No- Fail Sugar Cookies

The baseball cookies pictured below have been featured in a post on The Recipe Girl blog (with step by step instructions): Baseball Cookies. On another post, I detailed how to (step by step) make Soccer Ball cookies: Soccer Ball Cookies.

Yield: 5 dozen (3-inch) cookies

Prep Time: 45 min + chill time

Cook Time: 8 min

No- Fail Sugar Cookies

This is a wonderful recipe for decorator cookies of any type- the dough rolls out easily and the cookies turn out sturdy and delicious.


2 cups butter, softened
2 cups granulated white sugar
6 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or desired flavoring- such as almond)
1 teaspoon salt


1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix well. Whisk together dry ingredients in a separate bowl, and add a little at a time to butter mixture. Mix until flour is completely incorporated and dough comes together.

2. Cover and chill for 1 to 2 hours (or see tips below).

3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Make sure you let your oven preheat for at least 1/2-hour before baking these or any other cookies.

4. Roll to desired thickness and cut into desired shapes. Bake on ungreased baking sheet for 8 to 10 minutes, or until just beginning to brown around the edges. (longer time for thicker cookies)

5. Gently remove cookies with a spatula and let them cool on wire racks.


* tip for rolling out dough without the mess: Rather than wait for your cookie dough to chill, take the freshly made dough and place a glob between two sheets of parchment paper. Roll it out to the desired thickness, then place the dough and paper on a cookie sheet and pop it into the refrigerator. Continue rolling out your dough between sheets of paper until you have used it all. By the time you are finished, the first batch will be completely chilled and ready to cut. Re-roll leftover dough and repeat the process. Add added bonus is that you are not adding any additional flour to your cookies.

*There are two icing recipes that work well with these cookies: Glace icing or Martha Stewart's Royal Icing

Source: (via


  1. postedAug 29, 2009 1:19 PM

    Really great cookie recipe–soft texture!!!

  2. postedOct 7, 2009 7:17 PM

    I have had this recipe for years and I love these cookies! They have been perfect sugar cookies(to decorate) every time!
    Also, THANK YOU for the soccer ball cookie tutorial… It’s a big help! I am making some for a friend’s daughter this weekend and yours look GREAT!!!

  3. postedDec 5, 2009 4:59 AM
    Susan Humphreys

    I made these for my son’s baseball team party – they were a big hit (at least a triple). My favorite comment was, “If I had paid $5 for this at a bakery, I would be thrilled with it.” And this comment came from someone who would NEVER pay $5 for a cookie!

  4. postedMay 9, 2010 9:11 AM
    Angie Stevenson

    I doubled this recipe and it came out really dry. I’m wondering if I should add some water to it. Any suggestions?

    • postedMay 13, 2010 8:39 AM

      @Angie Stevenson, I’ve never had to add anything to the existing recipe, but with other cookie recipes… if it seems a little dry then adding a bit of milk seems to help.

  5. postedJun 2, 2010 1:00 PM
    Shelley Goddard

    I REALLY need to know how long these keep with the icing and all… It is the first of June and I have a request for these on July 7th. I am supposed to be transporting them to an out-of-state ball tournament! With all the other plans necessary for our trip, if I can’t make them weeks in advance, I think it will be better if I just shell out the cash for someone else to make them, LOL!

    • postedJun 2, 2010 1:07 PM

      @Shelley Goddard, I guess I’d probably have to recommend that you don’t make them. I wouldn’t say that they travel all that well… when they get warm, they tend to become more tender. I’d be afraid that you’d lose some on your journey! I make them at the end of the season for every sport that my son does. I always ice them 2 or 3 days ahead of time and then package them carefully and lay them flat in a big box maybe stacked three high. I’m afraid that making them weeks in advance isn’t a good idea.

  6. postedJul 13, 2010 1:57 PM

    Thanks!!! This recipe is great! Have you tried adding nuts or flavors? Do you have a recipe for the icing?

