My Favorite Spritz Cookies

These are my favorite spritz cookies! Using a cookie press, shape this easy cookie dough into intricate shapes and have fun decorating with sprinkles, chocolate, and chocolate chips. No cookie dough chilling required and the cookies freeze and ship wonderfully.

Butter spritz cookies on a plate

Welcome to day 2 in Sally’s Cookie Palooza!

We started my annual Christmas cookie countdown yesterday with Peppermint Bark Cookies and I have an equally festive CLASSIC CHRISTMAS COOKIE recipe for you today.

These are my favorite Spritz Cookies.

butter spritz cookies

What are Spritz Cookies?

Spritz cookies are a lot like sugar cookies. They’re buttery and sweet and, with the right recipe, hold their intricate shape when baked. Sugar cookies are shaped with cookie cutters and spritz cookies are shaped with a cookie press. Spritz cookies are also similar to shortbread cookies, but spritz cookies usually contain an egg. Eggs help the spritz cookies hold their shape when baked, so they don’t crumble like shortbread cookies do.

The word “spritz” actually comes from the German word spritzen which means “to squirt.” This refers to squirting or pushing the cookie dough through a cookie press. I don’t know why, but I always associate the word spritz with “spritely” because spritz cookies remind me of something little spritely fairies would eat!

What is a Cookie Press?

I added a cookie press to my baking tools collection a few years ago. Inside this baking tool is a metal plate with a stenciled shape. A cookie press presses your cookie dough through the metal plate to create beautifully shaped cookies. It’s actually a lot easier (and more fun) than a rolling pin and cookie cutter!

  • I recommend this OXO cookie press. This is not a sponsored post; I genuinely love this cookie press. It’s the easiest to use and comes with 12 different shapes you can swap out. Just read the hundreds of positive reviews. It also makes a wonderful holiday gift!

butter spritz cookies with chocolate chips and chocolate drizzle

How to Make Spritz Cookies

This is my favorite recipe for spritz cookies. I love it so much that I published it in my cookbook Sally’s Cookie Addiction. Here’s why this is my favorite:

  • BASIC INGREDIENTS. Butter, flour, egg, sugar.
  • 1 BOWL. Easy recipe.
  • FAST RECIPE. Chilling the cookie dough is not required.
  • STICKS TO THE BAKING SHEET. Not the cookie press.
  • FUN TO DECORATE. Use sprinkles, chocolate chips, melted chocolate, etc!
  • FREEZER-FRIENDLY. They literally taste like new after thawed.
  • SHIP WONDERFULLY. Hold their shape during the journey!

The dough comes together in 1 bowl using a mixer. There is no baking powder or baking soda needed; these buttery spritz cookies are dense, not airy. They hardly spread, so you can fit a bunch onto your baking sheets. Since the cookies are small, you can use 1 batch of dough to make a variety of shapes with your cookie press. You can even tint some of the cookie dough red or green like you see in my pictures!

Butter cookie dough and bowls of holiday sprinkles

Cookie Press

Butter spritz cookies on a baking sheet

How Do I Use a Cookie Press?

Each press comes with a set of instructions and the OXO cookie press I recommend is super user-friendly. Select a plate, such as the snowflake shape, and place it in the bottom compartment. After your cookie dough is prepared, spoon it inside the tube. Attach the top of the cookie press to the tube. Hold the cookie press upright– the bottom pressed against your baking sheet. Press the lever until it clicks and lift up the cookie press. Shaped cookie will be on your baking sheet! *If the cookie dough sticks to the cookie press, use your fingers to release it and place onto the cookie sheet.

  • No Cookie Press? Instead, use a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch (13 mm) open star tip and use my butter cookies recipe, which is this cookie dough with a little milk to help it pipe-able. 🙂

assortment of butter spritz cookies made with a cookie press

Grab your kids, friends, cousins, grandkids, siblings, etc and have fun decorating. Can I admit I prefer these over decorating sugar cookies with royal icing? Ha!!! Spritz cookies are much neater and using a cookie press is really fun!

