Saturday, February 27, 2010

Cupcake Sugar Cookie Pops

A while back, I saw these beauties featured on one of my favorite food blogs, Our Best Bites, and knew that I had to try it! This blog always has such great tutorials on how-to's. They make the most complicated things seem easy! Even this sugar cookie business.

I haven't had a whole lot of experience with decorating sugar cookies. I've never gone all out and covered the entire cookie with beautiful designs, as I have seen others do fantastically! I've only done the draw-a-few-white-lines-on-snowflake-cookies thing. It's...a daunting thing to take on, you know? But after reading meticulously through Our Best Bites' tutorials, I felt like I was ready!

(Since they do such a great and thorough job on guiding you through the process, and since I'm such a novice at this whole sugar cookie decorating thing, I'm going to be brief in this entry. I will only discuss the areas that I personally had problems with. For more info, please reference their awesome site for detailed tutorials- see links below. They explain it better than I ever could!)

(1) The Sugar Cookie Dough

Their sugar cookie recipe was super easy to follow and make. It came together really well, and quite quickly! On their site, they say to refrigerate it after the dough comes together for about 1-2 hours.

However, as a time saving tip, they suggested rolling out the dough right away and sticking it in the freezer. I found that this was the best way to go. I tried it both ways and found that freezing it was more effective than refrigerating it because:

(1) Freezing it only takes about 5 minutes before the dough is good to go- SO much less time!
(2) Freezing it automatically gives you the right consistency, so that the dough lifts up easily after you cut into it.
(3) With the refrigeration method, I found it harder to control the consistency of the dough, making it harder to cut out the cookies. Sometimes, if I left it in for too long, the lump of dough would be too cold to even roll out. Then, if I left it out to warm a bit, it might get too soft, then I'd end up freezing it anyway, after I rolled it out.

Basically, forget the refrigeration step. Go straight to rolling it out and freezing it for 5 minutes. As for the excess dough, it will be too hard to roll back into a ball at first, so leave it aside and work on a different piece. It will thaw out quickly. Or you can play around with it a bit by rolling it with your hands. This will speed up the process.

(2) Making the Sugar Cookie Pops

One of the reasons why I put off making these was because I didn't have the right cutters. I wanted something cool and kept my eye out for it whenever I was at kitchenware stores (which is quite often). Imagine my excitement when I saw these cupcake cutters at Crate and Barrel! I couldn't believe it! Perfect for my blog, wouldn't you say?! They came in two sizes, too! Yup, there were two cutters in each pack!

I only used the smaller cookie cutter because the larger one would've been too heavy for the lollipop sticks.

I bought some 6 inch long lollipop sticks from Michael's, which ended up being the perfect length.

You see how the cookie dough doesn't sit flatly on the lollipop stick? I was worried about that. I wanted my cookie to bake flat, but it looked like that wasn't going to happen. I think I didn't roll out my dough to be thick enough.

Here's what they looked like when they came out of the oven. They expanded a bit, but not too much. Not enough to become flat and completely cover the lollipop stick. I started to panic and thought about baking another batch. But then I thought: hey, maybe I can cover it up with frosting! So I pushed on.

The cookies held up pretty well! Here's a front and back view. They weren't falling off the stick, as I was half expecting.

(3) Frosting and Decorating

Their icing recipe consists of a few simple ingredients: light corn syrup, powdered sugar, milk, and extract.

The directions were really easy to follow and pretty soon I achieved the right consistency.

I used simple icing bags and snipped off the tips ever so slightly. Yess! Ready to decorate!

It was easier than I expected! Although, I did use really simple decorating techniques. =) I basically just colored them in and stuck on some M&Ms.

Leave the cookies sitting out for about 24 hours, so that the frosting can dry and set.

(4) Cute Packaging!

I found some clear treat bags, a spool of cute ribbon, and an amazing cupcake stamp from Impress.

The stamp is a two-in-one! On one side of it, there's the cupcake image, and on the smaller end, you can use it to stamp the words "hey cupcake." How cute is that?!

