Great Grandma's Sour Cream Drop Cookies


This recipe was on a card tucked into my mom's recipe box; it's pretty similar to a number of variations that seem to be from the 1930s. A note said "flavor with whatever you like" and of all the flavors I played around with, I thought lemon zest balanced the sweet dough the best. These bake up into tender little cakes that make a great base for whoopie pies. Once baked, they freeze well (thaw for an hour or so on the counter to eat), but start losing their tenderness after more than one day at room temperature.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
25 mins
24 cookies


  • 1 ⅓ cups white sugar

  • ¼ cup shortening

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream

  • 1 large lemon, zested

  • 2 large eggs

  • 3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

  • ¾ teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. Cream sugar, shortening, and butter together in the bowl of a stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.

  3. Mix in sour cream and lemon zest on low speed until no streaks of sour cream remain. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing on medium-low just until there are no streaks of yolk, and scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Add flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder all at once and mix just to combine.

  4. Drop by heaping tablespoons on the prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven until the tops are puffy and spring back when lightly touched with a finger, about 10 minutes. They should be light golden, with occasional spots of pale golden brown.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

168 Calories
7g Fat
25g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 24
Calories 168
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g 9%
Saturated Fat 3g 16%
Cholesterol 25mg 8%
Sodium 116mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 4mg 19%
Calcium 22mg 2%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 45mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

You’ll Also Love