How to Decorate Snowflake Cookies

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Get ready to win your holiday bake-off.

When it comes to holiday cookies, there’s nothing more impressive than a perfectly decorated cutout cookie. And while we love cheery holiday elves and festive Christmas cards, snowflakes are one of our all-time favorite shapes. Here’s how to decorate snowflake cookies like a pro.

Before You Begin: Bake and Ice Cookies

Before you add the pretty snowflake design, you’ll need to bake and ice a batch of cookies! For this step, you can use your favorite cutout cookie recipe. We used gingerbread, but any sturdy cookie will work. Use snowflake cookie cutters to shape your cookies, then bake according to your recipe’s instructions. Cool completely.

Then, mix up a batch of royal icing. (We shaded our icing with blue and violet food coloring.) Using a piping bag, flood each cookie. Make sure you reserve a little extra icing—it’s the “glue” that you will use to attach the fondant flakes. Once your icing has dried, you can move on to the next step: homemade marshmallow fondant cutouts

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 3-1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
  • 2 tablespoons shortening
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • Additional confectioners’ sugar for dusting
  • Reserved royal icing
  • Luster dust

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 1: Melt ‘mallows

Start by combining the marshmallows and water in a large, microwave-safe bowl. Heat the mixture on high for 30 seconds, then stir. Continue microwaving—stirring every 30 seconds—until the marshmallows are smooth and completely melted. Then, transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer.

If you’ve never made or worked with fondant before, check out this guide first.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 2: Add shortening

Turn your mixture on to medium speed, then add the shortening. Beat until the shortening has melted and is fully incorporated.

Editor’s Tip: For this step, you’ll want to work quickly. The warmth of the melted marshmallows is what helps the shortening incorporate.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 3: Beat it, just beat it

If you have a stand mixer splash guard, put it on. Because this step can get messy! Turn your mixer to the lowest speed, then gently add the confectioners’ sugar, a little bit at a time. Keep beating until the mixture is fully combined. Congrats, you just made fondant!

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 4: Dust and transfer

Take your reserved confectioners’ sugar and generously sprinkle it over your workspace and hands. Turn the marshmallow mixture onto the counter.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 5: Knead, knead, knead

Start kneading the fondant until it’s smooth and pliable—but not sticky. This should take about 6 minutes. Keep some extra confectioners’ sugar close by in case you need to re-dust the counter or your hands.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 6: Roll it out

Dust a rolling pin with confectioners’ sugar, then roll out your kneaded fondant until it’s 1/8-inch thick.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 7: Cut your snowflake shapes

Dip your snowflake-shaped cookie cutters in confectioners’ sugar, then use ’em to punch out shapes from the fondant. To give your cookies a more unique look, use cutters of different shapes and sizes. (After all, no two snowflakes are alike!)

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 8: Attach fondant

Remember that royal icing you set aside? Go grab it and give it a quick stir. Using a piping bag or a toothpick, gently draw several dots on the back of a fondant snowflakes. Adhere the flake to one of your iced cookies. Let stand until set, and repeat with remaining fondant flakes.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 9: Brush with luster dust

For an added touch of glam, use a clean brush to apply luster dust to your finished cookies.

How to Decorate Snowflake CookiesTaste of Home

Step 10: Plate and serve

Whew! You did it. Place decorated cookies on a festive plate and go grab a glass of milk. Store leftovers in an airtight container.

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Katie Bandurski
Katie is an Associate Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in writing and email newsletters. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.