Desserts

December 14, 2022

Frosted Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookies

These soft sugar cookies are studded with mini chocolate chips and frosted with vanilla buttercream. The best part? No cookie cutters or chill time required! You have to make these healthy chocolate chip sugar cookies this holiday season!

I have something to confess...

I didn't make sugar cookies growing up!

Like, at all.

I know so many families make sugar cookies every year for Christmas, especially the cut out sugar cookies with royal icing or frosting.

Luckily, I managed to slide by these last few years with just getting my husband Lofthouse cookies from Walmart...

But this year, I decided to make cut out sugar cookies for the first time and they did not disappoint!

Today's recipe for frosted chocolate chip sugar cookies is a nice twist on the classic holiday cookie and you're going to love them. They are soft, buttery cookies with chewy centers, mini chocolate chips folded in, and a decadent vanilla buttercream frosting on top!

Basically it's like a really good chocolate chip cookie had a baby with a buttery sugar cookie. Drooling yet?


Why you'll love this recipe

Perfect Christmas cookie: for all your gift giving, cookie exchanges, or baking for Santa

No chill time: probably the best part of the whole recipe. You can make these sugar cookies RIGHT AWAY!

No cookie cutters: if you don't have cookie cutters, don't worry! You can still have these delicious cookies without any fancy shapes.

Secretly healthy: spoiler alert, these are actually gluten free, dairy free, and low sugar, but you'd never know!

Tried and true recipe: these sugar cookies are a modification of my best chocolate chip cookie recipe that went viral on Instagram, so you know they're gonna be good!

A chocolate chip sugar cookie with a bite out of it


Ingredients you'll need

  • Vegan butter: I prefer vegan butter because it's made with heart healthy fats but bakes just like regular butter. You can use any unsalted butter you like, though! Just make sure your butter is room temperature.
  • Granulated sugar: because sugar cookies aren't made with light brown sugar. If you really want these cookies to be as healthy as possible, I recommend using organic cane sugar, but that isn't necessary. (Note: do NOT use 100% Stevia in this recipe or your cookies will be disgustingly dry. You must use some type of regular sugar in combination with the Stevia.)
  • Stevia: one of my favorite sugar alternatives that reduces the overall calories and added sugar in baking. You can also use Monkfruit sweetener or more regular white sugar.
  • Large egg: for moisture, flavor, and leavening. It should be room temperature as well.
  • Vanilla extract and almond extract: vanilla for sweetness, almond for that classic cookie flavor. The almond extract is really the secret ingredient that makes these cookies truly amazing, and you'd be sorely disappointed if you didn't use it, so don't make these cookies without it!
  • Gluten free all purpose flour: what my family uses, but you can 100% use regular all purpose flour.
  • Sugar free chocolate chips: I love Lily's mini chips or Enjoy Life mini chips, but you can also use regular chocolate chips, semisweet chocolate chips, or even chopped chocolate.
  • Sugar free powdered sugar: I know this isn't always readily available or affordable at every grocery store, so if minimizing sugar is important, you can get some sugar free powdered sugar here on Amazon. If not, just use regular powdered sugar and reduce the salt by half!
  • Greek yogurt: to replace some of the butter in the buttercream. You can use plain or vanilla, just be sure to use a refined sugar free greek yogurt.
  • Salt: to balance the sweetness of the cookies and the buttercream.


Equipment you'll need

Chocolate chip sugar cookies with vanilla buttercream


How to make frosted chocolate chip sugar cookies

Step 1: prep the kitchen

If you don't plan on chilling your cookie dough, preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.

Step 2: cream the wet ingredients

In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, and Stevia until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

Add in the egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract and cream until light and fluffy, about another minute.

Step 3: mix the dry ingredients

In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, whisking until well combined.

Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into the butter mixture until a few streaks of flour remain.

Switch to a rubber spatula and fold in 1/3 cup of the mini chocolate chips.

A woman cutting out the shapes of her sugar cookies

Step 4: choose your cookie shapes and bake

This step is more like a choose-your-own-adventure. There's some room to switch things up and make your cookies exactly how you want!

