Owl Sugar Cookies {Vanilla-Almond}

My sister, Stacy, had her baby last week! Yay!

We are super excited!!!!

My sister, Sara, and I are in competition about who will be the favorite aunt. I kinda feel bad for Sara, ’cause clearly I will be the favorite aunt! :P

For the baby shower we did an owl theme.

We had a blast at the shower! You can check it out here.

Instead of cake, I made owl cookies.

I think they turned out kinda cute! :D

The recipe for the cookie came from Bake at 350. This is a great cookie decorating website, and this sugar cookie recipe is the bomb! For sure!!!

Run, don’t walk, to your nearest oven and bake up some of these splendid goodies!!! Your mouth will thank you!

Vanilla-Almond Sugar Cookies

3 c unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 c sugar (I use sugar that I’ve stored vanilla beans in)
2 sticks (salted) butter, cold & cut into chunks
1 egg
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp pure almond extract

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine the flour and baking powder, set aside. Cream the sugar and butter. Add the egg and extracts and mix. Gradually add the flour mixture and beat just until combined, scraping down the bowl, especially the bottom.

The dough will be kind of crumbly, so knead it together with your hands as you scoop it out of the bowl for rolling.

Roll onto a floured surface and cut into shapes. Place on parchment lined baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes. Let sit a few minutes on the sheet, then transfer to a cooling rack.

To print this recipe click Vanilla Almond Sugar Cookies.

To make owl shaped cookies, I used my handy-dandy mason jar ring to cut circles out of my dough.

I then used the ring to cut the owl’s ears, like so…

I used the little piece from the ears to cut in half and make wings…

And then, pressed them to the body of the owl…

Okay, stay with me here, this is kind of confusing…

1. To frost the owls I used a technique that I found on Pinterest. It came from The Bearfoot Baker.

2. I used the royal icing recipe from Bake at 350. It really is yummy, I mean as far as royal icing goes.  But,…

3. I did not use the royal icing for the body of the owls, I only used it for the eyes, (The recipe for the icing I used for the body of the owls is below.)

Okay, so let me re-cap…

The technique came from The Bearfoot Baker.

The royal icing recipe came from Bake at 350. Got it? :)

Royal Icing

(used for the owl’s eyes)

(This will cover 2-3 dozen 3.5 inch cookies in 2 colors; I usually double this recipe.)

4 TBSP meringue powder
scant 1/2 c. water
1 lb. powdered sugar
1/2 – 1 tsp light corn syrup (optional)
few drops clear extract (optional)

Combine the meringue powder and water. With the paddle attachment of an electric mixer (do not use the whisk attachment), beat until combined and foamy.

Add in the corn syrup and extract if desired. ( I did not use the corn syrup, but it is supposed to help keep the icing shiny.)

Increase speed to med-high/high and beat for about 5 minutes, just until the icing is glossy and stiff peaks form. It will look like stiff meringue. (You should be able to remove the beater from the mixer and hold up and jiggle without the peak falling.) Do not over beat.

To print this recipe click Royal Icing.

So for the eyes I followed the technique from The Bearfoot Baker.

I traced two different sized circles on paper. I used my food coloring gel container and a piping tip coupler. I’m so crafty that way! :D

I placed this white paper under wax paper. The white paper could be moved along as I went so I didn’t have to trace every single circle.

*The eyes need to be done a couple of days in advance of frosting the cookie, so make sure to have plenty of drying time.*

First, I started with the black part of the eye.

*Important!* You will need the black part to be dry (about a day or so) before you can do the white.

I mixed up the royal icing recipe as above and then added water (a teaspoon at a time) to thin it out enough so that when I ran my knife through the icing the line disappeared in 14 seconds.

Check out The Bearfoot Baker. She gives a great tutorial on 14 second icing.

I piped the icing onto the wax paper, using the traced circles underneath as my guide. While the black eyes were still wet, I added a dot of white to give them some character.

After the black part of the eyes were dry, I then, started working on the white.

I repeated the process, same as the black part. This time, after I piped on the white, I plopped the black eye into the center of the wet white icing.

I allowed the eyes to dry for about 1 day, and then added them to the cookies as I frosted them.

