Gluten Free Butter Cookies | Spritz or Icebox

Gluten Free Butter Cookies | Spritz or Icebox

Cookies are a great Holiday Gift. In case you ever need to get me anything. I’m easy. Butter, sugar, eggs, and all purpose gluten free flour.

It’s best if you make this cookie dough with a food processor. It makes the dough all uniform in color.

If you (a) don’t have a food processor; or (b) don’t want to use your food processor (why?), do it by hand. In a bowl. Just be sure that the butter is at room temperature. Not melted and cooled, not cold. Room temp.

And then gather the dough together by squeezing it in your plastic covered hand. It won’t really be so uniform in color. Big whoop.

But whether you make this dough in the food processor (directions in the printable recipe below), or by hand, if you’re making spritz cookies, do not chill the dough.

For spritz cookies, you’ll need a cookie press. I have this one. It’s serviceable enough, and cheap as he**. Yet, still,I dream of sneaking up on it, and choking it to death with my bare hands.

But, instead, I fill it with butter cookie dough.

Then fit it with a disk. And press the lever until the dough is beginning to come out a bit.

Then I press it on an ungreased baking sheet. To my great displeasure, my beloved USA Pans will not work, since they’re so good at being nonstick. If the dough isn’t sticky, and the baking sheet doesn’t allow anything to stick to it … no spritz cookies. See those pretty spritz cookies? Yeah. There were, like, a million that didn’t turn out.

But if you ask me, even though you wouldn’t, I’d tell you that I much prefer this recipe as Icebox Cookies. Shape the dough, in plastic wrap, into a cylinder, square the edges, and chill. Then slice…

Ahhhh there’s my USA Pans the-only-nonstick-bakeware-I’ll-ever-use half-sheet pan (affiliate link, thank you kindly). I place my cookies on there.

They’re so pretty, it’s almost worth wrestling with that ridiculous cookie press. Which I hate. And I’m fairly certain hates me. So it’s mutual.


P.S. See you tomorrow. And later on our new Shoestring Community page. Have you checked it out yet?

Like this recipe?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 40 cookies


1 1/2 cups (210 g) all purpose gluten free flour (I used Better Batter)

3/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (72 g) confectioner’s sugar

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

8 tablespoons (112 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature

3 egg yolks (75 g), at room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Optional for topping
1 egg white

Sugar in the raw


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Set out large rimmed baking sheets, but don’t line them.

  • In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, place the flour, xanthan gum, sugar and salt, and pulse to combine well. One at a time, add the butter, egg yolks and vanilla, pulsing to combine after each ingredient. Pulse again until the dough comes together in a ball. The dough should be smooth and a bit wet, but you should be able to handle it lightly.

    You can easily make these cookies without a food processor, although the dough will not be as uniform in color. The process photos I show represent the dough as made without the use of a food processor. When it comes time to gather the dough together, you will need to squeeze it with your hand wrapped in a plastic bag or glove. Keep working. It will hold together.

  • For spritz cookies, do not chill the dough. It must be room temperature to adhere to the baking sheet. Fill your cookie press according to the manufacturer’s directions. You will want to form half the dough into a cylinder a bit smaller than the size of the chamber, and then slide the dough in. Place the disk you like on the end of the chamber, and screw the end on securely. On a bare, ungreased baking sheet that is NOT nonstick, dispense the cookie dough, spacing it evenly. I have the most luck getting the cookie shape to stick to the sheet when I place the press firmly onto the surface, press the lever on the press until I feel some resistance, hold steady, and then release quickly.

  • For icebox cookies, wrap the dough in plastic wrap, and shape it into a cylinder about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. Square each of the sides with a straight edge to form a rectangle, and place the log in the freezer until firm (about 15 minutes). Remove the log from the freezer, unwrap it, and slice into cross-section pieces about 1/4 inch wide. Place the cookies on a nonstick baking sheet, evenly spaced.

  • With a pastry brush, brush the tops of all of the cookies on the baking sheet with the (optional) egg white, and sprinkle with (optional) sugar in the raw (or other large crystallized sugar). Place the baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once, until just beginning to turn lightly brown around the edges, about 8 minutes. Allow to cool completely on the pan before moving the cookies, or they will break.


Comments are closed.

  • Karin K Morin on Facebook
    December 16, 2011 at 9:14 AM

    I’m going to try these these weekend. Can I make them CF…can I use Earth Balance, as they have to be soy free, also. I’m new to casien free and Gluten free baking. Want to make them for my daughter, who’s new to the CFGF world. She misses yummy baked goods. Thanks!

  • December 16, 2011 at 8:36 AM

    I’d use less almond extract, Julia, since it’s very strong.

  • December 16, 2011 at 8:12 AM

    These are my favorite cookies at the holidays and I’m so excited to try the recipe! Quick question – I like to use almond extract instead of vanilla. Would you use the same amount?

