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Super Easy Lemon Cooler Cookies Recipe

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If you are a lemon lover then you need this super easy Lemon Cooler Cookies recipe in your life! The bright flavors will have your taste buds dancing and starting with a cake mix allows you to get amazing lemon flavor in no time!

A dozen lemon cooler cookies on a black tray.
Table of Contents

Lemon desserts are perfect all year long.  The tart flavor is both refreshing and delicious.  Whether you decide to make a lemon bar recipe, lemon curd thumbprint cookies or these lemon coolers cookies your taste buds will do a happy dance.

Some recipes you find will use lemonade mix or lemon extract but this recipe uses a combination of lemon cake mix, fresh lemon juice and fresh lemon zest for a huge burst of lemon flavor.  

The flavor is phenomenal and the texture is perfect. They will remind you of the original lemon coolers you know and love.

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What goes into this Recipe

The ingredients needed to make lemon cooler cookies with a cake mix.
  • Lemon Cake Mix- The perfect starting point for an amazing lemon forward cookie.
  • Cornstarch- Helps to create a tender cookie with an amazing lightness.
  • Butter & Butter Flavored Shortening-  Using a half cup butter and shortening gives the cookies a bakery style texture.
  • Fresh Lemon Juice-  There is nothing as wonderful as the incredible flavor and the tang of real lemon juice.
  • Lemon Zest-  A bit of lemon zest in the cookie creates a wonderful natural lemon flavor in the cookie.
  • Powdered Sugar- Coating the best lemon cookies in a layer of fluffy powdered sugar is the perfect finishing touch.

Variations and Substitutions

To get authentic lemon coolers like the sunshine lemon coolers from Sunshine Bakery, I suggest following the recipe exactly.  BUT if you prefer to make a few changes you can add vanilla extract instead of lemon juice.  

You can also add 5-6 packages of True Lemon to the powdered sugar for a bold citrus flavor.

How to make easy Lemon Cooler Cookies

1. Combine the lemon cake mix, cornstarch and all purpose flour in a large bowl. Whisk the ingredients together to combine.

2. Then add the softened butter, shortening, eggs, lemon juice and lemon zest to the dry mixture and cream together using an electric mixer. The dough will be a nice thick consistency.

Steps 1 and 2 of making lemon coolers.  1, combining the ingredients and 2, mixing the dough.

3. Use a medium cookie scoop to scoop dough onto a silicone mat {or parchment paper} lined baking sheet.  Form the cookie dough mounds into round discs, baking 8-10 cookies at a time.

4. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until the cookies are baked through but not over baked. Remove from the oven and continue baking the 2nd batch.

Steps 3 and 4 of making lemon cooler cookies. 3, scoop dough and form into discs. 4, bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes.

5. Once you remove the cookies from the oven.  Then take the warm cookies and coat them in confectioners’ sugar.

6. Place the cookies back onto the baking sheet or onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Steps 5 & 6 of making lemon coolers. 5, dunk baked cookies in powdered sugar. 6, cool covered cookies on baking sheet or cooling rack.

Expert Tips

  • Zest the lemon before juicing it. If you juice the lemon first the zest will be hard to get because the lemon will be misshapen.
  • Whisk the dry ingredients before adding the wet ingredients. Doing so will allow everything to be evenly incorporated throughout the cookies.
  • Pull out your stand mixer and paddle attachment for mixing the dough. A hand held mixer will work but a stand mixer will get the job done quickly and easily.
  • Use the shortening sticks from the baking aisle in the grocery store. The sticks allow you to easily measure out the ingredient without any added mess.
  • Form the cookies into thick discs before baking. This step will help to keep your cookies nice and round.

Storing and Freezing

Store-  Leftover cookies should be stored in an airtight container {or ziploc bag} at room temperature for up to 5 days. If you prefer to refrigerate them they will last a day or two longer.

Freeze- These cookies freeze well for up to 3 months if they are packaged well. I suggest adding parchment or wax paper between layers.

Recipe FAQs

What does adding cornstarch to cookies do?

Adding a bit of cornstarch to cookie dough will give the baked cookies more of a crumbly and tender texture.

Are lemon coolers still made?

If you prefer to purchase lemon cooler cookies instead of making homemade lemon cooler cookies you can find them in the cookie aisle.

Sunshine lemon cooler cookies are now made by Keebler who continues to make sweet lemon cooler cookies.

How do I serve Sunshine Biscuits?

While the cookies are amazing all on their own you could add a scoop of ice cream in between two cookies for an ice cream sandwich. 

They are also wonderful in the afternoon with a cup of tea or coffee for an amazing pick me up.

Four lemon cooler cookies stacked on top of each other with the top one having a bite taken out.

Do you love the flavor of lemon? Try these recipes…

Moist and delicious Lemon Cooler Cookies on a black tray.

Super Easy Lemon Cooler Cookies

A lemon cake mix and fresh lemon zest are combined to create the ultimate lemon cooler cookie with just the right amount of powdered sugar.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes
Servings: 22 cookies
Calories: 225kcal
5 from 1 vote
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Ingredients

Cookies

  • 1 box lemon cake mix {15.25 ounces}
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup butter {softened}
  • ½ cup butter flavored shortening
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest

Topping

  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°.

Cookies

  • Combine the lemon cake mix, cornstarch and all purpose flour in a large bowl. Whisk the ingredients together to combine.
  • Add the softened butter, shortening, eggs, lemon juice and lemon zest to the dry mixture and cream together using an electric mixer. The dough will be a nice thick consistency.
  • Use a medium cookie scoop to measure out cookie dough onto a silicone mat {or parchment} lined baking sheet. Form the cookie dough mounds into round discs, baking 8-10 cookies at a time.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes or until the cookies are baked through but not over baked. Remove from the oven and allow them to cool for a couple of minutes. Continue baking the remaining cookie dough.

Topping

  • While the cookies are still warm, add the powdered sugar to a large bowl and coat each cookie with powdered sugar. Place cookies on a cooling rack to cool completely.

Notes

  • Zest the lemon before juicing it. If you juice the lemon first the zest will be hard to get because the lemon will be misshapen.
  • Pull out your stand mixer and paddle attachment for mixing the dough. A hand held mixer will work but a stand mixer will get the job done quickly and easily.
  • Use the shortening sticks from the baking aisle in the grocery store. The sticks allow you to easily measure out the ingredient without any added mess.
  • Add 5-6 packages of True Lemon to the powdered sugar for a bold citrus flavor.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 225kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 214mg | Potassium: 27mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 166IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 1mg
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