Soft Sugar Cookies

4.88 from 64 votes
56 Comments

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This soft sugar cookie recipe tastes just like the big, frosted sugar cookies from the grocery store. They are melt-in-your-mouth soft!

A big pink sugar cookie with a bite taken out
Featured with this Recipe
  1. Ingredients in Soft Sugar Cookies
  2. Method
  3. Tips for Making Soft Sugar Cookies
  4. Customize Your Cookies
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
  6. More Sugar Cookie Recipes
  7. How to Make Soft Sugar Cookies
  8. Soft Sugar Cookies Recipe Recipe

Have you ever been tempted by the big frosted Lofthouse cookies sold in the grocery store’s bakery section? They look so good, don’t they?! This is the best sugar cookie recipe to make that kind of cookie. Our copycat recipe tastes JUST LIKE those, if not better. This is a no-chill bakery-style sugar cookie recipe with simple ingredients. With just a few pantry staples and a little bit of time you can have big, soft, melt-in-your-mouth sugar cookies with delicious cream cheese frosting. Then, top them off with some fun, colorful sprinkles and you have yourself a treat that looks as good as it tastes!

A plate of copycat lofthouse sugar cookies


Ingredients in Soft Sugar Cookies

  • Unsalted Butter – Make sure your butter is room temperature for a smooth batter.
  • Sugar – White granulated sugar works best for this Lofthouse cookie recipe.
  • Large Eggs – The eggs help bind the batter together and they also make the sugar cookies soft and fluffy
  • Milk – Milk brings richness and moisture to this recipe.
  • Vanilla Extract – Vanilla adds sweetness to the batter.
  • Flour – We use white all-purpose flour for these cookies.
  • Baking Powder – Baking powder give the cookies a little extra lift.
  • Salt – Even when you’re making sweets, you still need a pinch of salt to balance things out.

Frosting Ingredients

  • Cream Cheese – Cream cheese is the base of this frosting recipe. Make sure it is room temperature for a smooth frosting.
  • Butter – Again, make sure your butter is at room temperature.
  • Vanilla Extract – I like the flavor of vanilla extract in this soft sugar cookies recipe, but you can also use almond extract.
  • Powdered Sugar – Powdered sugar gives the frosting it’s texture and form.
  • Food Coloring – I prefer gel food coloring to liquid food coloring because gel doesn’t affect the texture. I used a small squeeze of red gel for this frosting.
  • Sprinkles – Who doesn’t love sprinkles?? If you are adding sprinkles, then make sure to add them right after you frost the cookies so they stick to the frosting.

Method

  1. Add butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer and mix with a paddle attachment. Mix until the mixture is light and fluffy. You can also use a hand mixer.
  2. Add eggs one at a time and mix thoroughly after each egg, making sure to scrape the sides of the bowl. Then, add milk and vanilla.
  3. In a separate large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients.
  4. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until the dough forms a uniform ball. The cookie dough balls should be soft but not sticky.
  5. Our soft sugar cookies recipe calls for 4 cups of flour. However, the consistency of the dough can vary based on a lot of factors. You can judge how much flour you need by the consistency of the dough. Start with 3 cups of flour using a measuring cup to get it exact. If the dough is too sticky, then add more flour a little at a time until you can touch the dough without it sticking to your hands.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, use a rolling pin to roll the cookie dough out to 1/4-inch thickness.
  7. Using a round cookie cutter, or the rim of a drinking glass, cut circles out of the dough.
  8. Line some large baking sheets with parchment paper. Place the cut out dough evenly spaced on the baking sheets.
  9. Bake in batches at 350 for 10-12 minutes. DO NOT OVER BAKE. The sugar cookies will look soft and under-baked but they will finish baking on the hot pan.
  10. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and allow to cool.
Lofthouse cookie recipe cookies

Frosting

  1. Meanwhile, make the frosting. Combine cream cheese, butter, and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add powdered sugar a little bit at a time until the frosting reaches your desired consistency. Add food coloring if desired.
  2. When the cookies are completely cooled, then frost and top with sprinkles. Kids love helping with the decorating!
  3. Store in an airtight container or covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator.

Tips for Making Soft Sugar Cookies

  • The number one tip I can give you for this soft sugar cookies recipe is that you absolutely MUST NOT over-bake them! That is the key to making them soft. They may look under-baked when you take them out in 10-12 minutes, but they will cook a little more on the hot pan. 
  • If you don’t have a round cookie cutter, then you can use the top of a glass.
  • Use parchment paper or a silicone baking mat to keep cookies from sticking to the baking sheet.

Customize Your Cookies

This soft sugar cookies recipe is a go-to recipe for any holiday or birthday celebration throughout the year. You can change it up by cutting the cookies into different fun shapes. You can also dye the frosting all sorts of colors and use lots and lots of sprinkles to make them extra festive! For Valentine’s Day I like to use the pink frosting pictured below. Alternatively, for Christmas, I like to do half the cookies in red frosting and the other half in green. You can even add different extracts to the frosting for a variety of tastes – orange, almond, coconut – make them your own!

Pink frosted sugar cookies with sprinkles

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you keep sugar cookies soft?

To keep these cookies soft, make sure to store them in an airtight container at room temperature.

Should you chill sugar cookie dough?

Some sugar cookie recipes call for chilling, but this recipe doesn’t.

Why are my cookies hard after they cool?

If your cookies are hard, then it is likely that you over-baked them. Bake them for exactly the time listed below. They will look under-done but I promise they will turn out perfect!

Read Next:33+ Easy Dessert Ideas

If you love these soft, chewy sugar cookies, then try some of our other delicious sugar cookie recipes!