  • December 9, 2011 at 1:53 PM

    OH, these are some of my favorite kind of cookies ;) ): Yum, yum…can’t eat just one :) :) This would be really good with a nice cup of Dandy Blend, too :) :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of Monterey, Heather :)

  • Steph
    December 9, 2011 at 10:45 AM

    Why don’t you chill the dough for the spritz? (Is that an official spritz rule I didn’t know about?) Granted I’m just learning about GF, so this is my past Christmas’ regular recipe experience, but I fill my cookie press with dough, then chill the whole thing in the fridge for 10-15 minutes, and then they ‘spritz’ onto the cookie sheet just like they’re supposed to and stick there, coming off the press in happy little chunks just like I want. Less cursing. More blissful cookie perfection. I can’t believe the difference it made. I wonder if it’d work the same w/ gluten free dough?

    • Nicole
      December 9, 2011 at 12:48 PM

      Hi, Steph,
      If you chill the dough, it doesn’t stick. If your dough is actually warm, instead of room temperature, then it might benefit from a quick 10 minutes to bring it mostly to room temperature. If you find otherwise, that cold dough works, let me know!
      xoxo Nicole

  • December 8, 2011 at 2:55 PM

    *tries to figure out how to make said yummies both dairy free and sugar free, since you took care of the gluten*……….

    Lost cause. But I can drool. ;)

    • Nicole
      December 8, 2011 at 3:14 PM

      Oh, my. I agree, Irish Lass. Butter cookies dairy-free does sound unattainable, I’m afraid. It would be kinda like making angel food cake egg-free. ;) Dairy free is way harder than gluten-free, at least in my experience. The subs just aren’t … great. So sorry!
      xoxo Nicole

      • December 8, 2011 at 4:28 PM

        I’m sorry too. :( Ha ha! Yes, we’ve been gluten free for three or four years now, I’ve been sugar free for a year and a half, and I just went dairy free. So at least it’s not all at once. :) But stevia really is a life saver, since it’s a herb that sweetens like the dickens!

        Still drooling……


    • Shannon
      December 12, 2011 at 10:57 AM

      What about Earth Balance? I am also dairy free & have used it in place of all butter & had great results! :)

      • Nicole
        December 12, 2011 at 12:31 PM

        Hi, Shannon,
        Earth Balance is great, but it’s a bit of a challenge to use it in butter cookies, since they’re mostly … butter. But it’s worth a shot!
        xoxo Nicole

  • Sarah
    December 8, 2011 at 2:55 PM

    I hate my cookie press. I’ve only had one time i feel it was a success but i think it was because i was making cookies and drinking wine. The wine might have blocked the pain of the press. I like the idea of icebox them instead since i love the taste of them.

    • Nicole
      December 8, 2011 at 3:13 PM

      I’ve never felt so close to you, Sarah. :) Yeah, I think wine-soaked cookie pressing is the only way to go. Toss the press. Icebox it for sure.
      xoxo Nicole

  • Darlene
    December 8, 2011 at 12:12 PM

    :wipes drool off her chin:

    • Nicole
      December 8, 2011 at 12:15 PM

      Darlene! So nice to ‘see’ you. :)
      xoxo Nicole

      • Darlene
        December 8, 2011 at 3:21 PM

        Drool and all? Now there’s a friend! :)

      • Nicole
        December 8, 2011 at 4:55 PM

        Hopelessly devoted, drool and all.
        xoxo Nicole

  • December 8, 2011 at 11:31 AM

    There has never been as much cursing in my house as there was when I recently tried a cookie press. Maximum failure achieved.

    • Nicole
      December 8, 2011 at 12:14 PM

      I know, Allison! I hate the damn things. Icebox cookies are a much more sane option.
      xoxo Nicole

  • Dana Baker Coughlin on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 10:57 AM

    I will have to search for my cookie press and I think this recipe will give me a good excuse to go buy the food processor I’ve wanted! or at least thats what I’ll tell my husband-can’t make these without one. :)

  • Karin K Morin on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 10:22 AM

    Can’t wait to try it!

  • Pamela Howie-Lapierre on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 10:11 AM

    very very cool and sorry and thank you <3

  • December 8, 2011 at 9:52 AM

    Katy, the way I measure Better Batter, it is 155 grams/cup. So a 2.5 pound box would have a bit more than 8 cups.

  • Katy Coole on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 9:46 AM

    I’m finally going to take the plunge and order Better Batter, these cookies have pushed me over the edge. If I wanted to go super cookie baking crazy, do you know approx how many cups are in a 2.5# box?

  • Michelle Wilcox on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 9:42 AM

    Oh thank you, thank you! I wrestled with my cookie press the last few years since going gf, and decided it was not worth the heartache or tantrums! But I think I’ll dust it off and give it another go, especially after reading your tips!

  • December 8, 2011 at 9:31 AM

    oh yes yes yes bring them on thank you!!!!!!!!

  • Amanda DeLara on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 9:19 AM

    These are pretty! Def. going on the cookie list this year!

  • Heather Tunison on Facebook
    December 8, 2011 at 9:08 AM

    These are the ones I have been waiting for!!! THANK YOU!!!

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