Butter Cookies

11.23.2018

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.

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Butter Cookies

4.61 from 23 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 tsp vanilla extract*
  • 2 cups (283g) all-purpose flour (scoop and level to measure)
  • 2 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 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

  • *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 does not include chocolate coating.
Nutrition Facts
Butter Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 138 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 12%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 36mg 12%
Sodium 26mg 1%
Potassium 16mg 0%
Total Carbohydrates 14g 5%
Sugars 5g
Protein 1g 2%
Vitamin A 5.1%
Calcium 0.6%
Iron 3.3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Danish
Keyword: Butter Cookies
Calories: 138 kcal
Author: Jaclyn

106 comments

  • Kathy MacPherson: Hi Jaclyn, Made these cookies and used strong coffee to moisten along with 1/2 the milk. Dipped in Chocolate for a nice flavour. They piped nicely but a little sticky to the parchment. A friend said to use my silpat which I will the next time. They were a big hit. April 15, 2019 at 1:15pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Your addition sounds delicious! Thanks for your review Kathy! April 15, 2019 at 2:12pm Reply

  • sherry susan: Really good butter cookie, but my hands are getting so arthritic, I couldn’t push the dough thru the bag, so ended up doing the log roll, chilling, slicing, baking … not as pretty, but they taste very good. Also for the chocolate dip, it sure doesn’t melt good in microwave (good brands too), just scorched … so put a little cake frosting on em … will def make again! February 28, 2019 at 3:39pm Reply

  • Kelly: It sounds like the issue with cookies spreading is in the creaming method. The butter and sugar need to be beaten, using a heavy duty, stand mixer, for at least 5 minutes, and 10-15 minutes or more for a hand mixer. If the butter and sugar don’t chemically change, they won’t be able to create the air needed to lift the cookie, thus spreading occurs. Without the proper creaming of those ingredients, any amount of chilling, freezing and finger crossing won’t work. February 26, 2019 at 9:25am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’ve heard the opposite on this, that creaming too long whips in air bubbles and in turn cause cookies to spread out? Who knows :). February 26, 2019 at 3:09pm Reply

  • Kelly: It’s a good recipe, but it definitely needs more salt and vanilla. I used 6tsp of milk because the dough was too stiff to pipe. They didn’t spread too much either, with no chilling needed. The texture of the cookie improves the following day. February 26, 2019 at 9:13am Reply

  • New Girl in the Kitchen: Thanks for sharing the recipe for such a tempting-looking cookie! I would love to try making it. I have had issues with spreading in the past and I wanted to chill it before baking this time. Just want to ask you if I can pipe it BEFORE chilling the dough. It would be easier to pipe it immediately and then straight away bake them straight from the fridge. Everywhere that I checked on the internet, the instructions are to roll out/ shape the dough AFTER chilling, so I was wondering if tgere is a reason behind it. Please help me with this. I am so excited to try out this recipe that I weighed out everything last night itself! Hoping to hear from you about it very soon! February 3, 2019 at 9:53pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Yes you’ll definitely want to pipe first then chill otherwise the dough will be too stiff to pipe. OR you can roll into two logs and chill first for a few hours then cut into slices and bake. The point is just to begin baking with cold dough so it spreads less. February 3, 2019 at 10:12pm Reply

      • New Girl in the Kitchen: Made them today and the cookies were gone even before they had cooled completely!! Thanks so much for such an amazing recipe. The cookies were just perfect – crispy and yet amazingly soft and buttery! My only disappointment is that I couldn’t pipe it out in the beautiful shapes that you did. I really, really wanted them to look pretty like yours do! In fact, my piping bag split at the seam while trying to pipe the dough! So, I rolled it into a log instead and chilled it before slicing and baking. Turned out delicious anyway! February 5, 2019 at 12:07am Reply

  • Pam: Made these cookies and they were awesome. Can’t understand why anyone would have trouble piping these, usually it’s because they try to squeeze too much dough at a time. Been a baker/cake decorator by profession for 40 years. Hubs loved these, his new favorite January 21, 2019 at 7:57pm Reply

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