This is also one of the reasons this recipe is so great! Do you want the easiest cookies possible? You got it. Do you want the cutest shapes? You got it. Do you care if how long you wait for fresh cookies? Either answer is great!

Here are three ways to make your chocolate chip sugar cookies:

Option 1: the cookie dough log

If you like the slice-and-bake method for sugar cookies, this option is for you.

Form the cookie dough into a nice thick log, about 3" in diameter, and wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour up to 24 hours in advance.

When ready to bake, unwrap the cookie dough, slice into 1/4" thick cookies, and bake for 8-10 minutes.

Let the cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Option 2: no-chill method

If you don't have any cookie cutters, you don't care about special shapes or designs, and you don't want to chill your cookie dough, this method is for you.

Use a rolling pin to roll out the cookie dough into 1/4" thick circle and use a glass or cup about 3" in diameter to cut out your cookies. (The diameter doesn't totally matter, but if you want more cookies out of one batch of cookie dough, shoot for 3" cookies.)

Note: you don't need to dust your surface with flour before rolling the dough. This will add too much flour and dry out the cookies!

If you don't want to roll out the cookie dough, you can also portion out 1 tablespoon sized cookie dough balls and flatten them into 1/4" thick discs.

Note: using the no chill method means your cookies will spread more in the oven, so you can't bake more than 7 at one time.

Place the cookies on your prepared baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.

Let the cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Option 3: festive holiday-shaped cookies

If you love all the fun shapes and have the cookie cutters on hand, this method is for you.

Wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour, up to 24 hours in advance.

When ready to bake, roll out the cookie dough (without dusting your surface with flour) into 1/4" thick and cut out your cookie shapes.

Baking 5 cookies at a time, bake for 8-10 minutes, then let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the pan before transferring to a cooling rack.

A woman frosting sugar cookies

Step 5: make the frosting

In a small bowl (or the bowl of your clean stand mixer), mix the butter, greek yogurt, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt on high speed for 2-4 minutes until smooth and fluffy. Add 1-2 teaspoons almond milk, depending on how thick or thin you want your buttercream. I usually add 2 teaspoons.

Use a clean rubber spatula to give one final mix to the buttercream and smooth out any air pockets.

Step 6: frost the cookies

Note: your cookies should be completely cooled before frosting them!

Using the back of a spoon, spread a thin layer of buttercream on each cookie.

(You can also use a piping bag, but I find that I usually add too much buttercream to each cookie and therefore don't have enough to frost all the cookies, so this just adds more work on my end.)

Top each cookie with a few extra mini chocolate chips and enjoy!


Troubleshooting sugar cookies

Help! My cookies are dry!

This could be for a few reasons: 1) you packed your flour and therefore used too much flour in the cookie dough, or 2) you dusted your surface with flour before rolling out the cookie dough. To measure your flour properly, use a spoon to add flour to your measuring up, then level off the excess flour with a knife. Do not flour your surface to roll out the cookie dough.

Why did my sugar cookies spread so much?

This recipe was developed without chill time and with less flour than most other sugar cookie recipes, so the cookies will spread more in the oven that you're probably used to. If you don't want your cookies to spread hardly at all, see step 4, option 1 or 3 above in the "how to" section and bake according to those instructions.

Chocolate chip sugar cookies on a cooling rack

Can I use brown sugar in this recipe?

Sugar cookies are sugar cookies because they're made without brown sugar, so no. If you used brown sugar, you would be making regular chocolate chip cookies.

How do I know when to pull sugar cookies out of the oven?

Always pull your cookies out of the oven when they look slightly underbaked. The edges of the cookies should be set, but the centers should give when you touch them gently with your finger. As the cookies cool on the warm pan, they will finish baking to perfection.

That being said, if you want softer cookies, remove the cookies just after 8 minutes. If you want crisper cookies, remove the cookies closer to 10 minutes.

Will this recipe work with melted butter instead of softened butter?

No. The ratio of wet-to-dry ingredients is specific to the texture of the butter, and I developed this recipe using softened butter. Remember that softened butter means the butter has naturally warmed to room temperature, not slightly heated in the microwave.

Can I make this recipe dairy free?

Yes! Just use a vegan greek yogurt alternative for the frosting.

