Sourdough Sugar Cookies Recipe

Sourdough sugar cookies are delightful and a great use of your friendship starter.  Sometimes you have just a little left over and it is a waste to throw it out.  Now you can make these cookies instead.  It is a wonderful and delicious way to use your sourdough starter!

You can also add many things to the Sourdough sugar cookies such as, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, or nuts.  This recipe was shared with me by Michele Stephens of Newberg, Oregon.  Learn how to make and use Sourdough Starter.


sourdough sugar cookies


More favorite Cookie Recipes and Secrets To Making Perfect Cookies.  Also learn How To Have A Successful Holiday Cookie Exchange or Cookie Swap.



Sourdough Sugar Cookie Recipe:
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
30 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Sourdough Sugar Cookie Recipe
Servings: 3 to 5 dozen depending on size
Sourdough Sugar Cookies:
Lemon-Milk Frosting:
Sourdough Sugar Cookies Instructions:
  1. In a large bowl, cream vegetable shortening and sugar.  Beat in eggs, lemon or almond extract, and vanilla extract until mixture is fluffy.  Stir in sourdough starter; set aside.

  2. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and salt; stir into sourdough mixture.  Refrigerate dough, covered, at least 1 hour or overnight.

  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  

  4. On a lightly floured board, roll dough to 1/4-inch thick; cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters.  Place 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

    Sourdough Sugar Cookies
  5. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until very lightly browned on the bottoms.  Remove from oven and cool on wire racks.  When cool, frost with Lemon-Milk Frosting and decorate as desired.

Lemon-Milk Frosting Instructions:
  1. In a small bowl, combine powdered sugar, lemon extract, and enough milk to make frosting easy to spread. Tint, if desired, with a few drops of food coloring.

  2. NOTE: Depending on the size of your cookies, you might need to double the frosting recipe.

Recipe Notes

* If you do not presently have a sourdough starter, either make your own sourdough starter or purchase Packaged Sourdough Starter Mix by mail-order.


Comments and Reviews

14 Responses to “Sourdough Sugar Cookies Recipe”

  1. Chrys

    I cannot wait to make these! Have you ever frozen them for later? Did they turn out well?


  2. Lisa Compton

    can dough be frozen?

    • Linda Stradley

      I don’t see any reason that it could not be frozen. Bring the dough to room temperature before rolling out.

    • Melody

      I found these a few years ago my family loves them i never even get to ice them before they are gone. They freeze well the dough is better worked with when chilled slightly. Dough freezes well but not for more than a few months have not tried it longer.

  3. Brenda

    Are these sugar cookies meant to be hard or soft? I recently made them and they taste delicious! Mine were crunchy and not even lightly browned and still crunchy. Are they meant to be that way?

    • Whats Cooking America

      Yes these cookies are meant to be crisp aT 1/4 inch thick. If you would like them softer, then roll the dough to a thicker consistency and adjust the baking time for a couple minutes longer until lightly browned.

  4. Phyllis Hartman

    Is the sourdough fed or unfed?

    • Whats Cooking America

      When I decide I want to use my starter, I then remove it from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature (usually I let it sit overnight on the counter). I then feed it with one (1) cup flour and one (1) cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F.). I let this sit eight (8) hours or preferably overnight. It is now ready to use in your sourdough recipes.

  5. Lauren

    Made these for Christmas and they were well received! The dough is flavorful and forgiving–highly recommend. One note: it rises/spreads a lot! Both in the fridge and in the oven, so be sure so space them well. Thanks for the recipe! I’m always looking for ways to use up my discard.

  6. BRIGITTE Couture

    Could I use butter as I don’t have shortening?

    • Nancy

      Butter is a harder fat, and the finished cookies will be harder and crisper if you use butter.

  7. Nope

    I will honestly say that these are the best cut out sugar cookies. The dough is forgiving, they taste and look great. No matter how thin or thick I roll the dough, they turn out amazing. I’ve searched for years for the perfect cut out recipe. I found it! This is my go to recipe. I’ve made it at least a dozen times now. Thank you for sharing.

    • Nancy

      Thank you, Happy Holidays!

  8. Mona Arnott

    I don’t have lemon extract. Can I use vanilla extract instead?


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