Every Way to Frost Sugar Cookies: From Easy to Expert-Level Techniques
There’s more than one way to frost a cookie, cookie! We’re here to walk you through our best techniques starting with a low-effort way to give your cookies a satiny-smooth finish and building up to the technique professional bakeries use, so no matter how much time you have—rest assured we’ve got a trick that’ll take your decorating up a notch.
How to Frost with Faux “Royal Icing”
There’s nothing wrong with spreading Betty Crocker’s™ rich & creamy frosting onto your cookies with the back of the spoon—we’ve done it many times. But without too much more effort, you can have cookies that look like they’ve been flooded with royal icing.
How to Dip Your Sugar Cookies
To make these shiny, perfectly coated cookies all you need is a tub of Betty’s rich and creamy frosting and gel food coloring.
1. Spoon frosting into a large microwave-safe bowl. If you want to tint, stir in a few drops at a time until blended to desired color
2. Heat frosting in microwave uncovered for 25 to 30 seconds until warm. Rewarm as needed to keep frosting at a dippable consistency
3. Dip top side of each cookie into glaze, letting excess drip off.
4. Place cookie right side up on cooling rack placed over cookie sheet or waxed paper. Sprinkle with decorations, if desired.
5. Let stand about 2 hours or until set.
6. Store covered in airtight container at room temperature with waxed paper between layers.
Give this technique a try with our sparkly and shiny Retro Tinsel Christmas Tree Cookies recipe.
How to Make Piped Sugar Cookies—Without a Piping Bag!
No need to run to the craft store or invest in special tools, cute-as-can-be, piped sugar cookies can be yours with one ingredient and a simple pantry item. Here’s a ridiculously easy way to take your sugar cookies from drab to fab!
How to Decorate Sugar Cookies with a Homemade Piping Bag
Of course, you can add a pretty touch with sprinkles and food coloring, but if you want to keep it simple, all you really need for this method is Betty Crocker™ rich and creamy vanilla frosting and a resealable plastic bag. If you do decide to tint the frosting, blend in food coloring before adding frosting to the bag.
1. To easily fill your large resealable plastic bag, open it up and stand it inside a pint glass. Fold the open top down and over the sides of the glass. Fill bag about half-full using a spoon or spatula. Don’t overfill the bag, as it will be more difficult to control, and frosting might come out of the top of the bag as you pipe.
2. After filling the bag, push the frosting towards one corner and make a small cut in the corner—start small. You can always cut the opening larger, if needed.
3. Again, push frosting towards cut corner and twist bag above frosting (no need to seal the bag) to squeeze out any air. Keep one hand above the frosting, so you’re pushing from above using steady pressure. Try piping on a piece of parchment or waxed paper to see if the hole is the right size.
4. Once you’re satisfied with the size of the hole, twist the bag closed and position your hand above frosting, apply pressure to begin piping. Occasionally, you’ll want to pause and readjust. Continue pushing your frosting toward the corner, as needed.
Pro Tip: For beautiful cookies without much fuss, combine this piping technique with the dipping technique described above. Dipped cookies will need to set before piping, allow approximately 2 hours.
Pipe like a Professional with Royal Icing
For the baker who’s ready for a challenge, royal icing and classic sugar cookies are a match made in heaven. Royal icing gives your sugar cookies an impressive fresh-from-the-bakery look. Decorating cookies with this type of icing is a two-step process, which involves piping and “flooding.” While a bit more effort, the cookies that result are sure to steal the spotlight at any Christmas cookie exchange.
How to Frost Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing
Our kitchen-tested Royal Icing recipe only requires a handful of ingredients but is easier to make with a hand-held electric mixer, as high speed is required to get the stiff texture needed to pipe.
1. To pipe outlines or borders: Squeeze decorating bag firmly and steadily working counterclockwise to create an icing border. Release pressure on decorating bag to cut off flow of icing and complete border. Allow borders to set completely, 30 to 60 minutes, before filling in outlines.
2. To flood or glaze: Using squeeze bottle, fill inside with thinned icing. Use nozzle of squeeze bottle or small metal icing spatula to fill in all areas until completely covered. If decorating with sprinkles, let stand 1 to 2 minutes before adding. Let stand about 3 hours or until completely dry.
There’s more than one way to use royal icing. Sometimes the process is reversed, so cookies are dipped in the thinned consistency (the one used for flooding), left to set and then piped and decorated. Royal icing is also used to decorate gingerbread cookies, assemble gingerbread houses and decorate wedding cakes.
The Easiest Way to Dip Truffles
Not all cookies are flat, so use this hack from the Betty Crocker Test Kitchens to coat your cookie truffles and other round sweet treats with frosting.
This clever dipping hack will coat your cookies completely while also leaving you and your kitchen neat and tidy.
How to Dip Cookie Truffles
With your cookie truffles, chocolate truffles or cake balls, plus frosting, at the ready, you’ll need two plastic forks to pull this off.
1. Remove two middle tines of two plastic forks.
3. Place cookies on waxed paper to set the chocolate.