Cookie Decorating Tips

Mario Brothers, Mickey Halloween, and Coffee & Donuts

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Christmas Cookies

A couple years ago I became interested in a cookie frosting technique called flooding. It makes your cookie look glossy, smooth, and flawless. As a baker this was something I really wanted to try! It started out as something fun to do for my own special occasions but ended in a small side business with a friend.

We started taking Mother’s Day orders and then the orders never stopped! I was so nervous in the beginning; stressing over every detail. It took us sometimes 16 hours to do 2 dozen cookies. I’m happy to report now that we’re more comfortable and confident, we have been able to cut that time in half 🙂

If you are interested in giving this fun cookie art a try, I have some tips to share with you!

Baking the Cookies

• You want a sugar cookie recipe that’s going to give you firm, thick cookies. You want them to keep their shape and be a good foundation for your icing art.

• Place raw cut out cookies in the fridge for 5-10 minutes before baking to help them keep their shape.

• Be careful of cutters that give you thin areas. For example if you had a margarita glass you wouldn’t want the stem to be too thin because then your cookie will break easily.

•Always make a couple extra cookies. You never know what will go wrong lol

• Always set your timer a little lower than what you think it will take to bake the cookies. Then check on them and increase time by 1 minute increments until they are slightly browned around the edges. This will cut down on burnt cookie accidents.

Icing Consistency

• When flooding you want the consistency around 8 seconds. This means when you drizzle the icing on top of itself, it should only take 8 seconds before it has melted back into the rest of the icing.

• For outlining and writing you want the icing stiff, but still soft. If it’s too stiff you’ll  have trouble getting the icing to flow smoothly.

• When using tips that make an imprint such as flowers and leaves, you want the icing very stiff or the imprint will lose its shape.

Decorating

• Immediately pop bubbles after flooding or it will leave holes in the icing. Use a toothpick if you don’t have the tool needed.

• When you need just white colored frosting add a couple drops of white instead of just leaving it colorless. It will give it a crisper look and help with color bleeding.

•If a color is too dark, just add some white food coloring to lighten it up to the desired color.

• Let flooded cookies dry overnight before adding writing or using edible markers to draw eyes, etc. Especially if the flooded color is darker than the writing color, it will bleed if not given enough time to dry. Also the icing will crack under the pressure when using edible markers so you want to make sure it’s nice and hard.

• Sometimes it takes time to find a comfortable position with your hand when using a decorating bag. If you find your hand is shaking or not able to be flexible, try different positions and use an extra cookie or napkin to practice.

• If you’re not great at doing fonts with icing, use an edible marker to write it first and then go over it with the icing. Try to use the same color marker as icing you’ll be writing with. If it’s a different color it’s more noticeable if your lines don’t line up exactly.

• See if you can use a cookie cutter you already have to make something new. This could save you from having to purchase or make a whole new cutter. For example in my Christmas cookies the Santa face was originally a bell.

Probems

Oil Spotting- this is when the moisture from your cookies soak through and create dark spots in your icing.

To try and prevent this I store my cookies on paper towels to soak up extra moisture. If oil spotting has occurred, the best solution is to let it continue happening so that the whole cookie just looks darker in color and you can’t tell there was spotting.

My final piece of advice is to just go for it! If you’re too scared to try things, you’ll never know if you can do it. And even if it comes out bad at first, you can always get better!

Happy Decorating!

If you’re just starting out, you can view this YouTube video of me flooding a wedding dress to give you a start:

DIY Cookie Flooding ~AND~ Party Ideas for Little Man Baby Shower

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These mustache and tie cookies were for a baby shower I helped put together. The colors are so fun and I got to do this cookie flooding technique I’ve been wanting to try for a while. The trick is using these bottles:

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Wilton Mini Squeeze Bottles (Amazon)

I watched a few videos and found that some people mixed up their royal icing, outlined the cookies, then added a little water to do the flooding inside the cookie. Others just added the water at the beginning, outlined the cookies and filled it in, all with the same icing consistency. I tried both ways and ended up liking the second way better. As you can see, it takes a few practice cookies to get the hang of it:

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But once I did, I was very happy with it.

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Once you make the royal icing (recipe below), you’ll want to add 1/2 tsp at a time of water until you get the right consistency which is a 10-15 second icing. This means when you take a spoonful of icing and then drizzle a little design, it should disappear back into the icing within 10-15 seconds. If you end up getting it too runny, add in some more powdered sugar. I found this YouTube video very helpful:

Royal Icing Recipe:

  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Meringue Powder (bought mine on Amazon)
  • 5 Tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tarter
  1. Mix meringue powder and water in stand up mixer until foamy.
  2. Add powdered sugar and cream of tarter and mix on low for about 8-10 minutes. Yes, minutes. 🙂
  3. Transfer whatever royal icing you aren’t adding water to yet in an airtight container because it hardens quickly. So if you’re doing multiple colors, just keep out what you’ll need for the first color, and put the rest in the airtight container.
  4. Mix in your color and then 1/2 tsp of water until icing is right consistency.
  5. Put your 10-15 second icing into the squeeze bottle and outline the cookie. Then fill it in. If there’s some little holes where the icing didn’t quite fill, just take a toothpick and spread a little bit of the outside icing into the hole.