  7. postedApr 27, 2011 10:10 AM

    I cant wait to try these and thank you for the soccer ball ones, i was looking to make them for my sons teams this weekend one problem, i normally use meringue powered icing, i am in texas and i would have to say that it is most likely gonna feel like 100degrees, should i keep these on ice? a cooler with ice on the bottom and but them in a plastic container? We have a game and noon and then at 3p. i will make the dough tonight bake tomorrow and ice saturday morning, the meringue really hardes pretty fast, or i may do it all but ice tongiht so i am not in a rush

    • postedApr 27, 2011 5:14 PM

      I’d keep them a bit chilled if at all possible. I’d hate for them to soften in the heat and break apart before you give them to the kids.

  8. postedAug 30, 2011 10:27 AM

    I have used this recipe several times for cut-out cookies and it is wonderful, and I used the Soccer Ball cookie Tutorial and they were a big success at my daughter’s end of season soccer party…I am wondering if this sugar cookie recipe can be used for drop cookies? I love sugar cookies, but not everyday requires cut-outs and icing. LOL Any ideas on baking time, and if they would still need to be refrigerated first?

    • postedAug 30, 2011 1:30 PM

      I’ve never tried them as drop cookies. Something tells me that this recipe wouldn’t be good for that though since they don’t spread much while baking.

  9. postedOct 28, 2011 5:30 PM

    I have used this recipe before and it is a keeper! Just curious as to whether or not the dough holds up well to freezing….

    • postedOct 29, 2011 10:14 AM

      You know, I have never actually frozen the dough… only the cookies.

  10. postedOct 29, 2011 8:18 PM

    If I try it out, I will come back and comment to let you know how it works.

  11. postedFeb 6, 2012 1:04 PM

    Do you know if anyone has tried replacing the eggs in this recipe with something else? My son has an allergy and I’m supposed to bring cookies for his school party next week. I usually use flax meal mixed with hot water to replace eggs I also have a box of egg replacer too. Thanks 🙂

    • postedFeb 6, 2012 1:24 PM

      I’m not sure about that.

  12. postedFeb 29, 2012 10:27 PM
    Brandi Johnson

    I followed the recipe exactly as instructed. Chilled for an hour and went to roll it out and it’s crumbly like it needs a liquid…idk what to do other than add milk! I didn’t leave anything out. Frustrated…I obligated myself to make soccer cookies and wanted to give them time enough to dry as you instructed for the icing. Any advice would helpful…

    • postedMar 1, 2012 6:08 AM

      Was the dough too chilled and that’s why it would not roll out? I always use the method described in the tips- rolling the cookies out prior to refrigeration so that they’re just ready to cut and bake. Works perfectly.

  13. postedMay 24, 2012 7:38 AM

    I have found this cookie recipe to be great the day they are baked, however, if they are not eaten right away, I think they get somewhat dry even covered with royal icing. Adding more butter or less flour would help.

    • postedMay 24, 2012 11:00 AM

      I don’t have that experience w/ these. Room temp for days or frozen for weeks- still love them!

  14. postedJul 14, 2012 12:50 PM

    curious if you have any tips for adding cocoa powder to these to make them chocolate? I was going to make Darth Vader cookies and thought I would save myself ALOT of time icing by making the cookies chocolate!

    • postedJul 15, 2012 9:36 AM

      I’ve never done it so I can’t tell you for sure if it would work out okay or not!

  15. postedNov 6, 2012 6:53 PM

    I agree with the issue of dryness all around. When you mix this dough, add flour gradually and use your hands to bind it together, otherwise it is crumbly. The cookies are good the first day, as someone else said, but are dry after that. There is just too much flour in it. The only good thing is you can roll them without chilling and the dough holds its shape when baked. However, I feel a recipe with less flour and a tad more butter, plus much less baking powder is better and stays moister longer. I no longer use the No Fail cookie recipe because it failed me!

