A Family Favorite – And a Flop?

Well, not according to Eric. Whew! What a huge relief! Eric has been bugging me to make his Aunt Mary Ellen’s sugar cookies FOREVER. Eric literally downs 8 in one serving whenever we visit. They are his absolute favorite. In fact, his whole family loves them. Mary Ellen is my FIL’s oldest sister and she’s about 25 years older than him. So since Eric’s paternal grandparents passed long before he and his brothers were born, Mary Ellen sort of took on that grandma role in his life. She is the world’s sweetest lady. I just adore her! I told Eric I’d love to give her cookies a shot but first he had to get me the recipe! He finally got it this past weekend. I decided to make a batch today for him today since I’m leaving town starting tomorrow and won’t be back until Monday. Now he’ll have a nice little treat!

Now, I thought I screwed up these royally. When I tried them, I thought they were kind of blah. But then again, I don’t absolutely love sugar cookies. Eric thought they were great but mentioned that Mary Ellen’s are usually thinner. The dough is super sticky, so you really got to flour your surface and rolling pin really really well. Next time I’ll be sure to roll out the dough nice and thin, probably to about an eight of an inch. The recipe also called for almond extract or vanilla. I used vanilla since that what I had on hand, but I bet Mary Ellen uses almond extract. I have a feeling that would really punch up the flavor. I plan on trying these again with a few changes.


**Note** This makes a TON of dough. Enough for about 6 dozen cookies. If you don’t want to make them all at once, you can freeze the dough for use at a later date.


  • 2 sticks of margarine, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tsps. almond extract or vanilla (I used vanilla, but I want to try almond next time)
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tsps. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt


  1. Beat margarine and sugar until creamy. Beat in eggs, sour cream and extract.
  2. Combine flour, baking soda and salt. Add to sugar mixture and mix until a soft dough forms
  3. Divide dough into two balls. Wrap in wax paper and refrigerate until firm – 2 to 3 hours or overnight.
  4. Roll dough on heavily floured surface and cut with cookie cutter. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 375 for 8 to 9 minutes or until edges are just brown. Do not overbake. Cool on wire rack.

1 Comment

Filed under cookies

One response to “A Family Favorite – And a Flop?

  1. Jared

    I thought my family was the only ones that had ever had Sour Cream cookies. Everyone I have told about them just looks at me like I have 4 heads. Glad to see it posted here. My recipe is a little different and I’m looking forward to trying this one. I also tried my grandmothers recipe recently for the first time and I thought they were much drier than I remember as a child. Thanks!

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