When they completely dry, they have a nice gloss to them and you can stack them without messing it up. Here they are on display at the shower:

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The party colors were green and blue with a mustache and tie/bowtie theme. My mom has the new Cricut Explore which was amazing for making the food labels and banner.

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Dessert Table

For appetizers we had bowtie pasta, meatballs & little smokies, sliders, white chocolate m&m popcorn and fruit (in a baby carriage of course 🙂 )

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Drinks were served in mason jars with mustache straws. I cut out the mustaches (with Cricut Explore Machine) and just hot glued them onto some straws.

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There was a photo booth where you could take silly photos with props and hats. You could also get a finger mustache tattoo there because those are awesome!

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Some other details were the chalkboard sign with a To Do List

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Envelopes to write your address for thank you notes

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And favor boxes with small cookies

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Red Velvet White Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I saw some recipes for these cookies, but the ones I found didn’t use a cake mix. I had a red velvet cake mix to use and thought, “Hey, why not?” If it cuts corners for me I’m totally in. So I began with a Duncan Hines Red Velvet Cake Mix and then also added eggs, vanilla, butter, flour, canola oil, and white chocolate chips

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Just use a large cooking spoon to mix everything except the chocolate chips together. The tricky part is getting all those little cake mix crumbles gone. If you don’t, you will have brown specks in your cookies. Once you mix everything into a dough, add the white chocolate chips.Image

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I used a spoon to help me form medium sized dough balls and put them on a greased cookie sheet. In between cooking batches I put the mixing bowl with the dough in the refrigerator to keep it from getting too sticky.

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As you can see, this cookie sheet has been used for many years. But, it still works just great.

I baked these for 9 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. I let them cool on the counter for a few minutes before removing them with a spatula to cool the rest of the way. I would say these cookies are more cake like than gooey like. I’ll take them either way 🙂

Red Velvet White Chocolate Chips Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 red velvet cake mix (Duncan Hines)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 3 Tbl flour
  • 2 Tbl oil
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips

Directions:

  1.  Melt butter and set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease cookie sheet.
  2. In a large bowl mix together red velvet cake mix, eggs, butter, flour, oil, and vanilla extract. Stir with a large cooking spoon. Make sure to get all the cake crumbles smashed so you won’t have brown specks in your cookies.
  3. Add in the white chocolate chips and stir.
  4. Form medium sized dough balls with your hand and a spoon. Place on greased cookie sheet (separated enough so they won’t touch when cooked).
  5. While cooking each batch, place dough in fridge to keep from getting too sticky.
  6. Bake @ 350 degrees for 9 minutes. Let sit on cookie sheet until cooled enough to transfer to another place to continue cooling.
  7. Enjoy with a glass of milk 🙂

Good Ole’ Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I’ve seen many cookie recipes on Pinterest that claim they’re the best, most amazing, chewiest, softest, and puffiest cookies ever. But when I try them, I have no such luck. So I’ve been determined to figure out how to actually get my chocolate chip cookies to turn out this way. And not just once, but every time. Ladies and gents, I found success! I think there are 2 factors:

~The butter and the eggs~

You want the butter firm. Not rock hard, because then its hard to get it all mixed in, but firm. I found if I put a full stick in the microwave straight from the fridge for about 5 or 6 seconds I achieve this. The half stick can just go straight in the mixing bowl or microwave for 3 seconds.

I live in high altitude and found that I need to add an egg to help my cookies stay nice and puffy. So in my recipe it calls for 2 eggs. If you do not live in high altitude you probably only need 1 egg. Alright now that we have that figured out, let’s get cookin’!

Measure and pour all the dry ingredients into your bowl and mix it up.

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Then, add the wet ingredients (eggs, vanilla, and butter) and beat it until the dough forms.

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As soon as that happens, mix in the chocolate chips with a large spoon.

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Scoop spoonfuls out and roll them into balls before placing them on the greased baking sheet

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I use these silicone mats and LOVE them. Nothing sticks!

Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-9 minutes. Side note: A mix of semisweet and white chocolate chips in your cookies are super yummy!

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Ingredients:

  • 3/4 c brown sugar
  • 1/4 c granulated sugar
  • 2 c flour
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray non stick or use silicone mats.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine brown sugar, sugar, flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. Mix it.
  3. Add the butter, eggs, and vanilla. Beat until dough forms.
  4. Stir in chocolate chips with a large spoon.
  5. Scoop dough by spoonfuls and form into balls. Place on baking sheet with room for them to spread.
  6. Bake in oven 8-10 minutes. Let cool before removing them with a spatula.