‘Tis The Season | Festive Iced Cookie Decorations

How to make your own edible tree decorations, Bumpkin BettyWell I don’t know about you but I am full of the festive cheer this week. We picked up our tree on Saturday and spent yesterday making the house feel all Christmassy so now I’m writing this surrounded by twinkling lights and candles and candy canes and I just can’t wait for it to be holiday time already.

For my latest ‘Tis the Season feature I thought I’d share a simple recipe for some festive iced cookie decorations with you, the results of which are now adorning the branches of our spruce (well half are, the other half were scoffed while decorating said spruce). I think because we’re having Christmas at home this year, I’ve felt totally justified in indulging my inner creative and going overboard with lots of baking and making – and these cookies were one of the most fun and rewarding tasks. I can’t help but smile when I see my handmade creations smiling back at me from the tree. I reckon baking my own tree decorations might just become an annual tradition, and it would be such a great activity to do with kids too.

Iced cookie recipe, Bumpkin bettyThe cookie recipe itself is as simple as it comes because I wanted to concentrate on the icing decoration but of course, you can switch it up in any way that suits you – from gingerbread to cinnamon or nutmeg flavours. In the past I’ve always found icing cookies to be a very frustrating business, and usually one which results in some pretty terrible monstrosities at the end of it, but now I’ve discovered ready to roll icing and I’m feeling pretty smug about the whole thing so if you are planning to give these a go, save yourself the drama and pick up some coloured royal icing and a pack of writing icing too (I used Dr. Oetker products which I’ve detailed below).

These cookies were also my first for a new baking platform I’ve joined – We Bake. It’s a type of baking social media which allows you to create your own foodie profile and then share recipes, tips and advice with others. It’s the community which rewards you for baking! Now you all know I’m a massive fan of any sort of baking community. I’m a member of a few baking related platforms, and as most of you probably know, I also set up my own baking club at the beginning of this year (which you can join right here, we’re baking festive treats this month so its easy to get involved) – I actually truly believe that food is one of the few things which can bring almost everyone together, and personally I find sharing a love of cake and baking with others a great way to get to know new people and have fun at the same time. As I use my blog social media pages for all aspects of my lifestyle and not just baking, We Bake is the perfect alternative for me as I can use it solely to share my baking endeavours and get inspired by others doing the same.

You can see my profile here and sign up for yourself to share your own baking wins (there’s loads of helpful content, recipes and competitions on the website to keep you motivated).

So, onto the recipe…

Festive Iced cookies, Bumpkin BettyTop Uk food bloggers, Bumpkin Betty
What you’ll Need

The Cookie Dough (makes around 20-30 biscuits depending on size)

I made a plain cookie but feel free to add any spices or flavours you like to mix it up

100g butter

100g caster sugar

200g plain flour

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla essence

A selection of cookie cutters – I used a mixture of gingerbread men, circles, trees, bells and stars


The Icing

These are the products I specifically used but of course you could make your own icing and pipe from a nozzle or use any royal icing.

Dr Oetker Regal Ice ready to roll coloured royal icing

Dr Oetker writing icing tubes

Dr Oetker designer icing

A selection of sprinkles, chocolate chips and chocolate balls

Iced christmas cookies, Bumpkin bettyMake your own tree decorations, Bumpkin bettyIced christmas cookies, Bumpkin Betty


How it’s done

The Cookie Dough

Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy

Whisk your egg and add to the sugared mixture a little at a time along with the vanilla essence until combined

Slowly add your flour to the mix in stages until it starts to form a dough (add a little more egg or water if too dry)

Knead together and then wrap and chill in the fridge for an hour or so

Once chilled, break into small sections and roll out on a floured surface (make sure you don’t roll the cookies too thin as they’ll go brittle when baked – keep them fairly thick)

Using your cookie cutters cut a selection of shapes and place on a baking tray with a sheet of greaseproof paper (If you’re making these for the tree don’t forget to make a hole at the top of each – I used a straw to punch out a circle)

