Christmas Creme Brulee Cookies

Intensive Cake Unit
by Intensive Cake Unit
20-30 cookies
1 hr 30 min

I know I’ve asked this before...but where are my fellow low-key pyromaniacs looking for an excuse to pull out their brulee torches? ;)

Pretty sure there’s not a bad time of year for sugar cookies, and Christmas is definitely no exception!

These cookies are my favorites – I love the deeper flavors the brown sugar and cream cheese gives them, and the cream cheese keeps they from getting too dry! You can up the flour a bit if your chilling time is limited, so these are my go-to if I don’t have tons of time! You can always decorate these cookies just by icing them, buuut I use ANY and all excuses to bust out my brulee torch, and the caramelized sugar adds a fun texture and caramelized crunch to the tops of the cookies. Enjoy!

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Christmas Creme Brulee Cookies
Recipe details
  • 20-30  cookies
  • Prep time: 60 Minutes Cook time: 30 Minutes Total time: 1 hr 30 min
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  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter (or 1 ½ sticks) room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons clear vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (3 ½ if your chilling time is limited)
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Christmas cookie cutters of your choice - I found large shapes the easiest to brulee without burning the edges of the cookies ;)
Brulee topping
  • - Brulee torch – here’s a link to the one I’ve used for years! (The torch itself doesn’t come with butane; the torch fuel is available online here)
  • - Baker’s Superfine sugar – regular granulated sugar will kind of work, its just harder to caramelize without burning. You can find it in some stores, buy it here online, or make your own by putting granulated sugar in a food processor.
  • 1/4 cup frosting - you can buy frosting or use my favorite Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting recipe!
Preheat oven to 425F. Mix in order given, beating cream cheese and butter together well before adding sugars.
Chill 1-2 hours before rolling if time allows; if not add an extra ½ cup of flour to your dough.
Roll out to about ¼ inch thick, and use extra flour when rolling or your dough will stick. I also recommend parchment paper or these silpat mats to keep your cookies from sticking to the baking sheets!
Bake 5-7 minutes, until lightly browned at the edges. Cool completely before decorating. Will keep 2-3 days at room temperature, up to 10 in the fridge, and can be frozen for 2-3 months!
Brulee topping
When you’re ready to decorate, I recommend a quick watch through the video for reference! Basically, you want a thin layer of frosting down so that the sugar sticks to the top of the cookie and doesn’t burn. Here’s a link to my favorite Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting - you’ll probably just need a quarter of a batch, and any butter-based frosting would work here. Sprinkle about a teaspoon of sugar evenly onto each cookie, and place on a heat-resistant surface like a plate or baking sheet. Light your brulee torch and evenly fire each cookie until the sugar melts and then crystallizes – I often do 3-4 at a time to save time/fuel and keep from burning them!
Allow to cool until the sugar hardens – then enjoy!
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  • Sandra Eichhorn Sandra Eichhorn on Dec 27, 2021

    Can you use a regular lighter to melt the sugar on the cookies? Will that work

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    • Intensive Cake Unit Intensive Cake Unit on Dec 28, 2021

      It will work, though it took me a bit of playing with the distance between the lighter and the cookie to melt the sugar without burning it. It’ll just take a pretty long time and very possibly more than one lighter to do an entire batch of cookies. ;)

  • Ester Ester on Jan 23, 2023

    Hi, they look fantastic but i don't understand the need of frosting to make the brulée coverage. In the video it seems that he only spread it with a litrle butter and ther covers with the sugar to caramelize. Is the frosting another different option?

    • Intensive Cake Unit Intensive Cake Unit on Jan 23, 2023

      What I’m spreading it actually frosting; it helps the sugar adhere so the brûlée torch doesn’t just blow it off the cookies. I’ve not tried just butter but that might work too!

      You could just use frosting to decorate the cookies, but I did include it to adhere the sugar for the brûlée process. Thanks for asking!