Perfect Holiday Sugar Cookies Recipe

Give the gift of food this holiday season with this recipe from the kitchen of Kristen Gibson, one of Metro Parent's contributing writers

As the holiday season kicks off, we here at Metro Parent thought it was the perfect time to share some of our favorite family recipes with you. Here, contributing writer Kristen Gibson shares the story behind her recipe contribution – and gives you the step-by-step instructions for making these delicious sugar cookies.

The story

Years ago, my grandma gave me her go-to resource for making almost anything – a Fannie Farmer cookbook complete with old splatters and notes in her handwriting. So, when I wanted a special holiday recipe to make with our young bakers, I searched the worn pages of this family “heirloom” to find one. Countless batches and taste tests later, we came up with this sugar cookie recipe.

Our kids ask to make these treats every holiday. They love to help mix the dough, cut out shapes and decorate them with colored sugars or icing. Our family enjoys experimenting, so we split up the dough and let everyone design their own.

It’s a fun way to share a holiday tradition.


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. milk or cream
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 2/3 cups flour, plus extra for rolling out dough
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


  1. Cream butter and sugar.
  2. Beat in milk, sour cream and vanilla.
  3. Add eggs and beat until blended.
  4. Stir flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.
  5. Gradually add flour mixture to wet ingredients and mix well.
  6. Sprinkle flour on clean counter or table where dough will be rolled out.
  7. Lightly sprinkle the dough with flour, and gently work it into a ball. You can roll out and bake the dough right away or refrigerate it a day or two before using.
  8. Sprinkle cookies with sugar and bake at 375 F for about 8-10 minutes. Remove and let cookies cool completely on a wire rack. You can also opt to leave them without a sugar sprinkling and frost the baked cookies after they’ve cooled.
  9. Store in a tightly covered container.


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