Low-Fat Holiday Sugar Cookies

low-fat Christmas sugar cookies on a cooling rack

The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Chill Time: : 2 hrs
Total: 2 hrs 25 mins
Servings: 15 servings
Yield: 30 cookies
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
129 Calories
4g Fat
21g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 15
Amount per serving
Calories 129
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 6%
Saturated Fat 3g 13%
Cholesterol 23mg 8%
Sodium 73mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 23mg 2%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 21mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

With almost half the butter of most sugar cookies, and all of the flavor, these cookies are a crowd pleaser and offer a blank canvas for decorating. They come together much the same way as typical sugar cookies, with a dough that needs to chill for a bit before rolling it out.

Top with festive holiday sprinkles before baking or add a glaze afterward using confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, and some food coloring.

“I really couldn’t tell much of a difference taste-wise between these low-fat cookies and the standard sugar cookie, so that’s a pretty good indication of their quality in my book. Even out of the holiday seasons I love a simple sweet like this so you might as well make this healthier version.” —Noah Velush-Rogers

Low-Fat Christmas Sugar Cookies/tester image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    ingredients to make low-fat Christmas sugar cookies

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  2. Using a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, cream together the butter and sugar. Alternatively, use a hand-held electric mixer.

    beaten butter in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  3. Add egg and vanilla, mixing well to combine.

    beaten butter and eggs in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  4. In another medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Gradually stir flour mixture into butter-sugar mixture until a dough forms. Don't worry if dough seems a little crumbly at first; it will come together as you mix it.

    flour and butter mixture in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  5. Shape the dough into a disk, rap in plastic, and refrigerate for 2 hours.

    low-fat sugar cookie dough wrapped in plastic

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  6. Position a rack in the upper and lower third of the oven and heat to 350 F. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to a 1/4-inch or 1/8-inch thickness.

    rolled out low-fat sugar cookie dough

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  7. Use holiday cookie cutters dipped in flour to make cutouts. Gather scraps and reroll until all the dough is used.

    sugar cookie cutouts

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  8. Place cookies 1 inch apart on parchment-lined cookie sheets.

    sugar cookie cutouts on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

  9. Bake in batches, if necessary, until edges are lightly browned, 9 to 10 minutes. Let cool 1 minute, then transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

    low-fat sugar cookies cooling on a metal rack

    The Spruce Eats/Abby Mercer

Tips

  • Feel free to customize the recipe a bit to your liking. For example, you can use a little more vanilla extract than what we've called for if you'd like to accentuate that flavor, or combine it with almond extract, or use almond extract all by itself.
  • Cut the ball of dough in half and keep one half in the refrigerator while you roll, cut out, and decorate the other half with frosting or sanding sugar.

How to Store and Freeze Low-Fat Christmas Sugar Cookies

  • Store in a tightly covered container for a week to 10 days. You can also freeze butter cookies, albeit very carefully. Lay them out on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment or waxed paper. Once they are frozen, transfer them to a zip-close bag that you then put in a tightly covered container. They should be safe from freezer odors and protected from accidental breakage for up to three months.