Introduction: Jumbo Spin Art Cookies

When someone mentions 'spin art' my mind tunnels directly back to awkward middle school carnivals where each room was filled with some sort of activity like the duck pond, ring toss, the cake walk, bean bag toss, and of course my favorite.....spin art! I would save up all of my tickets and only use them for spin art. I'm sort of embarrassed right now that I can actually recall these events in detail but I really loved watching that paint stream down onto that cheap white cardboard rectangle spinning a million miles an hour. When the table finally came to a complete stop it was like the world stood still for one second while I gasped at my newly created masterpiece. Then before it could dry the parent volunteer would slap it in a flimsy white matte and send me on my way! I felt like a million bucks!

Before my boys are old enough to enjoy the awkwardness of middle school I wanted them to feel my same love for spin art. Since I don't own an actual spin art table I decided to use my salad spinner and use food coloring instead of paint. And what goes well with food coloring? That's right.....cookies and frosting!

It doesn't matter if my boys are playing their favorite games or playing with their favorite toys - as soon as I get out the salad spinner they come running. They love to spin what ever greens I have in the device so you can imagine the excitement when it would be put to use with cookies instead of greens! This could possibly be a child's dream!

You will need the following items:
- jumbo sugar cookies (recipe follows) - cut to fit the bottom of your salad spinner
- frosting (recipe follows) - I made cream cheese frosting but buttercream would also work
- salad spinner - don't worry....the food coloring washes right off
- liquid food coloring
- spreading knife
- rolling pin
- pizza cutter or sharp knife
- squirt bottle (optional)

This is a perfect activity for children and a fun family activity. If you had the cookies pre-baked and frosted this would also be a great activity at a child's birthday party!

Step 1: Make and Bake Jumbo Cookies

Sugar cookies are certainly not boring but if you want to you could make any cookie you want. I would suggest something smooth however because you will need to be able to spread frosting on very smoothly. Gingerbread would work well.

Sugar Cookies
1 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
1 egg
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and egg and mix until combined. Sift in baking powder and flour and mix until well combined.

Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes.

Remove dough from fridge and plastic wrap. Lightly flour a large work surface and roll dough to 1/4 inch thick and cut desired size circle using a table knife.

I made a paper pattern for the size of circle I needed and cut around it.

Place on ungreased sheet pan and bake 10 - 12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Removed from oven.

If dough spread too large cut warm cookie to desired size again using a pizza cutter or sharp knife.

Let cool completely on pan.

Makes approx. 6 cookies depending on thickness.

***I made jumbo cookies so they would fit nicely in the bottom of the salad spinner. You could make smaller cookies but you will need to find a way to keep them in the middle so they don't creep up the sides when the device is spinning. You can always cut the cookies if you think they are too big. Did I just say a cookie could be too big? Sorry, what was I thinking!!??

Step 2: Make Frosting

Cream Cheese Frosting
8 oz. cream cheese
4 T. butter
1 t. vanilla extract
3-6 c. powdered sugar (depending on desired consistency)

In a medium mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed combine cream cheese, butter and vanilla. Slowly add powdered sugar until you reach desired consistency.

Step 3: Frost Cookies and Spin!

Using a spreading knife smooth frosting on jumbo cookies. Be generous, everyone loves frosting!!

Gently place cookie in the bottom of salad spinner. I secured ours with a dollop of frosting on the bottom of the spinner.

You can drip on food coloring one of two ways. While it is spinning or before you start spinning. Before it spins (I think) is easier for kids but either way will give you the spin art look.

This isn't rocket science so I don't really have much to explain. Using liquid food coloring drip coloring where desired. Spin salad spinner gently enough that your cookie doesn't break apart but fast enough that you get the coloring to spin to the outside of the cookie. Repeat with more drops of coloring if necessary until you have the desired effect.

Gently remove cookie from spinner and allow coloring to dry (so lips and tongue aren't stained too bad) or eat right away simply because no one will want to wait!!

***I recommend using aprons or old clothes when the kids are dropping food coloring. You don't want stains on their nice clothes and they can get a bit carried away with all of the fun!

***If you want a more tie dyed look drop food coloring and then spritz with a few sprays of water (2-4 sprays) using a clean squirt bottle and then spin. It will cause the colors to run and bleed more as in picture #7.

***Don't worry, your salad spinner will wash clean without any stains - well, at least mine did!  :)

Comments

author
rrkrose made it! (author)2012-07-28

Made these the other day but they were all eaten before I could take pictures. The looked so good!

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-28

I'm so glad you made them but bummed you didn't get pictures but I completely understand they get eaten too fast!! I hope you had fun with it.

author
rrkrose made it! (author)2012-07-21

These look so fun! I am sure my sister would love making these with me.

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-22

Take a picture if you make them and post it here. We had a blast making them I'm sure you will too!!

author
amy-sue made it! (author)2012-07-12

I remember those middle school carnivals... spin art and the cake walk were my favs! And yes, the awkwardness. Great awkward memories. But I LOVE this idea! Its brilliant. Who knew the salad spinner had a double life as an art machine? The cookies turned out so colorful and funky. These would make a great activity for any kid's birthday party!!

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-12

I always wanted to win the cake walk but couldn't spare my tickets!! I'm glad someone else remembers the awkwardness as much as I do!

author
lmnopeas made it! (author)2012-07-09

These are really awesome! I'm definitely going to make these for my son's birthday party. :)

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-09

Thank you. Send me a picture of the finished cookies! One thing I forgot to mention in the spinning step is if you are dropping coloring while the cookie is spinning hold the dropper up high to get the 'splat and run' look! Since I was doing it with little boys (3 and 5) I spun after the coloring was dropped on to avoid a serious mess!!! Have fun with it!

author
lmnopeas made it! (author)lmnopeas2012-07-10

O.k, great! Thanks for the tip!

author
bajablue made it! (author)2012-07-09

Clever idea... love your narrative, too!

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-09

Thanks! I hope I'm not the only one who had strange school carnivals like those so people can actually relate!!!!

author
bajablue made it! (author)bajablue2012-07-10

I think you're safe. ;-) Good luck in the Dessert Contest!

author
mygibzone made it! (author)2012-07-08

What a fun project! I don't have a salad spinner but now I may have to purchase one just for this! :)

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-08

Thanks! Salad spinners are great, especially for this.

author
Penolopy Bulnick made it! (author)2012-07-08

A salad spinner was genius! And I love the size of that cookie! It is certainly jumbo :)

author
wold630 made it! (author)wold6302012-07-08

Thank you. It's a fun project!

author
jessyratfink made it! (author)jessyratfink2012-07-08

100% agreed - best use of a salad spinner ever!

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Bio: Hi, my name is Jen! I'm a Community Manager here at Instructables. In my free time I'm a crafter, food lover, cake decorator ... More »
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