I have never been overly excited about citrus flavored things. I mean occasionally it sounds good, but typically I don’t go out of my way for it. It feels more like a summer time flavor. Maybe because I associate it with lemonade and sunshine? But I’m sure that’s just me.
I do love sugar cookies. And when I was thinking about making a batch of sugar cookies, lemon just peaked my interest. Possibly the burst of warm weather and sunshine we had last week has something to do with it.
These are crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside with the perfect balance of sweet and tart. And even though I’m not a lemon person, I will definitely be making these again. They turned out phenomenal.
I realize these are not vibrant yellow like what you might see in the store. That’s because natural lemon is not brightly hued. And I hate to use food dyes. It just feels wrong to me in most cases. Of course, if you really want to add food coloring to the dough, feel free to do so. No judgement here. With or without coloring, these cookies have a super delicious and intense lemon flavor.
Giant Lemon Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter
2 cups granulated sugar
1 Tbsp pure lemon extract
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dried lemon peel
3 cups flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar + 1 tsp lemon peel. Using a mini food processor or immersion blender, pulse until lemon peel is well blended into sugar. Set aside.
In large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, lemon extract, lemon juice, and lemon peel. Mix well. Combine flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Add to wet ingredients. Mix thoroughly. Dough will be very soft. Scoop 1/4 cup of dough and form large balls. Roll in lemon sugar to coat. Place balls on parchment lined cookie sheet. Flatten slightly with the bottom of a glass dipped in coarse sugar. Refrigerate 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake cookies 15 minutes until edges are slightly browned. Allow to cool on cookie sheet 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack to fully cool. Makes approximately 12 giant cookies.