Paintable Easter Egg Cookies for Kids
For my daughter’s preschool Easter party this year, the teacher needed a volunteer to bring sugar cookies and frosting so the kids could try their hand at decorating. Although this is not my area of expertise, I offered to try to pull something together.
First, it was difficult to find any undecorated sugar cookies at the grocery store so I wasn’t able to purchase them. I looked up a recipe for soft sugar cookies online and came up with this one.
I used this recipe for the cookie base because I had some margarine I needed to use. If I were doing this again, I would look for another recipe (or at least another brand of margarine) because the margarine I used had trans fat in it, which we all should not be eating. Everyone thought the cookies were delicious though! (Since I was dieting, I didn’t actually taste them myself.)
Once I had the recipe, I needed a way to make cookies in the shape of eggs. Based on a tip here, I designed a template on the computer and cut them out of the dough. I grossly underestimated how much this dough would expand when baked so my cookies came out enormous! I would probably reduce the shapes by at least 25% if I were doing this again. One recipe made about 16 smaller egg cookies and 2 large ones (for teacher gifts).
It was at that point that I realized the little tubes of icing I thought I bought for the cookie decorating were not actually tubes of icing at all but food coloring gels! So then I needed to make homemade icing too!
I ended up making a hard sugar cookie glaze for each cookie. I attempted this recipe but had to modify it since there didn’t seem to be enough liquid in it. I ended up using about 2/3 cup sugar to 2 tsp milk and 2 tsp corn syrup. I also used vanilla extract instead of almond. The glaze dried fairly solidly in about an hour.
We experimented with trying to color this sticky glaze to decorate the tops of the cookies. This frosting is very thick and you can kind of splatter it on Jackson Pollack style.
This seemed a bit too difficult and messy for a preschool class to handle though so we looked for another option.
To make it easier for the kids to decorate the cookies, I read this tip (from the wonderfully named Chef Messy blog) about making a paintable frosting that you put on with a brush. (She also gives a recipe for Lion House sugar cookies that she recommends.)
I mixed up some colors. My colors could probably have been a little darker for better effect but I sort of liked the subtle pastel look. I tested out the frosting paints on some sample eggs for the teachers. They worked quite well! The hard sugar cookie glaze made a great “canvas” for the paints. It did not get punctured by the brushing.
I left the frosting colors in the fridge, covered in plastic wrap, overnight. The next morning, I was worried the frosting might have dried but it was still just fine.
We wrapped up the teacher cookies in some plastic and my daughter wrote an Easter message on each one. The teachers really loved these.
The teachers were really pleased with how easy this craft was to execute with the children and asked that I share the recipes so they could do it again.
The kids seemed really proud of their edible masterpieces. The teachers packaged them for transporting home by putting each cookie on a paper plate and then inside a large zippered plastic bag, which worked really well.
*I know we all probably don’t want to know this information but each huge decorated Easter egg cookie has about 325 calories. Not too bad considering.