My Recipe Box

Cream Cheese Spritz Cookies

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Yields about 100 cookies, depending on size and style.

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 61

My grandmother's recipe for this sweet and slightly tangy cookie dates back to the 1960s. Luckily, today’s cookie presses are much easier to use than the old hand-crank variety, so baking dozens of pretty little cookies is a snap.

  • 8 oz. (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 3 oz. cream cheese (I use Philadelphia brand), softened at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 11-1/4 ounces (2-1/2 cups) all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten
  • Colored sugars or other decorations for sprinkling (optional)
Tip:
For the best results, measure your flour by weight instead of volume. (1 cup of all-purpose flour equals 4-1/2 oz.) If you don’t have a scale, be sure to use the proper technique when filling your measuring cups.

Heat the oven to 375°F. With a stand mixer (use the paddle attachment) or a hand mixer, beat the butter, cream cheese, and sugar in a large bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the egg yolk and vanilla and beat again until blended. Add the flour and mix on low speed until blended.

Fit a cookie press with a die plate. Scoop up about a quarter of the dough and, using a small amount of flour if needed, shape the dough into a log just narrower than the barrel of the cookie press. Slide the log into the cookie press and spritz the cookies directly onto ungreased baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Brush the tops with the beaten egg white and sprinkle with colored sugar if using. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Bake until the cookies are just golden around the edges, 10 to 12 minutes (it’s best to bake one sheet at a time). Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet on a rack for 5 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely. Be sure the baking sheet is cool before spritzing more cookies.

Store at room temperature or freeze in an airtight container, separating the cookie layers with waxed paper.

Photo: Scott Phillips

This cookie made an excellent basic cookie....meaning it was delicious sandwiched with raspberry jam in center and dipped in dark chocolate. Also tasty just dipped in dark chocolate and sprinkles.

I made these cookies twice-- the first time, I thought "meh" when I first tasted them. Over the course of a week of sampling, I found out that these are not cookies to eat fresh, they are cookies to give-- and as such, they keep very well. After a full week, they were rich and tender, with no signs of staling. Still, I think Kathy_B had the right idea with adding a bit of extra flavoring-- when I made a second batch to give away, I added 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 2 tsp vanilla, and 1/4 tsp Flor di Sicilia (from King Arthur Flour). Holy Spritz, the second batch was amazing-- light, a little crisp, tender, rich, and fragrant with vanilla and citrus.

My family loves these cookies! I added 2 teaspoons of almond extract as well as the vanilla. This recipe will become a holiday regular of mine!

I was so disappointed with this recipe. I wasn't expecting a complete reinvention of this basic cookie but I certainly wasn't expecting it to be LESS than the original! In fact, it tasted almost like store-bought cookie dough in a tube. I don't go to the trouble of making cookies from scratch to have them taste like they came out of a tube. I think I'll stick to my usual Spritz recipe which has never let me down.

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