If you love the lemon flavor and sugar cookies, wait until you try my new Gluten Free Lemon Cookie recipe! It is a delicious blend of sweet lemon flavors! These lemon sugar cookies are easy to make as drop-style or slice-and-bake cookies!

A stack of lemon cookies on a plate.

These delicious gluten-free lemon cookies almost melt in your mouth. Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, they are the perfect sugar cookies to enjoy when you are in the mood for cookies.

My family has been enjoying all the new cookie recipes I have worked on. They are my trusted taste testers and have made it through three versions of these lemon cookies. The first version used only lemon extract, the second only lemon juice, and the third, the winner, uses a combination of both!

I hope you love these cookies as much as we do. There is also a dairy-free version for my readers who need to be dairy-free! If you love lemon-flavored desserts, check out all of my delicious Gluten Free Lemon Recipes!!

These cookies are so light and flavorful! No one knew they were gluten free except me!”

Carol, Blog comment

Allergen Information:

These homemade lemon sugar cookies are gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free, and oat-free. To make this recipe dairy-free, substitute the butter for vegan butter.

If you are a cookie fanatic like me, you will want to check out all of my gluten free cookie recipes!

Photos of the gluten free lemon cookie ingredients.

Ingredients Notes:

For the full list of ingredients and amounts, please go to the recipe card below.

  • Gluten free flour blend – I tested this recipe using Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten Free Flour Blend and King Arthur’s Measure for Measure Gluten Free Blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work. I just have not tested other flours.
  • Xanthan Gum – If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain a binder like xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 3/4 teaspoon.
  • Baking Powder – Use aluminum-free baking powder.
  • Eggs – Use size large.
  • Lemon Extract – I use this for that extra lemon flavor. Too much lemon juice can add too much moisture and change the texture. This is why I use a combination of both extract and juice.
  • Butter – I recommend using unsalted butter

Step-By-Step Photos and Directions

Lemon cookies photos of steps 1 and 2.

Step 1: Add the dry ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend.

Step 2: Add the wet ingredients, including the partially melted butter, and mix in a smaller bowl.

Lemon cookies photos of steps 3 and 4.

Step 3: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix into a big cookie dough ball. Wrap this cookie dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30-45 minutes.

📢 Sandi says: Every gluten-free flour blend has a different starch-to-grain ratio. The brand of gluten-free flour you use will affect the moisture of the batter. If your cake batter is too runny, add more flour, and if it is too thick, add more liquids.
Read Why Gluten-Free Flour Blends Vary to learn more about this.

Step 4: Make the lemon sugar by adding the sugar and lemon zest to a bowl.

Lemon cookies photos of steps 5 and 6.

Step 5: Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or spray it with gluten-free baking spray. Scoop up the dough with a cookie scoop, roll the cookie dough balls with your hands, and then roll them into the lemon sugar.

Step 6: Place the sugar-coated cookie dough balls on a baking sheet.

🔑 Sandi says: If you want to make slice-and-bake cookies instead, make a log out of the cookie dough ball. Roll the log into the lemon sugar and wrap it in plastic. Refrigerate for 30-45 minutes and slice and bake.

Lemon cookies photos of steps 7 and 8.

Step 7: Take a glass and use the bottom to smush down all of the cookies.

Step 8: Bake at 350º F for 10 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven to cool on a cooling rack.

Why are my cookies flat, aka spread too much?

This is one of the most common questions I get from my readers. There are several reasons for flat cookies, including:

  • Check to see how long you chilled your cookie dough. If you use partially melted or softened butter, you must chill it to prevent spreading.
  • How did you measure your flour? Measuring your flour accurately is important. I don’t often weigh my ingredients because every flour blend has a different weight, and my readers all use different gluten-free flour blends. I recommend using either the Spoon Method by using a spoon to add flour to the measuring cup. Use a knife to level along the top to remove the extra flour. Leveling Method by putting the measuring scoop into the flour and filling it with flour. Do not pack the flour. Use a knife to scrape along the top to remove the extra flour.
  • Did you place cookie dough on a hot cookie sheet? This is a common mistake when people are making a second batch. The hot baking sheet will start cooking the cookie dough when the dough balls are put on the cookie sheet. This will make the cookies spread more. Try to rotate between two cookie sheets, so you always have a cool one to use.

