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Image of Classic Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

Classic Sugar Cookies

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword classic, sugar cookies
Servings 3 dozen
Author Chef Maria Cummins


  • 2 Mixing bowls
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Baking sheet and parchment paper
  • Rolling Pin


  • 2 cups flour (plus a little for rolling out)
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (1 stick, softened)
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • Royal icing (optional)


  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat butter, sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in egg until well blended. Add flour mixture and beat on low speed until combined.
  • Divide the dough in half and shape it into two discs. Wrap in waxed paper and chill until firm, at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Working with one disc of dough at a time, roll out dough on a floured surface until (1/4-inch) thick and cut out cookies with floured cookie cutters.
  • Transfer cookies to parchment paper-lined baking sheets, spacing them 1 inch apart.
  • Bake until just golden around the edges, 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool and then decorate as desired.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature. 
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