Happy 4th of July!

The 4th of July is my favorite holiday, and baking is one of my favorite pastimes so of course I tend to combine the two to make one big happy day.  This year I made my favorite sugar cookies but tried a new royal icing recipe.  (Try Peppermint Plum’s recipe for thick, soft sugar cookies and Sweetopia’s royal icing recipe and tutorial for the decorating!)


Generally, royal icing intimidates me.  You have to hit that magical consistency and decorate with a certain speed so as to have just the right look.  A few months ago I started the search for the perfect royal icing recipe–and perfect tutorial for decorating with royal icing.  I finally landed on one that looked pretty promising, and I finally got around to trying it out for the 4th.

It would seem I found the right one.  Sweetopia offered detailed instructions as well as helpful tips and tricks to decorating with royal icing.  I will most certainly be using this again.

Overall, I liked using the same consistency to outline and flood the cookies.  However, I will use a bigger icing tip for the larger cookies (such as the jaggedy edged firecracker).  It is really clean looking to not have the outline when using the same color to fill.  I also strongly advise the use of the Americolor gel food coloring to tint the icing.  The squeeze bottle is super handy, and I really feel like it provides the truest color consistency.

To make these firecracker cookies, you need to outline + flood the cookie with white royal icing using Sweetopia’s 5-10 second consistency icing.  Then come back and add lines that follow the edging pattern to the middle.  I alternated with blue and red icing.  Once you have enough “bullseye” circles, drag a toothpick through the lines.  You can start at the center and drag out or start at the edge and drag in.  It’s up to you!  I used Americolor Super Red and Navy Blue for my colors.  The red and blue lines are the same icing consistency as the white.  It just made things easier that way!  It’s important to be mindful of how quickly the royal icing can harden.  I usually would flood three cookies and then add the lines to those three.  It’s difficult to do more than that because your white won’t be as liquid for your red and blue lines to “fall into.”  I also advise keeping your bags in glasses with a damp paper towel at the bottom.  Then your icing tips don’t clog up requiring extra steps to clear them out and a messier opening for your neat lines.

So now it’s your turn to decorate some cookies!  Here are my 4th of July firecracker cookies.

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Born and raised in the suburbs of Wichita, KS, I am a believer in the adage "There's No Place Like Home." Nearly thirty years later, I am married with one dog--Ellie the German Shorthaired Pointer--and reside in Wichita by choice. I spend my downtime reading, baking, supporting the Kansas State University Wildcats, and traveling.

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