Melt-in-Your-Mouth Sourdough Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookies may just be my favorite treat. I love a good chewy sugar cookie that melts in your mouth and has that distinct hint of almond extract shining through. And the frosting: I can’t forget an amazing frosting that pairs so well with a sugar cookie. It’s just the best. I have a favorite and beloved cut-out sugar cookie recipe that I’ve been making for years and absolutely love, but sometimes I don’t have the energy to roll and cut out sugar cookies. I’ve also never added sourdough discard to sugar cookies…until now. These sugar cookies are super fast, melt-in-your-mouth and use up some of that sourdough discard I always seem to have lurking in my refrigerator. Perfect for Valentine’s Day or any day you just want a little something sweet, these sourdough sugar cookies do not disappoint. Give them a try!

Ingredients in Sourdough Sugar Cookies

Don’t let this long list of ingredients scare you off. These sourdough sugar cookies come together quickly, and each ingredient is needed to get that melt-in-your-mouth texture that is so irresistible.

Butter: I am a big advocate of using unsalted butter in baked goods. Using unsalted butter allows you to easily adjust the salt in a recipe. Different brands of salted butter have different amounts of salt added to them, making it difficult to adjust a recipe for salt. If you only have salted butter, decrease the salt in this recipe and add salt to taste as needed.

Granulated Sugar: White sugar is typically used for most sugar cookie recipes. This recipe is not different, with most of its sweetness coming from white granulated sugar.

Powdered Sugar: Adding some powdered sugar into the cookie dough gives the cookie a lightness that is unique to this cookie. 

Vegetable Oil: I don’t often use vegetable oil in cookie recipes, but I find it incorporates itself well to this dough. Definitely use a neutral-flavored oil and mix it in after the sugars have been added.

Egg: 1 large egg is needed for the cookie dough. The egg emulsifies the butter/oil and sugars together, resulting in a very creamy dough.

Sour Cream: Sour cream adds a little extra richness and moistness to the cookie dough. Sour cream is also used in the frosting. It adds a little tang that blends and balances the sweet frosting.

Sourdough Discard: I don’t have too many cookie recipes that use sourdough discard (except these brown butter chocolate chunk discard cookies–if you haven’t made them yet, you’ll want to). I do love the addition of sourdough discard in this cookie recipe. I’m always looking for a way to use up some of my discard. The discard in this recipe doesn’t add flavor, unless you use an older discard that’s been sitting in the refrigerator. For this recipe I tend to use a fresh discard because I don’t actually want to taste the tang of sourdough in these cookies.

Vanilla & Almond Extract: In my opinion, you can’t have a sugar cookie without vanilla extract or almond extract. I grew up adding almond extract in every batch of frosting made…and I still love it to this day. It’s the quintessential ingredient for me in sugar cookies. 

All Purpose Flour: This recipe calls for an all purpose flour. I have not tried substituting any other type of flour.

Salt/Baking Soda/Baking Powder: Adding in salt, baking soda and baking powder help the cookie rise and balance the flavors. Make sure to mix these in with the flour before adding them to the butter mixture.

Heavy Cream: I love adding heavy cream to my frosting. I think it makes the frosting much more creamy and delicious. I add heavy cream a little at a time until I get the soft and whippy texture I’m looking for.

Mixing Sourdough Sugar Cookie Dough

Using a stand mixer or a hand mixer, mix together the softened butter with the granulated sugar. Add in the powdered sugar and vegetable oil and mix until creamy and combined, about 1-2 minutes. Add the egg and mix again until light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes. At this point the mixture will be light in color and look very creamy. Add in the sour cream, vanilla and almond extract and sourdough discard. Mix again until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

To a separate bowl, fluff together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the fluffed flour mixture into the mixer and mix until combined. Be careful not to over-mix. The dough will feel super soft but should not be overly sticky.

Scooping and Shaping Cookie Dough Balls

Line two pans with parchment paper and use a 2 teaspoon cookie scoop to scoop out the dough. Roll it into a ball and set on the parchment paper. Repeat to make about 24-26 cookies. Pour some granulated sugar into a bowl and oil the bottom of a small glass. Stick the bottom of the glass in the bowl to coat it with sugar. Press the sugared glass bottom on top of the cookie, flattening it. Repeat with the remaining cookies.

Baking Sourdough Sugar Cookies that Melt-in-Your-Mouth

I like using convection bake when baking cookies. I find they have a better texture when baking convection, but it all depends on your oven. If you don’t have convection or are not familiar with it, you can bake the cookies on a regular oven setting too. Bake the cookies for about 8 minutes at 325 degrees F convection. If you choose not to use convection, bake for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees F. Watch the cookies closely. You don’t want any of the edges or bottoms to burn. It’s better to pull them out a minute or two early than have them bake too long.

