Christmas Sugar Cookies and Royal Icing Recipe

This is the best cut out Christmas sugar cookies and royal icing recipe! A classic holiday favorite, decorated with frosting, these are the perfect, thick cookies that your family will love.

This post contains affiliate links: I am grateful to be able to bring you content free of charge. In order to do this, please note that when you click links and purchase items; in most cases I will receive a very small referral commission at no added cost you. Your support in purchasing through these links enables me to keep blogging and it doesn’t cost you a penny extra!

See Disclosure, Terms and Conditions for more information. Thank you for supporting Rocky Hedge Farm.

no chill sugar cookie with royal icing

It is less than a week before Christmas, and we are still in the holiday baking spirit. While we have already make a holiday favorite, Chocolate Crinkle Cookies, nothing beats the classic, homemade sugar cookie made from scratch. But, let me be honest, this is the first year that I finally baked the PERFECT recipe and I had to share it with you.

Here is why this is the perfect sugar cookie recipe.

  • They are a cut out cookie that holds their shape.
  • No chill sugar cookie recipe. Mix, bake and decorate.
  • Have a soft, chewy texture.
  • Reliable recipe, turns out the same each time.
  • No spread sugar cookie recipe – the design stays the same with perfect edges for decorating.
  • Made from scratch, with real good for you ingredients. No corn syrup or other crazy ingredients that you may not have in the pantry.
  • Easy, it is bound to become the no fail favorite cookie recipe for each season.
Best Sugar Cookies

I am far from a professional cookie decorator, but the children and I had so much fun figuring out our style of sugar cookie decorating techniques. I kept our tools minimal with a star cookie cutter, a woodland squirrel, one tip and a bag for piping the icing.

If you are looking for the best Christmas sugar cookie recipe, whether you are a decorator or not, this is the ultimate sugar cookie recipe for you.

rolled sugar cookie

Enjoy this view into a day in our home as the children and I spend time together making Christmas sugar cookies.

Kitchen Essentials You May Need

cut out sugar cookie

This recipe makes a large batch of cookies and depending on the size of cookie cutter used, it can make about 100 cookies. We used a large star for one batch of cookies and a squirrel for the other. It made around 50 – 60 cookies which is perfect for large family gatherings!

Ingredients for the Ultimate Christmas Sugar Cookies

  • 1 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup milk
cut out sugar cookie with royal icing

How to Make Christmas Sugar Cookies

  1. Cream together butter and sugar.
  2. Add eggs; beat until fluffy.
  3. In a separate mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Add alternately with milk to creamed mixture. If dough is sticky, add flour to handle.
  4. Roll 1/4″ thick on well floured surface. Place cookies on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes.
  5. Decorate cookies with royal icing once they are completely cool.
sugar cookie decorating ideas

Tips for Making the Best Sugar Cookies

  • Roll dough lightly to an even thickness so that the cookies will bake the same.
  • The thinner the dough, the more crisp the cookies will be.
  • The perfect thickness for a soft sugar cookies seems to be about 1/4 inch thick.
  • Dip cookie cutter in the flour, shake of excess, the cut cookies close together.
  • Dust the rolling pin with flour, it helps it to not stick to the cookie dough.
  • Lift cut out sugar cookies onto the baking sheet with a spatula to avoid stretching them out of shape.
  • It takes these cookies 8 minutes to reach the perfect level of being done in my convection oven. If the cookies start to turn golden around the edges, they have baked too long.
  • Wait until the cookies have cooled before icing. If iced warm, the royal icing will not set up like it should.

What is Royal Icing

Royal icing is set apart from other frostings as it is a shiny and stiff sugar cookie icing that hardens once it dries completely. This is why it is the best icing for decorated sugar cookies.

Christmas Sugar Cookie Recipe

Royal Icing Recipe from Scratch

Royal icing is an easy to make from scratch. Homemade with ingredients that you probably already have, this recipe is the best tasting sugar cookie icing. These are the ingredients you will need to make royal icing without meringue powder and corn syrup but instead use egg whites.

