Vanilla cookies recipe

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makes: 15 - 25
Skill: easy
Cost: cheap
Prep: 15 min
Cooking: 20 min
(plus cooling time)

Nutrition per portion

Calories 98 kCal 5%
Fat 4.5g 6%
  -  Saturates 3g 15%
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  • Vanilla cookies may sound plain, but as our picture shows - with a little creativity - they can look spectacular.

    These vanilla cookies are so easy to make. Follow this recipe for the basic base, and decorate with different coloured icing and sweets. With a delicate flavour, these vanilla cookies are made with just a few store cupboard essentials, butter and egg. Taking just 35 minutes to make from start to finish, this recipe is enough to make 15 – 25 biscuits, depending on their shape and size. To prevent the cookies baking unevenly, rotate the tray often in your oven so that the mixture is exposed to different temperatures while they’re cooking.



    • 125g (4oz) unsalted butter, softened
    • 150g (5oz) caster sugar
    • Pinch of salt
    • Few drops of vanilla extract
    • 1 medium egg
    • 250g (8oz) plain flour
    • You will also need:
    • Baking sheets, lined with non-stick liners or baking parchment


    • To make this cookie recipe, set the oven to 160°C/320°F/Gas Mark 3.

    • Cream together the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla extract until the mixture is light and fluffy. You can refer to our how to cream butter and sugar guide here to ensure you’re creaming correctly.

    • Beat in the egg and then the flour until the mixture binds together to form a dough. If the dough is very soft, wrap it in a plastic bag and chill it until it’s firm enough to roll out.

    • Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to about 3-4mm (nearly ¼in) thick and use cutters to cut out shapes, re-rolling trimmings as necessary until all the dough is used.

    • Place the cut-out shapes on the lined baking sheets. If there is time, chill the shapes for 10-15 mins before baking.

    • Bake the biscuits in the centre of the oven for 15-20 mins, or until the cookies start to turn golden at the edges. Remove the baking sheets from the oven.

    • Leave the cookies to cool for a few mins on the baking sheets, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely and decorate as you wish.

    • To freeze: The cold cookies may be packed into a plastic container and frozen for up to 3 months. After defrosting, they may be “refreshed” in a hot oven for a few mins to re-crisp them.

    Tips for making vanilla cookies:

    To make these chocolate flavoured, reduce the amount of flour to 200g and add 50g cocoa powder to the dough.

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