The BEST cut-out sugar cookies! No softening butter, no chilling dough, they bake up super soft and never spread. Your new go-to recipe!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking pans with parchment paper and set aside.
Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
Add the egg, vanilla, baking powder, and salt, and mix until combined and smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.
Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour, only mixing until the dough just comes together. Give it a final mix with a rubber spatula, folding and pressing it together, to ensure all of the flour is mixed in.
Separate the dough in half and work with one piece at a time, roll the dough ¼-inch thick. Cut out shapes as desired and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least 1 inch of space between cookies.
Bake until the cookies look set and are slightly firm to the touch but still pale, about 10 to 12 minutes.
Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.