Raspberry Sugar Cookies

These raspberry sugar cookies are like regular cut-out sugar cookies, but with two major upgrades in the dough: tangy cream cheese and freeze-dried raspberries. Naturally colored, these pretty pink cookies are beautiful right out of the oven, but feel free to garnish with melted chocolate or any of our other recommended toppings. You’ll love these for Valentine’s Day or any occasion where you crave a fun, berry flavored cookie.

heart raspberry sugar cookies dipped into dark chocolate

Have you ever baked our regular sugar cookies before? They’re a traditional sugar cookie with soft centers and slightly crisp edges– definitely a favorite around here. We also have a published recipe for cut-out cream cheese cookies with Nutella glaze, which totally take sugar cookies to the next level. The cream cheese provides a creamy-like texture and slight tang in each bite. I actually prefer them over our regular sugar cookies!

I took the same cream cheese sugar cookie dough and experimented with freeze-dried raspberries. The result was an extra tender berry flavored cookie with the most gorgeous (and natural!) pink/magenta color. I figured you’d enjoy trying these at home.


Tell Me About These Raspberry Sugar Cookies

  • Texture: These raspberry sugar cookies have a soft and almost creamy-like texture, which is unique for a cut-out sugar cookie.
  • Flavor: If you’re ever craving FLAVOR in your sugar cookies, start here. We have a slight tang from the cream cheese, but most of the flavor comes from raspberries. I appreciate that we’re using real berries that have been freeze-dried, not artificial raspberry flavoring. Almond extract is completely optional, but it adds another level of flavor. You can skip it if desired. The plain cookies have so much flavor– and are naturally pink– that you don’t really need icing or decoration. (Though who can resist a dip or drizzle of chocolate?)
  • Ease: Cookie cutter sugar cookies, of any variety and flavor, aren’t quite as easy as drop cookies. However, if you’re comfortable using a rolling pin and cookie cutters, the process won’t seem arduous. This recipe requires an extra step but it’s pretty simple: grind the freeze-dried berries into powder before using.
  • Time: The cookie dough comes together quickly. Roll it out, then chill it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Without chilling, the cookies will completely lose their shape– so, yes, it’s a crucial step. After that, cut the dough into shapes, re-roll the scraps, then bake. Set aside a few hours to complete this recipe.

stack of raspberry cookies

Freeze-Dried Raspberries are the Secret

We love using freeze-dried berries in frostings. Have you tried this strawberry buttercream before? When you grind freeze-dried strawberries into a powder, you can easily use it in frosting. Freeze-dried berry powder or “dust” is perfect because it’s not wet and, therefore, doesn’t mess with the consistency of frosting. Real berry flavor without compromising texture. As it turns out, you can do the same thing with sugar cookie dough as long as you don’t go overboard with quantity. 2 cups (about 56g) of freeze-dried raspberries grinds down into 1/2 cup of powder, which is the perfect amount for this sugar cookie dough.

  • Where to buy freeze-dried raspberries: I always find them in my regular grocery store in the dried fruit aisle. Keep your eyes peeled– they’re more common than you think. We like Trader Joe’s brand and Target carries a nice selection, too. You can also purchase them online and here is a brand we’ve tested before. (They are much cheaper in stores if you can find them!) You need 2 cups, which is a little more than 1 standard 1.2 ounce (weight) bag.
  • Can I do this with another type of freeze-dried fruit? Yes, absolutely. I’ve tested this sugar cookie dough with freeze-dried strawberries, blueberries, and mango. The mango flavor wasn’t as intense as the berries, though. Use the same amount– 1/2 cup of the ground powder.
  • Can I do this with regular dried fruit or frozen fruit? No, do not use chewy/gummy dried fruit and do not use frozen fruit. You need freeze-dried raspberries, which are raspberries with all of the moisture removed– that way they can grind into a powder.

two side-by-side photos of freeze-dried raspberries in a food processor

side-by-side photos of raspberry cookie dry ingredients and the finished dough

Overview: How to Make Raspberry Sugar Cookies

The full printable recipe is below.

