Peppermint Frosted Sugar Cookies
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We Love This Frosted Sugar Cookies Recipe
My family has an ongoing love affair with sugar cookies.
We love them plain. We love them flavored. We love them glazed. We love them frosted.
We believe they are the perfect cookie…
When made right, sugar cookies have a delicate airy texture. They are soft and chewy, and make a versatile starting point for all sorts of creative baking endeavors.
You really can’t go wrong with sugar cookies.
Peppermint Sugar Cookies with Frosting
Although you can make sugar cookies any flavor with the use of extracts, we are crazy over these peppermint sugar cookies for the holidays.
Both the sugar cookie dough and the cookie frosting are kissed with a tiny amount of peppermint extract.
Just a touch of peppermint extract gives the cookies a nostalgic holiday flavor, without overshadowing the rich vanilla-butter sugar cookie essence.
These Peppermint Sugar Cookies with Cookie Frosting are the perfect treat to take to holiday parties, work events, and annual cookie exchanges.
They are easy to make, lovely to behold (without being fussy) and a comfort to sink your teeth into.
To frost or not to frost, that is the question…
To some people, cookie frosting is a turn-off because it tends to be cloyingly sweet, with a heavy flavor of either food coloring or shortening, or both!
However, this cookie frosting is different. Instead of shortening, I used butter and buttermilk as the base of the frosting, so it’s rich and tangy, with a scant amount of peppermint for flavor.
We skipped the food coloring in the frosting, and just used the tiniest amount in the cookie dough, to turn the peppermint cookies pale pink. This creates color variation and visual appeal, without an overdose on chemicals. (However, food coloring is not required.)
In general, I tend to frost sugar cookies when I’m taking them to events. Yet, leave them bare when I’m just making them for the family.
How To Make Frosted Sugar Cookies
- Cream the Butter and Sugar. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of your electric mixer. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes. Creaming means to beat the butter and sugar on high until the sugar crystals break down into the butter. It’s an extremely important step for light airy cookies.
- Slowly Mix the Dough. Then turn the mixer on low and add the eggs, vanilla extract, peppermint extract, and food coloring. Then slowly add the flour mixture.
- Rock and Roll. Scoop the dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Shake each ball around in a bowl of sugar to coat the surface. Then place the balls on the cookie sheets.
- Press for Consistency. Use the bottom of a drinking glass to press down on each ball, until its 1/2-inch thick. This make the cookies very consistent in shape and thickness.
- Bake. Bake until the edges are slightly golden and the centers are just barely set. Cool completely on the cookie sheets.
- Beat the Frosting. Beat the butter on high speed until light and fluffy. Turn the mixer on medium-low and slowly alternate adding in the powdered sugar and buttermilk. Then beat in the peppermint extract and salt, on high, until the frosting is smooth and fluffy.
- Frost and Sprinkle! Use a spatula to spread a layer of frosting over the top of each cookie, in a circular motion. Immediately sprinkle the top with decorative sugar or candy sprinkles, so they stick!
Get the Full (Printable) Peppermint Frosted Sugar Cookies Recipe Below!
Peppermint Cookies Tips & Tricks
Press the Cookies
In order to ensure you have perfectly sized symmetrical cookies (for us OCD types) it’s important to measure and weigh each dough ball so they are the same. If you don’t want to use a kitchen scale, at least use a cookie scoop to get the exact same portions.
Then be sure to press the cookies with a drinking glass into thick disks. That way, the cookies are even from edge to edge.
Want Puffy Sugar Cookies?
You do not have to chill the dough before rolling and baking this recipe.
However, if you want puffier cookies, do chill the dough for at least 1 hour. Then when you press the cookies, make sure the dough disks are 1/2 – 3/4 inch thick.
Freezing Sugar Cookies
You can place sugar cookies in a freezer bag (or plastic container) and freeze up to 6 months.
If it’s important that they look just as pretty when you thaw them, freeze the cookies flat on the baking sheets, before placing them in the containers. That way, they don’t stick together as they freeze.
Then you can pull out 1 or 2 at a time and they will look freshly made.
Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies?
Yes! You can make this recipe with gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour mix. The cookies are slightly more crumbly than when they are made with wheat flour, but they still taste amazing!
See All Our Sugar Cookies Recipe Variations
- Best Ever Classic Sugar Cookies (Our most popular cookie recipe!)
- Best Cut-Out Sugar Cookie Recipe
- Soft Chocolate Sugar Cookies
- Brown Butter Brown Sugar Cookies
- Lemon Poppy Seed Sugar Cookies
- Freedom Cookies – Allergy Friendly Cookies
Peppermint Frosted Sugar Cookies Recipe
For the Peppermint Cookies
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, measured then sifted
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened (3 sticks)
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar + extra for rolling
- 2 large eggs
- 2 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 2-3 drops red food coloring (optional)
- FOR THE COOKIES: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper. Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
- Place the softened butter and sugar in the bowl of your electric mixer. Cream the butter and sugar together on high until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes. (Don't skimp on the time here.) Then turn the mixer on low and add the eggs, vanilla extract, peppermint extract, and food coloring. Scrape the bowl.
- With the mixer running on low, slowly add the flour mixture. Scrape the bowl and beat again for 30 seconds.
- Pour some extra sugar into a bowl to coat the cookies. Scoop the dough out and roll into 1-inch balls. The dough should be soft and delicate – don’t over-handle. Shake each ball in the sugar bowl to coat, then place on the cookie sheets 2 inches apart. Use the bottom of a drinking glass to press down on each ball, until it’s 1/3- to 1/2-inch thick.
- Bake each sheet of sugar cookies for 9-11 minutes, until the edges are slightly golden and the centers are just barely set. Cool completely on the cookie sheets.
- FOR THE COOKIE FROSTING: Once the cookies are completely cooled, make the frosting. Using a clean mixing bowl, beat the butter on high speed until light and fluffy. Turn the mixer on medium-low and slowly alternate adding in the powdered sugar and buttermilk. Scrape the bowl and beat in the peppermint extract and salt, on high, until the frosting is smooth and fluffy.
- Use a spatula to spread a layer of frosting over the top of each cookie, in a circular motion. Immediately sprinkle the top with decorative sugar or candy sprinkles, so they stick before the frosting dries.
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