Tangy, sweet and loaded with bold lemon flavor, you’ll love these Sourdough Lemon Cookie Pies. Two soft, chewy cookies with a fresh lemon filling sandwiched in the middle, you’ll love these bright zesty treats.
Lemon desserts are a favorite in my household, I jump at any opportunity to develop these recipes since I know they’ll get gobbled up! That’s why I got so excited when I saw the recipe for these Lemon Pie Cookies in my friend Mimi Council’s new cookbook Effortless Eggless Baking. Mimi founded the very first organic bakery in the United States and she first specialized in cookies, so I knew these would be absolutely delicious. An added bonus is that they are eggless, and since so many of you have asked me for eggless recipes, I wanted to share this recipe with you.
Check out my other recipe collaborations with Mimi:
Adding a Sourdough Twist
Mimi was kind enough to let me share and add a sourdough twist to her Lemon Pie Cookie! So, after a few rounds of tests, I was able to create a faithful reproduction of her recipe with the addition of sourdough discard. To convert these cookies into sourdough cookies, I took out a little bit of the milk (56 grams) and all-purpose flour (56 grams) from the original recipe and added 113 grams (½ cup) sourdough discard.
Although Mimi’s recipe was ofcourse perfect, I changed a few more things. Her original recipe uses salted butter, but I wanted to test this recipe with unsalted butter since it's what most bakers have at home. Since I was using unsalted butter, I added ½ teaspoon of salt to this recipe. I also had to use lemon extract instead of lemon flavor, which Mimi used in her recipe, since it was what I had in the pantry.
Baking with Sourdough Discard
Sourdough discard adds a great flavor to these cookies. Since you are not using it to make bread, your sourdough starter does not need to be activated or fed for it to work in this cookie recipe. So, you can use your discard directly from the fridge. Older discard will have a tangier, acidic flavor than freshly-fed sourdough starter. Both will work for these Sourdough Lemon Cookie Pies. You’ll get a slightly different result but your cookies will still be delicious!
What you need to make these Sourdough Lemon Cookie Pies
Unsalted butter: imparts richness and binds the ingredients together, creaming the butter is extremely important since it helps give these cookies their delicious chewy texture
Powdered sugar and cane sugar: imparts sweetness
Milk: adds richness and binds the ingredients in these cookies
Sourdough discard: adds a delicious tang and moisture to these cookies so they taste fresher for longer
Lemon extract: imparts an intense lemon flavor to these cookies (use 2 teaspoons lemon flavor instead of 1 teaspoon lemon extract if you have it)
All-purpose flour: the low protein content is perfect for making tender, chewy cookies
Baking powder: the main raising agent, tenderizes and imparts softness to these cookies
Salt: brings out the flavor of the remaining ingredients
Lemon: this recipe calls for 1 lemon, you’ll be using the zest for the cookie dough and juice for the filling
Powdered sugar: make sure to sift your powdered sugar to get rid of any lumps so your filling will be smooth and creamy
- Kitchen scale
- Hand mixer or stand mixer
- Mixing bowls
- Silicone spatula
- Parchment paper
- Large baking sheet
- Small cookie scoop
- Piping bag
- Ateco tip #864
1. Cream butter, sugars and lemon extract together until light and fluffy
2. Add in the milk and sourdough discard (your mixture may appear curdled and separated; this is totally normal!)
3. Fold in the all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt and lemon zest
4. Chill the dough for 15 to 20 minutes until the dough is a little less sticky
5. Portion out the dough and bake for 11 to 14 minutes at 375 F
6. Make the filling
7. Match up the cookies that are the most similar in size
8. Pipe the filling on half of the cookies and sandwich them together
Frequently Asked Questions
The potency of the flavor of discard depends on your unique starter. Older discard will have a tangier, acidic flavor than freshly-fed sourdough starter. These cookies do have a sour flavor but the prominent flavor is lemon and not from sourdough.
Absolutely! You can make the cookie dough up to 3 days in advance. Portion out your cookie dough and refrigerate them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet covered with plastic wrap.
Absolutely! Simply use the same proportion of freshly fed sourdough starter in the recipe. Your starter won’t add a strong tangy flavor to your cookies, but will still work.
If you don’t have a starter, but still want to try out this recipe, simply add 56 grams of all-purpose flour and 56 grams of water to your cookie dough.
These cookies last about 3 days stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Sourdough Lemon Cookie Pies
- 2 baking sheets
- small cookie scoop
- piping bag
- 113 grams unsalted butter softened
- 142 grams powdered sugar
- 113 grams cane sugar
- 4 grams lemon extract
- 56 grams milk
- 113 grams sourdough discard
- 210 grams all-purpose flour
- 6 grams baking powder
- 4 grams salt
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 425 grams powdered sugar sifted
- 170 grams unsalted butter softened
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 28 grams lemon juice
- Cream the butter and sugars: Combine the butter, powdered sugar, cane sugar and lemon extract in a large mixing bowl (or the bowl of your stand mixer). Using a flat beater (or paddle attachment) to cream the mixture until no chunks of butter remain and the mixture looks smooth.
- Make the cookie dough: Add in the milk and sourdough starter until well combined. The acidity in the starter may cause your mixture to appear separated and curdled, this is totally normal. Fold the flour, baking powder, salt and lemon zest. Mix on low until no bits of dry flour remain.
- Chill the dough: Refrigerate the dough for 15 to 20 minutes or until the dough is not too sticky.
- Prep: Preheat your oven to 375 F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Portion out the dough: Using a cookie scoop, divide the dough into 24 portions and place them on the prepared baking sheet, about 1-inch apart to allow them to spread.
- Bake: Bake the cookies for 11 to 14 minutes or until the tops of the cookies look cracked and dry, and the edges look set.
- Make the filling: Add powdered sugar, butter and lemon juice to a large mixing bowl. Mix on low until combined and then speed up the mixer until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Transfer the filling to a piping bag fitted with an Ateco tip #864. (If you don’t have a piping bag, you can use an offset spatula.)
- Allow cookies to cool completely: Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and pair them up according to size. Let the cookies cool before filling them or your buttercream will melt.
- Assemble sandwich cookies: Pipe the filling on half of the cookies and sandwich them together.
- Store: Store the cookies in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.