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butter spritz cookies

My Favorite Spritz Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 84 bite-size cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These are my favorite spritz cookies! Using a cookie press, shape this easy cookie dough into intricate shapes and have fun decorating with sprinkles, chocolate, and chocolate chips. No cookie dough chilling required and they freeze and ship wonderfully.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks; 230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • optional: sprinkles, chocolate chips, and melted chocolate for decoration

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  2. In a large bowl, using a handheld mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract, 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.
  3. On low speed, beat in the flour and salt. Turn up to high speed and beat until completely combined.
  4. Press the dough– follow manufacturer’s directions to fit your cookie press with a decorative plate. Scrape some of the dough into your cookie press. Hold the cookie press perpendicular to the lined baking sheet and press out the cookies 2 inches (5 cm) apart. If desired, decorate the shaped cookie dough with sprinkles or press a chocolate chip into the center. Note: It’s helpful to lightly brush the shaped cookie dough with water before adding sprinkles. Helps them stick.
  5. If the cookie dough becomes too soft as you work, chill the shaped cookie dough in the refrigerator for 10 minutes before baking.
  6. Bake until very lightly browned on the edges, 7 to 9 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. If desired, drizzle with melted chocolate.
  8. Cookies stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: You can chill the cookie dough in the refrigerator for up to 4 days before pressing the dough through the cookie press. You can also freeze the cookie dough for up to 3 months; allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bring to room temperature before continuing with step 4. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months; thaw before serving.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand MixerGreen Food Coloring |  OXO Cookie Press | Silpat Baking Mat | Baking Sheet | Cooling Rack | Red Sanding SugarGreen Sanding Sugar | Wilton Pearlized Sugar | Christmas Nonpareils
  3. Almond Extract: Almond extract adds such a wonderful flavor and I don’t recommend skipping it. If desired, you can leave it out completely or add another 1/2 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract in its place. You can also substitute with 3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract, lemon extract, or another flavor extract you enjoy. Adding 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon is delicious too!
  4. Food Coloring: I tinted 1/4 of the cookie dough green with 1 very tiny drop of green food coloring. I recommend gel food coloring. Use sparingly; 2 drops is plenty for the entire batch.
  5. No Cookie Press? No problem! Instead, use a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch (13 mm) open star tip and use my butter cookies recipe, which is this cookie dough with a little milk to help it pipe-able.

Don’t miss my updated coconut macaroons!

Coconut macaroons drizzled with dark chocolate

180 Comments

  1. Do they taste like the Danish Butter cookies in the blue tin? I love those little cookies and am looking for a homemade version.

    1. Yes, definitely! But these are not quite as crumbly.

  2. Hi! You mention using a silpat or parchment paper. I have tried using it for these cookies, but, they won’t release from the press if I do. Any suggestions? Thanks! Love your recipes!

    1. Hi Kathy! This particular spritz cookie dough is sticky enough to stick to the parchment or nonstick mat. 🙂 If you’re still running into trouble, you can use your fingers to release the dough from the bottom of the cookie press.

  3. These cookies look really great Sally, o can’t wait to make them this weekend and share!

    I particularly like that you use parchment paper on the cookie sheets 🙂

    All of the other recipes that I’ve seen stipulate that cookies sheets should not be unlined – how did you decide to use parchment paper/silpat?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Michele! Most spritz cookie doughs aren’t sticky enough to stick to the parchment paper, but will stick to an unlined baking sheet. My cookie dough is sticky enough to stick to parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

  4. Beverly Schroth says:

    I am wondering if the spritz cookie could be made into a fudgy chocolate or brownie spritz. If you have such a recipe I would love to try it. It could be a nice variation to a cookie tray I take to work.

    1. Hi Beverly! I think a chocolate version would be wonderful. I haven’t tested any yet, but you could try with my chocolate sugar cookie dough. Again, I haven’t tested this.

  5. Curious as to why you don’t prefer an electric press (or more accurately “gun”) for greater ease. Have you ever tried one? Although your cookies are certainly shaped more beautifully than I’ve ever seen come out of my supershooter but then I haven’t tried your recipe in it yet. But I intend to.

    1. Hi Lorr! I actually don’t own one! I stick to this cookie press, but use whatever works for you or what you prefer.

  6. I make this type of cookie every Christmas. They are perfect for kids to help squeeze out and put sprinkles on. I just wanted to say that I often have trouble using a silpat for mine because I find the dough doesn’t adhere and won’t come off the press. For that reason I always squeeze mine onto a cold, grease free pan and they come off the press easily every time.

