I've always loved decorating for holidays, and one of my favorite patriotic decorations is the classic red, white and blue bunting. It's big, elegant, and bold looking, and it always makes me think of the Fourth of July. So why not make a cookie version?
These Patriotic Bunting Sugar Cookies are super easy to make and such a fun, festive dessert! A leaf piping tip is used to get those ruffled layers of red, white, and blue royal icing, and star sprinkles are added to make them look extra patriotic.
You can use any sugar cookie dough recipe for cut-out sugar cookies. I recommend chilling half of the dough while you roll out and cut out the other half. This will help make sure that you always have cold dough to work with. Make sure to chill the cookies again before popping them in the oven to bake them.
I recommend using a round cookie cutter with a diameter of about 4.5 inches or so. This size works well with the size piping tips I recommend. If you don't have a round cookie cutter, a bowl or cup and a sharp knife can also work, but make sure your dough is well chilled. If you use a smaller cookie cutter, I recommend sizing down the piping tips so that they are closer to Wilton or Ateco #65-68.
For a round cookie cutter with around 4.5 inches in diameter, I recommend using a Wilton or Ateco #70 for red (first outer layer) and #69 for blue and white. Using a slightly larger tip for the outer layer will help it stand out and create a foundation for the other layers to be added over.
Once your piping bag has its piping tip in place and is loaded with royal icing, you are ready to start piping! I recommend first piping a small amount of frosting on some parchment to practice. You’ll need to gently apply pressure to the bag, moving the bag up and down slightly as you go to create ripples in the icing, similar to a ruffled ribbon.
If you want to make your bunting cookies look extra festive, you can add some star sprinkles to the different layers of ruffles. Make sure to add them once you finish piping your cookie so they stick to the icing before it hardens.
Once you have your sugar cookie dough rolled out to the thickness of your liking, cut out as many circles as possible with the circle cookie cutter. Then cut those circles in half. Pop these cookies in the oven and bake as directed.
Meanwhile, take your royal icing and split it into three bowls. Dye one bowl of icing red and one bowl of icing blue. Fit your piping bags with your piping tips and scoop your icing into the piping bags, being sure to put red in with #70 tip if possible.
Once your cookies are out of the oven and cooled you are ready to start piping!
With the straight edge at the top, begin piping your first row of red ruffles by starting on the left and curving with the cookie, making sure to not pipe over the edge. Pipe all the way to the other end in one swift motion, moving up and down as you go.
Repeat this process with a row of white on top, slightly overlapping the first row of red.
Then repeat this process slightly higher up with a row of blue.
Keep repeating this process until you reach the top of the cookie.
Use a toothpick to take off any overhanging icing from the top of the cookie if needed. Then add star sprinkles to the different rows and let cookies sit out until the royal icing sets.