Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Valentines Day Cookie Decorating Party

With a simple sugar cookie recipe, a variety of frosting, and colorful sprinkles, you can host an affordable and stylish Valentine Cookie Decorating Party!!! #sponsored 
Valentines Day is in a few short weeks. Do you usually plan something for this sweet holiday? Now that my kids are older we don't do anything over the top, but I still love to celebrate. Most times I prepare a Valentine themed dinner and dessert and everyone has always been happy with that. 

When my kids were younger it was all about exchanging cards, school parties, teachers gifts and so many sweet treats. I have to say things are a lot easier now, but if you have younger children, I have a great inexpensive idea on how to celebrate Valentines Day with kids - a cookie decorating party! 

Your kids and their friends will be able to frost and decorate cookies and take home some yummy treats. To keep my pocketbook in check, I designed a Valentine cookie decorating station with simple, stylish decorations and supplies that I picked up at my local Walmart

First, gather your items: You will need baked sugar cookies, cookie frosting, sprinkles, decorator candy, tablecloth, paper plates, napkins or paper towels, a Valentine table topper , decorations, plastic icing bottles, utensils to spread the frosting (plastic knives), and carry home bags or boxes. 

All of these items are very inexpensive, especially if you make your own cookie dough. Another great idea is to mix and match solid color party items (tablecloth, napkins and utensils) along with Valentine themed plates and decor to complete the look.

Getting started: Prepare and bake the cut out sugar cookies a day or two before the party. Store the cookies in an airtight container, so the cookies will be ready for decorating. 

If you're in a pinch and don't have time to bake cookies you can pick up a Valentine Cookie Kit at Walmart in the bakery department. Each cookie kit is priced at $6 and consists of 12 baked heart shaped sugar cookies with icing and sprinkles.  

Party Day: Create a simple cookie decorating area. For easy clean up, make sure to cover your table or decorating station with butcher paper or a tablecloth. I used a .99 plastic Valentine tablecloth, since it's going to be covered with frosting and sprinkles galore in the end. 

I added a .99 Valentine Day table topper and placed it in the middle of the cookie station and arranged the plates on the table. The plates will be used for the children to decorate their cookies. Set out the baked cookies, arrange the frosting (store bought or homemade). 

I used one container of store bought frosting, and prepared a homemade cookie frosting as well (recipe below). Arrange the sprinkles and add the candy m&m's and conversation hearts into small bowls so they're easy to grab.    

Prepare the homemade cookie frosting and pour it into each decorating bottle. I love to use the Mini Wilton Squeeze Bottles to decorate cookies. They're ideal for little hands and so convenient to decorate cookies. 

Each bottle is clear so the kids can see exactly what color the icing is in each bottle. I picked up three bottles for .75 each. Wilton also makes larger bottles found in the cake decorating section that come two to a package.  

Using the decorating squeeze bottle makes icing cookies a snap. You can also make simple designs or use them to add the icing onto the cookie before spreading. It's so much easier to control the flow of the cookie icing with the Wilton bottles versus using a piping bag, and less messy. 

Even thought my kids are older they still decorated cookies with me. We had such a good time and it was fun to see all the designs and creations my daughter and son came up with. 

Once the cookie are frosted, set them aside to give the icing some time to dry before packaging.  

Packaging the cookies: For storage and take home options I went with holiday zip lock bags priced at $1.47 (20 bags) and a few small decorator treat boxes. Make sure to label the bags and boxes with each child's name. 

Once the cookies are dry let the kids package up their decorated cookies to take home.  

I hope this idea will inspire you to host a Valentine Cookie Decorating Party of your own. 

Thick & Soft Sugar Cookie Hearts

1/3 - cup butter, softened
1/3 - cup shortening
1 - cup granulated sugar
1 - teaspoon vanilla extract
1 - beaten egg
2 - cups all purpose flour
1 - teaspoon baking powder
dash salt
colored icing, recipes below
valentines day sprinkles

In a medium size bowl,  beat shortening and butter together with an electric mixer. Add sugar, vanilla extract and beaten egg. Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together then add to the creamed mixture. Mix together scraping the sides of the bowl.

I used my kitchen aid mixer to mix everything until it came away from the sides of the bowl and started to form into a ball. Place dough inside a large zip lock bag and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Remove dough and let sit on the counter at least 30 minutes. Roll dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Cut with heart shaped cookie cutter and place on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with baking spray.

Bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes or until edges are firm and start to get golden brown. The bottom of the cookies should be light brown. Let cool on baking sheet 5 minutes, remove and place on a baking rack to cool completely. Frost with colored icing and decorate with sprinkles. 

recipe yields: 15 -18 cookies depending on size

Colored Cookie Icing:
2 - cups confectioner’s sugar (powdered sugar)
2 - tablespoon softened butter or margarine
4  - tablespoons milk
1 - tsp vanilla extract
pink, red or rose icing paste 

I used one bowl to mix the icing. Add all ingredients except the icing paste together with using a whisk. If the mixture is too dry, add a little more milk. 

Separate the icing into 2 bowls and add pink icing paste in one bowl, and red in the second bowl. Mix to combine. 

I used a funnel to add the icing into the Wilton decorator bottle. You want a pourable consistency to the cookie icing. 

Save or Pin This For Later 


Colleen said... #

Lovely decorated cookies.
I think having a good, soft sugar cookie is my favorite. Trouble some people have is, they bake them too long and they turn out hard and dry.
I will take a soft cookie any day.
Thanks for sharing your recipe.

Cold front moving in so stay warm

Tina Butler said... #

Thanks Coleen and you're right over baking the cookies does make them dry and crumbly. I bake mine just until slightly golden brown around the edges. A good decorator sugar cookie must be slightly firm yet chewy. It's 38 degrees in North Texas this morning, so the cold front is definitely here!!! Stay warm on your end :)

judy said... #

You are really full of energy and creativity. I haven't ever had much luck with
Cut out sugar cookies by these look l the kind I would eat a plate of๐Ÿ˜Š your small
Squeeze bottle idea for frosting gives everyone a chance to frost and eat the perfect
Valentine treat! Thanks for the recipe and sharing all those decorating tips!

stevenjared0853 said... #

The idea of Valentine’s Day Cookie Decorating Party looks great. Thanks dear for this wonderful share. The pictures are brilliant. This year we didn’t host party at home, Instead of that we attended an annual Valentine’s Day special event at popular Chicago venues. Truly, it was a fantastic experience for us.

Unknown said... #

Hi, thanks for all the tips! Does the store bought frosting work in the Wilton bottles?

Tina Butler said... #

I use the homemade cookie icing inside the bottles. The canned frosting won't flow as easily.

Unknown said... #

If I make the icing a day ahead will I need to refrigerate it? What's the best way to get it back to a squeezable consistency if I do?

Tina Butler said... #

This icing recipe is not recommended to make ahead of time. It will stiffen up and harden. Once the cookies are frosted the icing dries and hardens up some.