Crunchy Sugar Cookie Recipe

Thin and crispy, this crunchy sugar cookie recipe is rich, buttery and irresistible! Unlike a soft and chewy sugar cookie, these are wafer-like and rolled in sugar instead of iced. 

Stacked crunchy cookies with granulated sugar sprinkled around.

If you are looking for a softer sugar cookie that can be frosted, try these powdered sugar cut out cookies!

This crunchy sugar cookie recipe is of Amish origin and is a fun change of pace from your standard softer sugar cookie.  

I promise you won’t miss the frosting either! Just one bite of these drop cookies and they will become a new favorite.

These Christmas cookies are perfect for sharing or even gifting! Don’t let Christmas stop you from making them year round, though, we make them on a regular basis along with soft lemon cookies and crunchy chocolate chip cookies.

  • Classic Amish sugar cookies: These thin cookies have crisp edges and a chewy center, everything you want a cookie to be!
  • No chilling or cutting: Less mess, less wait, and these crispy sugar cookies are ready in a snap!
  • Coated in sugar: They are rolled in sugar for pure bliss upon first bite!

Ingredients and Notes

These thin sugar cookies crunch and crackle from a sugary coating and melt in your mouth from their buttery texture! Here are the ingredients you need for this sugar cookies recipe: 

  • Flour: You will need all purpose flour for this recipe. Measure correctly by scooping your flour into a measuring cup then leveling with a knife. This adds some air for lighter cookies that are not thick and dense.
  • Baking soda and baking powder: Two leavening agents that create rise and lift. 
  • Butter: Your butter will need to be soft, salted butter is preferred in this recipe. 
  • Granulated sugar: You will need some for the cookie batter and for rolling your cookies in for crunchy results!
  • Egg yolk: We are skipping the egg white to give these cookies just a slightly chewy center.
  • Vanilla extract: Pure vanilla extract for best taste.
Cookies one on top of another.

How to Make Crunchy Sugar Cookies

This crunchy sugar cookie recipe is so easy to make! It’s a drop cookie meaning there is no chilling or messy rolling and cutting.

Whisk dry ingredients: In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and baking powder to remove any lumps and set aside.

Dry ingredients in a bowl.

Cream wet ingredients: Next, use your electric mixer to cream together the granulated sugar and softened butter. Add egg yolk and vanilla extract and continue to mix. Slowly blend in the flour mixture to prevent flour from getting everywhere! The dough should be soft and compact, not sticky. 

cookie dough in a bowl.

Roll dough balls in sugar: Roll your sugar cookie dough into walnut-sized balls then roll them in sugar until coated on all sides. 

Dough rolled in balls on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

Bake: Place dough balls on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake until the edges are golden, about 8-10 minutes. Cool for 2-3 minutes on the pan before removing to a wire rack. Enjoy! 

Baked Cookies on a cookie sheet.

Tips for Perfect Cookies

  • Room temperature ingredients: But not too soft! Your finger should be able to make a small indent in the butter but not push all the way through. 
  • Brown edges: Are totally okay in these crunchy cookies. It’s impossible to over bake these, as a crispy texture is what we are after in this cookie recipe.
  • Thin and crispy: Instead of rolling cookies in sugar, place dough balls on a baking sheet, wet the bottom of a flat glass, dip the glass in sugar, then smash the cookie, flattening it slightly. 
  • Festive: Press a small red hot candy in the center of the cookie right after baking. It adds a cinnamon taste that makes these perfect for the holidays. Crushed candy canes would add peppermint crunch, yum!

How to Store 

Store: These crispy cookies can be stored in an airtight container for a few days, if they last that long! After a few days, they tend to get drier, but they are still delicious.

Freeze: You can freeze unbaked dough balls or fully baked crunch sugar cookies. Store unbaked dough balls in a freezer safe bag and bake when ready. Store fully baked cookies in an airtight container for 2-3 months, thaw and enjoy.

Four cookies on a white plate.

FAQs

Can I frost these cookies?

You could, although I don’t. A thin royal icing may be best. You will also want to skip rolling them in sugar.

If you find the dough too sticky add just a pinch more of flour. Alternately, if you find it is too dry add a tablespoon of milk. If you have followed the directions precisely, neither should be the case though.

Why didn’t my cookies spread? 

You may have used too much flour or over mixed your dough. Remember to mix until just combined and measure flour correctly. You may find that a kitchen measuring scale works best for accuracy! 

Why did my cookies spread thin?


This is usually because your butter was too soft or you didn’t use enough flour. Remember to scoop and level your flour into your measuring cup for accurate measurements.

Cookies one on top of another.

More Cookies

Stacked cookies with granulated sugar sprinkled around.

Crunchy Sugar Cookie Recipe

Erika Marucci
Thin and crispy, this crunchy sugar cookie recipe is rich, buttery and irresistible! Unlike a soft and chewy sugar cookie, these are wafer-like and rolled in sugar instead of iced. 
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 22 cookies
Calories 92 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • cup All purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon Baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon Baking powder
  • ½ cup Butter – soft
  • ¾ cups Granulated sugar
  • 1 large Egg yolk
  • ½ teaspoon Vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 375F (190C) and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and baking powder and set it aside.
  • In a large bowl beat together the sugar and butter with an electric mixer until creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and mix again. Gradually blend in the flour mixture. The dough should be soft and compact, not sticky. Roll the dough into walnut-sized balls.
  • In a small bowl add extra granulated sugar and roll the balls in the sugar. Place the balls on the prepared baking sheet 2 inches apart.
  • Bake until the edges are golden, about 8-10 minutes. When ready, let them cool on the baking sheet for about 2-3 minutes then move the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Notes

These Crunchy Sugar Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for a few days. After a few days, they tend to get drier, but they are still delicious.
They can also be frozen. 
You can freeze unbaked dough balls or fully baked crunch sugar cookies. Store unbaked dough balls in a freezer safe bag and bake when ready. Store fully baked cookies in an airtight container for 2-3 months, thaw and enjoy.

Nutrition

Calories: 92kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 1gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 79mgPotassium: 11mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 196IUVitamin C: 0.01mgCalcium: 6mgIron: 0.4mg
Keyword Christmas cookies, crunchy sugar cookies, sugar cookies
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I was searching for a simple & delicious sugar cookie recipe to use for a lemon raspberry cheesecake crust & the first review prompted me to try this one. After tasting the test cookie – that I made before using the batter on the cheesecake – it was so good I knew I had to make another batch so we’d have some cookies on hand. I followed the recipe to the letter & they are very simply the best I’ve ever had. They’re also easy to make which means I’m going to be in serious trouble because they’re the perfect combination of a soft crunch on the outside & melt-in-your-mouth buttery vanilla goodness on the inside. It’s the perfect cookie to serve with almost any beverage, but be forewarned, it’s hard to stop at one! My husband lit a fire under me to write a review when he walked into my office earlier tonight and said, “Put a star next to that recipe – you were right – they’re fantastic!”

  2. 5 stars
    I am so picky about my cookies and I never write reviews but these cookies were perfection and deserve a great kick off!

    They came out perfectly crispy and kept a tender chew in the middle.
    Pro Tip: flip the cookies right after they come out to evenly crisp the other side. I rolled mine in rainbow sprinkles which added an extra crunch!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.