Why do my gluten-free cookies taste gritty?

This grit you experience is from the rice flour in the gluten-free flour blend. Not all companies mill their flour extra fine. To eliminate the grit, I recommend letting the cookie dough rest for 15 minutes. This extra time will allow the rice flour to soften, eliminating the grit.

How do you make cookies the same size?

The best way to ensure your cookies are the same size and look uniform is to use a cookie scoop. I really like my XOXO brand medium-sized cookie scoop. It is the only scoop I have used that has lasted a long time and hasn’t broken. Check out all of my favorite gluten-free cookie tools.

For more cookie troubleshooting, read my Gluten-Free Cookie Troubleshooting Guide.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can you use just lemon extract?

Yes, you can skip the fresh lemon juice if you like. The cookies will be much sweeter without it.

Can you use cookie cutters with the lemon cookie dough?

You can use cookie cutters if you like. Make sure the dough is cold.

How long will these cookies keep fresh?

These cookies will last up to 4 days in an airtight container or up to 4 months in the freezer.

How do you freeze lemon cookies?

I allow the cookies to cool completely, then put them into a zipper-style freezer bag. Press the air out before freezing.

A stack of five lemon cookies.

More gluten free cookies to try:

A stack of five lemon cookies on a large flat wooden spoon.

Gluten Free Lemon Cookies

Sandi Gaertner
Delicious, slightly crisp, gluten free lemon cookies. If you love sugar cookies, this lemony version will make your day!
5 from 9 votes
gluten free allergy icon
nut free allergen icon
soy free allergy icon
vegetarian icon
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chilling 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Gluten Free Cookies and Bar Recipes, Gluten Free Dessert Recipes
Cuisine American
Servings 20 cookies
Calories 126 kcal

Equipment

  • Mixing bowls
  • Cookie sheet

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups gluten free flour blend * see note
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup butter melted or very softened
  • 2 eggs size large
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest

For Sugar Coating

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest

Instructions
 

  • Add the dry ingredients to a bowl and whisk to blend. In a smaller bowl, add the wet ingredients and mix.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix into a big cookie dough ball. Wrap this cookie dough in plastic and refrigerate for 30-45 minutes.
  • Make the lemon sugar by adding the sugar and lemon zest to a bowl.
  • Preheat the oven to 350º F.
  • Remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator. Roll cookie dough balls with your hands and then roll them into the lemon sugar.
  • Place the sugar coated cookie dough balls on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • Take a glass and smush down all of the cookies. Bake at 350º F for 8-10 minutes. Allow to cool on a cooling rack.

Notes

  1. I have tested this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure GF and Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 GF blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work, I just have not tested other flours.
  2. If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain xanthan gum or guar gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
  3. To make this recipe dairy-free, substitute the butter for vegan dairy-free butter.
  4. These yummy cookies will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer. To freeze, put the cooled cookies into a freezer-safe zip lock style bag.
*Note, if you want to make slice and bake cookies instead, make a log out of the cookie dough ball. Roll the log into the lemon sugar and wrap it in plastic. Refrigerate 30-45 minutes and slice and bake as directed above.

SPECIAL NOTE

Please know that every gluten free flour blend has a different starch to grain ratio. If you use a blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust your moisture levels in your baked goods.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 126kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 2gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 29mgSodium: 89mgPotassium: 29mgFiber: 1gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 166IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
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Nutrition Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.

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Recipe Rating




12 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These are perfection! The only thing I adjusted after my first batch was added 1 extra T. of lemon juice. These are super soft with a little crunch on the edges. So yummy!

  2. Hey, wondering if I could roll out dough and cut out different shapes instead of doing balls? Or would that make the dough too tough? Thanks!