Butter Cookies

November 23, 2018

Butter Cookies are one of those classic Christmas cookies that everyone loves. This homemade version is far better than what you’ll find in the tins at the store during the holidays and this addition of decadent chocolate takes them to a whole new level of delicious! 

Butter Cookies dipped in chocolate and covered in sprinkles. Shown in rows on a white serving plate.

Butter Cookies

I love these cookies because they keep well longer than most cookies, they’re perfect for gifting and they’re such a pretty cookie.

They have a rich buttery flavor and a satisfying crisp tender texture, and anytime a chocolate dip is involved no one can turn them away.

I made these two ways, the traditional flavor with vanilla extract then for a funfetti flavor (the white chocolate version with rainbow sprinkles) I added almond extract.

You can’t go wrong which ever route you go, even if you decide to skip the chocolate you’ll still have a perfectly delicious homemade cookie!

Butter Cookies dipped in white chocolate and covered with rainbow sprinkles. Set in three rows on a turquoise plate.

Ingredients You’ll Need for This Recipe

  • Unsalted butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Salt
  • Egg yolks
  • All-purpose flour
  • Milk
  • Vanilla extract (and almond extract for funfetti flavor)

Showing how to make butter cookies in a stand mixer. Starting by mixing butter and sugar.

How to Make Butter Cookies

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream together butter, sugar and salt until combined.

Butter Cookies

  • Mix in egg yolks and vanilla.

Adding flour to butter cookie mixture in stand mixer.

  • Add flour and mix until crumbly then add in milk and continue to mix while adding in a little more milk if needed for a pipe-able consistency.

Butter cookies finished cookie dough mixture in mixing bowl.

  • Transfer to a 16-inch piping bag fitted with a large open star tip (I like the Ateco 826 or 827 here).

Butter cookies cookie dough in piping bag.

  • Pipe dough into rounds onto two ungreased baking sheets.
  • Bake one sheet at a time in preheated oven until golden brown on bottom, about 12 – 15 minutes.

Butter cookies before baking on a baking sheet.

  • Let cool on baking sheet 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Butter cookies on a baking sheet after baking.

  • If you’d like to dip in chocolate or white chocolate, melt 10 oz chopped chocolate, chocolate melts (I like Ghirardelli), or white chocolate melts in a microwave safe bowl on 50% power in 20 second intervals until melted and smooth.

Butter cookies on a cooling rack.

  • Dip half of cookies into chocolate let excess run off (while also brushing some off bottom across bowl) then transfer to a sheet of parchment paper. Immediately add sprinkles then let set.

Dipping butter cookie in white chocolate melts in a small bowl.

Do I Have to Pipe them Out Into Rounds?

You could also use this same recipe and make slice and bake cookies. If doing so shape dough into two logs (wrap in wax paper) and chill until fairly firm, then slice into fairly thin disks and bake.

Butter cookies on parchment paper.

Can I Freeze These Cookies?

These cookies should freeze well for a month (or even more). If kept at room temperature they should keep for about 1 week.

Butter cookies dipped in chocolate and covered with Christmas sprinkles.

More Christmas Cookie Recipes You’ll Love!

Butter Cookies

4.68 from 34 votes

A classic Christmas cookies that everyone loves! This homemade version is far better than what you'll find in the tins at the store during the holidays and this addition of decadent chocolate takes them to a whole new level of delicious! It's a crisp and tender, rich and buttery cookie and they're perfect for gifting. 

Servings: 24 cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup (140g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 large egg yolks*
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract**
  • 2 cups (283g) all-purpose flour (scoop and level to measure)
  • 2 - 4 tsp milk
  • Chocolate or candy melts, optional (see notes)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream together butter, sugar and salt until combined.

  3. Mix in egg yolks and vanilla.

  4. Add flour and mix until crumbly then add in 2 tsp milk, if needed add in another 1 - 2 tsp milk for a more pipe-able consistency - add as little as possible for less spreading though.

  5. Transfer to a 16-inch piping bag fitted with a large open star tip (I like the Ateco 826 or 827 here, smaller tips won't work as well for piping this thick batter).

