Home Desserts Jamaican Police Button Cookies

Jamaican Police Button Cookies

by Jamdown Foodie
Police Button Cookies

Jamaican police button cookies are a delicious childhood favorite. I specifically remember saving my allowance or lunch money just so I could buy them every day. The cookies have crispy edges, a crunchy bottom and a semi-soft center. The flavor is mild but delicious and is mostly notes of vanilla and a tiny bit of almond from the addition of almond essence. When I tested these, I was pleasantly surprised at how easy they were to make. The batter is stiff (because cookies) but it can easily be done by hand. It will take some muscle work to get the butter and sugar to cream without a hand mixer, but you can use a hand mixer for that step. I was instantly transported back to my childhood when I bit into these and my boys loved them. That’s a win win all around! 

Butter and Sugar

This recipe calls for a stick of butter or ½ cup of butter which should be softened (not melted) before use. It’s a good idea to put all of the ingredients together before starting so that everything will be at the correct temperature. I prefer to use salted butter which is unpopular in baking. However, when I choose salted butter, I don’t have to remember to add salt to my batter or run the risk of adding too much or too little. You can use a hand mixer to cream the butter and sugar for 3-4 minutes on high speed, just until they are fully incorporated and the mixture is light and creamy. Stick with granulated sugar for Jamaican Police Button Cookies recipe as I did not test with brown sugar and I don’t know how much that would affect the bake time or the overall taste of the cookie. 

Wet Ingredients 

Eggs: This Jamaican Police Button Cookies recipe calls for the use of just 1 large egg. It is better if the egg is used at room temperature

Vanilla: I used imitation vanilla in this recipe because I wanted to be able to use a lot of it. Pure vanilla is actually dangerous in large amounts. I used 2 tablespoons of Benjamin’s vanilla to make the cookies super flavorful. If using pure vanilla, use 1 tablespoon. 

Almond Essence: The cookies should not have a very strong taste of almond but a tiny bit of almond essence elevates the taste and gives the traditional flavor that we are all used to. You will only need to use ½ tsp of almond essence in this recipe.

Dry Ingredients 

Flour: The recipe calls for 1 ½ cups all purpose flour. Though it may seem too thick, remember you are making a cookie and not a cake and cookie batters are far more dense than cake batters. You will need to add the flour in two portions with a small amount of milk in between. 

Baking Powder: For a tiny bit of rise and chew, add ¾ of a teaspoon of baking powder. 

Baking Soda: For flavor and rise, add ½ tsp baking soda. 

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl right after creaming the butter and sugar and set aside. 

Milk + Food coloring: 

Only a tablespoon of milk is added to the batter between the two portions of flour/dry ingredients. To give the cookies the correct color, I added yellow food coloring to the milk. You will need about 7-10 drops of food coloring to get the right color on the cookies. 

To pipe or not to pipe:

I used a medium piping tip and a disposable piping bag to help me pipe the cookies onto a lined baking tray. You can use a ziplock bag to help you get the same effect. The trick to easily getting the batter into the bag is to place the bag firstly into a tall glass. Fold the edges of the bag over the outside rim of the glass. Fill the bag with batter and fold the edges up and over the glass. You can also use a cookie scoop to help you get the cookies onto the tray, but because these cookies are very small, you will need a 1 teaspoon cookie scoop. You can also use a 1 teaspoon cookie measure but be sure to keep your fingers wet to prevent the batter from sticking to them. You may need to use your fingers to help get the batter out of the teaspoon measure easily. 

Cook Time: 

This is the best part! It will only take 10-12 minutes for the cookies to bake at 350 degrees. You can bake two trays at a time as this batter will yield about 84 cookies total, at the correct size. 

Things you will need for Jamaican Police Button Cookies : 

  • Piping bag or gallon ziplock bag or 1 tsp cookie scoop
  • Baking tray
  • Parchment paper
  • Large bowl
  • Measuring cups
  • Hand or stand mixer 
  • Large whisk
Police Button Cookies
Nutrition facts: 200 calories 20 grams fat
Rating: 5.0/5
( 1 voted )


  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 2 tbsp imitation vanilla 
  • ½ tsp almond essence 
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour, spooned and leveled 
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp milk 
  • 7 drops yellow food coloring


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. 
  3. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar using a hand or stand mixer for 3-4 minutes on high speed, until smooth and creamy. 
  4. In a separate medium bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and baking soda. Set aside. 
  5. To the butter and sugar, add 1 egg and whisk until incorporated. 
  6. Add vanilla and almond essence and whisk to incorporate. 
  7. Add approximately half of the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and whisk to fully incorporate. The batter will feel stiff but should be smooth. 
  8. Add drops of yellow food coloring to milk and stir to combine. Add milk to batter and whisk to incorporate. 
  9. Add the remaining flour and whisk until fully incorporated. The batter will be difficult to mix and will feel very stiff. This is the correct consistency. If the batter seems pale, add a few more drops of yellow food coloring to it until it looks slightly yellow. 
  10. Pipe or drop the batter onto a lined baking sheet. I used a 13x18 sheet. If you have a smaller baking sheet, you will need to bake the cookies in more than 3 batches. 
  11. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies turn golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool entirely on the baking tray before adding another batch. Keep the batter in a cool (not too cold) place as you bake in batches. 

Jamaican Police Button Cookies


You may also like

Leave a Comment

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept

Privacy & Cookies Policy