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Lemon Sugar Cookies

5 from 22 votes

posted: 07/17/17

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Lemon Sugar Cookies are crisp on the outside, soft on the inside with the perfect hint of lemon and a simple lemon icing on top. They’re melt in your mouth delicious!

The Lemon Sugar Cookies has a pale white color with a crispy exterior.

These lemon sugar cookies are soft, perfectly lemony and really easy to make! They start out with a simple sugar cookie recipe but we just switch out the vanilla for lemon extract. I made them the first time with lemon juice and I didn’t love the outcome. This version keeps the cookies soft on the inside and slightly crispy on the outside. And then we top them with a really simple and really delicious white chocolate lemon glaze. You can skip that if you like, but why would you?

I’ve gotten so much positive feedback on this post! If you have tried these delicious treats and want to share your thoughts, please leave me a comment below.

A stack of Lemon Sugar Cookies with a pale crispy outside.


  • Start with room temperature butter. You should be able to push your finger into it and make a small dent but not go all the way through. Want to make that go faster? Cut your butter up into 1 inch pieces and leave it on the counter for a half hour.
  • Your eggs also need to be room temperature. Want that to go faster? Fill a bowl with lukewarm water and leave them in there for a few minutes.
  • It’s really important to measure your flour correctly. Scoop the flour into the measuring cup and level it off. If you scoop right out of your flour container using your measuring cup, you will end up with significantly more flour.
  • Make sure you cream your butter and sugar together for at least three minutes. It needs to not just be mixed, it needs to be light and fluffy. The sugar actually beats air into the butter and that’s key in baking.
  • Keep your pans cool. If you are baking in batches and need to use your baking pans more than once, you need to make sure that they have cooled before you put more dough on them. You can make this happen fast by just running them under cold water and drying them off. Speaking of pans, I love these! And I love using these with them.
  • This isn’t essential, but I find that using a scoop helps to keep all your cookies the same size, for consistent baking and it also makes the process of getting the cookies into ball form so much faster! I love this scoop.


These gorgeous little drops of Heaven are perfect as is, or you can take it to the  next level with this really easy lemon icing. It comes together in just three ingredients:

  • White chocolate chips
  • Milk
  • Lemon extract

Melt all the ingredients together in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring well in between, and drizzle over the cooled lemon sugar cookies. Simply divine, I tell you!

A stack of Lemon Sugar Cookies are shown, and the most top cookie has a small bite into.


If you’re crazy about lemon like I am, try some of these mouthwatering recipes that are in constant rotation around here:

The Lemon Sugar Cookie has small bite with a crispy outside and soft chewy inside.

I hope you love these lemon sugar cookies with icing as much as I do! They’ve been proven in our house to lift sad spirits and make days better. Please make a batch for your sweet ones today and then let me know what you think! I love hearing feedback from you, my friends. Please leave me a comment below and enjoy these delicious lemony morsels.

5 from 22 votes

Lemon Sugar Cookies

Serves: 28 cookies
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Lemon Sugar Cookies are crisp on the outside, soft on the inside with the perfect hint of lemon and a simple lemon icing on top. They're melt in your mouth delicious!


  • For Cookies
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 14 TBSPS unsalted butter 1 3/4 stick at room temperature
  • 2 tsps lemon extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • For Icing
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 2 tsps milk
  • 1/4 tsp lemon extract


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • With your mixer on medium, mix together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Mix in the eggs (one at a time) and then the lemon extract until well combined.
  • Slowly mix in the flour mixture until well combined, with your mixer set to low. Scrape down the paddle and the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  • Roll the dough into one inch sized balls. (Optional: Roll in sugar) Place on a parchment lined baking sheet or silicon mat and press down slightly. Space the cookies about two inches apart.
  • Bake for 10 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking. (I baked mine in three batches)
  • Let cool on the pan for about two minutes before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  • After cookies have cooled, melt the icing ingredients together in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring in between. Melt until smooth. Drizzle over cookies and allow to cool.
Serving: 1cookie Calories: 154kcal (8%) Carbohydrates: 21g (7%) Protein: 2g (4%) Fat: 7g (11%) Saturated Fat: 5g (31%) Monounsaturated Fat: 2g Cholesterol: 29mg (10%) Sodium: 92mg (4%) Potassium: 9mg Sugar: 13g (14%) Vitamin A: 200IU (4%) Calcium: 10mg (1%)
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

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Lemon Sugar Cookies

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

Reader Interactions


    Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you & seeing what you made!

    Rate This Recipe:

  1. Ashley says

    My cookies didn’t flatten out. They were just like little balls. Not sure what I did wrong .

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so sorry! That is always so frustrating. My best guess is that your butter was too cold or your flour was packed. If you scoop the flour from the container with the measuring cup the flour can pack and you can end up with up to 25% more. That would definitely cause this.

  2. Dee says

    Do you use salted or unsalted butter? It doesn’t say

    • Lisa Longley says

      Unsalted! Thank you for catching that, Dee!

  3. Bonnie says

    With the lemon cookies, can you use juice from a real lemon?

    • Lisa Longley says

      Yes! It will have just slightly less lemon taste than the extract but it will still work.

  4. Terry Bain says

    I love how you make it easy to bake like a professional, so many times I make something that turns out to be a big disappointment

    • Lisa Longley says

      That’s an amazing compliment, thank you Terry!

  5. Diane Greggo says

    I made This cookie recipe and I have to say, the worst cookie’s ever using lemon extract made them taste like chemicals. They are all going in the trash. I’m still on the hunt for the best lemon cookies. Withreal lemon .
    ThanksDiane l

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so surprised to hear this. I’ve had so much great feedback on these cookies. I wonder if it was the brand of extract you used. You could make these again replacing the extract with lemon juice and adding in 2 teaspoons of lemon zest.

  6. Maureen says

    I don’t understand how anyone can give this less than 5 stars. I followed the recipe to a “T” and they came out superb. I’m actually not a fan of lemon cookies, and I much prefer something with chocolate. But, I had lemon extract and thought I’d give it a try. They were soft and chewy at the same time and had a wonderful flavor. I’ll definitely be making these again for family and company, and I’ll be looking at your other recipes.

    • Lisa Longley says

      Thank you, Maureen! I’m so happy you enjoyed them!

  7. Linda Harris says

    5 stars
    Is now a family favorite!! Tks!

    • Lisa Longley says

      So happy to hear that, Linda!

  8. Sabrina says

    5 stars
    Made these cookies for our family Thanksgiving meal. Was a huge hit. I didn’t put icing on them to make them a couple of calories less. Such an easy and delicious cookie.

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so glad everyone enjoyed them, Sabrina!

  9. Kathy R says

    Do you have another lemon glaze recipe that I could use possibly? Without white chocolate.

    • Lisa Longley says

      I don’t, but you could mix powdered sugar, milk, and lemon extract together.

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5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners