I’m so excited to share all my tips and tricks for creating perfectly rolled sugar cookies. All these tips will help to create these super cute menorah cookies that stand on their own! This is the method I use to roll out all my shaped sugar cookies. Rolling out the dough my way takes a little more time, but each shape will be exactly perfect, the days of crooked cookies are over! I definitely recommend using my recipe (which can be found at the bottom of this post) since that is the only recipe I have ever used; it’s tried and true. But if you have a favorite recipe, go for it! My method will still help create perfect shapes.
Cut a piece of parchment paper about the size of your baking/cookie sheet. Place your parchment paper on your work space and lightly dust with flour. You want your dough to stick a bit to the parchment paper!
Place a round piece of dough on the lightly dusted piece of parchment paper and dust with flour. Using a rolling pin, roll out your dough making sure you do not roll over the edges.
Do not lift your dough off the parchment paper! Turn your whole piece of parchment paper 90 degrees and continue rolling out your dough. Turn your dough 90 degrees again and continue until your dough is your favorite thickness.
To make the standing menorah cookies, your dough needs to be 1/4 inch thick or less. If it is too thick, the pieces will not fit together. The menorah cutter can be found here.
Once the dough is rolled out, dip your cutter in flour, shake it off and press your cutter into the dough; pressing down firmly. Lift the cutter off of the dough, slightly jiggling if the dough is stuck. If the dough lifts off with the cutter, place your shape back into place.
Continue cutting your shapes out, making sure not to cut too closely or the cookies may bake and stick together.
Once your cookies are all cut, carefully remove the excess dough from around each cookie. Be careful not to disturb the shapes of the cookies. The cookies should be sticking slightly to the parchment paper which helps in keeping their shapes.
When all the dough is removed, lift the whole piece of parchment paper and place on your baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for exactly 8 minutes (if you are using my recipe). If using your own recipe, follow the baking time listed.
Once the cookies are baked, they should be slightly puffed and light brown on the bottom and edges. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack before removing them from the parchment paper. Once cooled, your cookies should be exactly the shape you intended! To assemble the standing menorahs, simple fit the slot in the base cookie into the slot of the menorah cookie and stand!
- If the cookie base doesn’t fit into the menorah you may have baked your cookies too thick. Simply use your finger to press down the cookie in the spots where the cookies fit together. Make sure to do this when the cookies are slightly warm so the cookies don’t crack.
- If the cookie base doesn’t fit into the menorah, the slots may have moved too close together. Use a sharp knife (I like using an xacto knife) and trim the slots slightly larger.
- If your cookies are too thin, they may not stand up so well. Simply add some frosting or royal icing to help attach the base cookie to the menorah. The cookies should have a lot more stability this way. Adding some frosting or icing also helps if you are planning to travel with the cookies.
- I like my sugar cookies puffy and fluffy and that is how my cookies bake up. If you are decorating them with royal icing and need the cookies to be completely flat, bake as usual. Once they come out of the oven, wait one minute, then place a clean piece of parchment paper over the top of the hot cookies and place a second cookie sheet directly on top of the cookies. You want the flat bottom of the baking pan pressing down the tops of the cookies. Allow the cookies to cool like this. Once the cookies are cool, they will be completely flat but they will still have kept their shape and they will still taste perfect! Here’s my simple, favorite, dairy-free cut-out sugar cookie recipe:
- 1 cup vegetable shortening
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 5 cups flour
- 1½ tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 6 Tbs. orange juice
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, beat the shortening, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition.
- Add in the flour, baking powder, and salt all at once and combine.
- With the mixer running at low speed slowly add in the orange juice.
- If the dough is very sticky, refrigerate before trying to roll out.
- When ready, roll the dough on a floured surface so the dough doesn't stick. You can also roll the dough directly on a sheet of parchment paper. The dough can be rolled thinner to create a crunchy cookie or thicker for a soft and chewy cookie.
- Cut shapes out using your favorite cookie cutter.
- Bake at 350 degrees F for exactly 8 minutes until just barely light brown at the edges.
- Cool on wire rack.
Check here to purchase my custom cutter!
Want to learn how to decorate your menorah cookies? Check out my video tutorial here!