Introduction: How to Make Pixel Cookies!

Picture of How to Make Pixel Cookies!

This is a walk through on how to make Pixel Cookies! It involves using a playdough extruder to make long square rods of cookie dough, and building yourself a cookie. It's a lot of fun!

Step 1: Make the Dough!

Picture of Make the Dough!

For the cookies, I use the butter cookie dough recipe from Cooks Illustrated. I chose it because it's designed to be a very durable dough that still results in tender cookies. Also, it doesn't have baking soda or powder, so the cookies don't puff much during baking. You might even be able to use store bought dough if you wanted.
I don't have many detailed pictures for mixing up the dough, since it's fairly straight forward. Here's the recipe.

2.5 cups flour,
3/4 cups sugar, blitzed in a food processor until fine
1/4 tsp salt
two sticks of butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces, at room temperature
2tsp vanilla extract
2tbs cream cheese, softened

Using a stand mixer, mix the dry ingredients, then add the butter piece by piece, and process until the dough looks wet and crumbly looking.
Toss in the cream cheese and vanilla, and keep going until it starts to form large clumps (30sec).

Step 2: Color Time!

Picture of Color Time!

At this point, I separate the dough into smaller balls, and mix up a palette of colors. You can also just keep the dough off-white, and mix in the color later as you need it. However, this is a bit more troublesome, since it leads to the dough being much more squishy.
Anyway, add a few drops of each color and mix it in, either by hand or with the mixer. For a brown color, just add cocoa powder until it looks dark. A lot of cocoa powder will change the texture of the dough, though, so use it sparingly.

Once you have everything mixed to the color you want, wrap it in saran wrap and squish it down into disks. Place it in the fridge for a hour or two until the dough is stiff. This keeps things from getting too squishy during the cookie making process.

Step 3: It's Pixel Making Time!

Picture of It's Pixel Making Time!

For this step, you need a Play-doh extruder. We got ours at Target for about 5 bucks. They have different output options that you can set by sliding a little template back and forth. Select the set of four 1/4 inch squares and get squeezing! (You might be able to make some interesting roll cookies with the other templates, too)

Step 4: Build Your Cookie!

Picture of Build Your Cookie!

Stack the pixels to make your cookie! It can be useful to draw out your pattern on graph paper if it's going to be complicated. Here you see two "in progress" photos of some tetris cookies. This should make clear how the pixels fit together.
It's simpler to build the cookies one row at a time, but I was tired of waiting for yellow pixels.

Step 5: Finishing and Slicing

Picture of Finishing and Slicing

Once you're done with your cookie roll, wrap it in some saran wrap, and tap it gently but firmly on each side a few times against the counter. This helps stick the pixels together. Don't worry if the ends aren't even now, since you'll be slicing it off. Stick it in the freezer for a while, until it's pretty stiff. This will keep it from squishing when you cut it!
Once it's chilled, cut it with a sharp knife into slice a 1/4 of an inch thick. People have also suggested slicing it with dental floss.

Step 6: Bake and Enjoy!

Picture of Bake and Enjoy!

Place them on a cookie sheet with at least a half inch between them.
Bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes.

Take them out, let them cool a bit, and much away!


Undergrowth Moose (author)2015-01-30

This is ridiculously clever!!!

squishyjoss (author)2013-10-27

Its fantastic

Lance Mt. (author)2010-08-30

need alternative to playdough utilities!?!

KittyKissMe (author)Lance Mt.2013-10-13

You could use a clay gun. I'd suggest to use a new one or one only used for baking purposes before.

Ward_Nox (author)Lance Mt.2012-02-10

try dollar stores drug stores and low end stores for knock offs though i did see the original still for sale on amazon

St Jimmy (author)Lance Mt.2010-10-13

Maybe one of the bags used for icing patterns with a square nozzle?

KatherineSchreiber (author)2013-09-06

nice one

Kgirl924 (author)2012-09-20

You can get the Play Doh Fun Factory at Walgreens if there is one in your area. You can check online to see if the store in your area has it. That's where I got mine. You can go to their website and order it online if you don't have a Walgreens in your area but right now I think they are out of stock online. Hope this helps someone. =)

kittylover2009 (author)2012-09-13

Awesome! ;-)

St Jimmy (author)2010-10-13

Obviously don't use mint-flavored dental floss!

jobard (author)St Jimmy2012-02-10

Why not? It could be tasty...

bshin1 (author)2011-08-01

So cute and so cool! I love using different tools to make cookies and other baked goods. ^^

dvoss (author)2011-07-28

im make nyan cat

GenAap (author)2011-05-05

You make my mouth water.

dodo91 (author)2010-09-10


mareea (author)2009-10-20

awww i have this one instead of that one =(.. wich one of the outputs can i use? t_t

pd: sorry for my crappy english x_x

Bartboy (author)mareea2010-08-28

You don't HAVE to use a playdough extruder. You could just roll out long pieces of dough, the flatten each side and make less-than-perfect squares.

