Gluten Free Lofthouse Style Cookies

A homemade, gluten free version of the pillowy soft, frosted cookies you buy at the grocery store!
Gluten Free Lofthouse Cookies {pillowy soft goodness, nobody will know they're gluten free!}

Lofthouse cookies are more than just cookies to me. While I haven’t eaten one in years, for obvious reasons, every time I see them in the grocery store or in somebody’s pantry, I’m reminded of my childhood. A specific moment in my childhood, actually.

When I was seven years old, my family moved from Dallas, Texas to St. Paul, Minnesota. Talk about an adjustment. My sister was 10 at the time, and I think we both had the same fears and questions running through our minds. What does real cold feel like, what exactly is a ‘cheese curd’, and of course, will we make friends?

The first week was a lot of my sister and I sitting in our playroom watching TV and generally moping. But the weekend after we got there, one of my dad’s coworkers invited us over to his house for the afternoon. He and his wife were so lovely and welcoming, they had a gorgeous daughter I wanted to grow up to be, and a teenage son that seven-year-old me started crushing on immediately. We went on their deck for lemonade and snacks, and on the table was a plate of cookies with yellow icing and sprinkles. My sister and I each took a bite of one, quickly realized they were the most delicious thing we’d ever tasted, and told our parents they had to also try the “cloud cookies.” I think that cookie was the moment that we decided we would like Minnesota. And definitely the moment we coined the term “cloud cookie.” I honestly didn’t even know what Lofthouse Cookies were until years later.

Gluten Free Lofthouse Cookies {pillowy soft goodness, nobody will know they're gluten free!}

The point of that long journey down my memory lane was basically to tell you that I don’t take Lofthouse cookies cloud cookies lightly. If I’m going to make something so important to 1999 me + my sister, I’m going to make it right. This homemade, gluten free version of the treat is topped with plain vanilla buttercream, so it’s missing the brightly colored frosting. It’s not missing any of the flavor, though. In fact, it’s a little chewier than the original cakey cookie, and I think that makes it even better.

Gluten Free Lofthouse Cookies {pillowy soft goodness, nobody will know they're gluten free!}

Like the originals, I definitely didn’t skimp on the icing. And why would you when it tastes this good?

Gluten Free Lofthouse Cookies {pillowy soft goodness, nobody will know they're gluten free!}
A somewhat blurry picture of a picture my sister and me before her wedding, with our favorite childhood cookie (updated to be something I can actually eat now.) I don’t know if you can tell, but she’s absolutely stunning.

In conclusion, these cookies will definitely cure any kid, teenager, or adult of their apprehension about a new situation, trust me.

Oh, and to answer those burning questions for you…real Minnesota cold feels really, really freaking cold, cheese curds are delicious and more people should know about them, and yes, both of us made friends during the time that we lived there.

Gluten Free Lofthouse Style Cookies
Prep: 10 min + chilling  Bake: 8 min   Makes: ~20 medium cookies

1 stick butter, softened (I used salted. If using unsalted, add a small pinch of salt to batter.)
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup light brown sugar, packed
1 egg + 1 yolk, room temp
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups all purpose gluten free flour + up to 3 additional tablespoons (I use Cup4Cup.)
¼ cup cornstarch
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
For Frosting:
1 stick butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
½ tablespoon vanilla extract

1. In bowl of stand mixer, cream the butter until fluffy. Add in both sugars and beat together until light and fluffy.
2. Add in egg and egg yolk and vanilla and beat on medium high until well combined, about 3-4 minutes.
3. In a separate bowl, combine GF flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and baking soda.
4. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Beat until well combined, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.
5. Dough will be sticky. If it looks too sticky, add up to three additional tablespoons of GF flour and mix well. (I added two tablespoons.)
6. Line a large plate or cookie sheet with parchment paper. Form 2-tablespoon sized balls (I used my two inch cookie scoop) and place onto plate. Cover and refrigerate dough for at least 2 hours and up to several days.
7. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place cookie dough balls two inches apart on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until centers are just beginning to set. Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before moving to wire rack to finish cooling.
8. Meanwhile, make icing: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, or with a handheld mixer, whip butter on medium high for 4-5 minutes until fluffy. Reduce speed to low and add the powdered sugar. Once all sugar is incorporated, increase speed to medium high and add vanilla. Whip for two minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
9. Once cookies are completely cooled, frost them using an offset spatula or knife. Top with sprinkles if desired.

6 thoughts on “Gluten Free Lofthouse Style Cookies

  1. Lofthouse cookies are my very favorite! When I was little my sisters and I would always beg my mom to buy us them, but she always replied that we could make our own even yummier cookies at home. When I actually gave them a shot when I got older, they actually ended up bitter and anything but enjoyable. I’ll definitely be giving this recipe a go; I love that it’s gluten free too! 😀

  2. You and your sister are both so pretty (as are the cookies)!

    Thanks for the recipe. Love your blog!

    Would love to see a gf sweet potato biscuit recipe, if you’re ever looking for suggestions 🙂

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