Santa's Reindeer Sugar Cookies

These sugar cookies are works of art. Decked out in holiday attire, each reindeer cookie sports a different easy and beautiful decorating technique. Our recipes and step-by-step instructions make it easy to transform basic sugar cookies into nine simple yet elegant reindeer cookies ready for their Christmas showcase.

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  • 1 of 20

    Dancer: Pinstripes

    Dancer earns his stripes with plain and chocolate sugar cookie dough. The technique is suprisingly easy and the results impressive. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 2 of 20

    Dancer How-To

    Pinstripes

    1. Make the plain and chocolate sugar cookie dough. Roll out the plain dough as directed. Roll bits of chocolate dough into long, skinny ropes. Arrange the ropes parallel to each other on rolled plain dough.
    2. Gently roll over ropes to flatten them into the plain dough.
    3. Cut out cookies perpendicular to the chocolate lines to give reindeer a vertical-stripe look. Bake as directed. Pipe Royal Icing around edges of cooled cookies and dust with sanding sugar.
  • 3 of 20

    Cupid: Progressive Piping

    Cupid shows off a look you'll love with piped frosting in rows that gradually change shades. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 4 of 20

    Cupid How-To

    Progressive Piping

    1. Spoon 1/2 cup Royal Icing into each of five bowls. Tint frosting in one bowl the desired strongest color. Scoop out a large spoonful and stir it into the next bowl. Continue scooping from previous bowl into each next bowl until all frosting is tinted in gradually lighter tones. Spoon each frosting tone into a different disposable pastry bag.
    2. Start with the darkest frosting and pipe two or three rows of dots along the bottom of a reindeer cookie. Use the next-darkest tone to pipe two or three more rows of dots.
    3. Continue piping rows of dots, using gradually lighter frosting tones as you work toward the top of the cookie.
  • 5 of 20

    Blitzen: Fondant

    Blitzen is lightning-fast, and so is this decorating technique. A smooth coat of Royal Icing and purchased fondant combine to create a striking look. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 6 of 20

    Blitzen How-To

    Fondant

    1. Frost tops of cookies with slightly thinned white Royal Icing. (See Dasher How-To for details.) Let dry. Roll out purchased fondant in desired colors to 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. Use tiny cutters and a pastry wheel to cut out shapes.
    2. Brush a small amount of water on back side of each fondant shape.
    3. Lay fondant, brushed side down, on iced cookie. Press fondant lightly so it adheres to cookie; trim fondant if necessary.

     

  • 7 of 20

    Dasher: Gold & Silver Gilding

    Dasher is bathed in Royal Icing and luster dust for an elegant, multidimensional effect. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

     

  • 8 of 20

    Dasher How-To

    Gold and Silver Gilding

    1. Place slightly thinned Royal Icing in a bottle or pastry bag fitted with a small round tip; pipe an outline around cookie edges to make a dam to hold icing. Flood the inside of the outline with more icing.
    2. Use a toothpick to spread icing inside piped outline for a smooth base coat; let dry. Pipe designs on top of base coat; let dry.
    3. Combine 1/2 teaspoon luster dust with 2 teaspoons vodka.* Use a new small artist's brush to apply mixture to raised designs.

     

    *Note: Vodka is used because it evaporates and dries quickly.

  • 9 of 20

    Prancer: Marbling

    Prancer steps out with a playful yet sophisticated swirl. This classic wet-on-wet marbling effect is simple to achieve with Royal Icing. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 10 of 20

    Prancer How-To

    Marbling

    1. Outline cookie edges with white Royal Icing, and fill inside the outline with more icing. (See Dasher How-To for details.)
    2. Use a toothpick to spread icing inside the outline.
    3. While the base coat of icing is still wet, use a spoon to drizzle tinted icing over cookie.
    4. Drag a toothpick through the icings to swirl them together; let dry. Pipe tinted icing around cookie edges for a border.
  • 11 of 20

    Vixen: Painting

    Vixen's delicate painted designs give her a sweet folk-art look. Hardened Royal Icing is an ideal canvas for bold gel food coloring that's diluted for easy application. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 12 of 20

    Vixen How-To

    Painting

    1. Outline cookie edges with white Royal Icing, and fill inside outline with more icing. (See Dasher How-To for details.)
    2. Use a toothpick to spread icing inside the outline; let dry. Pipe a Royal Icing border on the dried base coat; while border is still wet, sprinkle it with sanding sugar.
    3. Place small amounts of gel food coloring on a plate; dilute each color with a few drops of water. Paint designs on dry icing using new tiny, fine-tip artist's brushes for the greatest detail.
  • 13 of 20

    Comet: Micro Glitter

    Comet is decked out with just the right flash. A shake of extra-fine edible glitter on piped embellishments keeps him light on his feet. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 14 of 20

    Comet How-To

    Micro Glitter

    1. Spoon Royal Icing into a disposable pastry bag; snip a tiny bit off the bag tip.
    2. Frost top of cookie with slightly thinned white Royal Icing. (See Dasher How-To for details.) Let dry.
    3. Place cookie on waxed paper. Using a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip, pipe designs on cookie; sprinkle piped designs heavily with edible glitter.
    4. Shake excess glitter onto waxed paper; let icing dry. Save excess glitter. Pipe on additional plain designs as desired.
  • 15 of 20

    Donder: Patchwork

    Donder sports a bold, multidimensional patchwork of colors and tastes. Four sugar cookie dough variations give him his holiday flair. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 16 of 20

    Donder How-To

    Patchwork

    1. Make four variations of sugar cookie dough: plain, red-tinted, chocolate, and peppermint. Roll out each dough variation. Using a fluted pastry wheel, cut dough crosswise into strips, then cut strips into irregular shapes, rectangles, and diamonds.
    2. Group and overlap different-hue dough pieces, alternating colors.
    3. When grouping is slightly larger than the cookie cutter, cut out the reindeer shape; transfer cutout to cookie sheet and sprinkle with sugar. Bake as directed in recipe. Reroll scraps for a marbled effect; cut out and bake as directed.

     

    Note: Tint one portion of plain sugar cookie dough with red paste food coloring to get the desired red dough.

    Get the recipes.

  • 17 of 20

    Rudolph: Texture Icing

    Rudolph's shiny nose isn't the only bright spot on this cookie. The easy decorating technique might be one reason Santa's go-to reindeer will become your favorite, too. See the next slide for decorating instructions.

  • 18 of 20

    Rudolph How-To

    Texture Icing

    1. Frost tops of cookies with a thin layer of white Royal Icing. (See Dasher How-To for details.) Let dry. Use a new wide artist's paintbrush to apply thicker icing to the dried base layer on cookie. Lift brush off cookie so icing is raised.
    2. Add a small red candy for a nose, and sprinkle the wet icing with sanding sugar or edible glitter.
  • 19 of 20

    Santa's Reindeer Team

    Decorated with holiday flair, Santa's reindeer are ready for their Christmas Eve journey. Follow our easy instructions to decorate each reindeer cookie.

    All the recipes you need to make the sugar cookies, including five delicious flavor variations, are available below. Plus, get free instructions to decorate Santa's sleigh, too.

     

    Get Santa's sleigh instructions and Sugar Cookie Cutouts recipes.

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    Begin Slideshow »
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