These soft and chewy lemon sugar cookies are buttery and full of fresh lemon flavor. They are crispy on the outside with a sparkly sugar coating and they take less than 30 minutes to make! A stack of lemon sugar cookies on a cooling rack with lemons and a glass of milk.

Why this recipe is so great:

  • Quick and easy to make – This one-bowl recipe comes together in a matter of minutes. Then all you have to do is roll the cookie dough in sugar and bake for 10 minutes.
  • Perfect texture – These cookies are amazingly soft and chewy on the inside and delightfully crispy on the outside.
  • Great taste – Each bite of these lemon sugar cookies is rich and buttery, sweet and tangy, and finishes with a zesty lemony flavor.

Lemon sugar cookies on a cooling rack with lemons and a glass of milk.

How to make lemon sugar cookies:

  1. In a large bowl, cream the butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy.
  2. Beat in the egg, fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla extract.
  3. Stir in the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda until just combined.
  4. Roll the cookie dough balls in granulated sugar and place 2″ apart on a lined cookie sheet. Bake at 350F for 9-11 minutes or until the edges just start to brown.

A picture collage of how to make lemon cookies.

Expert tips:

  • The flavor comes from the lemon zest – So the more zest, the more flavor. And this recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of freshly grated lemon zest (about 1 large lemon) which makes it super lemony and delicious.
  • If the dough is too sticky or the cookies spread too much in the oven – Simply chill the dough in the fridge for about 15-30 minutes to firm it up.

How to store lemon sugar cookies:

Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

How to freeze lemon sugar cookies:

Once the cookies are completely cooled, place in a freezer-friendly container or ziplock bag and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Place on the counter for 1-2 hours to thaw and come to room temperature before serving.

Variations:

  • Lemon glaze – Mix some powdered sugar with a bit of lemon juice and drizzle over the cooled cookies for a little extra sweetness.
  • White chocolate chips – Add some creamy white chocolate chips for a lemon and white chocolate combination in these cookies.
  • Citrus flavor – You can use this recipe and substitute the lemon juice and lemon zest with orange, lime or even grapefruit for a different citrus flavor.

Lemon cookies on a cooling rack with some lemon wedges and a glass of milk.

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Lemon Sugar Cookies


  • Author: Lily Ernst
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 10 min
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 2 dozen cookies

Description

These soft and chewy lemon sugar cookies are buttery and full of fresh lemon flavor. They are crispy on the outside with a sparkly sugar coating and they take less than 30 minutes to make!


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (114g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (190g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar for rolling

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchement paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream the butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in the egg, fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla extract.
  4. Stir in the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda until just combined.
  5. Scoop a heaping teaspoon amount of dough, roll into a ball, then coat in granulated sugar. Place 2″ apart onto the prepared cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until the edges just start to brown.

Notes

Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

How to freeze:

Once the cookies are completely cooled, place in a freezer-friendly container or ziplock bag and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Place on the counter for 1-2 hours to thaw and come to room temperature before serving.

Variations:

  • Lemon glaze – Mix some powdered sugar with a bit of lemon juice and drizzle over the cooled cookies for a little extra sweetness.
  • White chocolate chips – Add some creamy white chocolate chips for a lemon and white chocolate combination in these cookies.
  • Citrus flavor – You can use this recipe and substitute the lemon juice and lemon zest with orange, lime or even grapefruit for a different citrus flavor.
  • Category: dessert
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: lemon cookie recipe, lemon sugar cookies

Recipe very slightly adapted from Creations by Kara.

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