I also made a few non-pop cookies. These packaged up nicely! I used the "Hey Cupcake" stamp to seal the back of each package. It worked out pretty well with some double sided tape.

The pops turned out even better! I love how the ribbon matches the cupcake frosting! And see how you can barely notice the "wrinkles" in the cookie, now that they frosting has set and dried? Awesome!

For the pops, I attached the "Hey Cupcake" tags to the end of each ribbon. It turned out to be super cute too!

I'm really glad I finally got a chance to do this cookie project! It took a long time, from beginning to end, but it was really fun and acted as a great artistic outlet. Wouldn't these be perfect for a birthday party or shower?

Give these a try! If a novice like me can do it, anyone can! Just be sure to read through Our Best Bites' great tutorials first! =)

Click HERE for Our Best Bites' Sugar Cookie Decorating Tutorial
Click HERE for Our Best Bites' Sugar Cookie Pops Tutorial
Click HERE for Our Best Bites' Basic Sugar Cookie Recipe

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  1. They are so pretty Judy....job well done. I have used this recipe before as well. Made some for my daughter's bday, great dough and easy to work with. Once again love yr work. Good on ya mate!

  2. They are amazing! I didn't realise that you could do royal icing without eggs. I am going to try this as well! I have a pineapple shaped cutter that is begging me to make cookies with it.

  3. Judy... you seriously need to open some sort of bakery! :) These are the most creative and fun cookies, honestly! Who would have thought to use the lollipop sticks! I agree, the freezer IS your best friend.. so much faster than mr. fridge. The icing techniques are exquisite... that's something that I just don't have the patience for... I'm onto the next recipe after the cookies are baked! :) Beautiful!

  4. That's really cool! So so pretty that I even want one too.

  5. Ohhhh boy!! I have a shamrock cookie cutter that is dying to be transformed into a cookie pop! Again, your step-by-step everything rocks! It makes every recipe seem possible.

  6. OK - I have to make these now. One of my new year resolutions is to make cute decorated cookies. You made it look easy, so I am going to try it! I hope they turn out half as cute as yours.

  7. Use the paddle attachment to you mixer instead of the wisk. It is easier to get the dough off - Let the dough rest for at least two hours and up to three days. The cookies will be more tender - freezing them doesn't allow them to rest. Take dough out of fridge and roll the dough between two sheets of saran wrap and then put it back n the fridge on a cookie sheet.

    Get Toba Garrett's book on Creative Cookies - it is the best out there - it is her icing recipe that you are using!!

    You have the knack for sure!

  8. This is the first time I go through your blog and I'm sure it won't be the last. It's wonderful. (Y)

    My friend and I kind of started to develop some baking passion and we're posting our humbled experiences on a blog recently. We get inspired from excellent other blogs such as yours.

    Could you kindly share with us the specific measurements for the icing recipe? I was relieved to know there's a recipe for it that didn't contain row eggs.

    Thanks :)


  9. all the recipes can be found by clicking on the links i provided at the end of the post.

  10. Great job! Thanks for the step by step instructions!

  11. Hi Judy,

    I tried the sugar cookie recipe, but my dough kept feeling so soft despite me rolling them out and chilling it for more than an hour. I had to dust my work area with quite a bit of flour to prevent the cut-out shapes from tearing from the transferring process.. i have no idea why. and my lollipop sticks couldn't stick well to the baked cookie too. help! :(

  12. hi vivien, it seems like the dough consistency was off- if the dough had the right mixture of wet to dry, then it shouldn't be too soft. that's happened to me before- when i initially didn't measure out the flour to be exactly right. and the not sticking to the stick part is probably due to this as well. if the dough was the correct consistency, then it would rise to expand over the stick partially. you shouldn't have to dust your work area with too much flour. it can also throw off the consistency. i would suggest rolling on some parchment paper or wax paper. it's a non-stick surface that would not require you to dust with too much flour, if any at all. and just be REALLY careful with the measurements. hope that helps!


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