This mouthwatering 5-minute Sugar Cookie Frosting is smooth, creamy, and perfect for decorating cookies. It’s a top-requested recipe!
This delicious Sugar Cookie Frosting is made with both vanilla and almond extract. It’s perfect for decorating cookies, especially The Best Sugar Cookies and Sugar Cookie Bars.
The Only Sugar Cookie Frosting Recipe You’ll Ever Need
A good Sugar Cookie Frosting recipe is a necessity for anyone who likes to decorate cookies. But there’s a problem with most recipes: they don’t taste good!
Sugar Cookie Frosting is usually bland and often grainy. It will help you make cute cookies, but you won’t enjoy eating them. And where’s the fun in that?
That’s why I love this recipe so much. It’s a frosting that you’ll actually want to eat. The secret? I add a little almond extract, as well as vanilla extract, to give this frosting a rich and complex flavor.
You’ll love whipping this up for any occasion or celebration, and it’s perfectly customizable. Color it for holidays, it’s perfect for making a tasty Christmas cookie. It goes perfectly with our favorite Sugar Cookie Recipe! Enjoy!!
How to Make Frosting for Sugar Cookies
This is an exceptionally Sugar Cookie Frosting recipe. It only takes 5 minutes, and then you’ll have a melt-in-your-mouth frosting that is perfect for decorating.
COMBINE. Mix all the ingredients with a hand or stand mixer. Add more milk until it’s the desired consistency. Add food coloring (optional).
DECORATE! Spread on top of cookies with a knife or piping bag. Top it with delicious jimmy sprinkles, and enjoy!!
Sugar Cookie Frosting Variations
This frosting recipe is obviously customizable with food coloring, but here are some additional variations:
- Flavor. A huge part of what makes this recipe so good is the almond extract in addition to the vanilla extract. Change the flavors depending on the cookie being decorated: mint extract, strawberry extract, orange extract, and lemon extract, are some of my favorites.
- Consistency. A key part of good frosting is getting the desired consistency. After making the frosting, add more milk to make it thinner, or add more powdered sugar to thicken it up.
- Make it salted. While I usually use unsalted butter in this recipe, you can use salted butter too. It won’t make the frosting salty, it will just amplify some of the flavors, and reduce the sweetness a little bit.
Here are some tricks and tips for making the best sugar cookie frosting every time.
Softened butter. It’s important to use butter that is properly softened or it won’t mix with the other ingredients. If it’s too soft, it will start to separate, and the frosting will be runny. Use butter that’s soft enough to spread, but not so soft that it loses its shape.
Sift the powdered sugar. Confectioners’ sugar makes for silky frostings, but it can occasionally get clumps, which will ruin the texture. Sift the powdered sugar when adding it to the bowl, to ensure that the frosting is smooth.
Food coloring. When adding food coloring to this Sugar Cookie Frosting, it’s important to remember that once added, ingredients cannot be subtracted.
Start with a small amount of food coloring, mix up the frosting, and then add more if desired. I recommend gel food coloring as it is less likely to affect the texture than liquid food coloring.
Types of Frosting
In a nutshell, the different types of frosting include:
- Royal Icing is made using meringue powder and confectioners sugar. Adjust this icing so that it “floods” or holds a shape. It can be used to create pictures and intricate designs on the top of the cookies. It dries smooth and hard.
- Sugar Cookie Icing has a confectioners sugar base that is thinned out with liquid, usually milk. It is thinner than frosting and is often simply spread on the cookie using a butter knife. Adjust the thickness of the icing with more powdered sugar to be applied with piping tips.
- Cake Frosting uses a creamy base and then adds confectioners sugar to sweeten it up. It is thicker and can hold its shape when using a piping tip or spread on using a butter knife.
STORE leftover Best Sugar Cookie Frosting in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Let the frosting come up to room temperature before using it.
FREEZE the frosting in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw to room temperature before using, and blend with a hand mixer if the consistency isn’t quite right.
STORE a frosted cookie. Cool cookies and allow time for the frosting to set. Sugar Cookie Frosting doesn’t get hard like royal icing and can get smashed if not stored properly.
- Line the frosted cookies up on a baking sheet and then place them in the freezer.
- Once the frosting is solid stack the cookies, separating the layers with a piece of parchment paper, in a freezer-safe container.
- Freeze for 3-6 months.
- To thaw the cookies remove the layers and let them come to room temperature in a single layer.
FREEZE Sugar Cookie dough. Whip up a batch of frosting and a batch of Sugar Cookie Dough and keep them both in the freezer to be baked at a later date.
- Shape the dough into a log or disk.
- Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and then again with foil or place the wrapped cookie dough in a freezer Ziploc.
- Thaw in the fridge then roll and shape with cookie cutters before baking.
How to use Sugar Cookie Frosting
It probably goes without saying that I usually make this recipe to decorate Sugar Cookies. Here are some of my favorite recipes to top with this frosting.
- Lemon Sugar Cookies
- 3 Ingredient Sugar Cookies
- Sugar Cookie Bars
- No-roll Sugar Cookies
- The Best Sugar Cookies
More Mouth-Watering Frostings:
- Berry Buttercream Frosting
- Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting
- Creamy Peanut Butter Frosting
- Easy Marshmallow Frosting
- Cream Cheese Frosting
- Lemon Frosting
Sugar Cookie Frosting
- 1/3 cup butter softened
- 4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- food coloring
- Mix all the ingredients with a hand mixer. Add more milk until it’s the desired consistency. Add food coloring (optional).
- Spread on top of cookies with a knife or piping bag. Top it with delicious jimmy sprinkles, and enjoy!!
I have never made homemade frosting before. I just walked my 12 year old through the recipe to make a double batch. This recipe is incredibly easy to make and it’s delicious! The only adustments we made were due to my years experience of cooking and baking. My dad was a gourmet chef and baker for almost 30 years, my brother is a chef, and my grandmother was a baker and confectioner. I had my 12 year old sift each cup to cup and a half of powdered sugar and I had them add a little bit of salt to each batch of icing since we used unsalted butter. I am SOOOO impressed with this frosting and I will be using it again and again! Thank you so much for such an AMAZING frosting recipe!
This is my first time making frosting as well. I have 75 round cookies to frost. Will this recipe be enough, or should I double it?
It kind of depends on how thick you like your frosting and the size of your cookies. This recipe makes about 5 cups of frosting. If you used about a tablespoon per cookie, that would give you 75-80 cookies. So, if the cookies are large or you like lots of frosting, you may want to make a batch and a half or even double it.
Loved this recipe for cookie frosting. Turned out delicious.
So good. We won’t be able to add almond next time due to nut free school policy. Do you think this would taste just as yummy?
For sure!! You definitely don’t have to add it. Hope they are a hit!
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