Easy Frosted Valentine Cookie Recipe

Spread the LOVE this Valentine’s Day with this easy frosted Valentine cookie recipe! No matter what your baking skills are, you’ll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

When it comes to decorating sugar cookies, my skills are elementary at best.

I can roll out cookie dough as well as anyone, but I just lack the patience/skill/focus to decorate my cookies like a professional.

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy frosted Valentine cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

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Then I learned this one secret tip, and I stopped worrying about it.

Sprinkles! Just use more sprinkles. Sprinkles make sugar cookies look gorgeous, no matter what.

But before we get to the sprinkles, we need to make some Valentine cookies.

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy frosted Valentine cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

The Cookies

Ironically, my husband is the one who really drives the Sugar Cookie Train. He loves to make sugar cookies, testing out different recipes in his quest for The Perfect Sugar Cookie (he does the same thing with Pizza Dough; the guy should start a food blog!)

We are currently favoring my Grandma’s recipe from an old Gas Company cookbook. Because this cookie dough needs to chill at least two hours, I like to make it the night before. Once you start working with it, if the dough is too warm it will become sticky and impossible to work with.

With Depression Era sensibility, the cookie dough requires one egg yolk, and the royal icing requires one egg white. Nothing to waste!

Note: In the notes of the recipe, I have a royal icing recipe that does not contain raw eggs, so feel free to use that instead.

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy frosted Valentine cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

The Royal Icing

Royal Icing is worthy of its glamorous name: It looks gorgeous, all shiny and billowy in the bowl, and spreads like a dream.  I started off using a small spatula but migrated to a pastry brush.

Even though you might see lines in your royal icing after first applying it, it dries evenly for a smooth, blemish-fress surface. The frosting hardens quickly though, so frost a few cookies at a time and then decorate with sprinkles right away.

I spread a piece of parchment on the counter and decorated my cookies there to keep things tidy. At the end, I swept up all the fallen sprinkles and decorated a few more cookies. The randomness of leftover sprinkles looks great!

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy frosted Valentine cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

If the frosting hardens in the bowl or begins to become stiff, you can loosen it with a few drops of hot water at a time, stirring it until well-blended.  You’ll definitely want to do that if you plan to pipe your royal icing, too.

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy frosted Valentine cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.

5 from 5 votes

Easy Frosted Valentine Cookie Recipe

Spread the LOVE this Valentine's Day with easy Frosted Valentine Cookies! No matter what your baking skills are, you'll be able to tackle these simple cookies topped with royal icing and sprinkles.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cookies
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 35 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 399kcal

For the Sugar Cookies:

  • 1 ¼ cups unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk egg white reserved for royal icing
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt

For the Royal Icing:

  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • To make the sugar cookies: Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl, cream the butter until pale and fluffy. Add the sugar ¼ cup at a time, mixing on low-speed for 2 minutes after each addition.
  • Mix in egg yolk and vanilla until well blended. Meanwhile, sift together the flour and salt. Add to the large mixing bowl and stir until evenly combined.
  • Scrape the dough out onto a floured work surface and divide in half. Wrap each mound of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  • Remove the dough from the refrigerate and roll out between two pieces of parchment paper until ¼” to 1/8” thick. Using cookie cutters, cut out shapes and transfer to the prepared baking sheets.
  • Repeat with the second ball of dough. Scrape all remnants together and reroll. If the dough becomes too soft or sticky, refrigerate an additional 10 minutes.
  • Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown on the bottom and around the edges, rotating the baking sheet halfway through. Cool the cookies for 1 minute on the pan before transferring to racks to cool completely.
  • To make the Royal Icing, bring the egg white to room temperature. Beat the egg white with the cream of tartar on medium speed until foamy.
  • Reduce mixer speed to low and add the powdered sugar until just incorporated. Beat on high for 2 minutes or until the frosting is thick and glossy.
  • Using a pastry brush or spatula, spread frosting on to a few cooled cookies at a time, quickly decorating with sprinkles before the frosting hardens. Allow frosting to set before serving or storing in airtight containers.