  6. Pipe dough into rounds onto two ungreased baking sheets (if you normally have issues with cookies spreading chill them for 30 minutes on baking sheet before baking).

  7. Bake one sheet at a time in preheated oven until golden brown on bottom, about 12 - 16 minutes.

  8. Let cool on baking sheet 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container. 

Recipe Notes

  • *Some have mentioned using room temperature egg yolks makes dough easier to pipe.
  • **For a funfetti flavor (which is dipped in white chocolate and covered with sprinkles) add 1/2 tsp almond extract in addition to the vanilla extract.
  • If you'd like to dip in chocolate or white chocolate, melt 10 oz chopped chocolate, chocolate melts (I like Ghirardelli), or white chocolate melts in a microwave safe bowl on 50% power in 20 second intervals until melted and smooth. 
  • Dip half of cookies into chocolate let excess run off (while also brushing some off bottom across bowl) then transfer to a sheet of parchment paper. Immediately add sprinkles if using then let set.
  • Nutrition estimate does not include chocolate coating.
Nutrition Facts
Butter Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 138 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Fat 8g12%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 36mg12%
Sodium 26mg1%
Potassium 16mg0%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 255IU5%
Calcium 6mg1%
Iron 0.6mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Danish
Keyword: Butter Cookies
Author: Jaclyn

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194 Comments

    • Nana

      Did you use salted butter? 1/4 tsp for a cookie recipe isn’t too much unless you did something wrong.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      2 cups of flour using the scoop and level method to measure comes out at 286 grams so yes this is correct (and 1 cup of butter is 226 grams because it is denser).

  • Amy

    Like the orange ricotta cookies, this year was my first time adding these to our Christmas cookie assortment and they were a hit, especially with the little kids! And thank you for the suggestion of the Ghirardelli! I didn’t even know they made the melting wafers and they are a thousand percent better than those awful Wilton ones! Such a great discovery for me, I stocked up on both milk chocolate and while chocolate for other baking projects I have coming up. I have to say, your recipes always come out perfectly and I can always count on them! Thanks for sharing!

  • Amanda

    Ok ya you never tell how much of the ingredients are needed u just say “sugar” well how much sugar and how much butter and how much everything else!! Lol wow

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Sorry for the confusion, if you keep scrolling down the page you’ll see the recipe there with ingredient amounts and directions.

    • Nana

      You can scroll to find comments to post but can’t find the actual recipe? Is this the first time you’ve used the internet unsupervised?

  • Ann

    Great recipe!

    No issues at all with spreading – made two batches and with both I only used 3 tbsp of milk. With the second batch, I played a little with the recipe (because of the holidays) by warming the milk a little and then infusing it with saffron. They came out really rich and yum – but the first batch were also really popular at home. I highly recommend this recipe!

  • Sandra Schug

    BTW the nutrition estimate doesnt say how much dough was used in a single cookie to equal those 138 calories. Could this be updated to better reflect the size of the cookie it is estimated for?
    Thanks

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Sorry I didn’t weigh after baking but it should be 1 of 24 cookies. If you have more than that you can just divide the total sum (3,312 cals) by the number you got as long as they are mostly even in size.

  • Sandra Schug

    Deliscious cookies which are even better with the contrasted chocolate on them. Gave in my cookie exchange with neighbors and family which everyone was surprised they were home made! I looked for a butter cookie recipe because its my husbands fave cookie. The tin cans of cookies at the stores just arent as good anymore lol.

    I did have to soften the dough in the microwave after making it as it was too hard to push through my Wilton Dessert Decorator Plus pipe. I put half the dough in a microwave save bowl for 5 seconds at a time stirring every other one until soft enough. The second time I did it I used 10 seconds at a time (twice) and it was perfect. After piping it onto the parchment paper I placed the cookie sheets in the refridgerator for 30 mins to be sure the butter hardened up again. Then I baked them.

    This is not a recipe I would make with little kids as getting distracted would mean I would forget something, cook something too long or just burn the crap out of it. But hey thats just me! haha. Heck the dogs almost make me forget the eggs in one batch!

    I hope all your cookies are tasty!
    Merry Christmas