This recipe was originally posted December 11, 2018 and updated December 12, 2021
Rolled and decorated cutout sugar cookies are a classic of the holiday season. This recipe will definitely not disappoint. It's gluten free and dairy free. Plus it stays soft in the middle while being sturdy enough to hold it's shape during baking and travel. I've been enjoying these for over 20 years and I hope you will too!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- It's gluten free and dairy free.
- It holds it's shape when baked.
- It stays soft in the center after baking.
Other than the usual mixer and baking sheets, you will also need a rolling pin, cookie cutters and piping bags (if you want to add icing).
- Gluten Free 1-to-1 Flour Blend - I use Bob's Red Mill. You can use the flour blend of your choice, but this recipe has been created specifically with BRM so you may experience different results. As always, I recommend you weigh your flour if you plan to use another blend.
- Baking Powder
- Vegan Butter - I use Miyoko's or Country Crock Plant Butter
- Shortening - Butter Flavored Crisco is my preference. You can also use the full amount of butter in place of the shortening, but may experience some spreading during baking.
How to Make Sugar Cookies
Step 1: Cream cold butter, shortening and sugar in a stand mixer for 5 minutes.
Step 2: Add the eggs and vanilla.
Step 3: With the mixer on the lowest setting, add the flour, baking powder and salt.
Step 4: Divide dough into two parts. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
Step 5: Place dough onto a piece of parchment paper and roll out to ¼" thick. Place the dough sheet in the freezer for 15 minutes.
Step 6: Cut out shapes and transfer them to a lined baking sheet. Place baking sheet into freezer at least 15 minutes.
Step 7: Bake
Step 8: Cool cookies and then decorate!
How to Decorate Gluten Free Sugar Cookies
If you don't want to decorate your cookies with icing, you can sprinkle them with colored or white sugar before baking. To decorate with icing, make the royal icing recipe below. It will create a thick icing, which you can thin to your desired consistency depending on your design.
The icing recipe below will create more than enough to decorate all of the cookies in a variety of colors. To create separate icing colors, just scoop a portion of the mixed icing into a small bowl and add gel food coloring until you reach your desired color. Then transfer your icing to a piping bag for decorating.
How to Store Frosted Sugar Cookies
Once you apply the icing, it will take a while to dry to the point you can safely stack the cookies. Leave them out on a baking tray for several hours until you're sure they are dry. Then transfer the cookies to an airtight container, layering them with was paper in between. They can be stored at room temperature for 3-4 days.
The recipe is important because having too much sugar or butter will cause the cookies to melt and spread.
But the key to getting perfect cut out cookies is keeping the dough really cold. Put the shapes into the freezer right before baking and move the cookie sheet directly from the freezer to the oven.
I usually roll my dough out to about ¼" thick, maybe a little less. I like to keep them thick so the center stays softer after baking. Having them on the thick side also makes the cookies a little more sturdy for decorating.
Cut your shapes out of the dough before baking.
The edges should feel a little stiff when you gently touch them. You don't want to wait until the tops are golden unless you like your cookies crunchy/crispy.
If you love cookies, check out these great recipes!
Easy Gluten Free Sugar Cookies
Gluten Free Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies
Gluten Free Black and White Cookies
Gluten Free Limoncello Italian Lemon Meltaway Cookies
If you try this recipe, please make sure to leave a rating and comment below. Happy baking!
Gluten Free Cut Out Sugar Cookies
For the cookies
- 3 ½ Cup Gluten Free 1-to-1 Flour Blend (518g) sifted (I use Bob's Red Mill)
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- ½ Cup Vegan Butter I use Miyoko's or Country Crock Plant Butter
- ½ Cup Shortening
- 2 Cup Sugar
- 2 Eggs
- 2 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1 Tablespoon Water
For the Royal Icing
- 4 Cup Powdered Sugar sifted
- 2 Egg Whites or 5 tablespoon Meringue Powder
- ½ Cup Water may need more depending on how thick you want your icing
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
For the cookies
- Combine sifted flour, salt and baking powder in a medium size bowl. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter, shortening, and sugar. Beat on medium speed about 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy. Scrape down bowl.
- Add in the eggs one at a time, beating about 60 seconds between each addition. Scrape down bowl. Add in vanilla.
- Turn mixer to lowest speed. Slowly add the flour mixture. Stir until just combined. If the mixture seems too stiff, add the 1 tablespoon of water.
- Divide dough in half. Cover each half with plastic wrap and flatten to 1 inch thick. Place wrapped dough in refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight.
- Remove chilled dough from refrigerator and roll out to ¼” thickness. Place on cookie sheet and return to the freezer for 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Remove chilled dough from freezer and cut into shapes. Place cut shapes on cookie sheet and return to freezer for 15 minutes. The extra chilling helps the shapes stay crisp/defined when baking.
- Bake in preheated oven for 11-13 minutes. Ideally the cookies should be very light in color on the top and sides and the bottoms should be lightly browned. If you notice browning around the edges it usually means the dough wasn't rolled to an even thickness.
- Continue the process until all the dough has been used.
- Makes about 36 cut out cookies 2-3” in size.
For the Royal Icing
- Combine all of the ingredients in a stand mixer with paddle attachment. Start out on slow speed until the ingredients are incorporated. Then turn mixer to high setting and beat for 6-8 minutes until very fluffy. If the icing is too thick, stir in a little more water 1 tablespoon at a time.
Tiffany is the recipe developer, stylist and food photographer behind Well Fed Baker. As a lifelong baker who had to go gluten free and dairy free in 2016, Tiffany strives to share allergen friendly recipes that never feel like they are free from anything.
These are really good ! I doubled the recipe, being VERY careful to measure properly. As I went along though, I baked them longer than recommended. Approximately 13 minutes. Don't skip the freezer part, it's very very important !
I'm so glad you liked them! 🙂