Can I make these sugar cookies without chocolate chips?

Technically yes, but that's not the point of the recipe ;)

Can I make these sugar cookies without the frosting?

Yes! They still taste amazing without frosting.


How to store frosted sugar cookies

For the best results, store your cookies at room temperature in an airtight glass container or tupperware for up to 4 days. I don't recommend a ziploc bag because it will stick to the frosting.

You can store them in the fridge, but they will dry out slightly and be a little more crumbly instead of chewy.

I haven't tried freezing this cookie dough, but if you want to freeze it, freeze the cookie dough before you bake it and let it thaw in the fridge overnight before baking.

Frosted chocolate chip sugar cookies on a cooling rack

More holiday cookies

Chewy Snowman Molasses Cookies

Gluten Free Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies

The BEST Healthy Snickerdoodles

Banana Cream Pie Cookie Cups

Mini Chocolate Peppermint Pies

The BEST Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies


After today's recipe, I think I need to write a few more sugar cookie recipes... what flavor or variation should I create next?!

Be sure to leave a star rating and review below the printable recipe card so other readers know how you liked it! I hope you love this fun holiday cookie recipe. Merry Christmas and happy baking!

Frosted Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookies

These soft sugar cookies are studded with mini chocolate chips and frosted with vanilla buttercream. The best part? No cookie cutters or chill time required! You have to make these healthy chocolate chip sugar cookies this holiday season!

Author:

Brooke Harmer

Prep:

40

min

cook:

10

min

total:

50

min

servings:

16

Ingredients

For the sugar cookies

  • 1/2 C vegan butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 C organic cane sugar (or regular sugar)
  • 1/2 C Stevia
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1 2/3 C gluten free all purpose flour*
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2/3 C Lily's mini dark chocolate chips, divided

For the buttercream frosting

  • 1/4 C vegan butter, room temperature
  • 2 Tbsp nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 C sugar free powdered sugar**
  • 1/2 tsp salt***

Instructions

  1. If you don't plan on chilling your cookie dough,**** preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Cream together the butter, sugar, and Stevia until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add in the egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract and cream until light and fluffy, about another minute.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, whisking until well combined. Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into the butter mixture until a few streaks of flour remain. Switch to a rubber spatula and fold in 1/3 cup of the mini chocolate chips.
  4. Use a rolling pin to roll out the cookie dough into 1/4" thick circle and use a glass or cup about 3" in diameter to cut out your cookies. (The diameter doesn't totally matter, but if you want more cookies out of one batch of cookie dough, shoot for 3" cookies.) Note: you don't need to dust your surface with flour before rolling the dough. This will add too much flour and dry out the cookies! If you don't want to roll out the cookie dough, you can also portion out 1 tablespoon sized cookie dough balls and flatten them into 1/4" thick discs. Note: using the no chill method means your cookies will spread more in the oven, so you can't bake more than 7 at one time.
  5. Place the cookies on your prepared baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.
  6. In a small bowl (or the bowl of your clean stand mixer), mix the butter, greek yogurt, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt on high speed for 2-4 minutes until smooth and fluffy. Add 1-2 teaspoons almond milk, depending on how thick or thin you want your buttercream. I usually add 2 teaspoons. Use a clean rubber spatula to give one final mix to the buttercream and smooth out any air pockets.
  7. Once the cookies are completely cooled, it's time to frost! Using the back of a spoon, spread a thin layer of buttercream on each cookie. Top each cookie with a few extra mini chocolate chips and enjoy!

Notes

*If baking at high altitude (over 3000 ft above sea level), add an extra 2 Tbsp flour.

**You can also use regular powdered sugar, but it will significantly increase the calories and grams of sugar per cookie.

***If using regular powdered sugar, reduce the amount of salt by half.

****See blog post for 3 different ways to make your sugar cookies and when you should chill your dough.

Nutrition facts are a calculated estimate of one cookie, including frosting and extra chocolate chips.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 cookie / Calories: 178 / Fat: 11.1g / Saturated fat: 5.4 / Carbohydrates: 21.4g / Fiber: 3.9g / Sugar: 6g / Protein: 1.6