Teekuchen Cut-Out Cookies are a treasured family recipe and my favorite holiday tradition.
Grandpa's Teekuchen Cut-Out Cookies are something everyone in my family looks forward to at Christmas time. He made them every year that I can remember, and they are my hands-down favorite. We always just called them "teekuchens" (pronounced tee-kook-ens, German for shortbread), which must mean that this recipe came from my German ancestors. No one can quite make them like my grandfather, but that doesn't stop us from trying. Even since his passing, there is always a tray of them at the family celebration, thanks to my talented cousins.
Once in a while I get a hankering to try my hand at these cookies. This Christmas I wanted to share them with Keith. As I began mixing the dough, I was quickly reminded that I did not inherit the "baking gene". My grandfather was so good at this, rolling the dough paper-thin and patiently cutting out those tricky Christmas shapes. He loved his with chopped pecans on the top. While my mother was baking one of twelve different kinds of her beloved Christmas cookies, I was losing my patience trying to bake off this one simple recipe.As I took the lovely sparkling teechukens out of the oven, I was reminded of why I love these cut-out cookies so much. As they baked, the house filled with that familiar smell, and I was transported back to my Christmases as a child. Teekuchens are well worth the effort, and you can see it on your loved ones faces as they take their first bite. For me, sharing them with Keith made it all worth while. I cannot wait to take them home for my family to sample. Although they will never be as good as my grandfather's, I am sure he would be proud.
Don't stop here! Try some of our other patented family favorite Christmas Cookies: Cocoa Drop Cookies, Vienna Tarts, and Mama's Cinnamon Rugelach
Teekuchen Cut Out Cookies
My grandfather's classic Christmas cookie recipe is a family favorite. Steeped in tradition, this holiday cookie recipe is as fun to make as it is to eat.
- Total Time: 2 hours 37 mins
- Yield: 3 dozen cookies 1x
- 2 ¼ cups flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ pound unsalted butter (at room temp)
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Pre-heat oven to 400°.
- With electric or stand mixer, mix flour, salt and powdered sugar together.
- Mix in butter.
- Beat egg, but only use 2 teaspoons of egg in batter
- Add vanilla and blend well.
- Cover and chill for at least 2 hours.
- Roll out chilled dough on floured surface to ⅛" thickness
- Cut out using cookie cutters
- Use balance of egg mixture to brush tops of each cookie.
- Sprinkle with colored sugar (and chopped nuts if you choose).
- Bake for 5 to 7 minutes
- Prep Time: 2 hours 30 mins
- Cook Time: 7 mins
- Category: Cookies
- Cuisine: German American
- Serving Size: 3 cookies
- Calories: 320
- Sugar: 11.9 g
- Sodium: 68.6 mg
- Fat: 19.1 g
- Carbohydrates: 33.5 g
- Protein: 3.7 g
- Cholesterol: 67.4 mg
Keywords: cookies, Christmas, holiday, baking, cookie recipe, sugar cookie, cut out, teekuchen, cookie, sugar
They look beautiful!
Thanks Gretch!! I'm bringing them home... hope they are as good as yours!!!
Please spread the word.
On the 3rd try the cookies turned out absolutely scrumptious, even delectable. Such simplicity yet that is the genius of this recipe. My first time ever baking; I wanted to see if I had the German baking gene and by golly I do. My ancestors came over from Germany in the 1880’s and opened up Koenig’s Bakery in Baltimore. They lost them all in the depression. I’m sure they probably used a formula similar to this one back in the day. They baked in large batches so they didn’t cLl it a recipe, but a formula. Thanks for sharing yours.
Lowell, this is AMAZING!! I agree, these cookies are so hard to get right, but I am so happy you found success! thank you so much for sharing this with us. What a wonderful story about your family's bakery... I wonder if they were the same? Thanks again for stopping by! This made our day.
This recipe you have shared has already become an instant classic in my Family. I've made a "double" batch because I had to give them to friends and my boss. They disappear quickly and are just a delicate, balanced and perfect cookie. I made some with sprinkled sugar and some with the pecan dusting; next I'm going to try coconut flakes. I found success in rolling out 1/2 of the dough while placing the remaining 1/2 back in the fridge so that I had time to cut out the cookies before the dough gets too soft which would then cause it to stick to the rolling pin etc. I found that with very minimal flour [I used the Robin Hood w/3 grams protein] and using a parchment paper rather than a floured apron cloth worked best for cutting the best cookies. I am so into this, that I bought like 24 tin cookie cutter shapes and taught my son how to make them using the secret I mentioned above when rolling out the dough. Parchment paper worked best.
I imagine my Great Grandfather, Edward Koenig would've been very familiar with this type of cookie. Thank you again for posting this absolutely perfect recipe/formula. Merry Christmas to you and yours!!!