  1. Grind freeze-dried raspberries into powder.
  2. Make sugar cookie dough. The recipe instructions below include creaming the butter and cream cheese together before adding sugar. You also need 1 egg and vanilla extract. Almond extract is optional, but a tasty addition if you have some on hand. The dry ingredients include flour, your raspberry powder, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Divide in two pieces.
  4. Roll out cookie dough. Roll each section out to 1/4 inch thick. Have extra flour on hand because the dough is sticky.
  5. Chill rolled out dough for at least 2 hours.
  6. Cut into shapes. Re-roll all your scraps– you’ll be surprised how many cookies you get from this amount of dough.
  7. Bake & cool. Cool the cookies on the baking sheets before decorating.

The Trick is the Order of Steps

Notice how we roll out the dough BEFORE chilling it in the refrigerator? Let me explain why. To prevent the cookies from over-spreading, the cookie dough must chill in the refrigerator. Roll out the dough right after you prepare it, then chill the rolled-out dough. (At this point the dough is too soft to cut into shapes.) Don’t chill the cookie dough and then try to roll it out because it will be too cold and difficult to work with. Divide the dough in half before rolling it out because smaller sections of dough are simply more manageable.


After chilling, cut into shapes:

rolled out raspberry sugar cookie dough on parchment paper

Arrange 2-3 inches apart on lined baking sheets, then bake and cool:

heart-shaped raspberry cookies on a baking sheet

heart-shaped raspberry cookies on a cooling rack

heart shaped raspberry cookies dipped in dark chocolate

Decoration & Topping Ideas

I love using royal icing on regular sugar cookies. That icing would definitely work here, but I didn’t want the raspberry and cream cheese flavors to be overpowered by super sweet icing. So instead I dipped some into melted dark chocolate and drizzled others with melted white chocolate. So simple, so delicious. Here are some options:

Garnish the chocolate or icing with sprinkles or leftover freeze-dried raspberry powder:

heart-shaped raspberry cookies with white chocolate drizzle on top

Print
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heart raspberry sugar cookies dipped into dark chocolate

Raspberry Sugar Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 13 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 45 minutes
  • Yield: 36 3-inch cookies
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Ground freeze-dried raspberries add color and flavor to this cream cheese sugar cookie dough. You can leave the cookies plain, but we love them garnished with melted chocolate.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups (56g) freeze-dried raspberries
  • 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (230gunsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 ounces (112g) block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200ggranulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • optional: 1 teaspoon almond extract

Optional Chocolate Topping

  • 4-ounce bar (113gsemi-sweet or white chocolate, coarsely chopped

Instructions

  1. Using a blender or food processor, process the freeze-dried raspberries into a powder. You’ll have around 1/2 cup.
  2. Whisk the raspberry powder, flour, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl using a hand-held or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese together on medium-high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the granulated sugar and beat until mixture is fluffy and combined, about 1 minute. Add the egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. Dough will be very soft and creamy.
  5. Generously flour your hands and rolling pin. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Roll each portion out on a lightly floured piece of parchment paper or silicone baking mat to about 1/4-inch thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.
  6. Lightly dust one of the rolled-out doughs with flour. Place a piece of parchment on top. (This prevents sticking.) Place the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. Cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days.
  7. Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Carefully remove the top dough piece from the refrigerator. If it’s sticking to the bottom, run your hand under it to help remove it. Using a cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes. (I like these heart cookie cutters.) Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd piece of dough. Note: It doesn’t seem like a lot of dough, but you get a lot of cookies from the dough scraps you re-roll.
  8. Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 12-13 minutes until very lightly browned around the edges. If your oven has hot spots, rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.
  9. For optional chocolate decorating: Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or use the microwave. Microwave in 20 second increments, stirring after each until completely melted. Dip cooled cookies in the melted chocolate or drizzle each with melted chocolate, then place back onto the baking sheets. Allow chocolate to set in the refrigerator or at room temperature.
  10. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Plain or decorated sugar cookies freeze well up to 3 months. Wait for the chocolate/icing to set completely before layering between sheets of parchment paper in a freezer-friendly container. To thaw, thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature. You can also freeze the cookie dough for up to 3 months before rolling it out. Prepare the dough through step 4, divide in half, flatten both halves into a disk as we do with pie crust, wrap each in plastic wrap, then freeze. To thaw, thaw the disks in the refrigerator, then bring to room temperature for about 1 hour. Roll out the dough as directed in step 5, then chill rolled out dough in the refrigerator for 45 minutes – 1 hour before cutting into shapes and baking.
  2. Cream Cheese: Want to leave out the cream cheese? Use our regular sugar cookies recipe and add 1/2 cup of the raspberry powder to that cookie dough. Whisk it in with the dry ingredients, just as you do here.
  3. Freeze-dried raspberries: I always find them in my regular grocery store in the dried fruit aisle. Keep your eyes peeled– they’re more common than you think. We like Trader Joe’s brand and Target carries a nice selection, too. You can also purchase them online and here is a brand we’ve tested before. (They are much cheaper in stores if you can find them!) You need 2 cups, which is a little more than 1 standard 1.2 ounce (weight) bag.
  4. Can I do this with another type of freeze-dried fruit? Yes, absolutely. I’ve tested this sugar cookie dough with freeze-dried strawberries, blueberries, and mango. The freeze-dried raspberries gave the most potent flavor. Use the same amount– 1/2 cup of the ground powder.
  5. Can I do this with regular dried fruit or frozen fruit? No, do not use chewy/gummy dried fruit and do not use frozen fruit. You need freeze-dried raspberries, which are raspberries with all of the moisture removed– that way they can grind into a powder.
  6. Other Toppings: See Decoration & Topping Ideas in blog post above.
  7. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: raspberry sugar cookies, cookies

