Introduction: Stellar Shortbread Cookies

About: I like to make all kinds of things. I especially enjoy knitting colorwork mittens.

Stellar Shortbread Cookies

Marbled royal icing takes these wonderfully textured shortbread cookies to the next level. Perfect for a space themed party, or make them just for fun. Because space is cool.

The marbled icing effect was inspired by these valentines day cookies, but I used different ingredients for my icing and made shortbread instead of sugar cookies.


Cookie Dough:

  • 1 1/2 Cups Salted Butter (softened)
  • 1 Cup Icing Sugar (confectioners sugar)
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract.
  • 3 Cups Flour

Royal Icing:

  • 4 Cups Icing Sugar (confectioners sugar)
  • 3 Tbsp Meringue Powder
  • 6 Tbsp Water + 6 more Tbsp water
  • 1/2 Tsp Pumpkin Spice
  • Food Coloring (yellow, blue, red)

Other Supplies:

  • Parchment Paper
  • Cookie cutters (star and circle)
  • Rolling Pin
  • Several bowls for different colored icings
  • Stand mixer
  • Egg turner
  • Cookie sheet
  • measuring cups, spoons, etc.

Step 1: Mix Shortbread Dough

Preheat oven to 325 F.

In a stand mixer, combine:

  • 1 ½ cups salted butter, softened
  • 1 cup icing sugar

With the flat beater attachment, mix on low speed until ingredients are combined, then turn on high speed until the mixture is silky smooth, (it should look like the first photo).

  • Add 1 tsp vanilla extact.

Mix for 10 seconds on high speed.

  • Add 3 cups flour.

Mix on low speed until dough clings together, (it should look like the second photo).

Step 2: Cut Cookie Shapes and Bake

Place dough on a floured surface.

With a rolling pin, roll dough flat to about 1/4 inch thickness.

Cut out star and circle shapes and use the egg turner to place the cookies onto a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. (I made 5 circles and the rest were stars).

Bake at 325 for 15 minutes, (or until bottom of cookies are golden brown).

Allow cookies to cool.

Step 3: Make Royal Icing and Decorate

Make the Icing:

In a stand mixer, combine:

  • 4 cups icing sugar
  • 3 Tbsp meringue powder
  • 6 Tbsp water

With the wire whisk attachment, mix on low until combined, then mix on high for 2 minutes, until smooth.

Thin the icing by adding more water, one Tbsp at a time. The icing is the correct consistency when a spoonful of icing dropped into the bowl of icing, goes flat in 15 seconds. I used 6 more Tbsp of water.

Decorating the cookies:

Add 1 1/2 Cups of icing to a dish. A pie plate would work well.

Add ½ cup of icing to another dish. (I used a cereal bowl).

  • Add yellow food coloring to the 1/2 cup of icing.
  • Add ½ tsp pumpkin spice powder to the yellow icing. (adds a little flavor and looks like star dust).


Drizzle some of the yellow icing on top of the white icing, (As shown in photo 1).

Dip the star cookies into the white/yellow icing, (Photo 2). Turn the cookie sideways to let some icing drip off as you remove the cookie from the icing. Wipe extra icing off side of cookie. (You can spoon more yellow icing on top of the white if you need to).


For the blue/green planet, I put some of the remaining white icing into a dish and added blue food coloring to make blue icing. I added a few drops of blue coloring to the yellow icing bowl to turn it green, then drizzled the green icing on top of the blue. (Photo 3).

Next, I made red icing and drizzled green onto it and dipped a second planet.

Drizzled green onto the yellow/white bowl that was used for the stars and dipped a 3rd planet.

Drizzled the red/green mix onto the blue bowl and dipped the 4th planet. (Photo 4).

Added blue food coloring to the red bowl to make purple, then scooped some of the white/yellow from the star bowl and drizzled it on top, (Photo 5).

Allow icing on cookies to dry completely before storing in an airtight container.

Cookies Speed Challenge

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Cookies Speed Challenge