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Key Lime Cookies

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These Key Lime Cookies are adorable, tart, and soft, chewy treats! When you are in the mood for that unforgettable flavor of key lime but don’t feel like making an entire pie, these cookies are to the rescue. The tangy cookies are enough to make your heart go pitter-patter, and your taste buds do a little happy dance. 

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Key Lime Cookies Recipe

Cookies are some of my favorite desserts because they have incredible flavor, are usually pretty simple to make, and you can take them with you anywhere you go. Transportable dessert…count me in!

These cookies have everything I am looking for in a dessert. They are pretty much as heavenly as you can get. Plus, the fun specks of lime zest is super cute and great for entertaining.

The cookies themselves are buttery, creamy, and sweet, while the lime icing is zesty and amazing. I love making these key lime cookies for spring and summer gatherings because the citrus flavor just screams summertime. Backyard barbecues, picnics, and potlucks are kicked up a couple of notches when you serve these beauties. 

How Do I Make My Key Lime Cookies Chewy? 

These cookies will taste fine if they are crunchy, but when they are chewy, they are next level amazing. There are a few things you can do to make the cookies the best chewy goodness you are looking for.

First of all, never overmix the batter. Often times people will mix and stir for much longer than needed. This allows air bubbles to build up and almost always yields to cookies that are crunchy or dense. 

Secondly, it’s very important not to overbake the lime cookies. I know it’s tempting to cook them longer if you feel like they don’t look all the way done. We have all been there and done that.

The beauty of cookie baking is just baking them long enough for the edges to set up, and the centers will be a little soft. As they sit on the baking sheet for a few minutes after you remove the pan from the oven, they will continue to finish baking. This will give you beautiful and soft cookies instead of little discs that are hard as bricks. 

Can I Use Bottled Lime Juice in This Recipe? 

While you don’t need any actual lime juice in this cookie recipe, you can exchange the lime zest for juice. This will give you some lime flavor without having to have fresh limes on hand.

Sometimes finding key limes isn’t always easy, so using lime juice is a great backup plan. I recommend using 1 tablespoon of juice for the cookies themselves and 1 tablespoon of juice for the icing. If that seems like too much for your liking, you can always back off that amount. Or if you would rather have more, go ahead and add in a little extra. 

Conveniently, you could also exchange the limes for oranges or lemons too. Just use the juice or zest of any citrus fruit that you enjoy to make a variety of flavors. It’s enjoyable to play around with recipes like this one! 


You can make a batch of these key lime cookies with 9 ingredients plus 3 ingredients for the drool-worthy key lime frosting. They are incredible, and you are going to eat more than one, but don’t worry…I won’t judge!! 🙂

  • Cake flour – It’s best to use cake flour for these cookies for the best results. If you don’t have cake flour, you can replace it with use all-purpose flour, but you need to replace 4 tablespoons of it with cornstarch. 
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter softened
  • Granulated sugar
  • Egg white
  • Heavy cream
  • Vanilla extract
  • Zest of two limes

Lime Icing:

  • Powdered sugar
  • Milk – You can use any kind of milk you like. Coconut milk would be fantastic and give you a tropical feel. 
  • Zest of two limes

How to Make Key Lime Cookies

These are such easy key lime cookies to make! They take practically no time, and when you bite into them, you are taken to food heaven. So scrumptious!

First Step: Get the oven warmed up to 350 degrees F. 

Second Step: Start whisking the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside for later. 

Third Step: Beat the butter, sugar, and lime zest using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. It should be fluffy and pale and usually takes around 3 minutes. 

Fourth Step: Put the egg white, heavy cream, and vanilla in the butter and sugar mixture. Beat until they are well combined and completely incorporated. 

Fifth Step: Place one heaping tablespoon of dough in your hands and roll into balls. Place them 2 inches apart on a prepared baking sheet. 

Sixth Step: Slightly press the cookie balls down with your hands to flatten them some. 

Seventh Step: Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the edges have become slightly browned. Be sure to turn the cookie sheet halfway through baking, so they bake evenly. 

Eighth Step: Allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheet. This will let them finish baking and still be chewy. 

Ninth Step: Prepare the icing by whisking the powdered sugar, milk, and lime zest together in a medium sized bowl. 

Tenth Step: Ice the cookies and let it harden then serve and devour!    

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Key Lime Cookies

Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
These Key Lime Cookies are adorable, tart, and soft, chewy treats! When you are in the mood for that unforgettable flavor of key lime but don't feel like making an entire pie, these cookies are to the rescue.
4.37 from 11 votes


  • 2 C cake flour
  • 1 1/2 TSP baking powder
  • 1/4 TSP salt
  • 1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 C granulated sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 1/2 TBSP heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 TSP vanilla extract
  • Zest of two limes

Lime Icing:

  • 2 C powdered sugar
  • 3-4 TBSP of milk
  • Zest of two limes

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  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside
  • Using a stand mixer, beat together butter, sugar and lime zest until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes
  • Add the egg white, heavy cream, and vanilla, and beat until combined
  • Reduce speed to low and add flour mixture in three scoops, mixing until incorporated, scraping down the bowl as needed
  • Working with 1 heaping tablespoon of dough at a time, roll into balls and space 2 inches a part on the prepared baking sheets
  • Using your hands, press down the tops of the balls slightly
  • Bake until the cookies are just beginning to brown around the edges, 8 to 10 minutes, rotating the sheet halfway through baking
  • Let the cookies cool completely on the baking sheet
  • While the cookies bake, grab a medium bowl and hand whisk and mix the icing ingredients until combined
  • Pour icing over top the cookies and allow icing to harden
  • Serve and enjoy!
Author: Laura

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