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Rainbow Sugar Cookies

  • Author: Elise
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Category: Cookies, Rainbow
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American


  • 1 cup (220g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups (315g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg (50g), room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (420g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple food dye


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line baking sheets with parchment paper to ensure the cookies come off of the pan cleanly after baking.
  2. In a large bowl with a hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer that is fitted with a paddle attachment, beat room temperature butter and granulated sugar together on medium speed until smooth. This should be about 2-3 minutes of mixing.
  3. Add the egg and vanilla extract to the batter and beat until fully combined. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl to ensure the mixture is combined throughout.
  4. Pour the properly-measured all purpose flour, baking powder, and salt into the batter and mix only until you see the ingredients disappear.
  5. Divide the dough into 5 equal parts and dye each a different color of the rainbow. You can mix the dye into each dough part one-by-one in the stand mixer.
  6. Place the red dough ball on a sheet of parchment paper. Place another sheet of parchment paper over the dough ball and use a rolling pin or wine bottle to roll the dough into a thin slab. Repeat this process with each color, creating slabs that are close to size. They do not need to be exactly the same size.
  7. Stack the colors- red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple on top. Then, take one shorter end of the stack and roll tightly. Use your fingers to shape any breakage of the dough.
  8. Place the roll, uncovered, in the freezer for 10 minutes to firm up. Then, cut the roll into about 1/4-inch cookies and use your hands to shape them if they have lost their circle shape.
  9. Bake the cookies for 7-10 minutes until the edges are just barely starting to darken, the centers still look just slightly soft, and the tops are pale. The cookies will continue to bake and firm up as they cool. Store tightly covered or in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 4 months.


Measuring Flour: You will end up with dry, tough cookies if you do not measure your flour correctly. Measure out 420g of flour exactly using a kitchen scale or simply use a spoon to carry flour into your measuring cups before using a knife to sweep the flour across the top in order to level the flour.

Make Ahead: You can make the dough ahead of time and chill it in the fridge for up to 2 days before adding the dye or after forming the roll. Just make sure to cover wrap it tightly. You can also slice the roll into cookies and freeze the unbaked cookie dough for up to 3 months.

Keywords: Rainbow Cookies, Rainbow Sugar Cookies, Slice and Bake Cookies