A tried-and-tested recipe for perfectly rolled sugar cookies, every time. Celebrate Easter long weekend with this adorable dose of sweetness, hinted with almond and vanilla.
Mini Eggs AND a day off? AND free reign on egg puns? As if you needed more reason to love Easter.
While I’ve never painted an egg — wasting food for the sake of arts and crafts is something I think my grandma would slap me for — nor have I ever hunted for chocolate, the idea of Easter is still very much mysterious and exciting to me. Why bunnies? What happens if I don’t have a good Good Friday? And what does it all have to do with Jesus’s resurrection? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Be sure to Google these questions and more when you’re snacking on these cute bunny cookies. They’re deliciously crumbly, with tastes of butter and almond that melt in your mouth. Bookmark this versatile recipe too, so you can cut out any animal shape per your religious holiday calendar.
In the making
✘ Cookie decorating is tedious work. Make sure no one’s around when you’re swearing over a bump in your otherwise smooth spread of royal icing.
✘ Don’t throw away your icing bags, no matter how tired and lazy you are after this whole process. Instead, cut down on plastic waste and invest in reusable pastry bags, which you can use for icing, but also choux paste, whipped cream, dough …
✔ Corn flour! I’ve made rolled sugar cookies before, and each time they came out slightly misshapen with rounded edges. The secret to keeping that cookie cutter shape and preventing them from spreading in the oven is corn flour.
✔ Why do people still use regular rolling pins?! Welcome to the future – it’s time to get an adjustable rolling pin so you’ll never have to hunch over, looking at rolled dough at eye level. The rings on either side help make sure the dough is rolled evenly throughout.
✔ I also rolled my dough on a silicone pastry mat, which helped lift the cut cookies onto the tray without messing with their shape. Just flip over the mat and let the shape fall off, rather than using your fingers to lift the edges.
✔ Some bunnies have bigger cheeks than others. Others have uneven eyes and pointy noses. Keep in mind they’re all bound to be different and it’s all part of being handmade.
Easter Bunny sugar cookies
A versatile rolled sugar cookie that's crumbly and tender, with hints of almond and vanilla. Save this recipe to make any shape and colour you want.
- 4 cups all-purpose flour (480 grams)
- ¾ tsp salt (3 grams)
- ½ cup cornstarch (60 grams)
- 2 sticks butter 220g, room temp
- 1 cup sugar (200 grams)
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (5 mL)
- 4 tablespoons meringue powder (31 grams)
- 4 cups powdered sugar (454 grams)
- 6 tablespoons warm water (30 grams)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract (5 grams)
- ½ tsp almond extract (5 grams)
- Gel food coloring
- Sift flour, salt, cornstarch into a medium bowl, and give it a whisk.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy.
- Scrape down the bowl before adding eggs. Mix thoroughly.
- Add dry ingredients to the wet and mix on low.
Drizzle in vanilla. The dough should start coming together, with the consistency of Play-Doh.
- Roll dough into a disc and place in plastic wrap. Chill in the fridge for about 1 hour.
- To bake, preheat oven to 375°F.
- Roll dough to ½ – ¼ inches thick, depending on how you like them!
- Cut out cookies with your desired cookie cutters, and place on parchment paper.
- Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.
- Let the cookies cool before decorating.
The royal icing
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the whisk attachment, mix the meringue powder and powdered sugar.
- Slowly mix in the water and vanilla while the mixer is running on medium-low speed.
- Increase speed to medium and beat until stiff peaks form, around 7-10 minutes.
- Divide the thick icing into two bowls to separate the colours – reserving ¾ white and ¼ pink
- Add a thimble of white and pink food colouring at a time, mixing until you get the right shades. This is your piping consistency for the white border and pink details.
- To thin additional white icing to flood consistency, add 1/2 teaspoon of water increments until it looks thinner, smoothing out in the bowl when dripped.
- Once your icing is colored and the right consistency, scoop it into a piping bag fitted with a size 2 or 3 tip.
Assembly and decoration
- Outline the border with white icing, then letting it dry.
- Continue to fill the middle with white flood icing. Use a toothpick or small offset spatula to fill in all the gaps and tap the cookie on the counter a few times to help it settle into a smooth, even layer.
- If you have black sprinkles, drop those in as eyes.
- Once the white has hardened, pipe two white circles for cheeks. I did all the left cheeks first, then all the right cheeks so that they look like two separate circles.
- Using the pink icing, pipe two ears and a nose.
- Let cookies dry at room temperature for 2-3 hours.
- With a food writer, draw two eyes and a few whisker dots on the cheeks.