Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies

Do these look familiar? If you read My Baking Addiction on a regular basis, which I hope you do…these should look very familiar.

Did you guess that these are another version of the amazing Chewy Lime Coconut Sugar Cookies? If so, ding, ding, ding…you’re right! I loved these Chewy Lime Coconut Sugar Cookies with every ounce of being, so I had the bright idea to make them with lemons instead of limes and leave out the coconut. Honestly, I don’t remember why I left out the coconut, apparently I had a good reason at that moment, it just escapes me right now.

I had high, high hopes for these babies and was anticipating their citrusy goodness while they cooled. The verdict? Well, I like to keep things honest up in here and as cliche as it sounds, sometimes it’s best to leave well enough alone. Don’t get me wrong, they were good, but truly nothing in comparison to their coconut infused lime counterpart. If you don’t like lime, then definitely give these a try, but if you are a lime lover, skip this recipe and go directly to this one… I promise, you will not be sorry!

Stay tuned tomorrow for a pretty rad dinner recipe which includes homemade egg rolls!

Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies

Yield: 24-30 Cookies


2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Zest of one large lemon, finely minced
4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar for rolling cookies


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

3. Using a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until smooth and very fluffy.

4. Beat in egg, vanilla extract, lemon juice and lemon zest.

5. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients.

6. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and roll in sugar. Place on lined cookie sheets about 1 1/2 inches apart.

7. Bake 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly browned.

8. Let stand on cookie sheet two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.

adapted from Rock Recipes


96 Responses to “Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies”

  1. Cookin' Canuck — May 7, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    These are so pretty – perfect for Springtime! I am grateful for any cookies that are chewy and sweet.


  2. RJ Flamingo — May 7, 2010 at 9:15 pm

    Definitely bright and springy, but given a choice between these and the lime coconut ones, I think I’m with you on this one. :-)


  3. Jessica @ How Sweet — May 7, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    You are on a cookie roll – those look perfect!


  4. Sandy a la Mode — May 8, 2010 at 12:01 am

    MMMmmmm I am totally saving this to make later!!! Thanks for sharing!


  5. Katrina — May 8, 2010 at 7:20 am

    Thanks for the honesty! I’ll still try these out :)


  6. Brooke — May 8, 2010 at 7:46 am

    Even if they didn’t taste as good…..they sure look tasty! Maybe some more lemon zest would have taken the citrusy flavor up a few more notches?!?! I do want to give those lime ones a try though!!


  7. Julia — May 8, 2010 at 10:04 am

    I did love the coconut lime cookies. Maybe some lemon frosting on these will kick them up to slightly compare to the previous lime goodness. Either way, your pictures are really pretty :)


  8. I can’t believe we’ve been on vacation for almost a month, and came home to some Meyer lemons, STILL HANGING OFF THE TREE!!! I honestly thought they were done for the season. Gonna see if I can squeeze some juice out of them for these cookies.

    Also, the office is doing a bake sale to end child hunger in a couple of weeks… I might be contributing these cookies (but adding back in the coconut per your first recipe, and maybe throwing in some zest), so thank you for the idea!!! Another way to use up my lemons…[K]


  9. Steph — May 9, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    I have been looking for a great chewy sugar cookie, and these are finally IT! I made them last night and everyone loved them, including me. Thank you for sharing this recipe! You are the best.


  10. Elaine from Cookware Help — May 10, 2010 at 3:28 am

    This is I think the perfect sugar cookie recipe for me. I heart lemony flavor and I love chewy cookies. I’m not so fond of the really hard crunchy cookies. And these look and sound wonderful. Beautiful photos. I’m going to make this and the lime-coconut version as well very soon. I think we’ll have to have our very own sugar cookie taste test. :)


  11. Laura Flowers — May 10, 2010 at 12:23 pm

    These look great! I’ll be making these over and over I have a feeling! Thanks Jamie.



  12. Holly. — May 10, 2010 at 11:03 pm

    I am on a TOTAL fruity dessert kick! There are some orange cookies I want to make and now I want to make these and I just made a pineapple dessert! Mmm.


  13. Jennifurla — May 11, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    WOAH! These are gorgeous. I am saving this for sure, they look like the have that perfect consistency


  14. CaSaundra — May 12, 2010 at 9:50 am

    The cookies still look great, but I know what you mean about leaving recipes alone–I’ve had my fair share of failures due to incorporating what I thought at the time was a grand idea LOL


  15. Posti4 — May 12, 2010 at 9:47 pm

    lOVE you keeping it reAL!


