Just in time for Valentine’s Day are these eye-rollingly good cream cheese cookies. Not only do they melt in your mouth in a tangy, rich puddle but they’re one of the simplest cookies to bake. The bottom of these cookies bake up to a soft golden color, however, the tops remain white making them easy on the eyes peeking out of the cream cheese icing. And the icing…wow. Gives the cookies a whole new meaning. I was a bit let down when I tasted one straight out of the oven but I made myself remain impartial, wait patiently and calmly until the cookies cooled and then sample one iced. Jeez Louise. As I write this I’m flat, horizontal, on a tens unit getting over a thrown-out back. I want something sweet and, as I lie here, I’ve done a mental inventory of what’s in my kitchen and what I have hidden away and, sob, I know there’s nothing, nothing that appeals to me right now except these cookies. Not too sweet, the memory of their taste is seared into my memory bank. And what a lovely memory it was.
These little jewels require about 30 minutes time in the freezer once portioned out on baking sheets. What I love is they can hang out in the freezer a few days until I’m ready to bake them off. Gotta love that. So give them a try this Valentine’s Day weekend. You and bae will be glad you did.
Cream Cheese Cookies
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
- 3 cups cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 pinch of salt
- 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
- 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. The baking sheets need to fit level in your freezer.
- In a large bowl use a hand-held mixer or your hand and a wooden spoon to break up and mix cream cheese until fluffy.
- Add butter and sugar and beat until completely combined and fluffy.
- Add egg, vanilla and lemon extracts and mix thoroughly.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
- Add flour mixture to cream cheese mixture and gently fold until completely combined.
- Spoon cookie dough onto baking sheets in even amounts leaving about 1 inch in between each cookie. I use a 1 1/2-inch cookie dough scoop to portion out the dough and spray the scoop with non-stick spray whenever the cookie batter starts sticking.
- Place baking sheets in freezer so they are level and freeze for at least 30 minutes or up to three days. If freezing for a few days, cover each tray with plastic wrap to avoid freezer burn.
- Pre-heat oven to 375°. With the palm of your hand or the flat bottom of a glass, gently press down on cookies to flatten.
- Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes. The cookie bottom should be a light golden. Do not over-bake.
- Remove trays from oven and cool on baking racks for 10 minutes then remove from baking sheets and cool completely on racks.
- For icing, combine cream cheese, butter and confectioner’s sugar until smooth and no lumps remain.
- When cookies are completely cool, ice and serve.