Citrus Sugar Cookies

In this delicious recipe, old-fashioned sugar cookies are enlivened with the flavors of citrus oils and zests. Chewy on the inside and crispy on the outside, these treats are glazed with sanding sugar for an irresistible crackly sugar topping.

  • Yield: Makes about 30
Citrus Sugar Cookies


  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped candied orange peel
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 6 drops lemon oil
  • 3 drops lime oil
  • 3 drops orange oil
  • Fine sanding sugar, for sprinkling


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with Silpats or parchment paper; set aside. Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and the granulated and brown sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition. Mix in candied orange peel, the zests, and the oils. Reduce mixer speed to low, and slowly add dry ingredients. Beat until fully combined and dough begins to form around paddle.

  3. Use a 2-inch ice cream scoop to drop cookies onto prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Flatten cookies with palm of hand. Sprinkle with sanding sugar. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush tops with water. Sprinkle with more sanding sugar. Transfer to oven, and bake until just beginning to brown at edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Transfer cookies to wire rack to cool completely.


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