Soft lemon sugar cookies coated in lemon-scented sugar for the most incredible sugar cookie experience. These melt-in-your-mouth delights are our favorite lemon cookie recipe!
Why you'll love it
These lemon sugar cookies are soft, chewy, and melt in your mouth. The dough is filled with bright lemon flavor and coated in lemon-infused sugar.
You and everyone you know will love them because they are everything a good cookie should be. Crisp, buttery edges and soft and chewy on the inside with the perfect amount of lemon.
They are sweet, but not so sweet that you feel guilty eating a few at once. These cookies put all other cookies to shame. (Except my s'mores stuffed cookies cause, well, s'mores.)
What you'll need
Like the best cookies, you only need a few pantry staples to make these mouthwatering treats. You probably already have all or most of the ingredients already. Let's review some of the key ingredients.
- Butter - Unsalted butter is a must for these cookies. You cannot substitute the butter with alternatives such as margarine. For the best results, use softened butter left at room temperature.
- Lemon - For the best lemon cookies, you need to use fresh lemons. The regular lemons you find at the stores is what you should use, but if you want to change things up slightly, you can try pink lemons or Meyer lemons.
- Sugar - You should use granulated sugar for these cookies. I would not recommend replacing the sugar with a sweetener alternative.
- Vanilla - I like to add vanilla to my lemon cookies to add more depth to the flavor. You should use pure vanilla extract only.
How to make
Making these cookies is the best because there is no chilling necessary. You can whip up the cookie dough and bake it right away. Quick, easy, and perfect for any impatient bakers.
- Mix all the dry ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.
- Beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
- Mix the lemon zest, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and egg into the butter mixture and beat until well-combined.
- Add the flour slowly until just combined.
- Portion the dough into 24 equal balls and roll in granulated sugar that's been mixed with some lemon zest.
- Place on your baking sheets and bake until the edges are a nice golden brown.
The most juice comes from room temperature lemons, so I recommend leaving your lemons out for about an hour before you juice them. Zest is best when the citrus is cold, so you can zest your lemons just after taking them out of the fridge to warm up
Cookies are best stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to a week. You can freeze the baked cookies in an airtight container for up to a month. You may also store unbaked cookie dough in the freezer for up to a month. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before portioning out and baking. You may need to add another 1 - 2 minutes to the baking time.
Lemon Sugar Cookies Recipe
- 2 ¾ cup all-purpose flour 344 g
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 2 lemons room temperature
- 1 ½ cup sugar, plus extra for rolling 300 g
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature 230 g
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Mix the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Beat the butter with the sugar until light and creamy.
- Zest both lemons and extract about 2 tablespoons of juice - about half a large lemon. Set aside ¼ of the zest in a separate bowl.
- Mix the remaining zest, lemon juice, egg, and vanilla extract in the butter/sugar mixture and mix until well incorporated.
- Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients one cup at a time. Mix until combined.
- Mix the zest you set aside with some sugar for rolling.
- Take a tablespoon of the dough and roll into a ball between your hands. Roll the ball in the lemon sugar.
- Place the ball on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat the the remaining cookie dough, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie.
- Bake for 8 - 10 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies start to get a nice golden brown.
- Cool the cookies on the baking sheet for a minute before transferring to a cooling rack.
Modified from Two Peas and Their Pod