There are a few times a year where I mix up some quick sugar cookie dough and let my kids go nuts with holiday themed cookie cutters. The mess that ensues in these moments is mind-boggling [I swept this morning for almost a half hour total]. But my kids and I have so much fun and they love decorating the cookies once they cool.
I've tried making my own cookie icing, using cake icing in a tub and various food coloring to get the desired various rainbow of colors needed. I've also put icing in bowls and given them spreaders or toothpicks or anything that would aid in cookie decorating and it always ended up being a gigantic mess and a bunch of smeared cookies...although, they were still delicious.:)
I've also let them use Pampered Chef icing dispensers and they always squeezed too hard and the icing explosion that immediately occurred was frustrating.
This time, I brainstormed and came up with a very budget friendly, kid-friendly, and virtually mess-free way to decorate cookies. Here's what you will need:
Wilton's cookie icing (a bottle or two) several zip-loc sandwich bags food coloring (I used Wilton's gel coloring knife scissors
First, I poured some of the cookie icing into each zip-loc bag. (it's faster to dispense if you take the lid off).
Next, I took a butter knife and scooped out a small amount of food coloring to deposit inside the bag.
Then, I pressed my fingers around the knife while it was still inside the bag to remove all of the food coloring. Love this, because I am not ending up with food-coloring stained hands and fingers.
Simply remove air from the bag and seal it. Use your fingers to "mix" the coloring into the icing.
When it's fully mixed, take the tiniest, and I mean tiny, of snips at the bottom corner of the bag with your scissors. The point is to keep the kids as mess free as possible too, so the tinier the hole, the better.
And, as you can see, it comes out in thin little lines. It's not runny or clumpy, so the kids can really be deliberate about their decorating.
In addition, I put their cookies in small plastic containers to contain the mess even more. It saved my tablecloth and my sanity. :)
Here are some pics of them enjoying the cookie decorating...
Oh, and Miss O just enjoyed the consumption of the cookies. Decorating wasn't her cup 'o tea.:)