Lemonhead Cookies – Lemon Heaven

Lemonhead cookies on a blue plate with striped background.

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Lemonhead Cookies – Lemony Goodness!

We all have our favorite cookies, and I have to say, these Lemonhead cookies have definitely made it to the top of my list. No, they won’t replace my favorite Christmas indulgence of Russian Tea Cakes, but they are in the same category of yumminess. They’re absolutely wonderful and packed with plenty of lemon goodness.

What You’ll Need for Lemonhead Cookies

  • butter
  • sugar
  • pure vanilla extract
  • lemon zest
  • eggs
  • all-purpose flour
  • baking soda
  • baking powder
  • kosher salt
  • Lemonhead candies
  • confectioners’ sugar
  • freshly squeezed lemon juice

Tips for Making Lemonhead Cookies

Don’t be tempted to substitute any other lemon drop candy for the real deal. Lemonheads might not be your favorite candy, but they will be the perfect addition to these lemony cookies. If you can’t find Lemonheads (paid link) locally or you just want the convenience of delivery to your door, you can easily order them online. Mine were delivered quickly and were very fresh. You’ll need about 6 – 7 ounces of Lemonhead candies. I used about 1-1/2 (4.5 oz.) bags.

Chopping the Lemonheads can be a bit tricky (frustrating), but keep in mind, your efforts will be rewarded! I double bagged mine in zip-top baggies and went at them with the flat side of a meat mallet, you could also use a rolling pin. Unfortunately, you’re still going to have some candy bits break through, creating annoying holes in the baggies. Work carefully and get those pieces fairly small. You don’t want to bite into a big Lemonhead in the middle of your cookie — or, maybe you do. Anyway, I like my Lemonhead cookies with the lemon candies evenly distributed.

I have a hefty Kitchenaid stand mixer, but I prefer to hand mix the Lemonheads into the finished cookie dough. The candies are hard and probably not the best thing for the paddle attachment.

Refrigerate the Lemonhead Cookie dough for several hours or overnight, if possible. You can mix up the dough, cover it with plastic wrap, pushing the plastic wrap down around the dough and leave it in the fridge overnight. A nice cold dough helps to ensure the cookies don’t spread too much.

Baking Lemonhead Cookies

Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Roll the cookie dough into balls, making them as uniform as possible. Put the bowl of cookie dough back in the refrigerator while the cookies bake. As they begin to get a light golden brown around the edges, take the sheet pan out of the oven and leave the cookies cool for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. While the first tray of Lemonhead Cookies are cooling, roll balls and place on the second prepared baking sheet. Using 2 pans allows you to prepare another batch of cookies for the oven while the first batch is cooling.

Glaze the Cookies

You don’t need much of the lemon glaze to give these Lemonhead Cookies a huge kick of lemon. You just barely want to cover them. The glaze will set and harden, which makes them easy to store. You can turn a cookie upside down and dip it in the glaze, but, to be honest, I find it much easier to just use my finger. As my mama used to say, God gave us these tools for a reason! I simply spoon a small amount of glaze on top of the cookie and spread it around with my VERY clean finger 🙂

Lemonhead cookies on a blue plate with striped background.

Lemonhead Cookies

The Very Best Lemon Cookies EVER!
Course: cookies
Cuisine: American
Tags: lemon, lemonheads


  • Stand Mixer fitted with paddle attachment


  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2-3 Tbsp. lemon zest, you'll need 2-3 lemons, depending on size
  • 2 eggs, large, room temperature
  • 1 cup flour, all purpose
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup Lemonhead candies, chopped into small pieces

Lemon Glaze

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2-3 Tbsp. lemon juice, freshly squeezed


Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with paddle attachment, add the softened butter, sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest; beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter and sugar mixture; beat on low speed just until well combined, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl several times, if necessary.
  • On low speed, or by hand, stir in the chopped lemonhead candies.
  • Cover dough and refrigerate for 2-3 hours or overnight.

To Bake Cookies:

    Preheat oven to 350°F.

      Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

      • Scoop about 2 Tbsps. of dough and roll into a well-formed ball. Place about 2-inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake about 10 minutes or just until edges begin to turn a light golden brown.
      • Remove baking sheet from oven and let cookies cool about 5 minutes before removing. Gently transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
      • Repeat with the rest of the cookie dough.

      Make the Lemon Glaze

      • In a small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar and 2 Tbsps. of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Stir to make a thin glaze. If necessary, add a bit more lemon juice until you have a glaze consistency.
      • Top each cookie with a small amount of the glaze. Spread evenly and thinly. Place glazed cookie back on rack and allow glaze to set completely. Store in an air-tight container.


      Makes about 3 dozen cookies.
      Tried this recipe?Mention @Debbie_Net or tag #DebbieNet!

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