These gourmet buttermilk cookies are soft and tender with a tasty, delightful glaze. They are elegant and delicious!

I’ve been making these cookies for years and years, and they remain a favorite.

Let me tell you why: their ethereal, soft texture is unlike any cookie I’ve ever tasted and the sweet buttermilk glaze compliments the tender, light, lemony crumb.

A stack of four light yellow buttermilk cookies on a countertop.

They definitely look unassuming. I mean, really, where’s the color? The pizazz? The pop?

Trust me, one bite and you’ll realize these cookies don’t need anything else to make them special or stand out. They are absolutely incredible.

A blue plate full of glazed lemon buttermilk cookies.
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Gourmet Buttermilk Cookies

4.36 stars (78 ratings)


For Cookies:

  • 3 cups (426 g) all-purpose flour
  • Zest of 1 lemon, about 2-3 teaspoons
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ sticks (170 g) butter, softened
  • 1 ½ cups (318 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • cup buttermilk

For Glaze:

  • 1 ½ cups (171 g) powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, positioning an oven rack in the middle of the oven. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat liners or lightly coat with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together flour, zest, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, 1-2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, then mix in the vanilla.
  • Mix in the flour mixture and buttermilk alternately in batches at low speed, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until smooth.
  • Chill the dough for 30 minutes.
  • Drop tablespoons of dough about 1 1/2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake the cookies until they are puffed and edges are golden, 12 to 13 minutes.
  • While the cookies are baking, whisk together the glaze ingredients. Let the cookies rest for a minute or so out of the oven and then brush the tops of the warm cookies with the glaze.
  • Remove the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Serving: 1 Cookie, Calories: 197kcal, Carbohydrates: 32g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 32mg, Sodium: 137mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 20g

Recipe Source: adapted from Gourmet and found on Sweets by Sarah