Amish Sugar Cookies with Sour Cream Icing


amish sugar cookies with sour cream glaze-8 squareFirst of all, because we’re so close to Christmas and because of SO many requests, we’ve put together a list of stocking stuffers for the guys in your life! So head over there and check it out if you’re still looking, but don’t forget to come back because you need these cookies.

So two summers ago, we posted a recipe for Dirty Diet Coke, a little concoction I’d seen floating around the internet and I added an extra twist of deliciousness (half and half) that I had experienced at Sonic once upon a time. In fact, I have kind of a funny story about how I came to put half and half in Diet Coke: a few years ago, Sonic was really promoting some Dr. Pepper drink combo with vanilla, cherry, and cream. They stopped promoting it, and about a year later, I went back and ordered a drink with cream. They sounded confused. I told them, “You know, like you guys did awhile back with the Dr. Pepper and the vanilla and the cherry.” Well. I got my drink and they had put that gross whipped topping on top of my drink. It floated. It didn’t melt. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t actually fit for human consumption. So that was the last time for that.


Turns out the Dirty Diet Coke has ambiguous origins–currently, it can be found at these little drink and cookie shops in Utah called Swig, but there’s a loyal core of followers that believe it originated elsewhere. I dunno. I live 1500 miles away, so I’m kind of out of the loop.

So while we were in Utah last summer, we decided to finally visit the infamous Swig and get the infamous Dirty Diet Coke and the infamous pink-frosted sugar cookie. And it was good–definitely different from your typical rolled and refrigerated and cut sugar cookie.

There are lots of Swig sugar cookie knock-offs out there in the blogosphere and as I started looking at them, I realized that I knew that recipe. It came from my all-time favorite cookbook, The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook (which is currently out of print, but you can find used copies. I bought the updated version and I was not quite as impressed.) There are some variations out there, but they have a few things in common, the most significant being using a combination of butter and cooking oil, a combination of sugar and powdered sugar, using cream of tartar, and dropping the cookies (instead of rolling them) and then pressing them with a glass dipped in sugar. If any of those things aren’t your thing, I would stick with traditional sugar cookies. Also, both the cookies and the frosting are on the salty side. That’s just how they are.

So I remembered these because I used to make them all time when I was in college. I made them all the time because I had a) no time and b) no money. So when I could make tons of cookies with half the butter of a regular recipe, and no rolling, chilling, and cutting were involved, I was a huge fan.

When I remade these the first time, I knew they weren’t really the Swig cookie–they were much lighter, crispier, and more delicate (the Swig cookie was chewy and crinkly; I suspect they use more butter and flour). When I remade them, I added more flour, which didn’t regret; the dough as the recipe was written was more like a batter and I’m willing to bet those at really high altitudes would have had a disaster on their hands. I also chilled the dough, which isn’t necessary, but it helps prevent spreading, especially those later batches that seem to flatten out more.

So, long story short: these aren’t Swig knockoff cookies, but they’re definitely in the same family. However, they’re delicious and addictive and biting into a cold one is pretty spectacular.

You’re going to need butter, vegetable oil, sugar, powdered sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour, baking soda, table salt, and cream of tartar.

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Preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick mats and set aside.

In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and oil at medium speed until blended. Gradually add 1 cup sugar and powdered sugar, beating well. Add in eggs and vanilla.

Combine flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the butter mixture, beating at low speed until combined. If desired, chill for 30-60 minutes.

Using a 1-tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop the cookies out onto the pan.

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Gently press the bottom of a smooth glass onto the bottom of one of the dough balls, then press in the 1/2 cup of sugar,

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then press back onto the first cookie.

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After the first time, you can just dip the glass in the sugar and press it into the next cookie (it needs the moisture from the first cookie to stick to the glass.)

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Bake for 10-12 minutes or until very lightly brown around the edges. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.

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To make the icing, beat the ingredients together in a medium mixing bowl. Add food coloring as desired.

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When the cookies are cool, spoon about 1 teaspoon of icing on top of each cookie and spread it with the back of a spoon. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Makes about 42 cookies.

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Remember we have these darling tags to use on all of your goodies this season!


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Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. I have made these since I was a kid with my mom. I have never used oil, it’s not needed. Delicious!!

