Martha Stewart’s Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

Sugar Cookies with royal Icing

Happy Valentine’s Day!

My husband is always asking for sugar cookies with icing on them. They are his very favorite cookie, but every Christmas goes by and he never gets them. My mom always made tons of different types of delicious cookies when I was growing up, but never iced ones.  The only cookie I really like to eat is chocolate chip, so I had no experience with adding any more decoration to a cookie than a few sprinkles.
For Valentine’s Day I thought I would surprise him by making him sugar cookies with royal icing. I went online to find a recipe and I decided to use Martha Stewart’s since she is the queen of baking. Her recipe is perfect, because it uses Royal Icing, which dries hard and shiny, so you can easily stack the cookies. RecipeGirl.com has the sugar cookie recipe here and the royal icing recipe here.

A few things I learned while making these cookies:

-I did not have parchment paper, so I just sprayed the cookie sheets with Pam and it was fine.

-chilling the cookies for 15 minutes after cutting them out is very important.  Do not miss this step.  I left one pan in the fridge for only 5 minutes and the cookies spread out a bit.  I also put the cookie sheets in the fridge for a few minutes after removing one batch of cookies from them and before filling them with another.

-Royal Icing normally calls for raw egg whites, which can carry salmonella.  I like that Martha’s recipe replaces the raw egg whites with meringue powder.  You probably won’t find meringue powder at the grocery store, but you can buy it at Michael’s in the baking section.

-I added a teaspoon of vanilla to the icing for some added flavoring.  You can also add almond, or lemon flavoring.

-If you follow the icing recipe exactly, it is perfect for “flooding” the cookie. Flooding means coating the cookie evenly in icing over the entire top. After coating the cookie, allow it to dry overnight before piping on additional icing.  I didn’t have time to do this, since my hubby would be home in a couple hours, and the icing coating didn’t hold up under the piped icing.

-I separated the icing into three different cups and used gel food color to tint the icing.  A lot goes a long way when using the gel.

-Once I was ready to pipe the thicker icing onto the cookies, I added more powdered sugar to thicken it.  I didn’t thicken the icing quite enough, so the piping spread out a bit and didn’t hold it’s shape.

– the recipe made a lot of cookies, so I am going to freeze most of them and take a few out a week for us to enjoy.

I am excited to make these sugar cookies again along with my husband.  They tasted great, but I want to take my time with them and make them look even prettier.   My husband loved them but I think he was a little bummed that he didn’t get to help, so maybe we will try it again for St. Patrick’s day!

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