★★★★★

Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. The only cut out cookie recipe you need this holiday!

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

Click HERE to save recipe to pinterest

Making Christmas cookies is one of our favorite family traditions. Especially when it involves frosted sugar cookies.

It occurred to me that I haven’t ever shared my favorite cut out sugar cookie here on the blog. I love these Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies.

Why this is the BEST recipe?

  • They are not only packed with flavor (no cardboard taste here), but they keep their shape after baking, too. They don’t spread out while baking and lost that cute cookie cutter shape.
  • I love the texture and flavor the combination of cream cheese and butter provides as a base to these cookies.
  • The secret ingredients? I add in plenty of lemon zest and Almond Extract to the cookie dough as well to give it more depth of flavor!

How to Make Sugar Cookie Cut Outs

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too! #christmascookies #cutoutcookies #christmasfood #christmasbaking #recipe

STEP 1. Cream the softened butter, cream cheese and sugar together for several minutes, until well combined. Add in extracts, lemon zest, salt, baking powder and eggs. Beat until well blended.

STEP 2. Add in flour, mix until just combined. Do not OVER mix the dough at this point. You’ll be handling it enough that it will mix completely.

STEP 3. Drop dough onto a lightly floured surface, knead with hands. Divide dough into four parts, making it easier to roll out. Wrap the dough you are not using in plastic wrap to keep it fresh.

Roll dough to about 1/4-inch thickness. Press cookie cutters into dough and transfer them to a parchment paper lined baking sheet (using a wide spatula).

STEP 4. Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for about 8-10 minutes. Don’t over bake. Repeat for remaining dough. Cool completely before frosting.

This Cream Cheese Sugar Cookie recipe is great for freezing too.

How to freeze cut out cookies

For best results, roll and cut the cookies out using your favorite cookie cutter. Freeze the cut-out shapes. When we’re ready to bake cookies, I bake them directly from the freezer (adding a few minutes to the bake time).

I freeze my cut out cookie dough on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Freeze for about two hours, then remove from baking sheet and slide into a ziploc bag. These cookies will last about 2 months in the freezer.

Since the decorating of the cookies is messy enough, it’s nice to only deal with one part of the baking process with the kids at a time!

But let’s talk about the frosting.

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

With my Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies, it’s the frosting that is the star of the show!

SUGAR COOKIE FROSTING

Much like with cupcakes and brownies, PLEASE don’t be skimpy with your frosting. It makes a difference when you bite into these tasty Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies.

I use vanilla beans in my frosting. I usually buy online, but during the holidays you can get them at a great price at Sam’s Club or Costco.

Not only are they great to use for yourself, but they would make a fun gift too! Wrap up a package with the vanilla beans, some cute cookie cutters, sprinkles, and attach a copy of my Cream Cheese Sugar Cookie recipe, of course!

I know there are many recipes for royal icing. This is NOT it.

However, you can also make adorable cupcakes with my fluffy vanilla bean frosting recipe! Try using my Vanilla Bean Cupcakes or Funfetti Cupcakes as the base.

vanilla-beans-1

Normally when my kids decorate sugar cookies, they don’t pipe on the frosting.

However, this frosting is soft enough that I was able to fill some disposable bags, attach some fun tips, and set my kids to work!

The texture of this Vanilla Bean Frosting is perfect, as once it’s been piped (or spread) onto the Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies and the sprinkles have been added, it will harden slightly so that you can stack them up without ruining your designs! Fun, right?

You could even use this Vanilla Bean Frosting as a filling for Funfetti Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches if you want. It’s such a versatile recipe!

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

TIPS FOR MAKING CREAM CHEESE SUGAR COOKIES:

  • Cream your room temperature unsalted butter and cream cheese together in a stand mixer thoroughly before adding in any ingredients. I do this for about 2-3 minutes. I think it helps make the finished Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies more tender. Especially since once you add in the flour, you don’t want to beat them like crazy.
  • Use plenty of flavoring. My personal winning combo for Cut Out Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies is almond extract with lemon zest. HOWEVER, these are fantastic if you want to change the flavoring to something YOU enjoy. Use a combo of vanilla and almond extract. Or, try lemon and orange extracts for an extra hint of citrus.
  • Use vanilla beans in the cookie dough to deepen the flavor.
  • Once your dough is mixed, drop onto a lightly floured surface and knead with your hands until it comes together. 
  • Be sure to add vanilla beans to your frosting. Don’t skip this step. Beat for an additional 3 minutes until fluffy.
  • Add food coloring. When adding your food coloring, do so slowly. I prefer to use gel food coloring. I find there is no flavor and you don’t need to use very much to get the color you desire!
  • Spread or pipe the frosting onto your cookies and add sprinkles after each cookie is done (so that the sprinkles stick well).
  • The frosting will firm up in about an hour. You can then stack them gently (with wax paper between layers). Store in airtight container. ENJOY.
  • When you’re done with the vanilla bean pod, don’t throw it out. USE it for vanilla sugar (which is fantastic in coffee, baked goods, and more)! Add the pod to a mason jar of granulated sugar. Shake and store until ready to use.