98 Comments

  1. These look lovely. I love he way the freeze dried raspberries make such a beautiful color. I have used your strawberry buttercream recipe with lots of other freeze dried fruits. I am sure these will be delicious!

    1. i used frozen rasperries; if you do, then be sure to completely melt the butter.

  2. What other freeze dried fruit could be used here?

    1. Details in the notes section (at the end of the recipe) for other fruits!

      1. What type of cream cheese should I use?

      2. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

        Hi Jasmine, you need block cream cheese for this recipe – not the kind that comes in a tub. See note about cream cheese if you would like to make these cookies without it.

    2. I don’t know about these cookies, but I have used freeze dried strawberries, blueberries and pineapple when making buttercream. The pineapple does have a different texture.

  3. Love this recipe! It is really 2 cups of freeze dried raspberry?!? It is going to be a very expensive recipe!

    1. Hi Imma, yes it is 2 cups. If desired, you can use our regular cut-out cream cheese cookies recipe and add an inexpensive extract to the dough if desired.

      1. Thank you Sally!

    2. Nikki Chirico says:

      Hi Imma,
      I noticed your comment about 2 cups being costly. It’s actually only 1/2 cup of the ground fruit so one bag should do the trick! I wasn’t sure if you knew it’s only 1/2 cup once processed! Happy Baking ❤️

      1. Hi Nikky! I made the mistake to think 1 cup= 8 oz. I realized later that was just few ounces ( it was all about the volume and not the weight) , the equivalent of the bags I usually buy!!! Thank you!

  4. Looks delicious as do all your recipes! Thank you

  5. Hi Sally,can I use sugar free raspberry jello powder if I can’t find freeze dried raspberries??? Thanks,Stacey

    1. Hi Stacey! We haven’t tested it. If you try it, don’t use sugar-free. I would use the regular powder. Let us know if you try it.

      1. Great thanks,I will try it if I can’t find the freeze dried raspberries! And I will let you know!!!!

    2. Could probably sub with freeze dried strawberries which I can usually find at my local dollar tree.

  6. what about the seed in raspberries, I use them before and did not like the seeds. Do these seed melt into the batter???

    1. Hi Diana, you can’t detect them at all in the baked cookies. (Just our opinion though– didn’t notice them.)

  7. Elaine Berger says:

    I cannot wait to try these! Trader Joe’s sells freeze dried strawberries for a reasonable price.

  8. Oh man, this popped up at just the right time – its supposed to be super cold this weekend, I look forward to having the oven heat the house up some while making these!

  9. Hi Sally,

    Can the recipe be halve? I only have 1 bag of freeze dried raspberry in the pantry.

