Sunday, May 27, 2012

Royal Iced Sugar Cookies

My family has always used a buttercream frosting recipe to frost cakes and cookies. But after reading about royal icing on another blog, I wanted to try this beautiful way of decorating cookies that gives it a professional looking finish.

It will definitely take some additional practice, but for my first time, the cookies look pretty good!


Royal Icing
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tbsp. meringue powder
5 tbsp. water 
Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Mix on low speed until the sheen has disappeared and the icing has a matte appearance (about 7-10 minutes).  Transfer the contents of the mixing bowl to an air-tight container. 

This will be the stiffest consistency of the icing, and at this point it is still too stiff to use for decorating.  Add water a very small amount at a time and stir by hand until fully incorporated.  Continue until the icing has reached a consistency appropriate for piping. 

(Remember, if you are having any difficulty piping, it is still too thick.  Add a little more liquid and try again.) 

Using a pastry bag, pipe around the edges of each cookie.  Let stand so the icing will set.  Make sure to keep the leftover icing covered at all times when not in use so that it does not begin to harden.

Once all the cookies have been edged, transfer some of the remaining icing to a separate air-tight container.  Thin out by incorporating a small amount of water at a time, until the icing drips off the spoon easily when lifted and then smooths in with that still in the bowl.  If you go too far and the icing is too thin, add more sifted powdered sugar to thicken it again. 

Once the icing has reached the desired consistency, transfer it to a squeeze bottle (or a plastic bag with a hole in one corner), and flood the area surrounded by the piping on each cookie.  If it does not completely spread to the edges, use a toothpick to help it along.  Allow to set.

Use the remaining thicker icing for piping decoration as desired.  Gel icing color is best as it does not add a significant amount of liquid.  Liquid food coloring can be used as well – add powdered sugar as needed to compensate for any thinning that occurs.

Recipe and additional frosting instructions fond on Annie's Eats 

I'm excited to try these out again for a party or for holiday gifts! 


  1. Wow! I am impressed. These are so pretty! Are you sending a care package to someone? :) I'm so impressed that you are trying out new things in the kitchen!

    1. I'm not actually sending out a care package, but the cookies are definitely something I'd include someday. I'm enjoying trying new things - definitely makes me feel more confident about trying more complicated things too!