Save on Pinterest

Nice ‘n’ Soft Sugar Cookies

Total Time

Prep: 45 min. + chilling Bake: 5 min./batch + cooling


about 3 dozen

My family’s all-time favorite Christmas cookie has had a million shapes over the years. Little ones have fun making their own icing designs. — Cathy Hall, Lyndhurst, Virginia
Nice 'n' Soft Sugar Cookies Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2-1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • ICING:
  • 2-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 teaspoons meringue powder
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • Food coloring of choice
  • Colored sugar and sprinkles, optional


  1. Cream butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy; beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour. Divide dough in half. Wrap each in plastic; refrigerate 2 hours or until firm enough to roll.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°. On a floured surface, roll each portion of dough to 3/16-in. thickness. Cut with floured 3-in. cookie cutters. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake until set, 5-7 minutes. Cool on pans 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. Beat confectioners' sugar, water and meringue powder on low speed until blended; beat on high until soft peaks form, about 4 minutes. Add corn syrup; beat 1 minute.
  4. Tint with food coloring as desired. (Always keep unused icing covered with a damp cloth; if necessary, beat again on high speed to restore texture.) Pipe or spread icing on cookies; decorate as desired. Let dry.
Editor’s Notes: As a substitute for 2-1/2 cups of self-rising flour, place 3-3/4 teaspoons baking powder and 1-1/4 teaspoons salt in a measuring cup. Add all-purpose flour to measure 1 cup; combine with an additional 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour. Meringue powder is available from Wilton Industries. Call 1-800/794-5866 or visit

Nutrition Facts

1 cookie: 138 calories, 5g fat (3g saturated fat), 19mg cholesterol, 150mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate (15g sugars, 0 fiber), 1g protein.

Recommended Video


Click stars to rate
Average Rating:
  • Pamela
    Dec 21, 2020

    The recipe worked well and my cutouts were great but the taste of these cookies by themselves is horrible. It’s like biting into a cookie with too much flour and salt. I’ve been baking for years and confection is my forte but these cookies did not make my list. I will ice one and see if it changes anything because plain my dog wouldn’t eat it.

  • Juli
    Oct 30, 2019

    I have been using this recipe since my kids were old enough to sit in their highchairs and decorate cookies. It is stable enough to not break and it is a delicious cookie. I follow the notes for making self rising flour. Also, I use the dipping method to measure flour, so it is fluffed up a bit. Have never had a problem with the dough being too dry and crumbly.

  • drmpurple
    Dec 16, 2018

    This is an awful sugar cookie recipe. I agree with other reviewers the dough is so dry and crumbly. Its missing something. Still tried to cook it but could only squeeze it in to a ball and it didnt taste like a sugar cookie. Will not make this again.

  • ojc0806
    Dec 17, 2016

    The best sugar cookies!!! I used the editor's note to get the flour so I didn't need to buy a whole thing of self raising flour. Otherwise everything was followed as written. A great frosting too that sets well! Will be making every year!

  • cookingram78
    Dec 8, 2015

    I've been using this recipe for years with wonderful results. I do, however, roll out my dough a bit thicker than the recipe suggests, as I find this produces a guaranteed soft and tender cookie. Dough is easy to handle and very forgiving, and the re-rolled scraps even make delicious cookies.

  • dkatie9
    Dec 15, 2014

    These cookies are delicious. Those people who didn't get a soft cookie did something wrong. I followed the recipe exactly. Yummy. Maybe you didn't soften the butter???

  • DMWinnie
    Dec 13, 2014

    These were not anything like they should be. Wasted a bunch of ingredients. Not sure why some of us had the same issues, and others liked it. It was almost like there was a binding ingredient missing. After a few failures I added some oil to get the consistency I need to do anything with them. Moving on to another one...this one is a no go.....

  • lmmanda
    Apr 7, 2014

    I love soft chewy cookies and these are the best sugar cookies I've ever had. They are a Christmas tradition in our house.

  • LBayne
    Jan 1, 2014

    Love these sugar cookies. This is my go to cugar cookie recipe! Everyone loves these with a little buttercream frosting on them.

  • daughterofacook
    Dec 21, 2013

    The first batch I made, burned; The second batch was only air and super crunchy......I have lost 15 cookies so far..... I just hope that this next one isn't another waste....EACH BATCH IS SIX COOKIES SINCE I AM USING A TOASTER OVEN.......