Lemon Sugar Cookies

May 19 2013

by Grace Mannon

Southern Recipe Posted by Grace Mannon.

In the summers when I was growing up, we would often gather for lunch at my grandma’s house. Usually, the boys had spent the morning working on something farm-related, and though I sometimes chipped in there, I most often helped my grandma prepare the food. The table was always full of good eats, and the beverage selection consisted of three choices (and only three choices): sweet tea, lemonade, or milk. Grandpa always had tea, my brothers and cousins almost always had milk (they were growing boys, after all!), and I always had lemonade.

There’s something wonderful about a drink that’s sweet but makes your lips pucker at the same time. It’s downright refreshing and delicious, and the taste of these cookies is reminiscent of that effect. Like traditional drop sugar cookies, they’re chewy and a bit crunchy, thanks to a coating of granulated or coarse sugar. What makes them extra special, though, is the burst of lemon in every bite. On top of all that, the combination of flecks of yellow zest and shimmering sugar makes them quite lovely to behold as well! Grandma would be proud (and she’d happily snag a few!).

Lemon Sugar Cookies

Makes about 3 dozen cookies


  • 2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Zest of 2 large lemons
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup granulated or coarse sugar, for rolling


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
  3. Using a mixer, beat together butter and sugar until smooth and creamy, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add lemon zest, egg, vanilla extract, and lemon juice; mix until combined.
  5. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients.
  6. Roll rounded tablespoons of dough into balls and coat with sugar.
  7. Place on prepared baking sheets, about 1-1/2 inches apart.
  8. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until cookies are slightly brown around the edges and set.
  9. Let cookies sit on the baking sheets for two minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

Enjoy this southern recipe in this collection of our southern cuisine – let’s gather the best southern food ideas for The Southern Coterie cookbook.


Grace Mannon View More Blog Posts from this Author

You've heard it before--American by birth, Southern by the grace of God. Prepare to laugh at me and with me as I make a mess in my kitchen.

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