Ward_Nox (author)Bartboy2010-08-30

yea but using the extruder is quicker though i bet if you knew what you were doing you could make a better one out of metal

Ward_Nox (author)mareea2010-08-29

Amazon sells to old version of the fun factory (several combos sets actually) it's only the 50th birthday version that dosen't have the right shape to make thse

Senior Waffleman (author)2010-08-30

oooooh, looks yummy 5*

EvlPwnda (author)2010-08-29

Best use of a Play-Do extruder ever! Pixa-liscious!

Ward_Nox (author)2010-08-29

just fyi you want This version of the fun factory: cause the 50th Birthday fun factory:

Iridium7 (author)2010-08-28

No Space invaders? Shame on you sir!

chilll2009 (author)2010-08-28

that is sooo cool! I'm favoriteing this for sure!

argosxilow (author)2009-09-27

I just made a batch. Everyone is in love with them! Thanks for making me cooler :D

matstermind (author)2009-08-17

you could add this to the Kids Crafts Contest.

BrittLiv (author)2009-08-16

OMG how long did it take you to make all these. I made only one type and it took me about three hours...

Absol (author)2009-08-08

Wow! It is so cool! Thanks! You're a Pixel-Cookie Master!

Plasmana (author)2009-06-23

That looks amazing!

Lance Mt. (author)2009-06-23

Well... Thanks.. Yeah Thanks ALOT! Now i have to go buy a playdough extrutor and make cookie dough and get my food colourings out!

limpport (author)2009-03-29

This dough has no binder!!!! It stayed crumbly for me, even after the vanilla and cream cheese. I used one egg as a binder for the dough, and it came out PERFECT!!!

Ward_Nox (author)2009-02-24

been looking for a playdoh fun factory since i saw this

lolcat360 (author)2008-11-22

they look SO GOOD!

Nashella (author)2008-10-28

Hi, this Instructable is just awesome! I love everything which puts together food and geek things! but I'm French and i'm not sure how much is a "stick of butter" ? In France sticks of butter are 250g (0.551 lb) weight.

Eva Funderburgh (author)Nashella2008-10-28

The ones I've been using are 8 tablespoons / 1/2 cup / 1/4 pound / 113 grams. have fun!

Canadarocker (author)2008-10-18

Love them

roso (author)2008-08-20

love the cookies! for the recipe you have, about how many cookies does it make?

Eva Funderburgh (author)roso2008-08-20

it's pretty hard to say. The original cookie recipe says it makes 36 to 40 cookies. However, there's so many variables for the pixel cookies (how many pixels, how thin you slice them) that it's hard to guess. I think I general end up with two cookie sheets worth of cookies, if that helps.

Teh_Fluff (author)2008-08-20

faved, great idea

PKTraceur (author)2008-08-02

Your instructable is going to be added to my cookbook. Honestly. -RA

PKTraceur (author)2008-08-02

im going to use this idea for Tetris cookies for my brothers birthday, although i have the playdough extruder thing, i dont have the piece that makes it certain shapes. Would i be able to use some kind of wire mechanisim to make them pixel sized?? Thnx in advanced, -RA

technodude92 (author)2008-07-21

excellent idea 5*'s and a fav...

Deepthot42 (author)2008-06-23

Play-Doh extruder... GENIUS! I used this technique to make some Legend of Zelda cookis!

If you're on flickr, I've started a photo pool of pixel cookies.
I really appreciate the Link cookies, though. It looks like they came out great, and Legend of Zelda will always have a special place in my heart.

Kiteman (author)2008-01-12

This is excellent. If you build up the image, how stable is it when you roll the whole block out, like millefliori or sticks of rock? If the image stays clear, you could make loads of bite-size cookies to pile on plates for an Instructables Show and Tell. (Oh, and I wouldn't use dental floss, I'd use a cheesewire.)

Patrik (author)Kiteman2008-01-12

Hmm... now I want some Sierpinski cookies! :-)

Eva Funderburgh (author)Patrik2008-01-12

Awesome! Those are so cool... I'm not sure if the cookies would stretch nearly as well as polymer clay, but there's only one way to find out!

chibipowered (author)2008-03-29

OMG I want tetris cookies!!! haha thanks!!! I'mma go make em NOW!!! (okay maybe tomorrow, it's 10:30 :| )

henrywfstone (author)2008-02-16

i know i've already thanked you about twice but i thought you deserved another thank you because i gave these cookies to my girlfriend for valentines day and she loved them (even though i complete messed them up)! THANK YOU !

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm a ceramics artist in Seattle, WA.
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