Sugar Cookies and Royal Icing

When someone says they are making “Christmas Cookies” most people think of decorating various sugar cookies from Christmas trees, to candy canes and even baby yodas. If you need a last minute Christmas activity to do with the family then I can think of nothing better than the classic bake & decorate sugar cookies.

After making multiple sugar cookie recipie’s I have found my favorite – a melt in your mouth, sweet but not too sweet, moist, delicious cookie that is only enhanced by my favorite royal icing recipe.


  • 2 cups (4 sticks) softened butter
  • 8 oz (1 pkg) cream cheese
  • 2 cups of white sugar
  • 2 lg egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt


  • Cream together butter & cream cheese
  • Add sugar, egg yolks, vanilla – mix well
  • Add flour & salt – mix until combined *Don’t over mix*
  • Spread batter on parchment paper lined cookie sheet & cill for 2 hours (up to 12).
  • After chill, roll out batter on floured surface & cut into desired shapes
  • Bake at 350 F for 10-12 min.

The batter is incredibly sticky when it’s immediately mixed, that is why it MUST chill for at least 2 hours. Once it’s chilled it needs to be warmed up with your hands and then rolled out on a floured surface. I LOVE my marble rolling pin and I find the weight of the marble helps make the rolling easier.

Royal Icing


  • 1 1/2 TBSP Meringue powder
  • 3 TBSP warm (NOT HOT) water
  • 1/2 TBSP light corn syrup
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (or any flavor)


  • In bowl add meringue powder & warm water – beat for about 1 min or until light & frothy
  • Add powdered sugar, corn sytrup, vanilla & mix at medium speed
  • Continue mixing until it peaks – then add color

There is so much to say about royal icing and I am not an expert on it, but here is a link that explains all the technical terms of royal icing and how to do the outline & flooding.

All I do with the icing is pipe it on and fill it in, as you can see by the pictures. Maybe one day I will try to be fancy and do the flooding, shading, and other fancy decorations making my cookies look as realistic as possible. If you would like to make this icing recipe thinner then you can add some water to the mixture – only add 1/4 tsp at a time as a little goes a long way.

Let me know how it goes for you in the comments below, did you do anything differently?

Merry Christmas!

One thought on “Sugar Cookies and Royal Icing

  1. I made pies at Christmas but made mounds of cookies on Friday nights for many years. That was Bud’s bowling night and when he came home there was a mountain of cookies to last the week for him and five kids. My favorites were peanut butter cookies, chocolate chip and (my personal favorite…) oatmeal raisin. “Nothin’ says lovin’ like somethin’ from the oven!!!”


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