    • postedNov 7, 2012 5:34 AM

      Weird- they are perfect for me every time! Do you use a stand mixer? Maybe that’s the secret- I always use my stand mixer- sometimes doubling the recipe too.

  16. postedNov 6, 2012 6:56 PM

    BTW, for chocolate cookies, substitute 1 c. of the flour with unsweetened cocoa powder and add an extra 3/4 c. of sugar. I actually find this version very good campared to the vanilla recipe. A teaspoon of coffee extract added is good too!

    • postedNov 7, 2012 5:34 AM

      Can’t wait to try this!

  17. postedJan 8, 2014 12:29 PM

    I asked about freezing this dough way back and said I would come back and comment if I tried it.

    Well, it works just fine! I made the dough about 3 weeks in advance, rolled it between parchment sheets then wrapped it tightly and froze it. When I took it out to cut and bake it worked just like it was freshly made – tasted fine as well!

  18. postedJan 31, 2014 3:10 PM

    I tried this just now but my dough was so runny, not a dough at all! I added at least 10 cups of flour to finally get the dough to come together. And I followed the everything in the recipe, help?

    • postedJan 31, 2014 4:12 PM

      You must have made an error somewhere… I make this recipe several times a year, as written. Definitely not a runny dough!

    • postedJan 31, 2014 4:13 PM

      I don’t understand what would make it runny… the only liquid in the recipe is eggs and vanilla…

  19. postedJul 22, 2014 2:25 PM

    This is my first time making cookies. I halved the recipe as didn’t want that many cookies. Dough came out fine but spread when baking. Can’t understand why and really disappointed as sought out this recipe so that I could create and decorate shaped cookies for my daughters birthday

    • postedJul 24, 2014 1:37 PM

      It’s hard to pinpoint where things went wrong. Did you use butter (not margarine?) I use this recipe every time I need cut-out sugar cookies, and I never have any problems!

  20. postedNov 9, 2014 5:49 PM

    Is it ok to use the premade black frosting instead of making the black?

    • postedNov 11, 2014 6:24 PM

      I would think that would be tough. It won’t harden like you see in the pictures.

  21. postedMay 12, 2016 7:35 AM

    I’m wondering if I can do half vanilla and half almond extract. I love almond flavor but worried 2 tsp would be too much? 

    • postedMay 12, 2016 6:50 PM

      that would probably be fine!

  22. postedFeb 9, 2017 7:57 AM

    I make this recipe all the time and the cookies come out great each time and use both real vanilla and almond. The only problem I have is dry flour at the bottom of my bowl which I have to incorporate into the dough before putting into the refrigerator. I roll my cookies out on a floured board and then refrigerate for at least 15-20 minutes before baking so they are good and firm before baking. I quit cooling the dough for 1-2 hours before rolling because my dough was too hard for me to roll. I have folks who don’t eat their cookies for a week or so and say they are still fresh. I also send cookies over to my deployed Soldiers in Afghanistan so the cookies are 3-4 weeks old at that time and am told they are still tasty.

    • postedFeb 13, 2017 6:12 PM

      Happy to hear that this cookie recipe is a success for you!

  23. postedOct 10, 2017 3:49 PM
    Irene Munoz

    I have made these cookies quite a few times ,have had such great feedback from anyone that eats these cookies have even sold quite a few dozens people have so enjoyed them they order from me to bake them some I bake them almost every holiday this reciepe is a winner. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    • postedOct 12, 2017 6:15 AM

      You’re welcome- I love this recipe too!

  24. postedMar 13, 2018 7:00 PM

    Your sugar cookie recipe is amazing! I just finished making nearly 200 Easter bunnies! My grandmother always used almond extract in her sugar cookie recipe and her cream puff filling! Loving your recipe.

    • postedMar 14, 2018 6:24 AM

      glad it was so successful for you!

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