I like butter cream, and so, for the body of the owls, I used my friend Amberly’s To-Die-For Butter Cream Frosting. (That’s really what it’s called… Okay, that’s what I call it anyways.)

To-Die-For Butter Cream Icing

(used for owl’s bodies)

2 cups Crisco (plain white)
1 tsp salt
4 tsp vanilla (clear)
¾ tsp butter flavoring
½ tsp almond extract
½ cup water
2 lbs powdered sugar

Mix first 5 ingredients together until well blended. Mix in water and sugar, 1 cup at a time. Beat on high until thoroughly combined. Use as desired.

To print this recipe click To Die For Butter Cream Icing.

(Please ignore the black dandruff on this guy. I think his eyes were shedding.)

To form “feathers” on the owl, I dotted on the icing…

And, then, used a knife to pull through the icing, like so…

I continued this until I had filled in the body with “feathers”.

After the owl bodies were iced, I added the eyes.

For the beak, I used a dot orange of icing.

I used 3 dots of orange icing for each foot, and I was done!

I let the cookies sit out overnight to give the icing time to set up. (Don’t worry about the cookies getting stale, because the icing seals in all the yummy goodness!)

So cute! :D

I loved how they turned out, and I think my sister, Stacy, even liked them too!

And that’s really all that matters, right? :D

Hope you have a splendid week! Thanks for stopping by! :D

Linked to these parties.


Owl Sugar Cookies {Vanilla-Almond} — 52 Comments

  1. Those cookies are adorable! Bet they’re yummy, too. They look pretty intimidating to me. How long did each one take, rolling out to finished decorating? I used to bake when I was young (oh so long ago), I couldn’t understand others’ problems with a cookie press gun, ya know? Quick & easy. My arthritis and fibromyalgia keep me from those endeavors now, I can’t be on my feet long and haven’t found a way to do it seated. Your sister is a lucky lady. Congrats to her, and to you!

    • Thanks Janet! From start to finish these cookies took several hours (stretched over a few days), but it was all fun work! Thanks for your kind words, and for stopping by! :o)

  2. You will definitely be the favorite aunt! My weekly linky party–One Creative Weekend–has gone spooky this week in honor of my thirteenth party. If you haven’t already, I hope you’ll visit “One Creative Weekend” on OneCreativeMommy.com (open every Fri-Wed) and link up this idea and anything else you’d like to share. (You can include non-Halloween posts as well, but feel free to link up as many Halloween-themed posts as you like.)

  3. Well… you’de certainly be the Favorite Aunt around here! *Winks* These are Delightful… and the Own Theme would be great for Halloween or Thanksgiving! Thanks for sharing a Tutorial… not that mine would turn out this Fabulous… but I can always Dream and eat my Mistakes, right? *Smiles*

    Blessings from the Arizona Desert… Dawn… The Bohemian

  4. Stephanie, these are so cute! Thanks so much for sharing them at Project Queen’s Link Party. I will be highlighting them tomorrow night (Monday) at the Highlight Party. You will HAVE to end up being the favorite Aunt after making these fabulous cookies!!!!

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  6. Keep making cookies like that and you’re a shoo in for favourite aunt. My sister makes cakes and cookies, my kids don’t even bother asking me, they put their request in straight to her:)

  7. Sooo, I am planning an owl-themed first birthday for my son. I think I can do these based on your step-by-step instructions and recipes!! (Thank your for that!) BUT, I am sure I would need to attack them a few days in advance. How long will they keep?

    • As long as you keep the cookies stored in an air tight container when you are not icing them they will keep fine. Make the eyes first before you even make the cookies because they will need to air dry for a couple of days. Hope this helps! Have fun at the party. Would love to see pictures! :D

  8. Thanks for getting back to me so quickly…and I will do my best to get you some pics :) Warning: I am planning ahead (obsessing maybe) and the party isn’t until May! I do have another quick question for you. What is the approximate yield for the cookie recipe? Thanks again, I am really excited to try these!!!

    • Kristina,
      It depends on what size cookie cutter you are using. I got about 20 large cookies out of this batch. (I doubled the recipe for my sister’s shower.) Have fun! :D

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