Perfectly Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe


Ingredient Breakdown & Substitutions

Raw ingredients spread out on a counter to make drop-style sugar cookies.

Butter: The base of the cookie dough, butter contributes to the richness and texture. Salted butter is preferred for its added flavor, but unsalted butter with an added pinch of salt can be used as a substitute. For a dairy-free version, try using a high-quality plant-based butter.

Granulated Sugar: This is essential for sweetness and helps to create a tender texture. If you want a cookie with a slightly different flavor, brown sugar can be used. It will give the cookies a deeper, caramel-like taste.

Cream Cheese: Cream cheese adds a subtle tang and helps to create a softer cookie. If you don’t have cream cheese, plain Greek yogurt is a good alternative. It will keep the cookies soft while adding a bit of protein.

Corn Syrup: Corn syrup contributes to the soft texture and sheen of the cookies. If you prefer not to use corn syrup, you can simply omit it.

Almond Extract: Almond extract adds a nutty depth. If unavailable or if you prefer not to use it, you can simply increase the vanilla extract slightly.

Egg: The egg binds the ingredients and adds moisture. For an egg-free version, you can use a store-bought egg replacer or a flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water, left to sit for 5 minutes).

All-Purpose Flour: The structure of the cookie. For a gluten-free alternative, a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend can be used. Make sure it’s a 1:1 substitute to ensure proper texture.

Baking Powder & Baking Soda: These leavening agents help the cookies rise. They’re not easily substituted, so ensure they are fresh for the best result.

Salt: Enhances the flavors of the other ingredients. If using unsalted butter, increase the salt slightly.

Using substitutions can affect the final taste and texture.

Can I use this recipe to make drop-style sugar cookies?

You definitely can! You can also see our complete guide to drop sugar cookies here!

What if I don’t have a stand mixer?

You can always use a hand mixer to make the dough if you don’t have access to a stand mixer. While it is possible to make these without either a stand or hand mixer, it takes quite a bit of elbow grease to cream the butter and sugar together.

Can I use more almond extract for a stronger flavor?

This sugar cookie recipe has a mild flavoring. For a strong flavor, double the amount of almond extract. The extra 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract may seem like a small amount, but it provides a strong flavor.



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