vanilla extract and stir to combine.

Step 3: Toss in the sea salt and baking soda and give it a good stir.

two pictures of making cookie dough. Left is flour being add. Right: is the dough completely mixed

Step 4: Once that’s all blended in, you fold the flour in, half at a time, and mix the dough until it’s all just combined. The dough will be pretty soft, but not uber sticky and should pull away from the sides of the bowl.

Soft sugar cookie dough scooped on a parchment cookie sheet with the cookie dough behind it.

Step 5: Using a 3 tablespoon size cookie scoop, you scoop the dough onto prepared baking sheets and bake them for 10 short minutes. When they come out of the oven, it’s soft sugar cookie perfection! You’ll want to let them cool completely before topping with frosting and sprinkles, of course.

And also, if you find yourself searching for the perfect sugar cookie frosting to top this soft sugar cookie recipe, THIS IS IT RIGHT HERE!

Soft sugar cookie with white buttercream frosting on a white place with a teal napkin and decorated sugar cookies behind it

Things to remember when baking this soft sugar cookie recipe:

  • This recipe only makes about 14 cookies, but you can easily double it to make 28.
  • The cookies need to be baked on parchment paper or they will likely run and become REALLY LARGE.
  • And along those same lines, please let the cookies sit on the cookie sheets for 5-10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool.
  • Because these cookies are light and soft, they dry out quickly. The cookies should be eaten within 2-3 days or you can pop them in the freezer (with or without frosting is just fine!).

soft sugar cookie with buttercream frosting and sprinkles on a white plate with sugar cookies behind it on a wire rack and a napkin to the right.

What makes these sugar cookies soft?

First, they are soft because of baking time. You don’t want to over-bake them. Over-baking them will lead to a crunchy cookie.

How long do soft sugar cookies last?

Unfortunately, since these cookies are soft they don’t last a super long, only about 2-3 days before they start to dry out and get hard..

Can you freeze sugar cookies?

Yes! Since they don’t last a super long time at room temperature, you can place them in a freezer safe container or zip-lock bag and put them in the freezer. You can even put them in the freezer with the frosting on.

Go-To Soft Sugar Cookie

Aside from the fact that these cookies are soft and mouthwateringly delicious; my favorite thing about this soft sugar cookie recipe is that it can literally become your go-to “drop sugar cookie” recipe for any occasion. Just by changing the color of the frosting or the theme of the sprinkles, you could have a thick, chewy, soft sugar cookie for any event or celebration! #winning

Perfect for holiday baking or even everyday festivities, this soft sugar cookie recipe will win you over! The cookies are soft and lightly sweet, perfect for topping with your favorite homemade buttercream frosting and sprinkles!

Want more delicious cookie recipes? Check these out.

Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe

3 sugar cookies with buttercream frosting with sprinkles on a wire rack with a napkin and bowl of frosting behind
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Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe

A super soft and fluffy soft sugar cookie recipe, perfect for topping with a homemade buttercream frosting and sprinkles.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 14 cookies
Calories 160kcal
Author Kristine Underwood


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 TBS milk
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups flour


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugar together until smooth and light colored.
  • Add egg and extracts and mix until smooth.
  • Stir in sea salt and baking soda.
  • Add flour, half and a time, stirring until fully combined.
  • Using a 3 TBS cookie scoop, scoop dough onto cookie sheets at least 2 inches apart.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes, rotating halfway through.
  • Let cookies cool on the cookie sheet for 5-10 minutes prior to transferring to a wire rack.
  • When cookies are completely cool, frost with buttercream frosting (optional).
  • Store in an airtight container for 2-3 days or freeze.


*I only get 6 cookies per half-sheet baking pan.
**You can also use a 1.5 TBS cookie sheet to make 24 smaller cookies or double the recipe to make 28 large cookies.
***Cookies may be frozen with or without frosting.
****The nutritional information below is for the cookie only. The frosting recipe and nutritional information may be found here.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 160kcal | Carbohydrates: 24.6g | Protein: 2.1g | Fat: 6.2g | Saturated Fat: 3.8g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 183mg | Potassium: 23mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 12.7g | Iron: 4%

Don’t miss the rest of my popular holiday cookie recipes – they’re the BOMB too!

Kristine E. Underwood, author of the food and lifestyle blog Kristine in between.Hi there! I’m Kristine the cookie baker, photo taker, and fitness lover behind the lifestyle blog, Kristine in between. I believe in finding balance between health, happiness, & lots of homemade cookies!

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This post was updated February 2019

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