Simple Christmas Sugar Cookies

I've been making the same Christmas cookies for years.  These Sugar Cookies are one of our yearly traditions. They are simple to mix up, chill, cut out and bake; and if you so desire ... decorate.  
The cookies in the photos were baked and decorated by my daughter, which is why they are lovely and decorated nicely.  Mine often don't look nearly as pretty as hers, but they still taste great, and as a bonus, my husband prefers them without icing, so I get away with making at least one batch of 'plain' sugar cookies! 

Simple Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup softened butter (I use salted butter)
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla 
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

Mix together powdered sugar, butter, egg and vanilla.  Stir in flour, baking soda and cream of tartar.
Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours.  I usually mix the dough one day and leave it in the fridge overnight and bake the next day.  

Preheat oven to 375.  
Divide dough in half.
Roll out to 3/16 on a lightly floured surface.  
Cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters.
Bake on ungreased cookie sheets until edges are light brown, about 7 to 8 minutes. 
Cool on rack.
Decorate as desired, if you desire!

Note: You can decorate before baking with sprinkles and such if you prefer.  

Decorator Frosting

1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1-2 tablespoons water

Mix the above together until smooth and spreadable.  
Add food coloring to obtain desired colors.

What is your favorite Christmas cookie recipe?


Catherine Ann