Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies


Let the holiday baking begin! Yes that statement will always put a smile on my face. Even though I bake all year long, nearly every day there’s something so exciting about holiday baking. Hence the addition of glittery sprinkles I couldn’t resist adding to these chewy lemon sugar cookies.

Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies | Cooking Classy

I’ve posted nearly ever kind of sugar cookie. Most of which are those soft and fluffy lofthouse style (since they are one of my favorite kinds of cookies – and no, no, don’t confuse thoseĀ lofthouse brand cookies, hate those but love that style of cookie). Even though I’ve posted countless variations of sugar cookies I’ve never posted a chewy sugar cookie. The lemon were one of my favorite of the soft version so I decided to make this chewy version lemon as well.

These would make an exciting addition to the cookie exchanges going on this year. It’s nice to see the classics but it’s even more exciting to see something new. These cookies are deliciously chewy and they’re loaded with lemon flavor (I often like to use the three sources of lemon – extract, juice and zest to get more lemon flavor). The coarse sanding sugar also adds a nice crunch you get to bite through to get to that soft center. If you like lemon, these are a cookie you must try. Enjoy!

Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies | Cooking Classy


Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies

Yield: Nearly 2 dozen

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 + 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter , at room temperature
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable shortening , at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon zest
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp lemon extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Yellow food coloring , optional
  • 3 oz . coarse sanding sugar , for rolling (granulated sugar would work fine too)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt for 30 seconds, set aside. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together butter, shortening, granulated sugar and lemon zest until pale and fluffy. Mix in egg. Add honey, lemon extract, vanilla, fresh lemon juice and yellow food coloring to reach desired intensity of color (if using) and mix until combined. With mixer set on low speed, slowly add in dry ingredients and mix until well blended.
  2. Place coarse sanding sugar in a bowl then scoop dough out about 2 Tbsp at a time (33g each) and roll each one in the coarse sugar to evenly coat. Transfer to Silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheets, flatten slightly (to about 2/3-inch) and bake in preheated oven 10 - 12 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool on baking sheet 1 minute then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. Recipe Source: loosely adapted from this recipe from Fine Cooking


  • Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent: These look great! I bet a good lemony taste would be a good on a cookie exchange tray… something different from the normal chocolate, mint, etc. November 25, 2013 at 7:41pm Reply

  • sara: These look AMAZING – love that yellow color! November 25, 2013 at 7:45pm Reply

  • Jessica @ Portuguese Girl Cooks: it just snowed here this weekend, so all of a sudden i’m ready to bring on the holiday baking too!I love the colour of these cookies! November 25, 2013 at 8:16pm Reply

  • Averie @ Averie Cooks: These are so you! Just the lemon, the texture, the color, how beautiful and PERFECT they are…they’re just beautiful! Between these and the red velvet cookies, you’ve got some colorful beauties! pinned November 25, 2013 at 8:24pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Averie :)! November 25, 2013 at 9:01pm Reply

  • Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.: I love lofthouse-style cookies too. These look fabulous! November 25, 2013 at 8:47pm Reply

  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious: As Averie said, these cookies look PERFECT! Mine always look so disheveled but yours is so amazing! November 26, 2013 at 12:39am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much Chung-Ah! November 28, 2013 at 8:08pm Reply

  • Elisa @ Insalata di Sillabe: These cookie looks so bright, tangy and festive! Plus, I’m a huge lemon lover so you can be sure these won’t miss on my table!

    xo, Elisa November 26, 2013 at 1:38am Reply

  • Jen @ Savory Simple: These look amazing, I feel like I can taste them from here <3 November 26, 2013 at 7:31am Reply

  • Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction: Oh, I love lemon cookies! Love the glittery sprinkles! November 26, 2013 at 9:10am Reply

  • kelley {mountain mama cooks}: Love these! Lemon is my favorite dessert flavor and the texture looks wonderful! November 26, 2013 at 11:37am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Kelley! I love your blog! November 26, 2013 at 12:34pm Reply

  • Sandy Headtke: The lemons on my Meyer lemon tree are just starting to turn ripe. This is going to be the first thing I make with my lemons. Only problem is I have to wait until tomorrow to go out back and pick a lemon off the tree. November 26, 2013 at 8:03pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I hope you love the Sandy! November 28, 2013 at 8:01pm Reply

  • Tamara: I have also started holiday baking and I love it soo much. These cookies look soo yummy and i will save the recipe and try them out for Christmas. :) November 27, 2013 at 2:58pm Reply

  • Linda: Saw these the other day, lost them and couldn’t remember which baking blog site had them. Took me a bit but I found them again! Can’t wait to make these. Thanks!! December 1, 2013 at 5:48pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I hope you love them Linda, glad you were able to find them again :)! December 1, 2013 at 7:19pm Reply

  • J: Not sure about the consistency, could these be cut with a cookie cutter and still maintain their shape? February 18, 2014 at 7:50am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Slightly I’d think, like if you were using a basic shape like a heart or something it might work. They do puff a bit. February 25, 2014 at 11:06pm Reply

  • Emily: Just made this, they tasted delicious! I did replace the lemon extract with three tbsp of lemon juice as an alternative, along with the normal amount of lemon zest and original lemon juice. Great recipe and the color was definitely the best part! September 7, 2014 at 8:27pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for your feedback Emily! I’m glad you liked them! September 7, 2014 at 10:05pm Reply

    • Noreen: Was wondering about using juice instead of extract. I used lemon extract once and it had a funny aftertaste. Thank you! January 8, 2015 at 7:30pm Reply

      • Jaclyn: You could but it not nearly as potent so it won’t have quite as strong of a lemon flavor. January 15, 2015 at 9:10pm Reply

  • Dawn: What can I use instead of vegetable shortening? September 14, 2014 at 6:14pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: You could probably sub butter but will have a slightly different end result. October 15, 2014 at 10:30pm Reply

  • Anu: I see your cookie photo has been copied into another website.


    I am not sure if the blog owner has taken your permission. I just thought I would inform you.

    Thanks, July 9, 2015 at 4:32pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for letting me know Anu! July 14, 2015 at 5:39pm Reply

  • Beth: The texture of these cookies was great. However the lemon extract added a harsh slightly boozy flavor. I would switch to all lemon juice and zest for flavor in the future. December 20, 2015 at 1:40pm Reply

  • Macy: Can you replace the vegetable shortening with regular butter? January 8, 2017 at 10:49am Reply

  • Ashley C: I made these and they were delicious! Texture of these are exactly how I like my cookies ! Thank you for recipe! April 7, 2017 at 9:47am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you love them Ashley! April 18, 2017 at 1:08pm Reply

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