Keep these soft, tart, citrus-flavored refrigerator cookies on hand for unexpected guests or hungry kids. Slice and bake when the need or craving for a cookie arises. Lime Icebox Cookies are freezer-friendly too!
- 2 1/4 sticks (18 tablespoons, 250g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 cups (250g) powdered (icing) sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon (4g) kosher salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lime zest, from about 1 lime
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 3/4 cups (375g) all-purpose flour
For the lime syrup:
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (4 limes)
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar, or to taste
1 Cream the butter and sugar: In a large mixing bowl, add the butter, sugar and salt. Blend together using a mixer on low speed until creamy. The mixture will appear sandy during the initial stages, but when it’s ready, it will resemble buttercream. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
2 Add the wet ingredients: Into the bowl with the butter and sugar, add the eggs, lime zest, and juice, and blend together on low for 30 seconds. The mixture will look curdled when you add the juice. Increase the mixer’s speed to medium and beat for another minute and a half.
3 Add the flour: Once the mixture looks fluffy, decrease the mixer’s speed to low and add half of the flour to the bowl. Blend in the flour, just until it’s incorporated into the wet ingredients. Scrape down the bowl and add the remaining flour. Mix again, on low, until the dough comes together. This stage should only take 5 minutes.
4 Form and chill the dough: You should have a very sticky, soft dough. Lay a 1 1/2 foot long piece of plastic wrap on your countertop. Scrape the dough into the center of the sheet of plastic and use your spatula to form it into a crude tube shape that measures 14 inches long by 3 inches in diameter.
Wrap the plastic around the dough and twist the ends of the plastic to mold the dough into a tight, sausage-like log.
5 Chill the dough: Prior to slicing, the dough needs to firm up in the refrigerator (a.k.a. icebox). Leave the dough to chill for at least 1 hour, or up to 1 week, in the refrigerator.
6 Slice and bake the dough: Once the dough has chilled, preheat your oven to 375°F.
Remove the plastic wrap and slice half-inch thick rounds of dough from the log. Arrange the discs of cookie dough on a silicone or parchment lined baking sheet, and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the bottom edges of the cookies are golden brown.
7 Make the lime syrup: In a small saucepan, combine the lime juice and granulated sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat while stirring to dissolve the sugar. Once the mixture begins to boil, remove it from the heat and allow it to cool.
This syrup can be made a few days in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use.
8 Glaze, then cool the cookies: After the cookies have finished baking, remove the pan from the oven and immediately brush the top of each cookie with the lime syrup. Brushing them straight out of the oven “cooks” the glaze onto the surface of the cookies.
After glazing, transfer the cookies to a cooling rack to cool to room temperature.
9 Dust with powder sugar: When the cookies have cooled completely, dust each with your desired amount of powdered sugar, or none at all.
Store the cookies in an air-tight container on the counter. Enjoy the cookies within 3 days.