    1. Thank you, Rebecca, this is helpful! I have the SAME problem and will try your advice next time!

  7. Hi Sally! I tried to make these spritz cookies last night and at this time last year too because you have it also in your cookbook and I love them! But i cant seem to get the same width of cookie as you do. Mine spread a little more so they lose their shape and Im not sure what could be the reason to that???
    My cookie press works fine because ive always used the same one and the ingredients are room temp as the instructions say they need to be. But i cant seem to get ir right.
    Could you please help me figure it out
    Thankyou

    1. Hi Cecilia! My suggestion is to chill the shaped cookies for about 30 minutes prior to baking. Chill right on the cookie sheet 🙂

  8. These are fantastic! I’d be really interested of they came in a chocolate version :p

  9. Love this recipe! We made almond and lemon cookies. The trees and flowers popped out great! The green wreathes less so. I’m going to try the cold ungreased pan next week.

    If you were going to do a chocolate spritz, how much flour would you take out and how much chocolate powder would you put in?

    1. Hi Amy! So glad you enjoyed this spritz cookie recipe too!

      I think a chocolate version would be wonderful. I haven’t tested any yet, but you could try with my chocolate sugar cookie dough. Again, I haven’t tested this.

  10. Hi Sally,
    in a pinch, could I make these with a piping bag? I’m afraid my better half may flip, if I buy ANOTHER kitchen gadget… XD
    Lots of love from Germany!
    Jazz

    1. Haha – I understand 🙂 Yes, they should work with a piping bag and a star tip!

  11. I found this recipe to have too little flour, causing the cookies to spread quite a bit and loose their shape.

  12. About making these in advance, would it be advisable to freeze the pressed cookie dough and bake them from frozen as needed? I do cookie platters for Christmas and love to premake and freeze all my doughs. Easy enough to simply bake each one of those in the last couple days before serving. I am not particularly fond of freezing baked cookies. Thank you.

    1. Hi Faye! You can freeze the shaped cookie dough. Bake from frozen– they’ll need an extra minute in the oven.

      Love that you’re getting ahead on Christmas cookie baking! I do the same. 🙂

  13. I followed the recipe exactly. Measured using my scale, Butter and egg was room temp. The cookie dough won’t release from the press. I tried refrigerating and still no luck.

    Thank you!

  14. Sarah Russell says:

    I just made these and the cookies didn’t hold there shape when baked. Should I refrigerate the dough? They were still yummy!

    1. Hi Sarah! Chilling the cookie dough always helps. Was your butter too soft? Make sure it is still cool to touch, which is the best foundation for these cookies. My preferred method, for these spritz cookies, is to chill the shaped cookies on the baking sheet, then bake them.

  15. Just made these – they are awesome!!!!!

    Thank you for another great, easy recipe !

  16. Ashley Reynolds Marshall says:

    Hello Sally! I’ve followed you for quite a long time and this recipe came in for me when I was in a pinch! TL;DR: Recipe 1 fell way way way flat (literally) so I needed a super quick cookie for a cookie exchange at…say 2pm today. Tada! I found this recipe and made a few little tweaks (I did one a rum cinnamon flavor, one batch orange ginger with nutella drizzle) and I’m off to the races! Giving lots and lots of credit for your greatness (i.e. the link to this recipe) on my recipe cards!

  17. Hi,
    I bought the cookie press you mentioned and followed the directions exactly as written. I could not get the cookie press to release the cookie onto the sheet. Any suggestions for what may have gone wrong?

    1. Hi Jessica, be sure that when you hold the cookie press the bottom is pressed against your baking sheet. I use a silicon baking mat but some readers have reported that it sticks better for them directly onto the baking sheet. Try it both ways and see which works better for you!

  18. I have my grandmother’s recipe but have always had trouble getting my cookies to come off the press well. So I just tried your recipe and it worked perfectly. It’s going in my Christmas binder, for sure!

  19. Thank you so much for the recipe. It was a success! Perfect! I’ve tried to make these a couple of times and it was a disaster. Thanks again.

  20. I am so sad! I just tried my third batch of your spritz cookies. They have all failed! I have reread your instructions several times, read other people’s blogs, and talked to people who make spritz cookies. I just cannot keep them from spreading in the oven.

    All of my ingredients are at room temperature but not too warm. I have tried chilling the pans, chilling the dough before and/or after using the cookie press. I have tried OXO and Pampered Chef cookie presses. The cookies look beautiful before they go in the oven so it is not the press. But they spread every time I cook them.

