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  • Writer's pictureCatherine Murton

Watercolor Lover Cookies

Updated: Feb 9

Valentine's Day is such a fun holiday for me. It's a time to just show the people you love, that you love them! These Valentine Watercolor Lover-inspired Cookies are a beautiful and sweet way to show adoration for your Valentine, Galentine, or besties!

Ready to decorate your cookies? Jump to Hardening Icing or Watercolor Cookies technique.

heart cookies on white background

Valentine's day heart watercolor cookies on doily

Start with your favorite sugar cookie. I used a package mix and followed the directions to make cut-out cookies. I rolled them out and cut them out using a heart-shaped cookie cutter for Valentine’s Day. No judgment here if you find store-bought sugar cookies easier. The fun part of these cookies is the pretty watercolor icing. I mean, just look at that gorgeous ombre design! Ok, let's start on how to make them.

The hardening cookie icing creates a smooth, hard base for you to watercolor on. I used to think this was a hard trick to master, but after trying my hand at this simple frosting, I realized how easy it is!

Hardening Cookie Icing - 1 batch

  • 1 cup powdered sugar

  • 1 tablespoon milk

  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

You will also need:

  • plastic baggie or piping bag

  • toothpick

  • bowls and spoons

  • scissors if you are using a plastic baggie

In a medium bowl, mix together the 3 ingredients until smooth.

I make 2 batches of this icing for my cookies. The first batch has a little bit less milk, more like the consistency of toothpaste. I put it in a plastic baggie (or piping bag if you want to be fancy) and cut the tip off. I use that batch to create the outline of my cookie.

outline cookie with frosting

For the second batch, I made it just a bit more fluid, so that it “floods” the outline of the cookie and creates a nice smooth frosting. Just add a tiny bit more milk until you like the consistency of it.

Repeat the same step of adding it to a baggie with the tip cut off. Squeeze it onto your cookie. Use the toothpick to pop any bubbles and help spread the icing so that it covers the cookie.

NOTE: I let my cookies sit for about an hour to harden before I painted them to make sure it was fully hardened.

cookie decorating with white frosting

Now, for the fun part! Let’s “watercolor” paint our cookies. Once your icing is hard, create your watercolors using food coloring and clear vanilla extract. I used both liquid and gel food coloring and both worked fine.

lover inspired watercolor painted cookies

Lover Watercolor Cookies

In a small dish or new paint palette mix together a few drops of food coloring with your clear vanilla extract. I created a variety of shades using red and pink with different ratios of vanilla extract. Then, paint your cookies with a clean, new paintbrush. Do not use a craft paintbrush for this.

cookie decorating painting heart cookies

Have fun playing around with different designs. I found I liked giving my cookie a wash of clear vanilla extract before adding my colors. This allowed the colors to bleed together differently, giving it an even more watercolor look. I created unique ombre designs with my cookies but you can do whatever looks pleasing to you.

heart shaped pretty watercolor cookies

watercolor cookie decorating

Play around with different amounts of food coloring and vanilla extract to create pretty patterns. I even added some gold sprinkles to a few cookies for some texture and glam.

Be sure to check out our other Valentine's Day posts. This page will be updated as we continue to add more fun ideas!


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