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Surprise your loved ones with these gorgeous (and easy!) Valentine Sugar Cookies WIth Marbled Icing. Forget about the fancy piping and decorations, these cookies get dipped in swirled icing for a beautiful marbled effect. Another bonus is that the cookie dough doesn’t need to be chilled before rolling it out!
Why do we find making sugar cookies so elusive? We want a recipe that tastes delicious; isn’t too hard or too soft; doesn’t spread and lose its shape when baked; and is easy to roll out. Is that too much to ask?
No! This recipe has been my ‘go-to’ sugar cookie recipe for years. It makes cookies that are perfectly soft, yet not so soft that they can’t hold a lot of icing. The dough comes together easily and doesn’t need to be chilled, which if you’re impatient like me, is a huge bonus. Also, it produces cookies with sharp edge lines for the prettiest shapes ever.
- Butter – there isn’t a good substitution for this one. You need the butter for the best flavor, texture, and crumb.
- Granulated sugar and powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract and almond extract
- All-purpose flour and baking powder
- Cream – either half-and-half or heavy cream will work
- Gel food coloring – gel offers the most intense color without affecting the consistency of the icing.
Steps To Make This Recipe
- Make the cookie dough by first creaming together the butter and sugar, then adding the eggs and extracts.
- Stir in the flour and baking powder until a dough forms.
- Roll out the dough on a powder sugar-dusted surface and cut out the hearts.
- Bake until the edges begin to brown.
- Allow the cookies to cool completely.
- Make the icing by mixing the powdered sugar and cream together until smooth. Add the white icing to the large bowl.
- Spoon a small amount into three small bowls and add enough gel color to make one red and one pink.
- Swirl both the red and the pink into the large bowl of white icing.
- Dip one side of each cookie into the icing and let dry on a wire rack.
Tips And Tricks
- Use butter. If you use unsalted butter, add ⅛ teaspoon of salt to the dough. Omit the salt if you’re using salted butter. Allow the butter to come to room temperature before mixing to make the process easier.
- Don’t worry if the dough looks too crumbly. Keep mixing it or turn it out onto a floured surface and knead it a few times until the dough resembles Play-Dough.
- Using powdered sugar to roll out the dough adds a lovely sweetness to the outside of the cookie and a bit of crispness. It also allows you to reroll the scraps without making the cookie tough. This cookie dough is more forgiving than the usual sugar cookie dough in that you can roll the dough out in flour and reroll the scraps one time without compromising the texture. Rolling the dough out in powdered sugar will allow you to reroll the scraps more than once.
- Don’t overbake the cookies. Keep in mind that they will continue to bake on the baking sheet while the set. You want just a slight hint of color around the very edge of the cookies and a hint of gold on the bottom.
- For the icing, consistency is key. The consistency should be like glue. If you pour some of the icing on top of the icing already in the bowl and it takes a second or two before it sinks into the bowl and flattens out, this is a perfect consistency.
- Drizzle the colored icing very lightly. You can always add more but really can’t take it out.
- Don’t swirl too much. Use a light hand for the best-looking marbled effect.
- Use a toothpick to pop any bubbles that appear in the icing on the cookie after you lay it on the wire rack to dry.
- The colors will begin to ‘fade’ as you keep dipping the cookies. Lightly drizzle and swirl additional colors as needed.
- Allow the cookies to dry for at least 12 hours or up to 24 hours before storing them in an airtight container, packed in between layers of wax paper.
A Few More Valentine’s Sweets To Consider:
- Healthy Strawberry Granita
- Mini Cherry Cheesecakes
- Soft Red Velvet Cookies With Cream Cheese Frosting
- Red Velvet Cupcakes
- Mousse Au Chocolat
- Italian Amaretti Peaches
- Incredible Molten Lava Cakes
Surprise your loved ones with these gorgeous (and easy!) Valentine’s Sugar Cookies WIth Marbled Icing. Forget about the fancy piping and decorations, these cookies get dipped in swirled icing for a beautiful marbled effect. Another bonus is that the cookie dough doesn’t need to be chilled before rolling it out!
For the cookies:
- 1 cup salted butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- Powdered sugar, for rolling out the dough
For the icing:
Make the cookies.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and creamy – about 3 minutes.
Beat in the vanilla, almond extract, egg, and egg yolk until well combined.
Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, combine the baking soda and flour.
Add the flour to the butter mixture a little at a time.
Continue to mix until the dough starts pulling away from the mixer’s sides.
If the dough is too dry or stiff for the mixer, turn the dough out onto a flat, floured surface and knead the dough by hand.
Divide the dough into thirds.
Dust your flat surface with powdered sugar. Roll out the dough to ¼-inch thickness.
Cut out the heart shapes with your cookie cutters and place them 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake in the preheated oven for 7-9 minutes or until the edges start to turn golden.
Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for a minute before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Make the icing.
Pick a bowl that is wider than the largest cookie.
Combine the powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons of cream, vanilla, and almond extract.
Stir until a thick icing forms.
Add more milk, a tablespoon at a time, until you reach a thick glue consistency. Add more cream or powdered sugar as needed.
Place 2 tablespoons each of icing into two small bowls and 1 tablespoon of icing into another small bowl.
In the large bowl of icing, add a few drops of white gel coloring and mix well. Set aside.
Color the 2 bowls of 2 tablespoons of icing with the red food coloring, starting with a drop at a time until the desired color is reached. One small bowl should be darker than the other. The smaller bowl of 1 tablespoon of icing should remain white.
Drizzle a small amount of each colored icing into the large bowl of white icing and lightly swirl with a toothpick. Don’t swirl too much or you’ll lose the marbling effect.
Dip the top of each cookie into the glaze, pushing into the glaze and slightly twisting, then lifting up and shaking off any excess icing.
Place the cookie on a wire rack to dry.
Continue with the remaining cookies.
As the color in the large bowl diminishes, drizzle more of each colored icing into the large bowl and swirl lightly.
If you have too much color, use the reserved white icing to swirl over the colored icing in the large bowl.
Allow the cookies to dry for at least 12-24 hours before layering them between wax paper in an airtight container to store.
- Prep Time: 1 hour
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Category: Desserts
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Valentine’s sugar cookies with marbled icing, sugar cookie recipe, Valentine’s Day cookies, heart cookies, sugar cookies, marbled icing, no chill sugar cookies