I’ve got this thing for Glazed Lemon Cookies, especially in the spring. I know lemons are available year-round but there’s something about their bright tang that punctuates the rejuvenating nature of the season.
These cookies get a big smack of lemon from both fresh lemon juice and lemon zest in both the cookie and the glaze. I even add more zest after the sticky glaze is dripped onto the cookies and before it zests. I think it’s pretty plus you’ll get no argument from me about the added pucker punch.
The cookie dough is a straightforward mixture of butter, sugar, flour and eggs. Nothing out of the ordinary here. This basic recipe can be tinkered with a bit. I have substituted Meyer Lemons for the common lemon, and then the cookie loses its tang but gains more sweetness. Meyer Lemons are a botanical cross between lemons and oranges or mandarin oranges. The skin is also much thinner. I find them at specialty food stores, and occasionally my market. Cozy up to a friend who has a tree and trade a few Meyers for a dozen cookies.
Likewise, you could use limes or even Key limes instead of the lemons. All will provide a different taste. I did once substitute the vanilla flavoring with half vanilla and half lemon flavoring, too. A bit of lemon overkill, if you ask me.
I hope you’ll give this recipe a try. The cookies freeze well and thaw quickly. Take them to work, serve them at a baby shower, or keep them all to yourself. A cup of tea is a lovely accompaniment.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
- ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg, vanilla, and lemon juice and beat until combined. With mixer on low, beat in flour mixture.
- Drop dough by heaping tablespoons, 1 inch apart, onto two baking sheets. Bake until edges are golden, 15 to 20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Let cool 2 minutes on sheets, then transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
- While cookies are cooling, make Lemon Glaze. In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar, lemon zest, and fresh lemon juice until smooth.
- Spread cookies with Lemon Glaze and let set, about 1 hour.