Ingredients for Royal Icing Recipe

  • 1/4 butter, softened room temperature
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 cups confectioners sugar
  • 3 egg whites, unbeaten
  • 1/4 heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla

How to Make Royal Icing from Scratch

  1. Cream butter and add salt.
  2. Gradually add 1 cup confectioners sugar. Mix well.
  3. Add remaining sugar alternately – one egg white, one cup of sugar, blending after each addition. Once egg whites have been added, add remaining sugar alternately with cream.
  4. Add vanilla, beat smooth.
  5. Cover bowl with a damp towel to prevent crust that forms a stiff layer.
woodland sugar cookie with royal icing

Tips for Making Royal Icing

  • If the confectioners sugar is lumpy, sift before using. Tiny lumps can clog up the tip for the piping bag.
  • To tint frosting, mix about 1/4 tsp of food color to 1 tbsp of royal icing.
  • If frosting is too thin, add a little confectioners sugar.
  • Icing can be applied to cookies using a butter knife or small spatula.

How Long Does Royal Icing Take to Dry on Sugar Cookies?

Royal icing for Christmas sugar cookies may take up to 3 hours to harden. After 15-30 minutes, the icing may feel hard to the touch on the surface. Generally, it will take several hours for the icing to dry all the way through. The cookies should not be stacked or stored until the royal icing is completely dry.

holiday sugar cookies

How to Store Royal Icing Christmas Sugar Cookies

Once Christmas sugar cookies are dry, they can be stored in an air tight container or in an air tight bag. If stacked in a container, place a piece of parchment paper between each layer of sugar cookies. If stored in an air tight bag, store in a single layer. Sugar cookies are good stored on the counter for up to one week.

If you try this recipe and love it, would you please come back and give it 5 stars? Here’s the full printable recipe for you to make this at home!

holiday sugar cookies

Christmas Sugar Cookies and Royal Icing Recipe

Yield: 50-60
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Additional Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 28 minutes

This is the best cut out Christmas sugar cookies and royal icing recipe! A classic holiday favorite, decorated with frosting, these are the perfect, thick cookies that your family will love.

Ingredients

  • Cookies
  • 1 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Royal Icing
  • 1/4 butter, softened room temperature
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 cups confectioners sugar
  • 3 egg whites, unbeaten
  • 1/4 heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Instructions

    Cookies:

Cream together butter and sugar.
Add eggs; beat until fluffy.
In a separate mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Add alternately with milk to creamed mixture. If dough is sticky, add flour to handle.
Roll 1/4″ thick on well floured surface. Place cookies on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes.
Decorate cookies with royal icing once they are completely cool.

Royal Icing

Cream butter and add salt.
Gradually add 1 cup confectioners sugar. Mix well.
Add remaining sugar alternately – one egg white, one cup of sugar, blending after each addition. Once egg whites have been added, add remaining sugar alternately with cream.
Add vanilla, beat smooth.
Cover bowl with a damp towel to prevent crust that forms a stiff layer.

Notes

Tips for Making the Best Sugar Cookies

  • Roll dough lightly to an even thickness so that the cookies will bake the same.
  • The thinner the dough, the more crisp the cookies will be.
  • The perfect thickness for a soft sugar cookies seems to be about 1/4 inch thick.
  • Dip cookie cutter in the flour, shake of excess, the cut cookies close together.
  • Dust the rolling pin with flour, it helps it to not stick to the cookie dough.
  • Lift cut out sugar cookies onto the baking sheet with a spatula to avoid stretching them out of shape.
  • It takes these cookies 8 minutes to reach the perfect level of being done in my convection oven. If the cookies start to turn golden around the edges, they have baked too long.
  • Wait until the cookies have cooled before icing. If iced warm, the royal icing will not set up like it should

Tips for Making Royal Icing

  • If the confectioners sugar is lumpy, sift before using. Tiny lumps can clog up the tip for the piping bag.
  • To tint frosting, mix about 1/4 tsp of food color to 1 tbsp of royal icing.
  • If frosting is too thin, add a little confectioners sugar.
  • Icing can be applied to cookies using a butter knife or small spatula.

    Pin For Later

    If you love this post, please take a moment to share with your friends or on Pinterest.

    the best cut out sugar cookies

    Sharing is caring!

    2 thoughts on “Christmas Sugar Cookies and Royal Icing Recipe”

    1. Hey there! PLEASE put an option in your site to subscribe, out if all the blogs/sites I’ve passed through I really would like to get your posts in my email.

      Reply

    Leave a Comment

    shares