Desserts Recipes

Grapefruit Sugar Cookies

I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve made sugar cookies as an adult. I just don’t really love them – they seem overly sweet to me and kind of bland (give me a chocolate chip cookie any day of the week!).

But this variation is fantastic; I had some store-bought sugar cookie dough on hand for a different project and since we live in the land of citrus and are basically downing in limes, lemons, oranges and grapefruits, I thought I might combine the two.

The grapefruit flavor mellows out the sweetness of the cookie and the zested sugar base on the cookie gives it a nice crispy texture on the bottom to contrast with the soft centers of the cookies.

I won’t tell you how many I ate, but it was quite a lot.

Also, it appears to be a tradition now for me to post a grapefruit recipe in January (last year, it was this grapefruit sherbet and in 2014, it was these grapefruit poppyseed muffins with grapefruit cream), so I obviously need to keep it going.

(Note: If you’d rather make a sugar cookie dough from scratch and you don’t have a favorite recipe, I’d suggest this one from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe. I haven’t tried it myself, but the woman has never once steered me wrong)

Grapefruit Sugar Cookies

makes 2 dozen

1 batch of homemade or store-bought sugar cookie dough (enough to make 2 dozen cookies)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
Zest of one grapefruit
2-3 Tablespoons grapefruit juice
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
Red food coloring, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a food processor or blender, mix zest and granulated sugar together until it’s well-combined.

Roll your cookie dough into 1-inch balls. Dip the bottom half of them into the zest/sugar mixture.

Arrange them on the cookie sheet, sugar-side down, spaced 3 inches apart. Dip a drinking glass in some flour and press the cookie balls flat until they are about 1/4 inch thick discs.

Bake for 8-12 minutes (use the suggested time on your cookie recipe), until they are just slightly brown on the edges (try not to overbake them). Let them cool completely.

While they cool, whisk together the powdered sugar and 2 Tablespoons of grapefruit juice. If it’s too thick to drizzle, add the last Tablespoon, bit by bit. Whisk in one drop of food coloring if desired.

Drizzle the glaze over the cooled cookies and let set briefly before serving.

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  • Reply Kristin @ Going Country January 13, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    Citrus is too prized here in the frozen north to make something like this with the precious fruits, but they do sound delicious.

    I got a box of oranges from my brother a couple of days ago that he picked from his backyard tree in Gilbert and sent to me for my birthday, and I nearly wept tears of gratitude–and maybe some jealousy–when I opened it. Please cherish your overabundant citrus for me. I can only dream.

  • Reply Dan and Nicole January 14, 2016 at 5:00 am

    I came home from Gilbert with tons of lemons and oranges and have made lemon bars weekly! I need a good recipe that uses all the clementines I have. It seems like most citrus recipes use a couple of tablespoons of juice and I need to use up a bunch of whole fruit!

  • Reply Paige Flamm January 14, 2016 at 4:13 pm

    These cookies look delicious! We have a boatload of grapefruits right now, so we'll definitely have to try these out.

  • Reply Jodi January 15, 2016 at 6:14 am

    Ah citrus trees. Such a delight. I'll have to try these. Atticus LOVES grapefruit, but will hardly eat bananas or berries or other fruits children love. So strange.

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