Can I use these for cut out cookies?
Now, it probably goes without saying, but just in case, let me mention that these cookies are not good candidates for cutting out gingerbread men (unless you want a particularly bloated looking gingerbread man). These cookies spread, puff up, and generally expand enough that your cookie cutter shapes will mostly be useless. I tried rolling a few of them out and cutting them using a Christmas tree cookie cutter, and if you squinted, you could see the shape, but it really wasn’t worth the effort. If you want to do cutout sugar cookies, you’re looking for the Perfect Frosted Sugar Cookies recipe. If you’re fine with a run-of-the-mill circular cookie shape, please proceed.
Our Frosted Sugar Cookies are the way to go if you want to use your cookie cutters—we’ve been using the recipe for YEARS. It is, without a doubt, the most perfect sugar cookie recipe to use with all those fancy Christmas cookie cutters you have taking up space in a drawer in your kitchen.
The cookies don’t spread. They don’t discolor. They stay soft and flavorful. It’s easy to make and work with the dough. It uses simple ingredients. I believe it really is the perfect recipe for cutout cookies.
So how should I shape these cookies?
The easiest way to shape these cookies is to take damp hands and form the cookie dough into two-inch balls, and then smoosh them down flat using a flat-bottom glass. If you want a truly perfectly-circular cookie shape, you could chill the dough, roll it out to about 1/4-inch thickness with a rolling pin, and then use a biscuit cutter or round cookie cutter to cut out perfect circles.
If you do end up using a biscuit cutter, make sure you don’t twist when you press down on the dough. Twisting “seals” the edges of the cookie, making it to where it won’t rise as much—leaving you with a loftless Lofthouse cookie (is that where the name comes from?). Same advice is true for biscuits. Want tall, fluffy biscuits? Don’t you dare twist that biscuit cutter.
Either way, I’ve included instructions for both methods in the recipe directions.
When are the cookies done?
You’ll want to watch these closely, especially on the first batch (since all ovens are different). Sugar cookies go from tender to overbaked in seconds. When the cookies are ready, they should be just barely brown on the bottom and the top should look “set.”
When in doubt, err on the side of underdone—I’ve never heard anyone complain about soft sugar cookies, but people definitely notice overdone cookies!
What kind of frosting should I use?
Oh, and the frosting? Well, it’s just your run-of-the-mill (but not really because OMGyummy) buttercream. You can flavor it will vanilla, almond, coconut, or whatever extract makes you happy. Because it’s Christmas, and
at Christmas you tell the truth peppermint is all the rage, I used Nielsen-Massey Peppermint extract. It was gloriously minty and delicious! Enjoy.