Repeat with all of your dough and re- roll your off cuts if you need to until you have enough cookies

Place in a pre-heated oven on the middle shelf and bake for approx 10-15 mins at around 200C/ Gas Mark 5 (don’t wait for them to brown as this is the point they might go brittle, remove them when ever so slightly browned and still a little soft)

Leave to cool completely before beginning to ice

Gingerbread cookies recipe, Bumpkin BettyChristmas cookie recipe, Bumpkin BettyThe Decoration

I created a few different designs of tree cookie based on my shapes so here’s how I did each one…

Snowmen iced cookies, Bumpkin BettySnowmen cookie recipe, Bumpkin Betty


The Snowmen (using your round shaped cookies)

Cover the whole cookie with soft white icing (you could roll out white royal icing, but I preferred the rustic look for the snow so used a knife to spread on plain icing)

Using the blue royal icing, knead slightly and then roll out flat before cutting out circles slightly smaller than your cookie shape. Cut these circles in half and stick to the top of your snowman to create a hat

Decorate the hats as you wish using hundreds and thousands and writing icing/piping a design. To add sprinkles to a section, simply wet the royal icing in the area you want the decoration to go, sprinkle on and then tip and they should only stick to the area which was wet.

I used chocolate chips for the noses (with a dollop of yellow on top) and chocolate balls for the eyes and mouth

Edible christmas tree cookies, Bumpkin BettyIced tree cookie recipe, Bumpkin betty


The Christmas Trees

Roll out your green royal icing and cut out tree shapes

Dab a little warm water onto the cookies before placing the icing tree on top and pressing down slightly

Decorate by piping on icing dollops in varying colours to mimic baubles, and tinsel. Use sprinkles for added sparkle

Gingerbread iced cookies recipe, Bumpkin BettyIce your own tree decorations, Bumpkin betty


The Gingerbread Men

Roll out red and green royal icing and cut into the shape of shorts (or skirts – whatever you prefer)

Dab a little warm water onto the cookies where you want the shorts to go and place the icing on top, pressing it down to secure

Decorate using writing icing to create bowties, hair and gloves

Use chocolate balls for buttons and eyes

Star shaped christmas cookies, Bumpkin BettySnowflake christmas cookie recipe, Bumpkin bettyBell shaped christmas cookies, Bumpkin BettyHow to make christmas tree cookies, Bumpkin betty


The Stars and Bells

Do a mixure of royal icing (rolled out and cut into desired shape to place) and normal icing in varying colours to create a variety of different designs.

Decorate using writing icing (my favourite was piping a snowflake design) and add sprinkles and balls to finish

Finally leave the icing to set and then string ribbon through the holes at the top ready for the cookies to be added to the tree!


Top uk food and lifestyle bloggers, Bumpkin BettyI told you the recipe itself was easy, you just need a little patience and a steady hand for the decor. It can take a bit of time (especially at the beginning when you’re still figuring the techniques out) so block out a morning, put some christmas music on and just potter away.

These are just my version of decorations but of course, once the cookies are baked you can really ice and decorate them in any way you wish!

In the run up to Christmas, We Bake has launched a challenge to find the community’s best bauble bakers (with 50 winners getting to see their decorations adorn the Christmas tree at London’s Westfield shopping centre) and so if you do give these a go, why not sign up to We Bake and enter them into the bauble competition?

How to make your own christmas cookie decorations, Bumpkin bettyRemember if you bake any of my recipes, tag #BakewithBB on social so I can see them, and of course look out for more bakes from the #BBbakingClub this month!

You might also like to read – How to wrap presents like a pro and How to create the perfect festive cheeseboard


*This post was in collaboration with We Bake and Dr Oetker but it’s a platform I’m really excited to be a part of so I was happy to share – recipe, words and photos my own*

Alice ·

I was inspired by the photo on your baking club facebook and when I got back last night made some gingerbread men with the new cutters I bought last week from Tiger! For a recipe that stated approx 12, I ended up with about 30 biscuits! No complaints there, just need to find the time to ice them now!! Alice xxx

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