Basic Cookie Dough

Total Time

Prep/Total Time: 15 min.


8 cups dough

Updated: Oct. 25, 2023
Skip the store-bought cookie dough and learn how to make cookies from scratch—it's easy! Thanks to this basic cookie dough recipe, you can turn everyday ingredients into five sensational sweets. Bake some right away, then pop the extra dough into the freezer for later. —Gloria McBride, Payson, Utah


  • 2-1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup 2% milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 7-1/2 to 8 cups (30 to 32 oz.) all-purpose flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in eggs, milk and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk 7-1/2 cups flour, baking powder and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture, adding more flour if necessary. Divide dough into four 2-cup portions. Refrigerate, covered, until needed.
  2. Basic Cookie Dough may be used to prepare the following recipes: Classic Sugar Cookies, Crumb-Topped Date Bars, Cherry Surprise Cookies, Chocolate Mallow Cookies and Jelly Sandwich Cookies.

Test Kitchen Tips
  • Be sure to not overmix the cookie dough ingredients; this will help to prevent the dough from spreading excessively if you prefer to bake some or all of the cookies later.
  • Throw in some handfuls of your favorite chocolate chips for chocolate chip cookie dough.
  • If you love this recipe, you won't be able to get enough of these cookie dough desserts.
  • Nutrition Facts

    4 teaspoons dough: 98 calories, 5g fat (3g saturated fat), 17mg cholesterol, 91mg sodium, 12g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 0 fiber), 1g protein.