How to Make Soft Sugar Cookies

A cooling rack filled with Grandma's Soft Sugar Cookies

Soft Sugar Cookies Recipe

4.88 from 64 votes
This soft sugar cookie recipe tastes just like the ones from the store, but better. You will love how soft and chewy they are and the frosting is amazing!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Total Time 26 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 cookies

Video

Ingredients

Cream Cheese Frosting:

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
    Butter and sugar creamed in a mixing bowl
  • Add eggs, milk and vanilla.
    Cookie batter before the dry ingredients are added
  • In separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt.
    Dry ingredients for cookies in a large bowl
  • Slowing add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix together until you can form a large dough ball. On floured surface, roll out dough ball until about ¼ to ½ inch thick.
    Rolled out sugar cookie dough
  • Use cookie cutters (or rim of a drinking glass) to cut cookie shapes out of dough.
    Cut out sugar cookie dough
  • Place cookies on lightly sprayed cookie sheet. Bake about 10-12 minutes. DON'T OVERCOOK OR THEY WILL BE HARD!
    Baked sugar cookies on a baking sheet
  • After baking, move cookies to a cooling rack to cool before frosting.
    A cooling rack filled with Grandma's Soft Sugar Cookies

FROSTING

  • Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until smooth.
    Whipped butter in a silver mixing bowl
  • Add powdered sugar and mix until desired consistency. Add food coloring if desired.
    Cream cheese frosting
  • Spread frosting over cooled cookies. If adding sprinkles, add them immediately after frosting.
    Pink frosted sugar cookies with sprinkles

Notes

  • For large cookies (about 3 inch cookie cutter), you will get 15-16 cookies. With a smaller cookie cutter, you will get about 2 dozen.
  • The number one tip I can give you for this soft sugar cookies recipe is that you absolutely MUST NOT over-bake them! That is the key to making them soft. They may look under-baked when you take them out in 10-12 minutes, but they will cook a little more on the hot pan. 
  • If you don’t have a round cookie cutter, then you can use the top of a glass.
  • Use parchment paper or a silicone baking mat to keep cookies from sticking to the baking sheet.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 321kcalCarbohydrates: 53gProtein: 3gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 42mgSodium: 190mgPotassium: 82mgFiber: 1gSugar: 37gVitamin A: 370IUCalcium: 35mgIron: 1mg

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I love this recipe. It reminds me of cookies that I could get at the bakery.
    I used less sugar ( 3/4 cup monk fruit) and only 3 cups flour. I have to use gluten-free flour, and I used gfjules flour.

  2. 1 star
    I made these as part of my Christmas cookie assortment and I will not make them again, biscuit texture , dry and tasteless. Not what I would call a sugar cookie and it was a waste of my time.

    1. I am sorry you didn’t like these cookies. They are based off of Lofthouse cookies which have a different taste and texture than normal sugar cookies.

  3. 3 stars
    So I gave this recipe three stars because the frosting is good, but the cookies were ridiculous. They came out biscuits. I ended up throwing half of them away and saving a few to make strawberry shortcake with later. They taste like bread, have a texture like bread, and rise like bread. Huge waste of ingredients.

  4. These were so good. My whole family devoured them!!! I have one question though. Can I substitute the butter for oil, my friend has dairy issues?

  5. While these cookies are definitely soft, the consistency is like bread. I ended up throwing mine away because I couldn’t really call them cookies. They look like (and have the same consistency of) a slice of white bread when you bite into them.

  6. 5 stars
    This cookie was like a pillow of love ❤️ I made then for work and everyone wanted the recipe !

  7. Can you use a muffin /cupcake tin for cooking these? … I have a heart shaped pan (makes 6) that id like to use! Would that work? And just press or place dough ball in each muffin/heart spot? Should i grease pan if so?
    Thanks!
    💟

    1. I haven’t tried baking cookies in a muffin tin before, so I’m not sure how that would work out. Let us know how it goes if you try it though! One thing I would say is that you have to roll the dough out, it can’t just be in a ball because this cookie recipe doesn’t spread like a chocolate chip cookie would. It is a sugar cookie dough so it would need to be shaped before going in for sure.

  8. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe! Will surely have this again! It’s really easy to make and it tasted so delicious! Highly recommended!

  9. 5 stars
    I was really impressed with this recipe. The dough was easy to work with, I cut out hearts for Valentine’s Day. The cookies were soft and tender and held their shape perfectly!

  10. 5 stars
    Ah !! These look so fancy .. Love how easy they are. Perfect for valentines day and even to make with the kids

  11. 5 stars
    Those are some seriously tempting cookies! Definitely have had the experience of getting store cookies that looked good but were pretty stale.

  12. I have a recipe that I concocted years ago That keep much longer, it there are any left to keep.:
    No eggs or milk, margerine instead of butter or Crisco. I don’t have to ice them nor decorate.
    They are gone before I get the chance to.
    I make 4 -6 dozen per batch, to take to my computer club.
    I also make a humungouse batch of the dry ingredients to keep on hand & use the same batter for a
    base for many other cookies. I seldom am allowed to bring any back home.

  13. 4 stars
    I made these today. The dough was too soft for cutouts. I couldn’t pick the cutout from the floured parchment after cutting it out. I was afraid to add too much flour. I scooped the dough with a #40. Commercial food scoop,flattened the ball. The recipe yield was 3 dozen cookies. I added a small amount of milk to the frosting. I used a small amount of “koolaid” like drink mix (unsweetened) to add color and cut the sweetness of the frosting. Awesome cookie.

    1. Thank you for sharing your tips on this recipe! The dough can be tricky depending on elevation and humidity. I add a little flour at a time to get to the consistency for cut-outs, or powdered sugar if your concerned about taste. I love your Kool-Aid idea for adding color to the frosting.

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