    1. Hi Sasha, you can certainly try it. For the egg, crack it, beat the yolk and white together, measure it, then use half. (Usually a couple Tbsp.)

  10. Shira McKernan says:

    Hi Sally,

    I absolutely love your cream cheese sparkle sugar cookies and I’m terrible with rolling out dough. Can I incorporate the raspberries into that recipe?

    1. Absolutely. While I haven’t tested it, I’m sure you can add 1/2 cup of raspberry powder to it. The doughs are pretty similar.

  11. This looks so pretty Sally. I have two of your books and I always have on hand the freeze dried strawberries because I only use your strawberry frosting recipe when I need something strawberry, cake, cupcakes …..Was wondering what to make for work for everyone. This is it!! Thank you! I will let you know how they turn out 🙂

  12. How about raspberry jam? It’s moister so add more flour? Or …

    1. Hi Rick, you won’t get the same level of flavor and the cookies could taste dry adding more flour to make up for it. You could try using our regular cream cheese sugar cookies and adding raspberry extract (I know you can find it in some grocery stores).

  13. I usually love Sally’s recipes but this was disappointing. Not much flavor, even with the freeze dried raspberries. Smelled wonderful when baking, but ultimately rather bland. (Maybe I was expecting flavor like your strawberry frosting, which is amazing.) All in all, wasn’t worth the effort for me. : (

    1. There is no blocked cream cheese in the UK whats the alternative for UK cream cheese

      1. Hi Ade, in that case, it would be best to make the dough without any cream cheese so use our regular sugar cookies instead– see recipe note about that.

  14. Laurie Lehman says:

    Isn’t your gram amount incorrect on the 3 cups if flour? Another cookie recipe of yours says 360 grams for 3 cups APF. This recipe says 410 grams. Seems too much.

    1. Hi Laurie, we measured this amount of flour with our scale using King Arthur Flour and it was 400 grams. (That’s how this recipe was tested– 3 cups weighing 400g total.) We are adjusting grams in similar recipes where needed.

      1. Laurie Lehman says:

        Hi Sally,

        Appreciate your response on the flour measurement. I generally use Gold Medal Flour. I was really unsure so I chose to go with the lower weight. My batter seemed ok and rolled out ok. Didnt seem sticky at all. I will know for sure when I bake. Hopefully still turn out.

      2. Laurie Lehman says:

        Sally, my cookies turned out fine using the 360 grams of flour. They rolled out and rerolled just fine. I did google flour grams and found that King Arthur supposedly weighs 130 grams per cup vs. Gold Medal weighing 120 grams per cup. So, my using lesser amount (since I used Gold Medal flour) must have been ok. Had I went with the 410 grams then I would have most likely used more than 3 cups of my flour. Make sense? It’s funny because this is the first time I questioned your recipe. I think it’s because I also had just made another of your cookie recipes and as I mentioned in previous comment that it was a different grams for the flour. Anyway, turned out great!

  15. Hey Sally a couple questions for you, for one can you use fresh raseberrys, or does it need to be dried?
    Also, can I sub. anything for the cream cheese?
    Thanks God Bless!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Bree! You need freeze dried raspberries for this recipe. See recipe notes for details on how to make these without cream cheese.

  16. Will the dough come out the same if I don’t have a paddle attachment for my mixer?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kathy, regular beaters will work as well. Hope you love these!

  17. DELIA NICHIFOR says:

    Hi
    Is the measurements right for the raspberry powder? 2 cup it is not 56g? Is it 56g or 2 cups?
    Look amazing but not easy to find the raspberry in my area so I would like to know the quantity.

    1. Hi Delia, 1 cup of freeze-dried raspberries is incredibly light and weighs much less than, say, 1 cup of sugar. The grams are accurate.

  18. We loved the flavor of these cookies but had an issue with them.
    I pulverized the freeze dried raspberries to a fine powder and still found the cookies to be a bit gritty. Did anyone else have this issue? I am wondering if a different brand of raspberries would be better to use.