Almond Flavored Frosting

While the cookies bake, whip up the frosting. Make sure to use soft butter and whip, whip, whip. Frosting gets more creamy, the longer it whips. Use a stand mixer or ready your arm for a workout with a hand mixer. After the cookies have cooled, frost and decorate each cookie as desired. These cookies are perfect to gift and they can easily be made ahead of when you need them. I love eating these cookies at room temperature or chilled. Both are delicious and will just ‘melt-in-your-mouth’.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I store extra sugar cookies?

Extra sugar cookies can be stacked in between parchment paper and stored in the freezer for a couple of months. Pull then out a few hours before eating to thaw to chilled room temperature.

Can I leave out the sourdough discard in these cookies?

This recipe was specifically tested with sourdough discard. To leave it out, increase the flour to 425 grams and leave out the sourdough discard.

Looking for More Sourdough Discard Recipes?

Melt-in-Your-Mouth Sourdough Sugar Cookies

Melt-in-your-mouth sourdough sugar cookies are tender, sweet and oh-so delicious. These make the perfect cookie for any celebration or just to enjoy when you're in the mood for a sweet treat. No cookie cutters or chilling required and you can use up some of your sourdough discard. Sourdough sugar cookies are incredibly soft, tender and you won't be able to resist their melt-in-your-mouth quality.
4 from 2 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Cooling Time 20 minutes
Total Time 38 minutes
Course cookies, Dessert, Sweet Treats
Cuisine American
Servings 24 cookies


Sourdough Sugar Cookies

  • 113 grams unsalted butter softened, about 1/2 cup
  • 140 grams granulated sugar about 2/3 cup
  • 40 grams powdered sugar about 1/3 cup
  • 70 grams vegetable oil about 1/3 cup
  • 1 large egg about 50 grams
  • 20 grams sour cream about 1 Tablespoon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 70 grams sourdough discard see recipe note
  • 400 grams all purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt about 5 grams
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • granulated sugar for pressing down cookies

Light and Fluffy Frosting

  • 85 grams unsalted butter about 6 Tablespoons
  • 20 grams sour cream about 1 Tablespoon
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 350 grams powdered sugar about 3 cups
  • 10-30 grams heavy cream see recipe note


  • Preheat the oven to 325 F degrees convection (or 350 degrees F non-convection). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • To the bowl of a stand mixer (you can also use a hand mixer), add the softened butter, granulated sugar and powdered sugar. Mix until combined. Add the oil and mix. Add the egg and mix until very creamy–about 1-2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  • Add the sour cream, sourdough discard, vanilla extract and almond extract and mix until well combined. Set aside.
  • To a small bowl, add the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Fluff together with a fork.
  • Add the flour mixture to the bowl of creamed butter/sugar and mix until combined and no dry streaks remain. Don't over-mix.The dough will be soft but not sticky.
  • Using a 2 Tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop the cookie dough out of the bowl. Roll it into a ball and place the cookie dough ball on the baking sheet. Repeat with the other balls of dough.
  • Lightly oil the bottom of a small glass cup. Stick the bottom of the cup in granulated sugar and press down on each cookie, flattening them for easy baking.
  • Bake the cookies for 8 minutes on 325 degree F convection bake. Bake for 10 minutes on regular 350 degrees F bake.
  • Let the cookies cool completely before frosting.


  • Mix together all the ingredients until light and creamy. Add extra heavy cream if the frosting is too thick and you want a creamier frosting. You can also substitute milk instead of heavy cream if desired.
  • Add food coloring as desired, frost the cooled cookies and enjoy!


Sourdough Discard: Not all sourdough discard is created equal. Discard that has been sitting in the fridge for a month will be more sour than discard sitting for a day or two. Using older discard can alter or deepen the sourdough flavor. I prefer these cookies to not have a sourdough flavor to them. I typically use bubbly sourdough starter or discard right after its peak. If you want to taste the sourdough flavor, choose a discard that has been in your refrigerator for awhile.
Frosting: Mix together all the ingredients until light and creamy. Add extra heavy cream if the frosting is too thick and you want a creamier frosting. You can also substitute milk instead of heavy cream if desired.
Keyword crispy sourdough discard crackers, melt-in-your-mouth sourdough sugar cookies, melt-in-your-mouth sugar cookies, sourdough cookie, sourdough cookies, sourdough discard cookies, sourdough discard recipe, sourdough sugar cookie, sourdough sugar cookies, sourdough valentine treat, valentine cookies, valentine sourdough sugar cookies
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating


    1. I have not tried that. I think the texture of these relies on the combination of butter and vegetable oil. If you use all butter it would still be good but a different texture.

  1. These turned out perfect-so soft but moist and tasty. I used plant butter and plant based sour cream as we have to be dairy free. I also used quite tangy discard but don’t really notice any sour taste in the cookies. Will make these again to use up discard. Thanks for the great recipes!