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crisp sugar cookie

Light Crisp Sugar Cookies

These airy light and crisp sugar cookies can be made with just butter, a combination of butter and shortening or a combination of butter and lard. When made with 100% butter, they don't spread quite as evenly and the centers are a tad bit denser, but they are still great.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword lard
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 32
Author Cookie Madness


  • 1/3 cup cold salted European style butter cool room temperature (75 grams)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable shortening 65 grams or good quality leaf lard (75 grams)
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar 260 grams
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt it doesn't seem like a lot, but the cream of tartar adds some saltiness
  • 1 teaspoon good vanilla
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour 170 grams, weigh or spoon and scoop
  • 3/4 scant teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 scant teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Coarse or sparkly sugar optional


  • Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Have ready two foil lined or ungreased baking sheet.
  • Cut the cold butter into thin slices and put it in a large mixing bowl with the shortening or lard. Beat cold butter with an electric mixer until light and creamy. Add the sugar and beat for about 3 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl often. Add the egg yolks and continue beating for another 2 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl. Beat in the salt and vanilla and beat for another minute.
  • Mix the flour, baking soda and cream of tartar together in a separate bowl, then gradually stir into the whipped egg mixture until a soft dough forms. Shape the dough into 30 or 32 one inch balls. Chill the dough balls or bake immediately.
  • Dip tops of dough balls in sugar and place on a foil lined baking sheet spacing about 2 ½ inches apart. Bake at 300 for about 20 minutes or until the cookies appear set and just slightly brown around the edges. Sprinkle a little more sugar on top as soon as they come out of the oven.
  • Let cool on baking sheet for a minute or two, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool and crisp.