Lemon Sugar Cookies Recipe

Lemon sugar cookies recipe taste like you’ve taken a big bite out of summer! So fresh and delicious, it’ll become a favorite!

Lemon Sugar Cookie Recipe from addapinch.com

I always love bright, citrus flavors, especially in the summertime. Lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits, I can’t seem to get enough of them! Add them to a cookie and you better believe I’m all about it!

I’ve been making this lemon version of my sugar cookie recipe for years and years and every time I take them to an event or to friends, I’m asked for the recipe and how to make them. They are packed full of so much lemon flavor!

So, if you love citrus flavors and sugar cookies, then this recipe is definitely one you are going to love! They are perfect for summer entertaining or enjoying with your family.

The secret really comes down to the lemon in the cookie and then rolling them in lemon sugar. It makes for the perfect citrus-y cookies in my opinion!

Lemon Sugar Cookie Recipe from addapinch.com

Here’s my Lemon Sugar Cookies recipe. I hope you love them!

Yield: 24 cookies

Lemon Sugar Cookies Recipe

Total Time 22 minutes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Lemon sugar cookies recipe taste like you've taken a big bite out of summer! So fresh and delicious, it'll become a favorite!
4.59 from 31 votes
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  • 1 cup 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • zest of two large lemons
  • juice of one large lemon about 1 tablespoon
  • 1/4 cup lemon sugar recipe for rolling cookies


  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat.
  2. Cream together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg and mix until well-combined.
  3. Stir in flour, baking powder, salt, vanilla, lemon zest and lemon juice. Allow to sit for about 3 minutes to allow lemon flavor to develop.
  4. Scoop cookie dough by the tablespoon full and roll into a ball.
  5. Add lemon sugar to a large bowl for rolling cookie dough in before baking. Place each ball of cookie dough into the bowl of lemon sugar and roll to coat well. Place cookie dough onto baking sheet, spacing about 1 1/2-inches to 2 inches apart. Lightly press each cookie down. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned.

All images and text © Robyn Stone for Add a Pinch

Robyn xo

104 comments on “Lemon Sugar Cookies Recipe”

  1. Do we use the paddle attachment or the whisk

  2. I love these cookies! They got the same reaction as the butter cookies!

  3. This was the first and last recipe for lemon cookies I tried, they were that good. If you’re a citrus fan, this is where it’s at! Even those that I know, that don’t seem to like liking things, couldn’t deny the awesomeness! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!

  4. Hello I made these cookies and was very dissatisfied came out flat look and tastes like lemon sand tart

    • I’m so sorry your cookies didn’t turn out as they should have, Marilyn. I’ve not had the problem you mention, so I’m not sure what went wrong. I hope if you try them again you enjoy them! Thanks so much.

    • Sounds like sugar not creamed with butter enough. Flat maybe too much butter too short and spread. Hope this helps. Doreen Martin

    • First time I made them I forgot to take the butter out the night before and ended up using melted instead of softened. The batch rolled in the zest sugar can out very crunchy even if i took them out after 8min.

      The other batch I mixed real honey with lemon juice and brushed them, they came out sooooo soft and nice. I sprinkled them with powdered sugar after.

  5. Tasty cookie. Really lemony. Easy to make.

  6. Not lemony at all. They taste like vanilla sugar cookies. I used zest of two large lemons and juice of one lg lemon, as directed, but still not enough lemon flavor. Also, I rolled them in lemon sugar, but the sugar was absorbed into the cookies, therefore the tops were just smooth. Nothing like the picture on the website. Also, they never turned light brown. I baked them for 14 minutes instead o 10-12. Don’t think I’ll make these again.

  7. I made these today, they taste amazing but they are super flat…do not look like the pics you posted, and I don’t know why. Made 2 separate batches and same with both. That being said, they are thin and a bit crunchy on the edges and really good. Contemplating making a lemony filling and sandwiching them together but either way I will definitely make them again because they are really good. Thanks! 🙂

    • I’m not sure why they are flat – sometimes that happens when the dough is beaten too much after adding the butter. I am glad you enjoy them though! They are so good! Thanks!

      • If you use a lemon extract, that will boost the lemon flavor, and add about 1/4 tsp of cream of tarter. This will help keep them from not getting so flat. I thought they were delicious!

  8. I love everything about the recipe, except for me I had to add 1/2 cup more flour because they weren’t thick enough to roll into a ball. It was my first time zesting properly and the zest is really cool. I hope I followed the instructions properly, if you don’t think they’re lemony enough just squeeze more or a BIGGER lemon (duh)! 🙂

  9. I am making these now as my dough is in the fridge!! I cant wait!!

  10. My cookies came out flat as I don’t know what I did wrong but they taste good. I eooo try this recipe again a later time when I have more zest.

  11. The cookies turned out flat and super chewy . I added more flour and refrigerated the dough and that helped. It just seems like the recipe is not complete. The flavor was good. 

  12. I had high hopes for these cookies as I made the sugar version last week and they were the most perfect sugar cookies I’ve probably every made. These came out really greasy and stuck to the pan, and I guess flat like others were saying. When I made the sugar cookies, I didn’t beat them anywhere near the 3 minutes in the recipe but I tried it this time so maybe that was the problem. They tasted pretty good.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the sugar cookies and sorry these didn’t turn out for you Sherrie. I can’t be sure what happened unless your butter got too warm. I’ve never had an issue with these cookies. Thanks!

  13. Where is the lemon sugar recipe for rolling the dough balls?

  14. AMAZING!

  15. How do you make lemon sugar?

  16. I made mine dye free and they were a huge hit… Even with my all natural friends. They were easy to make and since I was hurrying I made my lemon sugar with lemon juice instead of zest and added sugar until you could roll cookies in it. I also add 1/4 tsp of lemon extract as I didn’t zest and people have been raving over these cookies. The down side. I am requested to bring cookies 2x month to church lol. Thank you! I did notice the first time when I microwave softened butter they were flatter than when I softened the butter by leaving it out. This recipe is the best!!! I also made them with just sugar to be rolled in and they were still awesome!!

  17. Theese are perfect! I made them for the first time on a gloomy winter day, added a pinhead of yellow color paste. They lit up the whole table and everybody loves them. I have made my lemonsugar with ground, dried lemon peel, and i make lime-, orange- ang strawberry sugar which i great in plain cookies.

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