I saw some gorgeous ombré cookies in Pinterest recently and was so drawn so how lovely they were. Freeze dried berries are one of my favorite secret ingredients for flavoring/coloring baked goods, and I knew they would make the most gorgeous pink frosting. I crushed them into a powder and added it gradually to the frosting, decorating a few, and then adding more powder until the graduated color affect was accomplished. Aren’t they lovely? Plus the tangy raspberry flavor is perfect with the lemony cookies making this flavor combo one of my favorites.
In terms of sugar cookie cut outs, this recipe is my favorite. It’s from Bake at 350, the queen of sugar cookies, and I’ve made it several times. This version has lemon zest mixed into the sugar which releases all the oils and makes the lemon flavor shine. The dough requires no chilling ahead of time, and this whole project was done in just about an hour. Not bad right? (If you’re feeling ambitious today I get my freeze dried berries from Trader Joes, but I’ve ordered them in bulk from Amazon as well.) These are perfect for Valentine’s Day, a baby shower, or anytime you want a pretty and spring-y cookie!
Ingredients needed for Lemon Raspberry Cookies:
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Vanilla extract
- Fresh lemon juice and zest
Supplies needed for Raspberry Lemon Cookies:
- Large bowl
- Electric Mixer
- Airtight Container
- Wire Rack
- Parchment Paper
- Offset Spatula for frosting
- Mesh Sieve
- Hand mixer or stand mixer
How to make Raspberry Lemon Cookies:
Combine flour with baking powder and set aside. Mix the sugar and lemon zest in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to work the zest into the sugar, releasing the oils. Add the butter, and use an electric or stand mixer to cream until fluffy. Add the egg, vanilla, and lemon juice to the butter mixture and mix until creamy and well mixed. Scrape the sides of the bowl and then add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, mixing on low speed until combined. Cookie dough will be crumbly. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until the dough comes together.
Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut out using cookie cutters. Place cut out cookies on a prepared baking sheet 1-2 inches apart and freeze for 5 minutes before baking.
Bake cookies 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack.
When the cookies are room temperature frost using a spoon or offset spatula. Cookies last at room temperature for 2-3 days in a sealed container or up to a week in the fridge.
How to make Freeze Dried Raspberry Frosting:
The reason I love using freeze dried berries for this recipe is that you can create a powder which doesn’t make the frosting runny like if you had used fresh raspberries or frozen raspberries.
The frosting has an extra burst of sweetness of raspberries as well as a bright natural pink coloring. For best results use a fine mesh strainer to crush the larger raspberry pieces, remove seeds and chunks and only use the remaining powder. If you want to keep the smaller bits of raspberry in the frosting you are welcome to do that as well.
To use, cream butter until fluffy and then add the powdered sugar and raspberry powder. Add milk or cream until frosting is creamy but can still hold shape. Spread frosting onto cooled cookies.
Other recipes using Freeze Dried Fruit:
Other cookies using Lemon or Raspberry:
Thumbprint Cookies with Icing (jam thumbprints you can make with sweet raspberry jam and a tangy lemon glaze!)
Chewy Lemon Cookies (Chewy sugar cookies filled with lemon freshness!)
For the Cookies:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 sticks (salted) butter, cold & cut into small chunks
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- zest and juice of 1 lemon
For the Frosting:
- 4 oz cream cheese, softened
- 12 tablespoons of butter, softened
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons freeze dried raspberry powder*
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the Cookies:
- Preheat oven to 350F. In a small bowl stir the flour and baking powder together, set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl add the sugar and lemon zest. Use your hands to work the zest into the sugar, releasing the oils.
- Add the butter, and use an electric mixer to cream until fluffy. Add the egg, vanilla, and lemon juice and mix until creamy and well mixed.
- Add the flour mixture and mix on low speed until combined. Dough will be crumbly.
- Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead until the dough comes together.
- Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut out using cookie cutters. Place cut out cookies on a lined cookie sheet 1-2 inches apart and freeze for 5 minutes before baking.
- Bake each batch 10-12 minutes. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack.
For the Frosting:
- Cream together the cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer until smooth. Add lemon juice and the powdered sugar, one cup at a time until fluffy and creamy.
- Add a sprinkle of the raspberry powder and decorate the first few cookies. Add a little more raspberry powder and decorate a few more, gradually adding more powder to each batch, creating a gradual darker pink.
- Cookies last up to a week stored in an air tight container in the fridge.
*To make the raspberry powder, scoop about 2/3 cup freeze dried raspberries into a ziplock bag. Crush them into a powder using a rolling pin. Sift them using a fine mesh sieve to create a fine powder, or add some of the seeds in for a more textured look. (The darkest color cookies have some seeds added!)
Sugar Cookie barely adapted from Bake at 350