Cookie Week: Thousand Dollar Sugar Cookies

It is the 5th and final day of Cookie Week 2018!

If you’re just now joining us for Cookie Week, be sure to check out the recipes from earlier this week:

Guys, today is very special. I’m finally sharing my secret recipe for sugar cookies. I’ve been making these sugar cookies since I was a little girl. The original recipe came from one of those old church cookbooks – you know, the ones with 5 versions of ambrosia salad. But over the years I’ve modified it to perfection.


Why am I calling them Thousand-Dollar Sugar Cookies? Because a dozen of these award-winning cookies sold for $1K at the county fair auction. I won the sugar cookie competition every single year at the home economics show, and the champion treats were auctioned off to benefit the next year’s fair. So for years, I kept my recipe a secret. Until now.

Thousand Dollar Sugar Cookies 3

Thousand-Dollar Sugar Cookies

Thousand Dollar Sugar Cookies 1


For the Cookies

  • 5 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup sour cream

For the Buttercream Icing

  • 1½ cups butter, room temperature
  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla (clear works best)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 – 6 tablespoons milk or cream
  • food coloring of choice (I use Wilton)


For the Cookies

  1. In large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In large bowl of stand mixer, beat the butter for several minutes until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed to achieve even consistency. Add the sugar and beat for 3 minutes more, scraping the sides as needed.
  3. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat for 3 more minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. Add the sour cream and beat until combined.
  5. Add the flour mixture one cup at a time until combined. Dough will be sticky.
  6. Divide dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. (I always do overnight).
  7. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  8. Sprinkle work surface with powdered sugar (not flour). Roll dough out and cut into desired shapes.
  9. Bake cookies on baking sheets lined with parchment paper or silicone baking mat until done. Baking time will depend on size of cookies. I prefer to make 2-inch cookies and they bake in about 8 minutes. You can tell they are done when the middle gives slightly when you touch it and the bottom millimeter is just starting to turn a light golden brown. Overbaking the cookies will cause them to dry out.
  10. Remove from oven and let cookies sit on hot baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack.

For the Buttercream Icing

  1. Beat the butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy – you should notice a change in color. Add the vanilla and beat until combined.
  2. Add the salt and gradually beat in the powdered sugar.
  3. Add 4 tablespoons of milk and beat on high until icing is light and fluffy. Add more milk as needed to reach desired consistency.
  4. Divide icing up into individual bowls and tint with coloring as desired.
  5. Spread or pipe icing on cookies as desired.

Let me know how your cookies turn out in the comments! And be sure to subscribe to this blog and be the first to know when something new is posted!

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