I have been on the lookout for a good recipe to re-create the smiley face cookies that I had as a child.  These are the large sugar cookies that had the hard glaze over them.  I discovered the glaze but the cookie always seems to evade me.  I have been making sugar cookies over the past couple of months to try to re-create them.  Although the sugar cookie in this post isn’t the right one for the smiley face cookie, it is super tasty.  It is light and fluffy with a great flavor, a perfect sugar cookie.   The one that I strive for, is harder and crunchier and a tad bit sweeter.  Not the definition of a perfect sugar cookie, but the perfect cookie to recreate my childhood memories.  Anyway I had to post about this cookie, because out of the bunch, it tasted really good.

The Smiley Face Cookie

As you can see, I painted the eyes and mouth before the first glaze completely hardened.  Thus, giving me a not so perfect smiley face.  🙁

Smiley Face Sugar Cookies

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbs baking soda
  • 4 1/2 cups flour – plus a little more for flouring the board


  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp milk
  • 2 tsp light corn syrup
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • food coloring

Making the Cookies

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a mixing bowl cream together the shortening and the sugar.  Once light and fluffy add the eggs one at a time.  Once the eggs are incorporated add the milk slowly.

Whip until everything is fully incorporated.  While the wet mixture is coming together sift the flour and baking powder together.

Slowly add the flour to the wet mixture.  The dough will be extremely stiff.  You may have to turn off the mixer and finish incorporating the flour by hand.

The Dough

Dust the counter with flour and then turn the cookie dough out onto the counter.  Roll out the dough until it is 1/4 inch thick. Cut the dough into desired shapes and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  I wanted a large round cookie.  I could not find an appropriate sized cookie cutter so I used a cereal bowl as my die.  It worked perfectly.

Cut into desired shapes

Bake for 12-15 minutes in the preheated 400 degree oven.

Remove when browned around the edges

Remove the cookies from the oven and let cool on the sheet for 1 minute.  Then transfer to a rack  to cool completely.


To make the glaze, add the powdered sugar, milk, corn syrup and vanilla to a bowl.  Mix until smooth.  If you feel the mixture is too thick, add a bit more corn syrup to the mix.

Glaze with Yellow food coloring

If making smiley face cookies, place a little of the glaze in a separate bowl and color both portions of glaze.   Place smaller portion into a piping bag or zip top bag.  This will keep it from drying out.  Glaze the cookies with the main glaze.  You can pour it on and then use a brush to make sure the whole cookie is coated.   Let the glaze dry for 5-10 minutes and then paint on the faces with the piping bag or zip top bag.

Time to enjoy


Rex is an avid griller, barbecuer and bacon enthusiast. He is the Pitmaster for the Rex BBQ competition team. Rex was also featured on the TV show American Grilled. If you have any questions or wish to have Rex decode your favorite dish, click on the ASK REX link in the menu above.


  1. I too remember these cookies from my childhood! I made them all the time with my mom so I can tell you what you are missing! The glaze is perfect. The mix needs these additions to be perfectly crisp cookies.

    Add to mix: 2 tbsp of the corn syrup & 1 tsp vanilla extract. Also do an egg wash over the cookies before they bake that helps the edges crisp up a bit. Drop your oven temp to 350 & let them go about 15 minutes. Then I think you'll have it!

  2. I beloved up to you’ll receive carried out proper here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an impatience over that you wish be turning in the following. in poor health certainly come more earlier once more since exactly the similar nearly a lot steadily inside of case you shield this increase.

Write A Comment

Pin It