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Desserts | December 4, 2018

Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies

Looking for a gluten-free treat to serve this holiday season? Look no further! These Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies are soft, sweet, easy to make, and everything you want in a holiday cookie.

Nancy’s gluten free sugar cookies

I’m often asked if I can share recipes on ABK that are gluten free, because not everyone can enjoy treats made with flour because of gluten intolerance. If you know me, you know I won’t share anything I  haven’t made myself. All of the recipes here are tested and heartily approved before publishing.

What if I told you there was a gluten-free cookie that tasted just as good as the original? Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies are a little crispy on the outside, soft and light on the inside, and taste absolutely delicious.

My friend Nancy, who has celiac,  bakes sugar cookies every year for family and friends at holiday time and told me she had experimented with gluten free flour to make her traditional cookies and loved the result.  When we needed some gluten free cookies for a church activity recently, Nancy offered to make a batch of her gf sugar cookies… I was blown away the result!  So good.  I had to get the recipe to share with you.  I’m not usually a fan of gluten free treats, but this cookie rivals any traditional sugar cookie baked with all purpose flour!
Christmas cookies are an essential part of the holiday season. And with Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies, there’s an option for everyone on the cookie tray. Plus, NO ONE will know they’re gluten-free. The flavor, texture, and appearance will have everyone coming back for seconds. They may just become a new holiday favorite for your family and guests.

A few tips for baking gluten free sugar cookies…

Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies are the perfect addition to your Christmas cookie list. Roll out the dough to cut into shapes, or scoop it, like I did into a Swig-Style cookie! The key ( according to my friends who are expert gluten free bakers) is to make sure to refrigerate the dough for a full 24 hours. It makes a huge difference in the final product. This allows the GF flour to absorb the liquids in the dough and makes for a cookie that is less likely to fall apart after baking. I also believe the refrigeration allows the flour to soak up the liquid and creates a less gritty finished product. I used Cup 4 Cup Gluten Free Flour on Nancy’s recommendation, which may be purchased online or in most grocery or big box stores!
If you’re looking for a really amazing sugar cookie you need to try these Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies. They’re light fluffy like a sugar cookie should be, and each bite has that irresistible sugar cookie flavor.
Also, try out some other gluten-free recipes on ABK … Gluten Free Chocolate Quick Bread and The Best Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookie.
4.86 from 7 votes

Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies

​Looking for a gluten-free treat to serve this holiday season? Look no further! These Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies are soft, sweet, and everything you could want in a holiday cookie.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword american dessert, glutenfree, holidaybaking, sugarcookies


  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract*
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla*
  • 3 cups gluten-free flour Cup 4 Cup gluten free flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

simple buttercream frosting:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
  • pinch sea salt or kosher salt
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk OR half and half OR cream


  1. Cream together butter, eggs, and sugar until smooth.

  2. Mix in remainder of ingredients. Be careful not to over-mix. Use low speed on mixer and scrape down sides at least twice.  Cover tightly with saran wrap and place in refrigerator for 24 hours. When ready to roll or scoop out dough, remove and let dough sit on counter for 1 hour. Then proceed with directions. 

  3. Roll out on floured surface in batches about 1/4 inch thick. Cut with cookie cutters into desired shapes. 


    Use a #16 cookie scoop, place baking sheet. Using a small glass,dip the bottom of glass into sugar in bowl.  Press and twist the glass until the cookie ball is about 1/2 inch thick. Repeat until all dough is scooped and lightly pressed. 

  4. Place on ungreased baking sheets about two inches apart.

  5. Bake at 400 degrees or 375 convection for 6 to 8 minutes, or until lightly golden brown on the edges.

for frosting:

  1. Place soft butter in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer. Using media high speed, mix until smooth. Turn mixer off. Add powdered sugar. Mix on low. Scrape down sides. Add salt, vanilla or almond extract and 2 tablespoons of milk or cream. Mix on low if needed, add more milk or cream. Beat until smooth about 1 minute. Frost cookies when completely cooled. If using sprinkles, add immediately after frosting cookies. 

Recipe Notes

  • *you may use all lemon or all vanilla or almond flavoring. I use all vanilla. 
  • The sprinkles are purchased at any cake decorating supply store or online at Amazon
  • This recipe may also be made with All Purpose flour. 

