Cooking with Kids – Frosting Sugar Cookies

By Sharon | Recipes

Dec 02

Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

Frosting your Sugar Cookies in different colors and then adding decorations is fun and makes a beautiful cookie.

This is a great activity for kids parties. For holiday parties we’ve baked Sugar Cookies in Easter, Christmas and Halloween shapes and mixed up bowls of colored frostings.  Then you put spoons or butter knives out on a table with the cookies and let the kids decorate their own.  You can purchase 12-packs of Children’s Aprons to protect their clothes.

There are two methods to make a beautiful Sugar Cookie.  The Royal Icing recipe is great for older kids and adults and the Vanilla Buttercream is easy for the younger kids to use and decorate their cookies.  Get lots of sprinkles in the seasonal colors and the kids will have a blast with frosting and decorating.

Royal Icing is a very simple recipe and will dry to a hard shell surface on the cookies.  It’s great for doing detail work and making decorations.

Royal Icing Recipe

  • 1 pound (3-3/4 cups) powdered sugar – sifted if lumpy
  • 1 to 2 large egg whites – or substitute 4 teaspoons packaged egg whites and 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract, vanilla or lemon juice
  • Food coloring if desired

Mix all of the ingredients together using an electric hand mixer, until the icing is smooth and thin enough to be pressed through a pastry bag with a writing tip.  Keep it stiff enough to not just run off the cookie. Add more lemon juice, if necessary.

Separate into bowls and add desired food colorings.

Put in pastry bag with the desired tip size.  Use a small tip to go around the outside edges of the cookie. Then fill the inside area of the cookie with a larger tip or a thinner icing.

Another method is to make a very thin batch of the base color and pour it over the cookies.  Place them on a cooling rack set on a cookie sheet to catch the run-off.  Then use a thicker icing with a decorating tip or small kitchen knife to add decorations and details.  You’ll have cookies as pretty as the bakery in no time.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream
  • Food coloring, if desired

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.

Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

Separate into bowls and add desired food colorings.

Give the kids a work area with the bowls and sprinkles out.  Let them pick their cookie shapes and decorate.  They love this and amazingly don’t eat all the cookies at once.