Sugar Cookie Icing

sugar cookie icingEveryone loves sugar cookies…except me. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll certainly eat them, but they’re not my favorite. I’d much rather have a peanut butter cookie with a Hershey’s Kiss on it, or a pumpkin chocolate chip, or a molasses cookie. Sugar cookies are popular though, because they’re so easy to customize.

This is the first time I worked with this icing, which I found over at Sally’s Baking Addiction; it looked much easier to work with than royal icing, and it certainly was. This icing works well with a technique similar to piping and flooding,where you outline your cookie to make a border, then fill in the center – the only difference was that I didn’t use a thinner version of the icing when I flooded the center.

The recipe below is adapted from Sally’s to make enough icing for about 3 dozen cookies. It’s important to note that this icing needs about 24 hours to harden completely; I put iced cookies in single layers in various containers while the icing set.


  • 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • About 6-7 tablespoons room temperature water
  • Food coloring, for tinting


In a large mixing bowl, combine sifted powdered sugar, corn syrup, and vanilla.

Add 2 tablespoons water and stir; icing will be very thick and paste-like, so continue to add water 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach a thick drizzling consistency; if you drizzle some of the icing with your spoon, it should hold for just a moment before melting back into the rest.

If tinting, divide icing into bowls and tint with desired colors. I tinted mine pink, orange, light green, and purple.

Place icing in a pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip and pipe a border around the outside of your cookie, then fill in the center using circular motions or swirls to cover most of the center. Using a small offset spatula, gently spread the icing in the center so it reaches the border and makes a smooth layer.

Store cookies in containers, in a single layer, for 24 hours to be sure the icing hardens completely. Once the icing is fully set, you can store the cookies between sheets of waxed paper.



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