Nothing says “holidays” more than getting into the kitchen with the kids… but there’s an art to finding the right kid-friendly baking project. Too simple? The kids are bored. Too involved? Your dessert ends up looking like one of the final products on “Nailed It.”

Jade Neblett

Essex mom Jade Neblett is no stranger to finding awesome creative things for her kids to do. The homeschooling mom loves thinking outside-the-box when it comes to cultivating her kids’ imaginations and talents. The painted sugar cookies recipe she shared with us combines two things both of her kids love — art and baking! Coincidentally, her daughter Taylah wants to be a pastry chef, so this edible art project was perfect for her! If your child wants to be the next participant on Cupcake Wars, you should definitely add this project to your holiday to-do list.

Jade’s newest venture? Neblett’s Kitchen! Jade is now offering kids’ baking and cooking classes in her own kitchen. If you like this project, follow her on Instagram to learn about upcoming class opportunities.

Neblett's Kitchen

Painted Sugar Cookies

Painted Sugar Cookies
A fun (and delicious!) holiday cookie that's sure to become a new tradition with your family.
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  1. 5 Cups of All-Purpose Flour
  2. 2 Cups of Sugar
  3. 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
  4. 1 Teaspoon Salt
  5. 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
  6. 1.5 Cups of Butter, Softened
  7. 4 Eggs
  8. 4 Cups Confectioners Sugar
  9. 3 Tablespoons of Meringue Powder
  10. 2 Tablespoons of Vanilla Extract
  11. 1 Cup of Room Temperature Water
  12. Vanilla Extract (1 Teaspoon per paint color)
  13. Gel Food Coloring
  1. MAKE THE SUGAR COOKIES: In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together sugar and softened butter until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time.
  3. Slowly add the flour mixture until a dough is formed. If you are using a stand mixer, make sure it is fitted with the paddle attachment. Once the dough is formed, cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least one hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 350F. Remove chilled dough from refrigerator and place on a floured surface. Separate the dough into four pieces so you you can work with it in small batches. Keep one and put the other three back in the fridge.
  5. Roll out the dough so that is is 1/4- 1/2 inch thick. Cut with desired cookie cutters. Transfer the cutout pieces to a non-stick cookie sheet and refrigerate for 5 minutes (this helps the cookies keep their shape!).
  6. Bake cookies for 6-8 minutes, just until the edges begin to brown slightly. Transfer to cooling rack and let cool for 20 minutes.
  7. Repeat the rolling and baking process with the last three rounds of dough! Now you're ready to ice...
  8. MAKE THE ICING: sing a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the confectioners sugar, meringue powder, and vanilla extract. Add water, one tablespoon at a time and beat until smooth. (You may not need the entire cup.)
  9. Once cookies have cooled, transfer the icing to a pastry bag with Wilton Tip #3 and ice the cookies. Start by outlining the cookie with the icing and then flood the center. Use a skewer to spread the icing and fill gaps. Let icing dry completely.
  10. TIME TO PAINT! Combine a few drops of gel food coloring and 1 Teaspoon of Vanilla Extract to make your edible paints. Dip a paintbrush in them and paint your cookies! Allow the paint to dry completely before packaging your cookies to gift or adding additional details with a different color paint. Enjoy!
Adapted from Neblett's Kitchen
Adapted from Neblett's Kitchen
(cool) progeny


Want more gifts can make and other fun holiday ideas? Check out our 2019 Charmed Holidays guide!

Charmed Holidays 2019