They are great for any and every holiday, since you can just change up the sprinkle colors to suit the event!
Now, call me cheap, but I'd like to point out to you that a bottle of Wilton sanding sugar is something around $2.99... and depending on how many colors you want, that adds up. I found this great tutorial on making your own sanding sugar. Just to compound my cheapness, I'll admit - I used regular granulated sugar instead of sanding sugar to make mine. When you think about how much a five pound bag of sugar and a box of food coloring costs, the price makes it worth the sacrifice - the difference between this and traditional sanding sugar is that the granules are smaller, and they are slightly less shiny.
I don't think my cookies suffered any from being colored with Cheap Girl Sanding Sugar. I took them to a lunch and a room full of future nurse practitioners ate em up! They stayed fresh in an air-tight container for four days... they might have lasted longer, but since they got eaten, I can't tell you for sure!
Cheap Girl Sanding Sugar tweaked from Sugarbelle
- 1/2 cup clear sparkling sugar (buy here or here) or plain ole granulated sugar if you aren't feeling fancy
- Gel or liquid food coloring
- 1/4 tsp cornstarch
- Zip lock baggie
- Pour 1/2 c sugar into a baggie, add a few drops of food coloring. I started with about 4 drops of liquid food coloring. Zip the baggie.
- Gently knead the food coloring into the sugar. This takes some time. Add more coloring as needed.
- Add 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cornstarch and knead into the sugar. Your goal is for it to flow like dry sugar. The cornstarch takes care of the stickiness caused by the food coloring.
- The original blogger suggests spreading it out on parchment paper to let it dry, I didn't find this to be necessary.
- Store in an airtight container. Jars work, but so do your zip lock baggies you used for mixing! Enjoy!
Easy Sugar Cookies from Brandy's Baking
(Makes about 3 dozen, depending on cookie size)
- 1.5 c sugar
- 1 c unsalted butter, softened
- 3 egg yolks (I saved & froze my whites in a ziplock bag for omelets later!)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp lemon extract (Brandy calls this optional but don't leave it out, it's great!)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cream of tartar (for those who are unsure, you can find this on the baking aisle with the spices)
- pinch of salt (for those who like to measure, about 1/8 tsp)
- 2.5 c flour
- Sanding sugar in various colors
- Sift together the dry ingredients, set aside.
- Cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
- Add egg yolks one at a time, making sure they are well incorporated.
- Add vanilla and lemon extracts.
- Add dry ingredients, mix until a soft dough forms.
- Chill in the refrigerator for 1-3 hours. (I actually let mine stay in the fridge overnight, then I got it out of the fridge and let it come to room temp while my oven was preheating.)
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Roll dough into 1" or 1.5" balls and roll in colored sugar.
- Place on ungreased baking sheet about 2" apart and bake for 12 minutes.