    1. Laurie Lehman says:

      I just made these cookies today. I pulverized the dried raspberries really well too. However, I do feel the seeds in my baked cookies. Not a huge deal but to me they were noticeable. I used Target brand dried raspberries so not sure if Trader Joe’s would be any different. Raspberries are raspberries and hard to get away from the seeds in this dried product. They cookies taste good though.

      1. If I make them again I am going to use a very fine strainer to filter the powder. The little pieces of seeds were unappetizing but the flavor was good.

  19. Just made these for our family and some neighbors for Valentine’s. One tip that worked well for me: When I rolled out the dough, I went ahead and cut out the cookies at that time, then refrigerated the shaped cookies on cookie trays. That way I didn’t have to get my counters all messy twice. Because I did it that way, I didn’t have to roll it out on parchment paper (I tried that first and the paper was slid around my counter like crazy when I was rolling!). I will definitely recommend that you roll them out as thin as you can–mine were perhaps a little thicker than 1/4 inch and they are a bit more cakey than I usually like my sugar cookies to be. On the plus side, this was the first time I used freeze dried fruit–it was easier to find than I anticipated and you can definitely taste the raspberry. Pro tip: check the bag first–mine had a bag of silica gel that I didn’t notice, so the FIRST bag had to go in the trash since I blended up the gel in the raspberries without realizing it!

  20. Hi!
    Can I use dehydrated fresh raspberries or strawberries dried in the dehydrator?
    Thank you!!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Patricia! Freeze dried berries are different than dehydrated – they’re crispier and will turn into powder when processed. We suggest sticking with freeze dried for this recipe.

  21. I made these last night. I had to use freeze dried strawberries as I couldn’t find raspberries locally. They tasted great, but were not particularly pretty. I decided to decorate them this afternoon. Made a bit of frosting, got out the valentine decorating stuff, and discovered there were only 6 left. Obviously the guys didn’t care if the color wasn’t the prettiest!

    1. I also didn’t like the color of my first batch even though they tasted wonderful. on my second batch I added a few drops of electric pink gel food coloring and I was pleased with their color after baking.

  22. Can you substitute with 1:1 gluten free flour? Many thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Anna, We haven’t tested this recipe with gluten free flour but let us know if you try it!

  23. Made the dough last night and cut them out and baked them today. The batch made just over 30 cookies for me. I used a 2 inch heart cookie cutter. Dipped half in chocolate and the other half in white melting discs. So delicious, especially warm. Couldn’t resist! I used freeze dried strawberries. My husband said they taste like strawberry pop tarts lol. He likes those. Thanks for another great recipe!

  24. I love these cookies, but mine did not come out as red as yours. Any recommendations?

    1. Hi Heather, for a deeper color, you can add a drop of red or pink food coloring. The dough is usually a striking purple/pink shade for us.

  25. This cookie has been a hit with my family and friends, the flavor from the freeze dried fruit takes these sugar cookies to the next level. I used strawberries (couldn’t find raspberry) and dipped them in chocolate, the perfect Valentines Day treat. Thank you!

  26. Hi Sally,so I made the raspberry cutouts and I used the raspberry jello powder… the freeze dried raspberries where very expensive.My cookies turned out beautiful and delicious!!! Stacey

  27. I really liked these. The tartness from the raspberries help balance out the sweetness of the cookies. They definitely need chocolate. I want to experiment with a bunch of different freeze dried fruit.

  28. Is it 2c. of the raspberry powder? I have the powder not the full berries — wondering if the amount is less since the berries are already powdered?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Illya, 2 cups is the freeze dried berries before made into a powder. You’ll want about 1/2 cup of the berry powder. Hope you enjoy this recipe!

      1. Perfect — thanks so much!

  29. These were fun to make and tasted great! Love the tang of the cream cheese. Great combination of flavors. The raspberry flavor was strong, which I loved! Mine did turn out more purple than pink though. And I didn’t really like the raspberry seed. I was picking them out of my teeth for a while after eating the cookies (ewww!) I might sift the raspberry powder next time to see if I can get the bigger seeds out. Thanks for another great recipe!

  30. I made these yesterday. I added 1 t salt, and I sprinkled the top of the cookies with coarse sanding sugar before baking to add extra crunch. Drizzled with chocolate, YUM!

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