Secret Ingredient Sugar Cookies are made from a tried and true recipe in which the secret ingredient is a box of instant pudding mix. I first tried the recipe years ago based on the testimony below.
How could I resist? After baking the cookies I gathered reviews from my own group and had similar reactions, including a thumbs up from my daughter who really loved them. For sugar cookies, or any cookies, instant pudding mix cookies sugar cookies are excellent. They're soft in the middle, have crispy edges and a whole lot of flavor from the vanilla pudding mix.
Update: A decade later I am still making Secret Ingredient Sugar Cookies! If you don't need 80 or so cookies, you can halve the recipe. I put measurements for a half batch, including how much instant pudding mix to use, in the notes. Also, you can make these with lemon instant pudding mix rather than vanilla.
Secret Ingredient Sugar Cookies
- 2 sticks salted butter (230 grams)
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
- 1 cup powdered sugar (240 grams)
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 package instant vanilla or lemon pudding mix (3.4 oz size)
- 4 cups all-purpose flour (500 grams)
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Sprinkles optional
- In a large bowl, cream the butter, oil and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, vanilla and dry pudding mix. Combine the flour, cream of tartar and baking soda; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well.
- Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart (I rolled mine into 1 ¼ inch balls) onto ungreased baking sheets. Flatten with a glass dipped in sugar or skip the sugar and the glass and just press down and add sprinkles.
- Bake at 350° for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks.
For a half batch, use 1 stick butter, ½ cup each – oil, sugar, powdered sugar, 1 egg, ½ tsp. vanilla, ⅓ cup pudding mix (or weigh out 1.7 oz), 2 cups flour, ½ each cream of tartar and baking soda.