  16. Mariama — May 13, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    OMG! I just made these & WOW. I sampled a tiny piece of one cookie from the first batch, and it’s soooo good. Can’t wait to have a whole one with some yummy cold milk. Mmm
    Thanks for the recipe :)

    P.S – I’m gonna try the other one too. Whew, back to my cookies.


  17. Jess — May 14, 2010 at 10:52 am

    I made my own version today, they are a little flatter than yours. Since the first batch came out I am waiting to taste!


  18. magpie — May 16, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    Mine also came out much flatter than yours, but still yummy. Any suggestions?


    • Jamie — May 16, 2010 at 9:43 pm

      Hmmm I don’t know why are coming out flatter…
      I scooped the dough with a cookie scoop, rolled into a ball and then into the sugar and baked. I always use cool cookie sheets, never warm ones. Hope this helps! :)

  19. Ask Ms Recipe — May 16, 2010 at 11:13 pm

    Chewy lemon cookies sounds and looks so good :)


  20. Cookie — June 18, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    I just made these cookies last night and wanted to thank you for the recipe! They are delicious!


  21. Moonawaii — August 30, 2010 at 6:37 am

    I baked these last night for coworkers/friends and they were a hit!!!! So easy, so crisp, so chewy and so yummy! Thanks for sharing! I will go ahead and try some of your other recipes!


  22. JehanP — January 18, 2011 at 4:31 pm

    I made these today and they are absolutely perfect! I added finely chopped candied ginger to half of the batch and it added a nice zing. I love both versions, thanks for a great recipe!


  23. Alison — February 1, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    What size scoop did you use? I have a 2 tablespoon size, but that’s seems too big for these!


    • Jamie — February 2, 2011 at 10:39 am

      Use a rounded teaspoon for each cookie. Thanks for stopping by!

  24. Lauren — February 27, 2011 at 3:21 am

    I was so confused when I found this blog after I saw this item on Etsy:

    I saw the cookies and decided to look up a recipe and found this blog and wasn’t sure if they were the same? I didn’t think so, but still! I’m not sure if the seller is using your photographs with out permission. *shrugs*

    I’m going to try baking these cookies, I love lemon baked goods almost as much as I love making them!


  25. Annabelle — March 30, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Just made these and I used meyer lemon and a zest of a regular lemon and it’s really good! A tad bit sweet for my tasting so next time I will be reducing the sugar. Thanks!


  26. Gretchen — April 5, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    Just made these today with my girls. We rolled out the dough and used cookie cutters. The dough rolled out well for cutters and the cookies puffed up on the pan. Thanks for the great recipe we all loved them!


  27. Jackie — April 28, 2011 at 11:55 am

    I made these on Easter Sunday for my fiance. I made some light lemon icing for them that I drizzled on and they were delicious. We had a couple and I sent the rest to work with him for his co-workers (otherwise we would have eaten every last cookie!!). Co-workers raved. Thank you for a great chewy cookie recipe!!


  28. Carol Burns — June 22, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    I love lemon and so I love these cookies. I made one change. In the place of lemon juice and zest, I put a whole lemon in the food processor and zizzed it up and added it. YUM.


  29. Erin Joy — August 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    One word: YUM!!!!!!! I am not a coconut fan in the least, but lemon? Lemon just so happens to be my Very Favorite Flavor of all the flavors. =] A friend posted this recipe on her facebook page a week or two ago (with rave reviews!), and based on the description I knew I had to make some for myself. Yum, yum, and yum again!


    • Jamie — August 1, 2011 at 2:14 pm

      I am so glad you enjoyed them – thanks so much for reporting back!


  30. Rachael — August 4, 2011 at 12:35 am

    LOVED the idea of these cookies! But no matter what i try, I can’t get them thick and chewy like yours. They always spread. I tried making them as the recipe calls, tried mixing the sugar and butter until just combined, tried melting the butter and mixing until just combined, even tried adding flour. Nothing worked. What am I doing wrong?


    • Jamie — August 4, 2011 at 11:03 am

      What type of butter are you using?

