Tools & Gadgets
- Easter egg cookie cutter – big fan of Ann Clark cookie cutters.
- Meringue powder – for the royal icing!
- Food coloring – I know I’m a broken record here, but I can’t stress how much I love this Americolor gel food coloring kit. I prefer gel food coloring because it won’t alter the royal icing’s consistency. We used sky blue, lemon yellow, violet, and fuchsia.
- Wilton piping tip #5 – this is for the flooding the eggs.
- Wilton piping tip #2 or piping tip #1 – this is for the polka dot or stripe design.
- Couplers – use couplers when you switch tips. For example, I used pink for flooding the Easter eggs with thicker tip #5. Then I switched to the thinner tip #2 for the pink designs on top of the yellow eggs. A coupler keeps the tip on the outside of the bag so you can easily switch them.
- Piping bags – I prefer the 16-inch size for decorating cookies, cakes, and cupcakes.
The base color of the Easter eggs should set before you begin the detail designs. What I usually do is place all of the decorated cookies on a baking sheet (or I decorate them directly on the baking sheet), make some room in the refrigerator, and stick the whole pan inside. The icing will set in about 15-20 minutes. During that time, you can get the rest of your colors ready.
Once the icing layers have set, you can stack, wrap, gift, and store the cookies for a week. Can you believe that the cookies in the picture below are 3 weeks old? I froze them, let them thaw on the counter, and snapped a picture before I set them out for serving. There’s a little bit of a texture difference between frozen/thawed royal icing and freshly made (the icing tastes much harder), but they’re good enough for me!
- 2 and 1/4 cups (280g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (180g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- optional for flavor: 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- royal icing (this is my favorite royal icing)
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. If the dough seems too soft, you can add 1 Tablespoon more flour until it is a better consistency for rolling.
- Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Roll each portion out onto a piece of parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat (I prefer the nonstick silicone mat) to about 1/4-inch thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.
- Stack the pieces, with parchment paper between the two, onto a baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days. If chilling for more than a couple hours, cover the top dough piece with a single piece of parchment paper.
- Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Remove one of the dough pieces from the refrigerator and cut into shapes with cookie cutter(s). Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd dough piece.
- Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 11-12 minutes, until lightly browned around the edges. Make sure you rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating. I like to decorate cookies directly on baking sheets so I can stick the entire baking sheet in the refrigerator to help set the icing. So place the cooled cookies back on baking sheets.
- Decorate: Prepare royal icing. Divide icing up between a few bowls. I used 4 colors: sky blue, lemon yellow, violet, and fuchsia. I left some icing white. Using piping tip #5, outline and flood with your base color(s). Allow icing to set (I place the cookies in the fridge so the icing sets quicker). Using piping tip #2 or piping tip #1, add decorative designs in different colors like polka dots, squiggles, plaid, or stripes. Icing will completely set in about 2 hours at room temperature.
- Decorated or plain cookies will stay fresh covered at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Make Ahead Instructions: Plain or decorated cookies freeze well up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator or at room temperature. You can chill the rolled-out cookie dough in the refrigerator for up to 2 days (step 5). You can also freeze the cookie dough (before rolling out in step 4) for up to 3 months. Then allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before rolling out. Chill for only 30 minutes in step 5 as opposed to 1 full hour.
- Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer | Rolling Pin | Silpat Baking Mat | Baking Sheet | Easter Egg Cookie Cutter | Cooling Rack | Meringue Powder | Food Coloring | Wilton Piping Tip #1 | Wilton Piping Tip #2 | Wilton Piping Tip #5 | Couplers | Piping Bags | Coarse Sugar
- Alternative Cookie Recipe: You could also use my cream cheese sugar cookie recipe.
- Bunny Ears: divide royal icing in half. Tint half pink with 1-2 small drops fuchsia. Using piping tip #5, outline and flood with plain white icing. Allow icing to set (I place the cookies in the fridge so the icing sets quicker). Using the same piping tip, top with fuchsia icing, leaving a white outline underneath. Top with coarse sugar sprinkles.
- Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.