These Halloween sugar cookies are so delicious, super quick and simple to make. You’ll definitely be carrying this recipe over into your Christmas cookie baking! There are tons of sugar cookie recipes out there and I’m sure that they are all equally fantastic. This recipe is one I personally prefer and find that it works really well for me. Plus, they are super quick to bake and I’m a huge fan of simplicity!
Remember to grab your freebies at the end of this post 😉
Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 Sticks of unsalted butter (softened)
- 1 ½ cups Confectioner’s sugar
- 1 Egg
- 2-3 tsp flavouring (I like vanilla but whatever you prefer)
- 2 ¾ cups Flour
- 2 tsp Baking powder
- 1 tsp Salt
Start by creaming your butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then add your egg and your preferred flavouring into the creamed butter and sugar mixture. Ensure that the egg is mixed in very well. Then in a separate bowl, sift your dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder and salt). Then add the dry ingredients to the mixture in batches, continue to mix until the dough sticks together.
Roll your dough onto some parchment paper to about 1-2 cm thick. Now typically you would use cookie cutters like a normal person. I’m sorry if I gave you the impression that I am normal. Unfortunately, I had none at my disposal, so I did the next best thing and printed out some Halloween templates for my cookies (basically, I was cut for time and had no time to run to the store for Halloween themed cookie cutters).
Do be sure to let your dough rest for a few minutes after you mix it, allowing it to firm up slightly. Bake these babies at 180˚C for 7-8 minutes. You can easily make 2 ½ dozen with this batch. Tip: Depending on your oven, baking times could differ, if the cookies start browning, you’re baking them too long. Also give your cookies 24 hours before decorating them, this will ensure that no oil transfers into your icing.
- Royal Icing:
I can’t share a sugar cookie post without including this super quick and easy Royal Icing recipe. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 Egg Whites
- 2 tsp Lemon juice
- 3 cups if Icing sugar, sifted.
Use your electric mixer to whisk your egg whites and lemon juice together. Add sifted icing sugar 1 cup at a time.
This is where you may also add any food colouring of your choice. I started off with white for my ghost sugar cookies. You want two consistencies for your royal icing, start off with your piping icing (this has a toothpaste like consistency). This can be used for outlining, details and writing.
Flood icing is when you thin out your icing to a shampoo like consistency. (I use very small amounts of water at a time until I’ve reached my desired consistency). Be careful not to make it too runny so that it does not flow over your outlining lines.
Use a toothpick to guide your flooding icing as you’re filling each cookie out. Then colour your icing and move onto the next element.
Mistakes to Avoid when making Sugar Cookies:
Common Mistake no 1: Using butter that’s too soft.
Forgetting to take the butter out of the fridge to soften is something I’m super guilty of. Whatever you do, fight the urge to heat it in the microwave for a few seconds (which I’m also guilty of). If you end up using butter that’s too soft your cookies won’t hold their shape as well and will probably become greasy.
Pro tip: Let the butter stand at room temperature for about an hour, until it’s soft enough to leave a finger impression on it. A nifty way to speed up the process is by cutting the butter into small cubes, you could also grate your butter.
Common Mistake no 2: Working your dough too much.
When it comes to baking in general, I have this really bad and annoying habit of over beating my batter. Its like something inside my brain says, ‘nope, you haven’t incorporated that ingredient well enough’ and I just mix and mix. You do not need to do this, and I’m teaching myself to relax. If you end up over working your batter or dough you will end up with a tough cookie. Although I’m all for tough cookies, this ain’t the kinda tough cookie I want in my house! Sugar cookies simply must be soft and flaky.
Pro tip: Always, but always aim to mix the dry ingredients only until they’re just incorporated, and not a second longer. Remember: less mixing equals more tender cookies.
Common Mistake no 3: Not chilling your dough.
I didn’t really take this step seriously enough because I’m not hardwired with any patient components, but chilling your dough is super important especially if you’re going to be using a cookie cutter! Not chilling your dough also makes it sticky and thus hard to work with.
Pro tip: Chill your cookie dough for at least 30-40 minutes, or pop those suckers in the freezer for 15 minutes. One thing I really love about this tip is if you’re making cut-outs, your chilled dough will help you get clean, sharp edges and will kep its shape better while baking. Can I get a whoop whoop?!
Common Mistake no 4: Rolling out your dough too thick or too thin.
Listen, for me when it comes to the kitchen (cooking or baking) its not an exact science. I always do what feels right (ha! This is probably why I’d never be a chef) however, this is important because if you end up rolling your dough too thing, you have a fragile puppy of a cookie on your hands, and if you roll your dough too thick your sugar cookies just might end up betraying you by not cooking through evenly.
Pro tip: For super soft, flaky, succulent, supercalafragilisticexpialadocious sugar cookies, roll the dough to just more than 1/2 a centimeter so a 1/4-inch thick. The dough will be easy to work with, without breaking or tearing, and it will bake up nicely.
Common Mistake no 5: Over-baking your cookies.
When it comes to baking, leaving something in the oven until they’re golden brown is the knee jerk reaction, but this isn’t the case with sugar cookies, though. Once you start seeing slight colour popping out, you’ve baked your cookies for far too long. Look overcooked sugar cookies are not the end of the world, they just hard and crunchy, as opposed to soft and chewy.
Pro tip: You want to remove your cookies after 7-8 min, once they have set in nicely, also look for slight crackles along the center, and very little to no colour change.
Boom! Halloween sugar cookies done and dusted! Be sure to post your pictures on Twitter and Facebook with the #HouseAdon hashtag and I’ll share/ retweet some of your awesome posts. Please also be sure to post your absolute favourite selfie on Instagram with the #HouseAdonFlamingo hashtag (because all my readers are exotic, flamboyant birds) and I’ll post your awesome selfies on the House Adon website Gallery for the world to enjoy, because you should never keep your awesomeness to yourself. I’m also dying to know if you found this recipe easy? What interesting changes did you make to the recipe to make it even more awesome? Drop a comment and let me know.
Enjoy these nifty freebies to give you an extra boost this week 😉