Recipe Notes

To make Royal Icing without the egg: Combine 1 Tablespoon meringue powder and 3 Tablespoons warm water in a mixing bowl at medium speed. Reduce speed to low and gradually stir 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar. Once the sugar is incorporated, beat on high until very and glossy, about 5 minutes. Add additional warm water, 1 Tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.

Nutrition

Calories: 399kcal

 

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  1. Nancy Friesen

    help! I am in the middle of making these valentine’s cookies but am confused by your recipe. is there equal amounts of powdered sugar in both the cookie batter and the icing recipes. It shows confectioners sugar in the cookie batter but doesn’t mention it in the recipe when putting the ingredients together. Seems strange that it doesn’t tell me when to add this sugar. it seems like it should be sifted with the flour and salt if it is really  part of the batter. I know I need it for the icing but something doesn’t seem right. Please  answer quickly if you can as I am ready to put the batter in the fridge. i have not added the confectioners sugar to the cookie batter. Should I?

    1. meggan

      Hi Nancy, NO! TYPOS! I’m so sorry about that. Don’t add the powdered sugar!!! It’s only for the icing. It doesn’t go in the cookie batter. I’m so sorry about all the confusion. You are clearly smarter than I am and saw the mistake. At some point I split the recipe so the batter would be one section and the frosting another section, but I did it wrong. I’m so sorry about that!!! I hope I replied in time. -Meggan

  2. Jennifer Stevens

    How does this recipe differ from your Grandma’s Christmas sugar cookies recipe?  

    1. meggan

      Hi Jennifer, I kind of just put together this Valentine’s Day cookie recipe in 2014 by testing out a bunch of recipes and pulling together what I liked the best. I frosted them with Royal Icing. For the Christmas Sugar cookies, it’s literally just a recipe from my Grandma’s cookbook. Looking at them side by side, they are quite similar in ingredients. I think the Valentine’s Day ones are a little sweeter overall but that is a guess based on my memories, not a formal side-by-side taste-testing. I should probably work on that though! Sorry I can’t give you a super helpful answer, but I’ll work on it when I can. :) Thank you!

  3. Lindsey

    Just made the dough with my daughter this afternoon…going to attempt royal icing for the first time tomorrow and let her decorate with sprinkles…wish me luck….i am sure it will be messy as she is 2..well almost 3!5 stars

    1. I hope it went well! I think your daughter is the perfect age to help out. I am just speculating though, my son is not quite 2 yet. But I imagine he will be much more helpful in another year. :) Thank you for trying out the recipe, I appreciate it!

  4. Aleesha Banks

    Gosh ……… they look wonderful. Perfect too, I’m sure I’d make such a mess :)5 stars

    1. Awwww you think my frosted sugar cookies look perfect? I did NOT think so. :) I asked my husband what he thought and he said… well… they look like sugar cookies made by someone who desperately wants to try to make frosted sugar cookies. :) Ha! The important thing is they tasted good. And since I decorated them all different, it hid the flaws of the individuals.

  5. Heena

    The are adorable… very cute and girly… I am gonna give them a try for valentines day… thanks for posting these beauties… :)5 stars

    1. Thank you for trying out the recipe! I hope it elevates your V-Day experience. They were fun cookies to make. I am excited to make more on Friday for my husband (he is a huge sugar cookie fan). Thanks again!

  6. huntfortheverybest

    they look cute!5 stars

    1. Thank you, they were fun to make! I ended up giving most of them away to my friends to prevent me from eating them all. :)

  7. These look so so so cute!!! And I own meringue powder and those decorating gadgets, so we need to bring our tools and techniques together for a sugar fest!!!5 stars

    1. Yay, a fun baking day!!!! Maybe you can teach me a few things. :)

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