Sugar Cookie Cut Outs


Sugar cookie cut outs are not always the easiest things to make, are they? They take a lot of time and patience. But, aren’t they are SO worth it?! Those buttery, sugary, adorable looking cookies have a place in the hearts of children and grown-ups alike. I like to try different cut out recipes and this is one that was passed to me from my Dad’s wife from Alton Brown that I made this year and FULLY recommend -they are AWESOME!!!! Powdered sugar is used to roll them instead of flour…

*As you can see in the photos- you can decorate unbaked cookies with colored sugar before placing them in the oven-then you do not have to frost them. If you like frosting  then, bake them as you normally would, make frosting below and decorate as desired. I like them both ways!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sugar Cookie Cut Outs
Serves: 36
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Alton Brown's Sugar Cookie Cut Outs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Powdered sugar, for rolling out dough
  • Frosting:
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • ½ cup shortening
  • 5 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • food coloring
  1. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. Place butter and sugar in large bowl of electric stand mixer and beat until light in color.
  3. Add egg and milk and beat to combine.
  4. Put mixer on low speed, gradually add flour, and beat until mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl.
  5. Divide the dough in half, wrap in waxed paper, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  7. Sprinkle surface where you will roll out dough with powdered sugar.
  8. Remove 1 wrapped pack of dough from refrigerator at a time, sprinkle rolling pin with powdered sugar, and roll out dough to ¼-inch thick.
  9. Move the dough around and check underneath frequently to make sure it is not sticking.
  10. If dough has warmed during rolling, place cold cookie sheet on top for 10 minutes to chill.
  11. Cut into desired shape, place at least 1-inch apart on parchment paper and bake for 7 to 9 minutes or until cookies are just beginning to turn brown around the edges.
  12. Let sit on baking sheet for 2 minutes after removal from oven and then move to complete cooling on wire rack.
  13. Serve as is or ice as desired. Store in airtight container for up to 1 week.

 Dedicated to my husband Geoff Nehrenz 



  1. Our family recipe calls for the rind of one orange and 1 TBS orange juice (I squeeze it fresh from the orange I just grated, but not necessary) as the flavoring. It gives the cookies a unique, but subtle flavor and they are a huge hit with all our friends. We know have a huge cookie decorating party every year for everyone we know and people love to come decorate and then take the cookies home with them. Overnight the cookies turn soft and they are a huge hit!

  2. My grandmother’s recipe (she was born in the 1880’s) calls for nutmeg too.


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