Dec 24, 2009

My Favorite Tea Cake Cookies & Icing Recipe


Homemade Tea Cake Cookies and Icing

Once a year I allow myself to indulge in one of my favorite desserts of all time: Tea Cake Cookies! And not just any tea cake cookies, but the softest, yummiest tea cake cookies I’ve ever had. 🙂

Here’s what you need…


1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup shortening (I prefer to use 1/2 cup butter instead of the shortening)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
A dash of salt (very very little)
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups of flour
3 Tbsp. Buttermilk


1/4 cup butter
4 cups of sifted powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
At least 2 tsp. of light cream or evaporated milk
Food coloring

Here’s how to make them:

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Cream the butter, shortening and sugar in a large mixer.


3. Add the egg and mix some more.

4. Add the baking soda, baking powder, salt and vanilla and mix more.

5. Alternately add the flour and buttermilk.

6. Once the dough is mixed thoroughly, pack part of it together into a ball and put it on a floured surface.


7. Roll the dough out to about 3/16 of an inch (I would recommend making it thicker than you think it needs to be, or the cookies won’t be as soft) and cut out shapes with cookie cutters.  (My kids did the shapes so the dough isn’t quite used to its optimal capacity in the picture)  🙂


8. Place the cookies on a greased cookie sheet and bake for around 10 minutes. Depending on your oven they might need to bake a LITTLE bit longer… just make sure you don’t overcook them.

9. Put together the dough that is left from when you cut out the shapes and add more of the dough from the mixing bowl. Repeat steps 7 & 8.

10. Once the cookies are done, immediately transfer them to a cookie rack. When they are cool, transfer them to an air-tight container.


Are you ready for the icing?

1. Cut the butter into the powdered sugar like corn meal with a pastry blender.

2. Add the sugar, vanilla, and cream of tartar and mix thoroughly.

3. Add the milk and food coloring.

4. Keep the icing in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve the cookies. Then ice them and ENJOY!

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  1. Heartland Hannah says:

    They look yummy & I think your little helpers do a pretty good job : ) Thanks a million for the tip on the pastry blender! I’ve done lot of baking but never used one of those before and I can’t wait to try one! Like my husband says with house repairs, having the right tool sure can make the job easier!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family Rachel!

  2. Erin Dixon says:

    So I just made these cookies and the frosting for our Christmas dinner “treat” tomorrow, and they are AWESOME!! Seriously, I could never get the frosting right before but this recipe is great, and the cookies are de-lish (I used 1/2 c. butter and no shortening, hubby is a trans fat phobe and I didn’t want to be the only one eating them) but they’re still great. Thanks a ton for posting this!

  3. Cheryl Smith says:

    Will be making these with my grandson as a surprise for his Mom who is a Chef.

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