Butter cookies are rich, crumbly cookies that have an undeniable buttery goodness. Perfect for pairing with chocolate or eating by itself.
Due to have five tournament games this weekend, I couldn’t continue my Great British Bake-Off Challenge. But I still wanted to post something, so I figured, why not make some classic butter cookies?
I love cookies. There is a cookie for every occasion! But sometimes there can be too much in a cookie (and sometimes I want everything but the kitchen sink in my cookie!). Butter cookies really scales everything back to just enjoy the pure flavor of a relatively simple cookie.
One of the more interesting things about butter cookies is that they can be shaped so you can create more intricate pieces out of the cookie, and they will hold. Another great option is adding more onto the butter cookies for those of us who cannot help ourselves. Like adding a slight dip in chocolate!
I love butter cookies because they don’t require are unusual ingredients. You can easily make these if you have the classic staples in your pantry: butter, vanilla, powdered sugar, flour, and salt!
I did find it interesting that these cookies used powdered sugar over granulated sugar. I believe this was to give the cookie a smoother texture after baked.
making the dough
The first step of this process is to cream together the butter, vanilla extract, and the powdered sugar. I was surprised how well the butter and powdered sugar creamed together. Powdered sugar is not my go to sugar for making cookies so creaming these two ingredients together felt like a first.
In a separate bowl, I whisked together the flour and salt. Some might argue for sifting the flour to keep the final texture of the cookies, but I didn’t. And I don’t think I saw a negative effect on the results. I added the dry mixture into the butter mixture and whisked until just combined.
The dough is more batter like which means that it’s perfect for piping.
Piping the Cookies
Piping the cookies is important because this is what gives butter cookies their shape. And the shape contributes to their texture. I find the texture of a cookie to be very important I used a star nozzle on the piping bag to give that classic butter cookie shape. Figured I should stat with the basics, you know?
I piped the cookies about an inch apart. I figured they would spread more in the oven. To my surprise, they didn’t really change that much. I baked the cookies one tray at a time, keeping the other tray in the fridge to prevent the butter from melting before they hit the oven.
Decorations on the butter cookies is optional. I only did decorations on half because I am a chocolate lover, and my partner is not. Yea, he’s weird, I know 😉. This process starts by melting the chocolate.
I am lazy so I don’t mind melting the chocolate in the microwave, but a stove top will give you better results. Once the chocolate is melted. I dipped half of a cookie into the chocolate and left the chocolate to harden. I prefer the dipping method but piping chocolate across would also look nice!
I love butter cookies because they are easy to make and require few ingredients. While it has a high butter content, the cookies don’t need any eggs which is nice if you are limited on ingredients.
These cookies were devoured rather quickly, and I know that I will be making them again soon.
Types of sugar
This recipe got me thinking about the differences in types of sugar. Why use powdered sugar instead of granulated sugar? I wanted to know so I did some research.
The most obvious difference between granulated sugar and powdered sugar is the size of the particles. Granulated sugar contains large sugar granules while powdered sugar has been, well, powdered.
Powdered sugar is lighter and will contribute to a final product that is less dense in texture. But powdered sugar does not do well in situations where air wants to be in the batter. The fineness off the powder will fill in all the spaces leaving no room for air to get in. Granulated sugar is a better choice in this instance.
- 1 Cup + 2 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter softened
- ½ Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- ⅔ Cup Powdered Sugar
- 1 ¾ Cup All-Purpose Flour
- Pinch of Salt
- ½ Cup Milk Chocolate optional (for decorating)
- Preheat the oven to 400° Fahrenheit.
- In a large bowl, cream together butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar until pale and fluffy.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Add the flour mixture into the butter mixture and mix until just combined.
- Spoon the dough into a piping bag fitted with a medium star nozzle. Pipe the dough into 5cm swirls on a lined baking tray.
- Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until a pale golden.
- Leave to cool on the trays for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completed.
- Optional: In a small bowl, melt the chocolate in a microwave on 15 second burst. Dip the cookies, one at a time, into the chocolate to cover half of the cookie. Allow chocolate to cool and harden.