Soft Sugar Cookies
Belly Button Pressed

These soft sugar cookies are the greatest and most flavorful treat. They are now known as Belly Button Pressed sugar cookies on this site, thanks to Sharon Hart of Milwaukie, Oregon USA.

Every time I bake them, my kitchen is filled with the most wonderful aroma of sour cream blended with butter, accentuated by vanilla extract and lemon zest. The local folks call them sugar cakes.


ingredients according to soft sugar cookie recipe

Unsalted butter, softened 1 cup or 2 sticks
Sugar 1 ½ cup
Lemon zest, finely grated 1 ½ tsps
Eggs 2 large
Vanilla extract 2 ½ tsps
Sour cream 1 cup
All purpose flour 3 cups
Baking soda ½ tsp
Cream of tartar ½ tsp
Salt ½ tsp


For topping, use 4 tablespoons of sugar and raisins.

    sugar cookies - before eggs

  • Cream butter, sugar, lemon zest until light in color and fluffy.




  • Beat in eggs and vanilla until very smooth.


    sugar cookies - before adding dry ingredients

  • Add sour cream, and gently fold in flour, cream of tartar, salt, and baking soda until evenly incorporated.


    dough made from a soft sugar cookie recipe
  • Dough will be sticky. For easy handling, chill it for at least 3 hours or until firm.


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.


    portioning dough for baking
  • Roll dough into 1½ inch balls, place on prepared cookie sheets, spacing about 3-inches apart.


    ready for baking
  • Press each ball with bottom of a drinking glass covered in saran wrap and dipped in granulated sugar. Make them about 3 inches in diameter. Insert a raisin into the center of each cookie.


    just out of oven

  • Bake for 8 – 10 minutes or until edges are lightly brown and the center is barely firm to touch.


    soft sugar cookie recipe yields these delicious cookies
  • Allow cookies to cool on cookie sheets for about 2 minutes before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.


Pennsylvania Dutch soft sugar cookies are done
This recipe makes about 24 soft sugar cookies. Store them in air tight containers for 1 week or freeze for up to 1 month.