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Soft Vanilla Sugar Cookies

5 from 4 votes

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A classic soft and chewy vanilla sugar cookie, with creme fraiche and a creamy vanilla bean glaze.

White vanilla sugar cookies photo on a white surface, topped with colored candy sprinkles.

You know when you want a plain old-fashioned cookie to dunk in your tea or just to enjoy as a sweet little treat?

These soft vanilla sugar cookies cookies are here for you.

They’re similar in texture to other classic chewy sugar cookies with icing.

The best soft sugar cookie recipe

Think of those iconic Black and White cookies and old fashioned sour cream cookies.

In other words, they’re lightly sweet, buttery and vanilla-scented, with a soft, cake-like crumb.

And — bonus point:

The dough is super easy to make; no rolling, cutting or otherwise fussing needed.

Making these cookies is a matter of scoop, drop and bake.

An image of plain sugar cookies with vanilla glaze and colored sprinkles on top, placed on a metal cooling rack.

Baking with creme fraiche

It may sound like a fancy-pants ingredient (and possibly French-tailored, at that), but crème fraiche is a really pure and simple thing involving just heavy cream and lactic culture.

Using it in a sugar cookie recipe guarantees a nice tender dough, similar to sour cream cookies.

Crème fraiche has more butterfat than regular sour cream and doesn’t contain added stabilizers (which sour cream often does).

In comparison to sour cream, crème fraiche tastes richer and sweeter.

I keep crème fraiche in my fridge pretty much always, for baking and as a dessert topping.

A tablespoon or two of crème fraiche stirred into a pan sauce adds body and flavor, and it doesn’t curdle like sour cream does when heated.  

Crème fraiche keeps for weeks kept in the coldest part of the refrigerator.

An image of plain sugar cookies with vanilla glaze and colored sprinkles on top, placed on a metal cooling rack.

Sugar Cookie Icing

The tangy glaze on top of these cookies has more crème fraiche, along with vanilla bean seeds to double-up on the vanilla flavor.

After glazing, you can leave them plain or decorate with confetti sprinkles (I used pretty pastel star sprinkles) or pastel colored sanding sugar.

The cookies are easy to eat on repeat (not that I encourage that – wink).

They tend to stale quicker if left uncovered, so keep them soft and fresh for a few days in a ziptop plastic bag or glass storage container.

More of my simple, sweet cookie recipes

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Soft Sugar Cookies with Vanilla Bean Glaze

Soft Crème Fraiche Vanilla Sugar Cookies

Karen Tedesco
Classic cookie recipe makes soft and tender vanilla sugar cookies. Everyone will love these!
Print Pin
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Desserts
Cuisine Baking
Servings 18 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (240 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 stick (120 g) (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (240 g) sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 ounces (125 g) creme fraiche or sour cream
  • Colorful sprinkles, optional
Glaze:
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (45 g) creme fraiche or sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) whole milk or buttermilk
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 (175C) degrees with the rack in the center of the oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Whisk the flour, salt and baking powder together in a medium bowl.
  • In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute at low speed. Raise the speed to medium-high and add the sugar. Beat until light, fluffy and lighter in color, 3-4 minutes.
  • Beat in the eggs one at a time, then add the vanilla. Add half the creme fraiche and half the flour mixture. Stir on low speed until just mixed before adding the remaining creme fraiche and flour.
  • Scoop 2 tablespoon-sized portions of dough onto the baking sheets, spaced 2 inches apart (8 or 9 per sheet).
  • Bake one sheet at a time for 18 minutes, or until the edges begin to turn golden. Cool on a rack 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a rack to cool completely.
Glaze
  • Mix the sugar, creme fraiche, milk and sea salt in a bowl until smooth. If the mixture is too thick, dribble in a tiny bit more milk. Scrape the vanilla bean with the back of a small knife, add to the bowl and mix it in.
  • Spread the glaze over the tops of the cooked cookies. Top with sprinkles, if you like.

Notes

  • The dough can mixed right before baking, or make one day ahead and refrigerate.
  • My favorite cookie scoop makes perfect 2-tablespoon portions of dough.
Based on this recipe from Molly Yeh.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 108kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 179mg | Potassium: 24mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 39IU | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe? Mention @Familystylefood or tag #familystylefood on Instagram!!

Hey, I’m Karen

Creator of Familystyle Food

I’m a food obsessed super-taster and professionally trained cook ALL about making cooking fun and doable, with easy to follow tested recipes and incredibly tasty food! Read more about me here.

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2 Comments

  1. These cookies look so soft and tender! I love the creme fraiche frosting – so beautiful!