Chocolate sugar cookies topped with the sweetest strawberry frosting make a lovely treat for any occasion.
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Sugar cookies are pretty ubiquitous, but if you’ve never tried chocolate sugar cookies, well, you’re in for a treat!
I mean, it stands to reason that these would be popular – all the fun of cut-out sugar cookies, in any shape you desire, infused with a rich, real chocolate flavor thanks to a bit of Dutch process cocoa powder. (You can use the extra laying around from this recipe!)Have you ever made CHOCOLATE sugar cookies? If not, you are missing out in a serious way!Click To Tweet
Then, the cut-out cookies become tasty canvasses to be decorated any way you wish. They keep their shape very well and make a beautiful base for royal icing designs, but sometimes you just want to keep it simple.
Enter: the lovely strawberry.
The Best Strawberry Frosting Starts With Freeze-Dried Fruit
If chocolate sugar cookies by themselves are charming and crowd-pleasing, chocolate sugar cookies with strawberry frosting are all that and more.
Especially this strawberry frosting. It’s simple to make, has a natural strawberry flavor and pink color, and comes out reliably with a nice, thick consistency. Perfect for spreading on cakes or cookies.
Also perfect for eating with a spoon. In case you were wondering. 🙂
All these qualities are thanks to the use of freeze-dried strawberries, which are ground into a fine powder, then mixed into standard buttercream ingredients.
I’ve made many a strawberry frosting before that always had one problem or another – too watery, not much strawberry flavor, an unappetizing color, etc. This frosting suffers from none of those issues. Zero. Perfect every time.
You might be surprised by how easy it is to find freeze-dried strawberries in your regular grocery store – often with the fruit snacks, if not with the actual fruit. But just in case, they’re also easy to order online.
A Practical Note
Although each step is quite easy, it is a bit of multi-stage process to make any decorated cookie. If you, like me, don’t often have long stretches of time to spend in the kitchen, I would recommend breaking down the process over a couple of days.
The recipe is very well-suited to this, and it makes each step very easy and manageable, without detracting from the finished product at all:
- Day One: Make the sugar cookie dough, keep in the fridge
- Day Two: Roll out and bake the cookie shapes; make the frosting if you have time, keep in the fridge
- Day Three: Make frosting if needed, decorate cookies
As is perhaps obvious from the fact that I made this batch of cookies in a heart shape, and from the way the photos are styled, I made these just prior to Valentine’s Day. I thought they looked especially cute paired with these sweet M&M pretzel granola bars as little gifts for friends and neighbors:
And then, despite my best intentions, I completely failed to get the recipe posted prior to, or even on, Valentine’s Day. The combination of an extremely sick toddler and preparing for a week-long trip might have had a teeny bit to do with that!
In any event, due to the timing, I initially thought I would forego posting these cookies on the blog entirely, but if you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen the cookies already there, where a few folks have asked for the sugar cookie recipe, specifically. So, here you have it!
Fortunately, even though this batch was pretty in pink, the cookies themselves are truly a delectable and endlessly adaptable canvas. I’ve made them into clovers for St. Patrick’s Day, signs and arrows for birthday parties, these spooky Linzers for Halloween, you name it. So, really, let your imagination run wild – and enjoy! ♥
Strawberry-Frosted Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Yield about 18 2.5-inch cookies
The best cut-out chocolate sugar cookies are delightful for any occasion, and especially sweet paired with this beautiful pink strawberry frosting.
For the Chocolate Sugar Cookies:
- 3/4 cup (90 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup (26 grams) Dutch process cocoa powder
- pinch of salt
- 6 tablespoons (3 ounces, 85 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup (85 grams) powdered sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Strawberry Frosting:
- 1/2 cup (about 5 grams) freeze-dried strawberries
- 8 tablespoons (4 ounces, 113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 cups (227 grams) powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt, optional
- To make the cookie dough, combine flour, cocoa powder, and salt in a medium bowl; whisk to blend and set aside.
- In a large bowl using a stand or hand mixer, combine the butter and powdered sugar, and beat on medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Blend in the egg and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and beat on low speed, just until incorporated and no streaks remain. Form the dough into a disc, wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour.
- When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (170 C) and line baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper. On a lightly-floured work surface, roll out the dough to about ¼-inch thickness. Cut out desired shapes with cookie cutters and place cut-outs on the prepared baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, just until set. Let cookies cool on the sheet for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the frosting, place the freeze-dried strawberries in a powerful blender or food processor, and process into a powdery crumb. You should have around 1/4 cup. Set aside.
- In a large bowl using a hand or stand mixer, beat the butter on medium-high speed for about 2 minutes, until creamy. Add powdered sugar, strawberry powder, cream, and vanilla. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then on high for 2 minutes, until frosting is thick and spreadable. Taste and add a pinch of salt if frosting is overly sweet.
- Spread 2-3 tablespoons frosting on each cookie. After 15-20 minutes at room temperature, the frosting will form a light crust, and the cookies can be stacked and stored either at room temperature or in the fridge. They will keep well for 2-3 days.
It's easy to space out the process of these cookies over several days if you want to. I have kept the mixed cookie dough in the fridge for up to 2 days before rolling, cutting, and baking the cookies. The baked cookies also keep well, covered, overnight, if you want to decorate them the day after baking.
If you have leftover frosting, it can be covered and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
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