You know you love them. Even if you don’t want to admit it. I know that you love them. I know that I love them, especially when they are Holiday themed =). For some reason, the holidays bring out the sugar cookie side of me. Lofthouse Sugar Cookies are what I’m talking about, and even if you don’t know the name, I’m 100% certain you’ve seen them before. You usually find them in the bakery of your grocery store, and they are usually incredibly difficult to resist. Well maybe not usually. More like ALWAYS incredibly difficult to resist. There are some copycat recipes floating around out there, but today I wanted to put my own spin on them. Surprisingly, these sugar cookies are quite simple to make, even though they take some patience. Just like all other sugar cookies, they need their “chilling” time. The buttercream is equally as simple and can be made ahead of time. You will totally be addicted to these sugar cookies once you’ve made them for the first time. I had to keep myself from eating the whole batch before I took photos! I know I know, life is so rough.
I’ll have you know that I struggled with the decision of using either cream cheese or sour cream for this recipe. I’ve baked with sour cream many, many times. It helps in making cookies super soft and fluffy. I didn’t want to go overboard with sour cream though. Sour cream has a tang that can knock you off your feet. For these sugar cookies, I decided to mix the two. It worked just fine for me, and the flavor was perfect…for me. This doesn’t mean you have to do the same. You can certainly just use sour cream and substitute the 1/4 cup of cream cheese for just more sour cream. You could also use softened mascarpone which I LOVE, but don’t LOVE to pay for all of the time. The choice is yours, just make sure you stick with the exact measurements.
The same goes for the vanilla bean. I go crazy over vanilla bean and use it any chance I get. Traditionally, you would not put the seeds from a vanilla bean into the dough. This ingredient can be skipped, especially since purchasing vanilla bean can get pricey. It’s up to you!
Just like anything else, baking requires you to be specific, and these sugar cookies can change depending on your conditions. I obviously live a mile above sea level. Sometimes “drastic” measures have to be taken. It always takes my cookies longer to bake and sometimes I have to adjust the leavening agents (baking soda, baking powder, yeast…even flour). The key is to pay close attention to the dough. You want a cookie dough. You want it to be sticky, but not runny. Adjust the flour amount as you need. I find that it is best to start with a little bit less and work your way up. You can always add more, but you can’t always take away. On the other hand, if you find your cookie dough to be TOO stiff, it’s ok to add a tablespoon or two of milk. I do this often and it always seems to work out in the end.
Have I confused the heck out of you yet??
I’m sorry =(. If you have questions, I’m just a message away =).
Also, sprinkles are not optional.
We haven’t had Santa Fe Brewing’s Imperial Java Stout in quite a while, but I couldn’t resist. I knew that it would be just perfect for this pairing. I know, you’re thinking I should have used a pumpkin beer of some kind because of the whole “Halloween-Fallish” theme, but the flavors just didn’t pair up. If I were sticking pumpkin in the cookie (well, heyyyy there’s an idea!), it would be a whole different situation. So Santa Fe is awesome (both the city and the brewery (=), and their Imperial Java Stout is just delicious. It’s the perfect pairing with sweets. It’s chocolatey and coffee(y) and perfect. It comes in a super cute can, so that should be more than enough reason to give it a shot.
I hope everyone had a great weekend!
Copycat Lofthouse Soft Sugar CookiesPrint Pin Rate
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra for dusting
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- seeds from 1/2 of a vanilla bean (optional)
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup softened cream cheese
- seasonal sprinkles (optional)
- 1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
- 4 tbsp half and half
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, with paddle attachment fixed, cream together the sugar and butter. One at a time, crack each egg separately into the bowl. Mix to combine. Once incorporated, add the vanilla extract, seeds from vanilla bean, sour cream and cream cheese. Beat again to combine until all of the ingredients come together. In 1/2 cup increments add the dry ingredients into the wet until you have added it all. Mix until everything comes together and a soft dough forms. It should be sticky, but slightly firm. If it''s too "runny" add a tablespoon more of flour at a time until you get this consistency. Dump the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and cover. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Once your dough has chilled, preheat your oven to 425 degrees F and line 2 large baking sheets with parchment. Set aside.
- Generously flour a work surface, unwrap your dough and place onto the floured surface. Dust the top of the dough with more flour. Taking a rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4 of an inch thick. Cut shapes out of your dough with a cookie cutter (I used a circular cookie and Halloween shaped cookie cutters). Once you have cut as many shapes as possible, place the shapes onto your prepared baking sheets (I had a dozen and a half total, but this will vary depending on the cookie cutter you decide to use). Bake at 425 degrees F for 6-7 minutes until they begin to brown slightly around the edges and feel slightly firm to the touch. Remove from oven and immediately transfer to a wire rack to cool COMPLETELY.
- While your cookies are cooling, prepare you buttercream frosting. In the bowl of your stand mixer, with paddle attachment fixed, cream the butter until soft and fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the vanilla extract and mix again to combine. In 1/2 cup increments, while the mixer is on it''s lowest speed, add the confectioner''s sugar until it is all incorporated. Increase the speed to medium and beat for about 30 seconds until fluffy. Add in the half and half (or whatever you decided to use) and beat again for about 2 minute until light and fluffy once again.
- Once cool, frost the cookies with the buttercream frosting. Sprinkle with sprinkles (if desired). Once the buttercream has set, transfer to an airtight container where the cookies will keep for about a week. Enjoy!