Sugar Cookie Recipe That Won't Spread

Baking By sweetjustice Updated 6 Apr 2014 , 4:10pm by craftybanana

sweetjustice Posted 27 May 2012 , 2:05am
post #1 of 18

Anyone know of a tried and true sugar cookie recipe that tastes great as well as doesn't spread and keeps its shape?

I've tried two recipes this weekend and have been disappointed. icon_cry.gif

Thank you in advance for any help.

17 replies
Norasmom Posted 27 May 2012 , 2:35am
post #2 of 18

It's funny, the NFSC recipe on this forum always made cookies that would spread for me. I like the Karen's cookies recipe!

Give it a try!

JRAE33 Posted 27 May 2012 , 2:15pm
post #3 of 18

I always use the NFSC recipe and if you cut back on the baking powder (i use 1 tsp) you should be fine. And this cookie is so versatile in that you can add any number of extracts/flavors and have the cookies as you like.

icer101 Posted 1 Jun 2012 , 3:47am
post #4 of 18

I also love the karens cookie site. love the icing , etc.

mcaulir Posted 1 Jun 2012 , 9:48am
post #5 of 18

I use this one:

But I up the flour to just over 5 1/2 cups, and halve the baking powder. Delicious!

MimiFix Posted 1 Jun 2012 , 5:35pm
post #6 of 18

I agree with mcaulir and JRAE33, cut down on the leavener in any favorite sugar cookie recipe.Or use a shortbread recipe, since these typically have no leavener.

bobwonderbuns Posted 1 Jun 2012 , 5:55pm
post #7 of 18

You can really use any cookie with the word "rolled" in front of it (and cut out the leavening if you wish). Those kinds of cookies are designed to be rolled out and used with cutters so they don't spread. Hope that helps! icon_biggrin.gif

MariaK38 Posted 4 Jun 2012 , 5:27pm
post #8 of 18

I use lilaloa's recipes for vanilla and chocolate sugar cookies. They're on her blog, just google lilaloa. The chocolate ones taste like brownies! They don't spread at all... I cut them pretty close together and slid the parchment I rolled them on right on to the cookie sheet and baked. I was so surprised that they looked the same as they did when I put them in, except baked!

Sweetriley Posted 3 Jul 2012 , 6:46pm
post #9 of 18

I cut the baking powder in half and freeze the cookies, then bake them frozen. It's still hit or miss though. Hope this helps! - Helen

kattasaurus Posted 12 Jul 2012 , 7:29am
post #10 of 18

I use Sweetopia's sugar cookie recipe found here:
But I cut out the baking powder entirely. She also has great tips on how to handle the dough to minimize spreading.

My general rules are:
- Make as few scraps as possible. The more you re-roll and handle the dough, the worse it will spread
- Bake dough that has been chilled for as long as possible (she recommends over an hour to overnight if I remember correctly.. I am usually in too much of a hurry for that, but I find the longer, the better)
- Make thinner cookies. I have noticed that when I bake thicker cookies, the bottoms spread out from under the cookie. Not pleasant.

And in a pinch, when a cookie has spread too much, I just re-cut it with the cutter when it first comes out of the oven. Not really a great solution but it works as a last minute fix.

MimiFix Posted 12 Jul 2012 , 10:51am
post #11 of 18
Originally Posted by kattasaurus

And in a pinch, when a cookie has spread too much, I just re-cut it with the cutter when it first comes out of the oven. Not really a great solution but it works as a last minute fix.

Thanks kattasaurus. This tip works well when making pieces for gingerbread houses.

Jillfcs Posted 26 Jul 2012 , 8:50pm
post #12 of 18

Lilaloa's chocolate and vanilla sugar cookie recipes are an absolute JOY to work with absolutely no spreading and they taste GREAT!

joycesdaughter111 Posted 31 Jul 2012 , 3:54am
post #13 of 18

I use Rose Levy Berenbaum's rolled cookie recipe called Traditional Rolled Christmas cookies from her book. No spreading at all and a shelf life of several MONTHS.

FromScratchSF Posted 31 Jul 2012 , 4:28am
post #14 of 18

I make NFSC - only I weigh the flour. I did 4.25 oz per cup called for and they turn out AMAZING.

ibeeflower Posted 31 Jul 2012 , 6:52pm
post #15 of 18

I use Sweetapolita's recipe which is similar to Sweetopia's as suggested above. Sweetapolita (and I) do not use any baking powder. My cookies are delicious and do not rise or spread. I have even placed my cookie cutter on top of the baked cookie to confirm that they haven't spread much and they don't.

I do refrigerate my dough when I have mixed everything and when I have rolled it out to cut shapes, and for a minute or two in the freezer prior to baking. May be a bit time consuming but the results are worth it to me.

WIthemos Posted 15 May 2013 , 6:32pm
post #16 of 18

I use this recipe, these cookies never spread)

    1/2 cup shortening
    1-1/4 cups sugar, divided
    2 eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 cup buttermilk
    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    In a large bowl, cream shortening and 1 cup sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla.Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating well after each addition. Combine cinnamon and remaining sugar. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto greased baking sheets. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar. Bake at 375° for 8-10 minutes or until edges begin to brown.


pookashnoo Posted 6 Apr 2014 , 7:31am
post #17 of 18

Hi guys,


Bumping this thread as I had dreams last night, first about some brooch moulds I made yesterday and then I woke up, went back to sleep and dreamt about cookies and so today I'm on a sugar cookie mission.


I have a question for those of you who use the sweetopia recipe, or chill then cut out cookies and then go on to refrigerate or freeze further before baking.. when they are ready to be baked, do you use the cold baking sheet that has chilled or do you transfer to a room temp tray?


Only had the though as sweetopias tips are saying essentially the longer it takes for the cookie to set the more opportunity there is for spreading. Would this be the same if I put the cold baking sheet directly into the oven?

craftybanana Posted 6 Apr 2014 , 4:10pm
post #18 of 18

I chill my cookies on the pans so both are cold before I put them in the oven and they don't really spread. Now if I don't chill the cookies, they spread into a big blob, but it's hot where I live.

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