    My cookies look like round blobs after they cook but they are oh so delicious!!

    1. Hi Karen! I understand the frustration. If you decide to make the cookies again, I suggest chilling the shaped cookies before they go into the oven. The colder the shaped dough, the less they will over-spread. Sorry for the trouble!

  21. I tried your recipe and ended up throwing the dough away. It was way too soft and sticky. And I couldn’t get it to come out of the press. I compared it to a recipe that I have been using for over 20 years and found the difference to be in the amt of sugar and extract that is in your recipe. I wanted to try something new and it was a costly experiment that did not turn out well.

    1. Hi Lucy! I wonder if your butter was too soft? Sorry you had trouble with the recipe and let me know if you ever decide to try it again.

  22. I made these a couple weeks ago and though they did spread more than the cookies in your photos, they tasted great. I’ve made spritz cookies many times, but not recently and these taste just as I remember. I did chill my dough before pressing it, so I’m not sure why mine spread. No matter. They had enough shape that they looked festive, they tasted great and to me they were worth the effort. Thanks for reminding me of an old friend. Happy holidays!

  23. I love this recipe!! How can we make these into chocolate spritz cookies?

    1. Hi Stephanie! While I haven’t tried this yet, you can try using my chocolate sugar cookies dough. I recommend chilling the shaped cookies (before baking) for at least 30 minutes so they hold they’re shape in the oven.

  24. Hi,

    I made this recipe last Christmas. While the flavor of the cookies was so delicious, they were very soft even the ones I let brown a little. Should I add more flour? I did the spoon and level method, maybe I should pack the flour?

    1. Hi Andrea, are you looking for a crispier texture? Feel free to pack the flour and bake for an extra minute.

  25. Cynthia jones says:

    How do you do the chocolate lines (there is probably a fancy baking word for the technique!)

    1. Hi Cynthia, The fancy term is drizzle 🙂 Haha! You just melt chocolate and you can simply use a spoon to drizzle the chocolate over the cookies or if you want to be more precise you can fill a piping bag (or even a ziplock bag with the corner cut off) with some melted chocolate.

  26. When growing up my mom had a press cookie recipe she called Velvet cookies. It used almond extract and peanut butter. They would just melt in your mouth. Unfortunately I have not been able to find her recipe. Does this sound familiar anyone? Would love to be able to make these.

    1. Sounds delicious, let me know if you find it!

    2. I found that recipe in an antique cookie press box today actually! Velvet cookies.. 3/4 cup powdered sugar, 2tbsp peanut butter, 3/4 cup butter, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 2 cups sifted flour, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1/4 tsp almond extract.

      1. Pat Griffiths says:

        Sally I can’t thank you enough. That is it. I’m so glad to have this recipe again. I recently lost my mom and she would bake these every Christmas. You’ll have to try them. They are wonderful melt in your mouth delicious. Thanks again.

      2. Do you happen to know the temperature & time amount to cook them? I would love to try them!

    3. Hi Pat I have an old Mirro cookie press that is the same as the one my Mom always used at Christmas, I also have the small “cook book” that was included with the press. I would be happy to copy and send any recipes you would like to have, including Velvet cookies.
      LK 🙂

      1. I made these spritz cookies last week with an old Mirro press I found for $5 at a flea market. The cookies are delicious and the new cookie presses can’t beat the simplicity of that old one. So many memories of baking with my mom!

  27. I made this recipe earlier this month and it was perfect! I did reduce the gram amount of butter called for because my conversion charts all read 113.39 grams = 1 stick butter; therefore, 226.79 grams = 2 sticks butter. I rounded my measurement up to 227 grams.

  28. Have tried spritz cookies before and failed this recipe was just about right if you do not live at 5280 ft (Denver or higher). Add two eggs to dough and bake 12-15mins. They turned out great. Thanks for the recipe.

  29. I was just reading the post between Pat and Steph ! I believe God is in the details ! So happy the recipe was found ! I’m trying the spritz recipe this week . I have used a recipe for years but the last two I’ve had trouble with sticking . Im also changing the cookie press ! Hoping for a successful spritz cookie season ! Merry Christmas

  30. I’ve been baking Spritz cookies for a very long time, from a variety of recipes, but this is my all-time favorite. Thank you Sally!

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