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

More Christmas Cookie ideas

A classic sugar cookie made easy by making them into bars. Frost with a generous layer of festive buttercream, tinted in your favorite color! Frosted Sugar Cookie Bars are a family favorite!

These Easy Traditional Kolachky Cookies Recipe for Christmas have a melt in your mouth cookie base and are topped with sweet preserves. Don’t forget the extra powdered sugar!

This Almond Bars recipe is a sweet treat that has a shortbread-like texture and a delicious almond glaze on top! You’ll want to make extra and freeze them for later!

Gingerdoodle Cookies are chewy, soft cookies that taste like a cross between a gingersnap and a snickerdoodle. Add this to your baking list ASAP! You’ll love the texture of the cookies, but more importantly the molasses flavor with the cinnamon, ginger, and cloves is irresistible!

Don’t want to cut out sugar cookies? These are the best, chewy Sugar Cookies with a no-chill dough. Topped with a creamy sugar cookie icing, you’ll love this Copycat Swig Sugar Cookie recipe!

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

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More Easy Dessert Recipes

Yield: about 60 cookies

Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. Don't forget to add the delicious Vanilla Bean Frosting too!

Ingredients

For the Sugar Cookies:

  • 1 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp Rodelle almond extract
  • 2 lemons, zested
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour

For the Vanilla Bean frosting:

Instructions

  1. For the cookies, cream butter, cream cheese and sugar together for several minutes, until well combined. Add in extracts, lemon zest, salt, baking powder and eggs. Beat until well blended.
  2. Add in flour, mix until just combined.
  3. Drop dough onto a lightly floured surface, knead with hands. Divide dough into four parts, making it easier to roll out. Wrap the dough you are not using in plastic wrap to keep it fresh.
  4. Roll dough to about 1/4-inch thickness. Press cookie cutters into dough and transfer them to a parchment paper lined baking sheet (using a wide spatula).
  5. Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for about 8-10 minutes. Don't over bake. Repeat for remaining dough.
  6. Cool completely before frosting.
  7. For the frosting, beat butter for 3 minutes until pale in color. Add in powdered sugar, milk and vanilla beans. Beat for an additional 3 minutes until fluffy. Add food coloring if desired.
  8. Add sprinkles immediately after frosting the cookies. ENJOY.

Notes

**If freezing the cookies for later, you can do one of several things:

  • wrap dough in plastic wrap and put in airtight freezer bag until ready to use
  • OR, make dough up to step 4, transfer those baking sheets to the freezer. Place frozen dough in freezer bags after an hour for long term storage.
  • OR, bake cookies and freeze them before frosting (MY FAVORITE OPTION)

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

60

Serving Size:

1 cookie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 208Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 33mgSodium: 75mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 0gSugar: 18gProtein: 2g
*Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

Recipe originally published December 10, 2015

Looking for the BEST sugar cookie cut out recipe? These Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies are so flavorful and they always hold their shape. The only cut out cookie recipe you need this holiday!

Aimee

About Aimee

Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

Learn more about Aimee.

Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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Posted on December 2, 2019

Comments & Reviews

  1. So I must have made way to much frosting and have a lot of it leftover. I don’t want to throw it away. How long will it keep in the refrigerator and is it possible to just put the frosting in a freezer container and freeze it just like the cookies?

    1. You can freeze the frosting. OR…you can use a 1Tbsp scoop and dollop the frosting in scoops on a cookie sheet. Freeze for 30 minutes. Remove from freezer, use your hands to roll in a ball then dip in melted chocolate. It will change your life, LOL. My favorite thing to do with leftover frosting (and you can freeze the truffles too).

  2. Thank you for the perfect recipe. The cookies, snowmen and stars, are so pretty. No spreading, texture is soft. Its a keeper

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