|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 2g||2%|
|Saturated Fat 1g||5%|
|Total Carbohydrate 7g||3%|
|Dietary Fiber 0g||0%|
|Total Sugars 7g|
|Vitamin C 0mg||0%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
This yummy sugar cookie frosting is the perfect topping for holiday sugar cookies. It's a creamy, fluffy frosting, and you only need 5 simple ingredients and 10 minutes to make it. The frosting is made with the perfect amount of butter and confectioners' sugar and enough vanilla extract to make everyone smile. Unlike royal icing that dries and hardens, this frosting stays soft and creamy. It's our best, easiest frosting for sugar cookies!
Other cookie frostings may look pretty, but they might not offer much in the way of flavor—this one has it all! It's versatile, too. Add a little more or a little less milk to change the thickness—you can spread or pipe the frosting or thin it enough to drizzle over the cookies. Use it to frost sugar cookies, gingerbread, or shortbread, or use it to fill whoopie pies.
"This is the perfect frosting recipe to add to your soft sugar cookies, but also can be used to top cupcakes, fill whoopie pies, or anything else you may need frosting for. The method used in this recipe is very simple, so you may find that you never need to buy frosting again!" —Tracy Wilk
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
4 cups (453 grams) sifted confectioners' sugar
3 to 5 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Dash of salt
Gather the ingredients.
In a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on low, beat the softened butter with the confectioners' sugar, 3 tablespoons of milk, vanilla extract, and salt until well blended. Increase the mixer's speed to medium-high and continue beating for 2 to 3 minutes, or until fluffy, adding extra milk, a teaspoon or two at a time, until the desired consistency is reached.
Use the frosting as-is or divide it among a few small bowls and add gel food coloring, as desired.
- The recipe makes enough to frost about 120 2 1/2-inch cookies. To scale the recipe down for 60 cookies, use 2 cups of confectioners' sugar, 4 tablespoons of butter, 1 1/2 to 3 tablespoons of milk, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and a pinch of salt.
- If you've added too much milk, add a little more confectioners' sugar, a teaspoon or so at a time, until it reaches the desired consistency.
- To avoid air bubbles in the frosting, use the stand mixer's paddle attachment or beaters on a hand-held mixer.
How to Use Cookie Frosting
- Lemon Sugar Cookie Frosting: Omit the vanilla, replace the milk with fresh lemon juice, and add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of finely grated lemon zest.
- Chocolate Sugar Cookie Frosting: Add 3 ounces of melted, cooled, unsweetened baking chocolate.
- Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookie Frosting: Add the seeds scraped from 1 or 2 vanilla beans along with the vanilla extract, or replace the vanilla extract with an equal amount of vanilla bean paste.
How to Store Cookie Frosting
- Refrigerate leftover frosting in an airtight covered container for up to 1 week. Set it on the counter when you're ready to use it, and let it warm up to room temperature. You may have to stir or beat it to bring it back to a smooth, creamy consistency.
- To freeze the frosting, spoon it into a zip-close freezer bag and freeze it for up to 3 months. Defrost it in the refrigerator overnight.
- To freeze frosted cookies, let them dry at room temperature, then arrange them on a baking sheet in a single layer. Freeze the cookies for about 1 to 2 hours, or until firm, and then transfer them to zip-close freezer bags or pack them in containers with wax paper separating layers.
Is cookie icing the same as frosting?
Frosting and icing are terms that are often used interchangeably, but there is a difference. Icing is thinner and can be used as a glaze, and frosting is thick and fluffy, and is typically used to frost and fill a cake.
Do I have to sift confectioners' sugar?
A small amount of cornstarch in most commercial brands of powdered sugar keeps it from clumping, and it usually blends well without sifting. However, many organic powdered sugars use tapioca starch and must be sifted.