  2. I am kind of grossed out by veggie oil. Can I substitute liquid coconut oil or anything else?

  3. These are the most delicious frosted sugar cookies! I’m so excited to have a recipe that’s more enjoyable than rolled, cut-out cookies to make and to eat! For Christmas, I didn’t color the icing and used Christmas sprinkles and red and green sprinkling sugar. They are festive and oh so good! Thank you so much!!!

  4. Thanks for this delicious recipe! My kids wanted cut out cookies for Christmas and I was tired of baking, so we made these instead. So easy, my 11-year-old did most of the work. It made a lot, enough to share, and they were so good! Our new favorite sugar cookie recipe.

  5. These would be great to make with my kids. I love the taste of sugar cookies, but I can’t stand how tedious it is to roll them out, cut them, move them to the cookie sheet, and start all over again. Rolling them in a ball and squishing them with a glass would totally take care of that problem.

    I hope you girls are taking next week off. Merry Christmas to both of you!

    1. Also, what’s the font you used in the last picture to write “Amish Sugar Cookies”? I saw that one somewhere else and I didn’t download it right away and now I can’t find it again or remember the name. Can you let me know where you got it? Please and thank you.

  6. Had never heard of Dirty Diet Coke, but it reminds me of my habit of adding some half-and-half to root beer to make it taste like a root beer float. :). Must try the DDC recipe. I have a “soft drop sugar cookies” recipe that we love, and it too is iced (in white) with colored sprinkles or jimmies on top. Always the prettiest ones on the cookies plate, and very easy. Most years my class and I would bake them at school so they had a dozen to take home. Enjoyed reading your post today after making those cookies with my grandson. Happy Holidays to you!

  7. I’d sure like to know what these cookies have to do with the Amish. Other then that, I like an easy sugar cookie. Thanks for the recipe.

    1. Oh my gosh, I totally forgot to put that in. My brain was gone, haha!! But yes, in fact, they are! 🙂

  8. But, you didn’t say what you thought of Swig! Did you love it or think it didn’t live up to the hype?

    1. If we lived there, I’d probably go there frequently. I thought my husband’s Mountain Dew with mango was better than my dirty diet coke. Fountain drinks are so hit and miss, you know? I will say I missed the half and half…they should do that, lol.

      1. There is a drink I love at a similar drink shop and it is a diet coke, or diet dr pepper, with coconut and pineapple syrups and a shot of cream. It sounded weird to me but I’m obsessed with it now and keep going back for more! Cream or half and half is definitely a must add!

  9. I wanted to let you know you’ve brought back such fond memories for me today. I am sick and stressed and ready to be DONE with all the stuff I have to do, and you have reminded me of the afternoon I spent baking cookies with my grandma. She let me press all the cookies out by myself, and we used my mom’s childhood copy of Betty Crocker’s cookbook for girls and boys. Grandma was a dirt-digger, a truth-teller, an adventure-seeker. She was not a cookie-baker. So the fact that she did it with me stuck with me all these years; I’m 36 now and she died when I was in college. So thank you for reminding me that the best memories involve ordinary days that someone turns extraordinary for no good reason and often no money at all. I needed that.

  10. When I click the print this recipe button, it takes me to your dirty diet coke post….which is great, because I printed that recipe too, but I need this sugar cookie recipe…in a bad way. 🙂

    1. Ummmm, that is the weirdest thing! I’ll look into it as soon as I get home, haha!

    2. Okay, I think I fixed it! Chalk it up to one of the weirder things that’s happened here, hahaha.

  11. These are my Nanny’s sugar cookies! As soon as you said butter and oil I wondered if they were the same, and they are, except for the cream of tartar. She always pressed hers down with a fork like peanut butter cookies. Looking at her handwriting in my cookbook this morning brought back a flood of memories; this is our first Christmas without her. I have become the designated cookie baker in the family (I actually made sugar cookies for my cousins for after her funeral) and will definitely be making a batch of these over the holidays.

    Thanks for sparking some precious memories this morning!

    1. What a touching, lovely story. My own beloved and cherished Gran passed on, over 3 decades ago. The loss NEVER goes away. But, I use her recipes and all of her baking equipment every day so she is always close to me. I’m glad that you have such wonderful memories to keep your heart warm. 😀