Lemon Sugar Cookies


Lemon Sugar Cookies

As my boys get older, their schedules are filling up with baseball and more baseball! But I still manage to wrangle them into the kitchen to bake cookies together. It’s a simple and fun food craft we can do as a family. Enjoy these sugar cookies with a zest of lemon!
Servings 2 dozen



  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, for dusting
  • Royal Icing
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract (optional)
  • food dye (optional)


  1. In a medium size bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
  2. Using a mixer, beat the butter until smooth.
  3. Beat in sugar until the mixture is light and pale, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the egg and yolk one at a time, beating until mixed.
  5. Beat in the lemon extract and zest.
  6. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture, mixing until incorporated. Do not over mix.
  7. If using the dough for cookie cut outs, flatten the dough into a disc, warp in plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. If not using cookie cutters, shape the dough into a log. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.
  8. The dough can be refrigerated up to 3 days and frozen up 2 months.
  9. Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  10. For cookie cut outs, roll dough between two sheets of plastic wrap to desired thickness, about 1/4” thick.
  11. Remove top sheet of plastic wrap and cut out cookies. Place on prepared baking sheets.
  12. If dough becomes too soft and sticky while rolling and cutting out the cookies, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
  13. Continue cutting out cookies until all the dough has been used.
  14. If slicing dough, remove plastic wrap from the dough shaped as a log and slice 1/4” cookies rounds.
  15. Place on prepared baking sheets.
  16. Bake cookies for about 9 minutes until firm. Do not over bake, browning the edges.
  17. Remove from oven. Allow to cool for 1 minute on the cookie sheet before moving to a cooling rack. Dust with powdered sugar if not icing the cookies.
  18. Store cookies in an air tight container up to 1 week or in the freezer for 2 months.
  19. For the icing, using a mixer, whisk together the powdered sugar, meringue powder, water, and lemon extract until the icing loses its shine, about 7 minutes. The icing should be slightly stiff.
  20. Add 1/4 cup of the icing to a piping bag with a #3 tip.
  21. Pipe an outline, about 1/4” from the edge of the cookie, around each cookie.
  22. Allow icing to dry.
  23. Add a few drops of water to the remaining icing in the bowl until it has a liquid consistency.
  24. Add desired dye color.
  25. Pour icing into a squeeze bottle or a disposable pastry bag.
  26. Flood each cookie with icing. Use a toothpick to remove any air bubbles and to work the icing around the edges.
  27. Make sure not to over flood the cookie, allowing the icing to seep over the edges.
  28. Add sprinkles, if desired. Allow to dry completely.

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