Picture of Cutout Sugar Cookies
This is the best sugar cookie recipe I've ever tried. The cookies are soft and hold their cutout shape very well. They are perfect for holiday decorating. 

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Step 1: Sugar Cookie Base

Picture of Sugar Cookie Base
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 cup cream cheese
1 tb flavored extract (vanilla, cherry, almond, lemon) etc.
8 cups flour
1 tb baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 ¼ tsp salt

1. Cream the butter, sugar, and cream cheese together in a large bowl. Add in the sour cream, eggs, and extract. Mix well.
2. Sift the flour, salt, baking soda and powder into the butter  mixture.
3. Form the dough in a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate at least an hour or overnight.

Step 2: Cutting out and Baking

Picture of Cutting out and Baking
1. Remove half the dough from the refrigerated dough ball and return the other half to fridge. The dough is much easier to work with when it is cold. 

2. Roll the dough on a floured surface to your desired thickness. 

3. Cut out the cookie using shaped cutters. If you have a cookie shape you want, but don't have the cutter for it, you can make a template out of poster board or card stock. I wanted to make larger cookie houses, so I sketched out a basic shape with pencil and cut out the shape with scissors. I placed the template on top of the rolled dough and carefully cut around the template with a knife. Use a thin spatula to safely transfer the dough shapes to a greased cookie sheet.

4. Bake the cookies on the middle rack at 350 F for 10-12 minutes, until the edges start to brown. 

Step 3: Frosting Base

Picture of Frosting Base
You can also use any type of frosting or icing that you want. Here is a simple buttercream recipe.

1 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or other flavor)
4 cups powdered sugar
1 pinch of table salt
4-6 tablespoons whipping cream

1. Cream the butter and sugar together. Add the vanilla and then the powdered sugar.
2. Thin the frosting with cream to your desired consistency.