Sugar Cookies - Cookies for Santa

This sugar cookie recipe uses butter and shortening which is the perfect combination for soft, chewy and crisp sugar cookies. 
Our favorite Christmas Cookie is Frosted Sugar Cookie Cut Outs. During the holidays I cant ever seem so make enough of them and they disappear so fast. My kids would eat the whole platter in one sitting if I let them. Sugar Cookie Cut Outs are the cookies we leave out for Santa Claus every year.

 I've been making this recipe for so many years, that when it comes to sugar cookie this is my go to recipe. I know I can trust them to turn out perfectly every time. I like my cookies to be firm but soft when you bite into them, not hard and crumbly. That is the main reason I like this recipe so much.

This sugar cookie recipe uses both real butter and shortening it's the perfect combination. I also cut my sugar cookies a little bit more on the thicker side. This really ensures the softness of the cookie. I roll mine out a little bit bigger than a 1/4 of a inch in thickness. I also don't use any fancy schmancy frosting on these cookies. Just a simple colored icing.

When we make cookies for Santa it is all about the kids having fun and letting them jump in and do all the cutting and decorating all by themselves. I just mix up the icing for them and let them them loose with the sprinkles, they turn out so pretty every time. Just look above at my Mackenzie's snowman she did a striped effect.

I got this cookie recipe years ago from a Better Homes and Gardens Baking Cookbook. It never fails me so it's the one I stick to. Now the Icing recipe is another story and I cant stake any claim to it. I found that recipe over at southern plate last year and have been making it ever since.
The icing is a wet colored icing, but will set up shiny and firm when it is fully dry. I love this icing just pour it on with a spoon, spread, add sprinkles and let dry. I think the hardest part is waiting for the icing to dry so you can dig in.

I think Santa will be very impressed this year the kiddos did a awesome job. I hope everyone will spend some time with their children baking in the kitchen on Christmas Eve.

I wont be back posting until after the Christmas Holiday. So Merry Christmas to everyone. Be safe, be merry and enjoy great food and good times with family and friends.

He we are having fun cutting out all the cookies shapes.

Cookies cut, baked, cooled and ready to be frosted. In the bottom left photo of the collage you can see the cookies right out of the oven. Just golden brown on the edges and the cookies are firm.
here is that snowman. Just lay out some wax paper and let the kids get busy decorating how ever they want.

Carson started with a yellow star and white sprinkles. Nice touch Carson.

Here is mine a Christmas Tree. Don't worry about the icing running off the sides. They will dry and be so pretty in the end.

Strike a pose!!!

definitely a rare moment.

When the cookies are all frosted move them to a clean sheet of waxed paper to dry for a hour or two. Then dig in!!!! Carson said he didn't think he could wait the whole hour LOL

I took a photo of the side of the cookie so you could see just how thick I cut mine. Santa will be so exited, now all he needs is a glass of milk.

Don't worry Santa we never forget the reindeer's the kids will make sure to leave carrots and water for them. And to all a goodnight!!!!!!

Yield: 20
Author: Tina Butler | Mommy's Kitchen
Christmas Sugar Cookies

Christmas Sugar Cookies

This sugar cookie recipe uses butter and shortening which is the perfect combination for soft, chewy and crisp sugar cookies.
Prep time: 2 HourCook time: 8 MinTotal time: 2 H & 8 M


  • 1/3 - cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 - cup shortening
  • 1 - cup granulated sugar
  • 1 - teaspoon baking powder
  • dash salt
  • 1 - beaten egg
  • 1 - teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 - cups all purpose flour
  • 1 - 3 recipes of colored icing, below
  • holiday sprinkles


