Brown Sugar Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Servings: 8

Make a quick citrus glaze for these cookies using 1 cup confectioners’ sugar and 2 to 3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice. Whisk together until smooth. If the glaze is too thick, whisk in additional lemon juice or water. Place the cookies on a wire rack and use a fork to drizzle the glaze over them.


  • 12 Tbs. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup coarse sugar, such as turbinado


Mix the dough
Position 1 rack in the upper third and 1 rack in the middle of an oven and preheat to 350°F. Line 2 rimless baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the butter, salt, brown sugar and vanilla on medium speed until smooth. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour and beat just until evenly blended.

Shape the cookies
With lightly floured hands, roll the dough into 1-inch balls and then flatten each ball into a circle. Place the circles about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle the top of each circle with the coarse sugar.

Bake the cookies
Bake until the edges of the cookies darken slightly, about 12 minutes. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let the cookies cool for 5 minutes, then transfer the cookies to the racks and let cool completely. Makes about 24 cookies.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Desserts, by Elinor Klivans (Oxmoor House, 2007).