28 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies

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Recipe Rating

  1. I’m excited to try these! Have you ever tried scooping them into balls and then refrigerating them? Do you think that would have the same positive effect on the texture? Thanks!

    1. Hi Lindsi, you could definitely try refrigerating them. It should still have a nice texture. Thanks for asking!

    1. Gina,
      I used Cup4Cup in this recipe. i have also used King Arthur GF flour with great results.
      Thanks for reading ABK,

  2. Thank you for the recipe! My daughter and I both have Celiac, and sugar cookies are a favorite! Can’t wait to try these!

    1. You’re welcome, Paris. These cookies are so yummy, I’m glad you enjoyed them and thanks for your comment!

    1. I see it in the grocery at most stores. Harmon’s, Smith’s, online at Amazon, and also at Target. Hope this helps!
      Thanks for reading ABK,

  3. This recipe is perfection. It rolls-out and bakes-up just like a glutenful recipe. I haven’t made sugar cookies for a very long time because I couldn’t find a recipe that worked, so I was really excited to try this one. I used Namaste flour because that’s what I had on hand and it turned out well. Thanks Nancy and Si!

    1. It’s such a wonderful gluten free recipe. I’m glad you enjoyed it, Bonnie and thanks for your comment!

  4. Hi Si,

    Just this morning my son told me his school class had giant gingerbread man sugar cookies yesterday, which he just watched everyone else decorate and eat because he is allergic to wheat. I promised to try to make sugar cookies. Thank you for posting this recipe! I feel optimistic and supported by the idea of trying. 🙂

  5. Do you or your friend have a GF cinnamon roll recipe that is really delicious? My daughter was just diagnosed with Celiac and she hasn’t been able to find a recipe that she likes!!! Any help would be so appreciated!! 😊
    I just put the dough to these cookies in the refrigerator!! I am hoping she loves them!! Thanks for everything!!

    1. I made these cookies for my daughter who has Celiac disease and they were a hit!! Everyone loved them!! Cup 4 Cup is a great GF flour!! It’s great in cakes also!! Thanks for the recipe!! 💕

  6. 5 stars
    I served these to a GF friend at a Christmas party. She LOVED them and begged for the recipe. Everyone else ate them and said they were delicious. They thought they were from a local bakery and couldn’t believe they were GF.

    1. That’s what I love about this recipe too, Laura. It tricks everyone into thinking it’s not a GF cookie because it’s so good. I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe and thanks for sharing!

  7. Do you have to keep the dough in the fridge for exactly 24 hours? With my schedule right now, I can either make the dough and leave them in the fridge for about 15 hours-ish, or it would have to be in the fridge for about 36 hours.. ?

    And after baking how long will they stay good for if placed in tupper-wear?

    Thank you!!

    1. Hi Cristina, for the best results, I would refrigerate the dough for 24 hours or more. You could still make the cookies after refrigerating for 15 hours, but make sure to keep an eye on them while baking. And the cookies should stay fresh in tupper-ware for 3-5 days. Hope this helps and thanks for asking!

  8. 5 stars
    Easily one of my favorite recipes of yours! My little guy who is 3 1/2 got diagnosed with celiacs almost a year ago. His favorite cookies were sugar. But he didn’t like that his cookies “looked” different than everyone else’s. These are the best sugar cookies. You really can’t tell that they are gluten free! 🙂

  9. Can you please tell me how many dozen these make? I’m making monster cookies using icing to adhere mini marshmallows in between two cookies, add eyes, very fun. Thx!

  10. 5 stars
    My daughter is gluten free and these are the BEST cookie receipe we have found, tested and it has passed. She LOVES them. We keep them in the fridge for her to have a nibble on when she wants one. Best GF cookie hands down.

    1. I’m so glad you found a recipe for gf cookies your daughter loves! I love the way sugar cookie store well in the fridge for several days.
      I appreciate your thoughtful review!

  11. 5 stars
    These are fantastic! I’ve had celiac disease for about five years and have not found any good homemade sugar cookies in that time. Until now! Thank you for this great recipe!

  12. 4 stars
    I have always been super hesitant about gluten free desserts (as someone who can eat gluten) but my mother in law was recently diagnosed with celiac so we have been trying to find recipes for her that almost taste like you aren’t eating gluten free. This was my favorite one I have been able to find! We all love it and is by far my favorite gluten free desert!

  13. 5 stars
    These are the best gluten free sugar cookies! They were a huge hit, the whole family loved them.