Soft Vanilla Sugar Cookies with Strawberry Icing

Heart shaped sugar cookies with pink strawberry icing

Flowers?  Chocolates?  Giant stuffed teddy bears?  Try something new this Valentine’s Day and get creative in the kitchen with these Soft Vanilla Sugar Cookies with Strawberry Icing.  The cookies are sweet and simple, with the smooth taste of vanilla, and the icing is homemade with fresh strawberries to give it that gorgeous pink shade.  Delectable and so very pretty, these cookies are the perfect way to say “I love you” this Valentine’s Day.

This week’s dish: Soft Vanilla Sugar Cookies with Strawberry Icing

Why we like it:

Make this Valentine’s a family affair by getting the kids involved with baking and decorating.  You can use an assortment of Valentine’s themed candies like cinnamon hearts, conversation hearts, and red and pink sprinkles and release your inner artist by decorating these cookies as simply or as wildly as you like.

For the cookies:

2 ¼ cups flour

¼ tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

½ cup butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 eggs, beaten

1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract

1 tbsp milk

heart shaped cookie cutter

For the icing:

½ cup fresh strawberries, chopped

¼ tsp lemon zest

2 cups powdered sugar

1 tbsp unsalted butter, softened

¾ tsp corn syrup

¼ tsp vanilla extract

water, if needed

To make the cookie dough, first mix together the dry ingredients in one bowl.  Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder, and mix them well.

Mixing together the flour, salt, and baking soda with a fork

In another bowl, combine the butter and the sugar.

Combining butter and sugar

Cream together until they are mixed into each other.

Creaming the butter

Add the eggs and vanilla, and stir well.

Adding eggs and vanilla to the butter

Now you’re going to add your dry ingredients to your wet bit by bit so it’s easier to stir together.  Alternate mixing in some of the dry ingredients and the milk, although you’ll likely mix in all the milk before the dry mix.

Folding the wet ingredients into the dry

Mix well until all ingredients are full incorporated together and it is the consistency of cookie dough, then wrap the dough in cling film and chill in the refrigerator while you make the icing.  You can chill the dough for several hours if you like, but if you don’t have time, it will still work fine with a shorter chill time.

Mixing together the cookie dough

Now you can make your icing!  First, wash and chop your fresh strawberries, and zest your lemon.

Washing strawberries and zesting the lemon

Combine the strawberries, lemon zest, and 1/8 cup powdered sugar in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth.

Pouring sugar over the fruit

Strain the strawberry puree through a fine strainer to remove the seeds.  It works best if you use a spoon to push the liquid through.

Draining the strawberry puree

Add the butter, corn syrup, and vanilla extract and stir well.

Adding syrup and vanilla to the puree

Add the remaining powdered sugar and whisk together until smooth (you can also use a food processor).

Whisking sugar into the icing

If the icing seems a little too thick, add some water and mix until the consistency is to your liking.

Icing with a smooth consistency

Now that the icing is done, it’s time to cut some cookies!  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Sprinkle some flour on the surface you’ll be using to roll the dough out.

Sprinkling flour over the surface

Take the dough from the refrigerator and remove from the cling film.  You may wish to roll half at a time so there’s less dough to work with.  Lightly dust the top of the dough with flour and use a rolling pin to roll it out so it’s about ¼ inch thick.

Rolling out the cookie dough

Using your heart shaped cookie cutters, cut the dough into heart shaped cookies and transfer them to a lightly greased baking sheet.

Using cookie cutters to form cookies

Bake for 8-10 minutes, remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for about a minute before using a lifter to transfer them to a cooling rack or a sheet of wax paper.

Cookie dough resting on baking sheet

If you want to make some with just sprinkles, put those on before baking, otherwise you can sprinkle them on top of the iced cookies.

Adding sprinkles to the cookies

Let the cookies cool completely before icing them.  Simply use a small spoon to spread the icing around, either thinly glazing or spreading it thicker.

Pouring icing onto the cookies

Add sprinkles, cinnamon hearts, or any other Valentine’s candies you wish.  You can even make double decker cookies or mini heart cookies with a smaller cookie cutter.  Just make sure to bake them for a little less time!

Decorating individual cookies with candies

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Beautiful heart shaped cookies perfect for Valentines!

 

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