  1. In a medium size bowl beat shortening and butter together with an electric mixer. Add sugar, vanilla extract and beaten egg.
  2. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together then add to the creamed mixture. Mix together scraping the sides of the bowl.
  3. I used my kitchen aid mixer to mix everything until it came away from the bowl and started to form into a ball.
  4. Try and mix enough of the flour mixture in using mixer, stir in any remaining flour with wooden spoon. Place dough inside a large zip lock bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  5. Remove dough and let sit on the counter at least 30 minutes. Roll dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/4 inch thick.
  6. I like thick cookies they seem to be softer. Cut with desired cookie cutters and place on aun-greased baking sheet.
  7. Bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes or until edges are firm and start to get golden brown. The bottom of the cookies should be light brown as well.
  8. Let cool on baking sheet 5 minutes. Remove and place on a baking rack to cool completely. Frost with colored icing and decorate with sprinkles.
Colored Icings Recipe
  1. cup confectioner’s sugar (powdered sugar)
  2. tablespoon softened butter or margarine
  3. tablespoons milk
  4. tsp vanilla extract
  5. food coloring
  1. I used 3 separate bowls to mix the icing.
  2. One recipe for each bowl.
  3. Mix all ingredients together with fork. If too dry, add a little more milk.
  4. Once mixed, add a few drops of food coloring. We did red, green and yellow.
Did you make this recipe?
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Recipe yields: Approx 20 sugar cookies
Icing recipe source: southern plate


Unknown said…
I already had plans to make some tonight!!!
Tara said…
Think we'll be making some too tonight after we go looking at lights!! Merry CHRISTmas!!!
PS...don't know if we can be friends looking at your shirt! I'm an AGGIE!! WHOOP!! ;0) Just kidding!!
Rachelle S said…
I have some sugar cookie dough waiting in the fridge for the kids to roll out. I had to make more just for Santa! I made tons of trains for my little one's class party last week.

Sherrie said…
I love making sugar cookies.
sonyadawn said…
Merry Christmas Tina... those cookies look so good, i don't think i could wait the whole hour either... thank you for the icing recipe, i have been looking all day for one just like that... these WILL be made tommorrow...
Jane said…
Thanks for the recipe! Merry Christmas to you and your family!
Krymsen said…
We are trying this recipe today! Thanks so much!!!
Heidi said…
I'm so glad you posted these cookies. I have tried and tried to make good sugar cookies, but am never happy with the recipes. I can't wait to try these out. I'm going right now to the cabinet to hunt for some shortening! I hope you and your family have a merry christmas. Your kids did a great job on the santa cookies!!!
Linda said…
I am so glad to have this recipe. Every time I make sugar cookies they spread out of shape into big blobs while baking. So gave up. Now this inspires me to try again. Thanks
Lindsay Ernst said…
Just found your blog and LOVE IT! Thanks for the recipe, just tried it and they are PERFECT, exactly how I like em!! Thanks for sharing and look forward to following your blog :-) Happy New year!
Darcy said…
I can't wait to try out this recipe. I do have a favorite sugar cookie recipe but always willing to try a new one. Hope they turn out as good as yours did!
Unknown said…
My son and I just made these tonight! they were fabulous! thanks for sharing, we will be making these for now on!
Brandie said…
Love cookie baking at christmas time
Anonymous said…
Where is a good place to purchase a variety of cookie cutters?
Michelle said…
I have made this recipe twice now and the dough is so crumbly it just falls apart. I followed the directions and not sure what went wrong. Any suggestions?
Tina Butler said…
I'm not in your kitchen so I can't really tell you what went wrong. It should not be crumbly especially with the butter, shortening and the egg added. Maybe start with 1 1/2 cups of flour and go from there.
Unknown said…
Let the butter soften longer and if you live in a cold climate let the shortening and butter sit in the warmest part of your kitchen. Also, cream the butter/shorting well before adding sugar/egg/vanilla and turn the mixer up a notch on the speed. Scrape down sides of bowl, turn the mixer back on and add dry ingredients a 1/4-1/2 cup at a time. As mixture begins to thicken, turn the mixer speed down a notch and let it mix until it all pulls to the middle and globs around the mixer paddle. Scrape off the mixer paddle and roll the dough up the side of the mixing bowl and place in zipper bag. This how it worked best in my Kitchenaide mixer with a paddle beater. If you are using standard beaters you will probably have to mix the dry ingredients in with a large wooden spoon a little at a time and when it starts to get really think you will have to roll the dry ingredients in with your hands. This is the easiest dough I have ever made! Also, be sure to press down well when you are measuring shorting to remove air pockets, otherwise you will not be getting enough shortening into your mix.
Unknown said…
Hi in the uk, what is shortening, is it lard??thanks.x
Anonymous said…
I need black sugar cookie dough. I am planning on adding black food coloring to this dough. I hope it works. I am making lots of ★'s. rip david bowie