    • Daisy — August 15, 2011 at 12:25 am

      i had the same exact problem! they taste great but they’re just soft, not chewy

  31. Julia — August 28, 2011 at 11:24 pm

    Oh, I’m so glad to have found your blog. I love chewy cookies and have searched for a lemon recipe for a long time. Even if you aren’t keen on them I will still give them a try. I’m going to add blueberry some way or another and have chewy blueberry lemony deliciousness. :)


  32. Joani — December 18, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    I baked these cookies, for the first time, last night, and they looked just like the picture advertised, and tasted even better! I was very pleased with the way they came out! I did substitute fresh lemon juice, with bottled lemon juice, and added a tsp. of lemon extract. They were like little chewy, lemony cake cookies, soooo delishhhh! I have always wanted to make a good home made lemon cookie, i’m glad i found the perfect recipe! I’m making more tonight for Christmas, they were so good, my family devoured them after Church this afternoon. I hope these ones last through Christmas Eve!!! Happy Baking :)


  33. Christi's Chirps — January 31, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Hi, Julie!
    Do you think I could roll this dough out and use heart-shaped cookie cutters?

    Thanks for your help!


    • Jamie — January 31, 2012 at 1:40 pm

      I have not tried this method, but I almost think the dough is a bit too soft/chewy to hold a particular shape. Thanks for stopping by!

  34. Ryanee — March 6, 2012 at 11:37 pm

    Hi Jamie! Love your site very much..
    I made this cookies last night, but the batter came out very soft, couldn’t even hold a shape, sticky all over when I was trying to make it round shape. So I decided to put some more flour but seems it was not a chewy cookies :(. Followed exactly what was written…anything I made wrong? Or was it the butter I used?
    Anyway the taste was very nice, my hubby and I like it very much. Thanks for sharing the recipes!


    • Jamie — March 22, 2012 at 8:15 pm

      Hmmm, that kind of stumps me. I have made these cookies too many times to count and I have never had that issue. Sorry I am not more of a help.

    • Stacey — July 4, 2012 at 11:35 pm

      My batter was also extremely sticky and hard to shape without deforming. Also the cookies hardened to perfect chewy cookie consistency after sitting on the cooling racks, but later softened A LOT and started to fall apart. :(
      Incredible taste though!

  35. Rosalie — April 30, 2012 at 4:04 am

    I just made these lemon sugar cookies and oh my goodness are they yummy!

    If you want to go for that extra lemon-flavored punch, add half a package of instant lemon pudding (just the dry ingredients in the box). The flavor and smell is delightfully zesty.

    Thanks so much for the recipe!


  36. Julie — June 14, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    I just made these and I like them. I did add 1 tablespoon of powdered lemon (from King Arthur website) to punch up the lemon flavor. I thought I was making them too big at first but I ended up with 42 cookies which really differs from your amount. Mine seem to have spread more than yours also, wondering if I should have refrigerated the dough first? I am using 1/2 sheet pans and I could only fit 12 on a pan because of the spreading. Anyway, I was looking for a lemon cookie and I do like these so will make them again. Thanks!


    • Jamie — August 5, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      I never refrigerate this dough, but it’s been so warm, it may be a good idea. They definitely shouldn’t spread too much at all.

  37. Beth — July 10, 2012 at 9:29 am

    Will these freeze well? I need them for a Monday, but will probably only have time to bake on the Wednesday prior. Thanks!


    • Jamie — July 12, 2012 at 2:35 pm

      I cannot attest as to how these will freeze, please let me know if you give it a try.

  38. Lori — August 17, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    I can hardly wait to try this recipe!!! The cookies look delicious:-)


  39. Sheri — August 18, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    Hello ~ I live 5000 ft above altitude and wanted crispy cookies so I had to bake at 400 degrees for an extra 10 min! Needless to say, they came out crispy. Thanks for the recipe, they were great!


  40. Julie — August 24, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    Just made these and they are perfect and delicious!


    • Jamie — August 25, 2012 at 1:12 pm

      So glad to hear that you enjoyed the cookies. Thanks for taking the time to report back on your success with the recipe.

  41. Miss.virgo — September 4, 2012 at 9:25 pm

    awsome..they where easy tomake and super yummy. Made them with my daughter =)


  42. katie — September 14, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    In the lemon cookie recipe, I added a packet of lemon peel powder to the sugar that is used to coat the dough balls. It really adds a nice lemon zing without having to do a glaze or something else.


    • Jamie — September 16, 2012 at 3:42 pm

      I love the idea of the lemon peel powder – thanks so much for sharing! Have a great day and thanks so much for visiting!

  43. Dzi — October 29, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    I tried making them one holiday but halfway through I realised we didn’t have any lemons, orange zest worked just as well, love this recipe its so yummy!


  44. Aya B. — October 30, 2012 at 9:50 am

    These looks really really good
    The color reminds me with snow or winter in general (though it never, and will never ever snow where I live :P)



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