Teach Eat Love

Vanilla Bean Cookies with Raspberry Filling

Anybody else out there love sugar cookies but only make them at Christmas time? When I made my annual trip in December to the top shelf with the cookie cutter box, I discovered a few heart shaped cutters that I’d forgotten about and made a mental note to make Valentine’s cookies this year.

And then I blinked, and it was a week into February.

So, today, my toddler and I made my favorite rolled cookie: vanilla bean cookies with vanilla bean glaze and raspberry jam. These cookies are delicious and beautiful with their little tiny vanilla bean specks and jewel-toned filling.

Admittedly, it’s a departure from my usual healthy recipes, but you have to have some fun, right? And besides, it’s a great way to talk to your child about where vanilla flavor actually comes from as you scrape the delicious vanilla caviar from the pod.

If you haven’t used vanilla beans before, run a sharp knife all the way down a bean, cutting it into two long pieces. Run the tip of the knife along the inside of the bean, pushing up black vanilla goodness as you go. I order my vanilla beans on amazon.com because I find they are prohibitively expensive at my grocery store.

Incidentally, these are not the pictures I’d imagined staging when I made these because my husband devoured this batch before I could photograph it, and I had to make do. These are really good cookies, guys.

Yield: 2-3 dozen cookies

Prep Time: about 1 hour (including chill time)

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies

These are my go-to cookies. They're easy to make, fun for kids, and full of perfect vanilla flavor.


2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
2/3 c. cane sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tablespoon real vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 vanilla bean, cut in half and scraped, reserving vanilla caviar
2 1/3 cups unbleached white flour


  1. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle (or using a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until thoroughly combined.
  2. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Add the egg, vanilla, baking powder, salt, and vanilla bean caviar. Beat well and scrape the sides again.
  3. Add the flour and mix just until it is combined.
  4. Put some saran wrap on the top of the bowl and refrigerate until you're ready to bake (or at least 30 minutes).
  5. Preheat oven to 350.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough to about a 1/4" thickness and cut. If the dough cracks, just give it  few minutes to warm up. Cut out your shapes, then carefully transfer the dough to an ungreased cookie sheet. Ideally, do like-sized cookies at the same time, but if you're working with kids who want to try all different shapes, group the smallest cookies in the middle so they don't burn.
  7. Bake for 7-8 minutes, depending on the size. The cookies should be golden around the edges. Transfer to a cooling rack. Continue to work in batches until the dough is gone (or freeze whatever you don't want to use). Let the cookies cool completely before icing (recipe follows).
Vanilla Bean Glaze

I love this glaze. It's pretty, dries hard, doesn't have any bizarre ingredients, and can be painted on, which is super fun for kids (and grown ups).

1 c. powdered sugar
1 vanilla bean, scraped
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
2-3 tablespoons water (or milk, if you prefer a richer flavor)

Stir the powdered sugar, vanilla bean caviar, vanilla extract, and 2 tablespoons of water. Add the additional tablespoon of water if the glaze is too thick (it should coat a spoon and drip off very slowly). Using a pastry brush, paint the glaze onto the cookies. It will dry quickly.

If you want the red, jammy filling, spread raspberry or strawberry jam in between two cookies, and sandwich them together.

Adapted from The Joy of Cooking's Rich Sugar Cookies




4 Responses to “Vanilla Bean Cookies with Raspberry Filling”

  1. Audra April 9, 2013 at 1:31 am

    Hey, I got a blog mention!! I’ll put you down for an extra jar or two of jam in the fall. In the meantime, while I wait for real, in-season berries to appear, I have been experimenting with lemon marmalade, and it is our NEW FAVORITE FOOD EVER. J baby actually licked his plate clean the first time he had it at breakfast. I’ll have to save a jar out for you… I’m sure you can put it to good use!

    • Anne Myer April 9, 2013 at 10:51 am

      Ha! You most certainly did get a blog mention. I think I cried a little when we ran out of that. Sooooo awesome. I’ve made marmalade once with Meyer lemons and rosemary and liked it but ran out of ideas for what to do with it. And I over cooked it a little, so it was just a smidge too stiff. I’d love to try yours 🙂

  2. Kate July 26, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    These did not turn out for me. I’ve never put egg in a sugar cookie recipe so I thought that was odd. The dough was incredibly hard to work with even on top of my marble board and marble rolling pin. Still, the dough turned so soft when I rolled it out and kept sticking it everything no matter how much flour I added. I think the egg was to blame here. Unfortunately, I had to scrap the dough and save it for another time since I could not roll/cut out shapes for my party. I’m sure if I add some mix-ins and use the dough for a standard drop cookie it will come out just fine.

    • TeachEatLove August 1, 2016 at 10:27 am

      It’s strange that they didn’t work out for you – this is the standard sugar cookie recipe from The Joy of Cooking, with my addition of vanilla bean, jam, and glaze. It does need generous flouring for rolling out, but I’m certain the egg isn’t to blame. I’ve made these literally dozens of times without problem. But again – I’m sorry they didn’t work out for you.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.