How to Stencil Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing: A Quick 4-Step Guide

How to Stencil Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing: A Quick 4-Step Guide

Check out this article and learn how to stencil sugar cookies with royal icing.

How to Stencil Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing: A Quick 4-Step Guide

You don't need to be an experienced confectioner to agree that decorating with stencils is a fun way to create beautiful, uniform cookies with minimal effort. Best of all when you do it with royal icing it's the fastest way to add designs with a lot of precision.

If you want to offer your loved ones delicacies that seem to have been made by a world-famous chef, keep reading this article and learn how to stencil sugar cookies with royal icing.

How to Stencil Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

In order to even have something to stencil, you have to bake the perfect cookie. If it's not tasty, no matter how good the decoration is, all the effort goes down the drain.

One of the most common problems our readers face is dryness, so check out this article as it offers a bunch of ideas that are sure to help you make the best sugar cookie dough you have ever tasted.

Tip #1: Make Royal Icing of a Stiff Consistency

This is a step in which you mustn’t skimp on the effort. It is necessary to make a firm consistency of the royal icing, which at the same time will be loose enough to be spread easily and evenly on the cookie, without running under the stencil. We know it sounds complicated, but it really isn't.

The best tip we can give you, which we think will be very helpful, is to add 1 teaspoon of water to every cup of royal icing + mix well together. Since the icing itself is quite stiff, the water should make the spreading process easier.

Tip #2: Spread the Icing over the Stencil’s Openings

You can't go wrong with an offset spatula, consider it your go-to tool. All you have to do is dip the spatula into the royal icing you made earlier and start spreading it on the cookie. Don't take too much at once; remember the old saying, less is always more.

Also, try to be careful and precise while spreading it over all of the crevices, and make sure it is in an even layer.

Furthermore, based on the countless cookies we have made so far, we claim that it is always better to use only one color of frosting over the stencil, it really gives the best results. If you do decide to combine several different colors on one cookie, be prepared to double your patience and precision, also don't use large tools, opt for smaller ones to apply each color to specific stencil openings.

Tip #3: Smooth, Smooth, & Then Smooth It Some More

For all those wondering how to stencil sugar cookies with royal icing without ending up with peaks everywhere, the key is to use an offset spatula to smooth over the entire cookie. Always repeat the process several times and in different directions to get rid of any peaks or scrape marks.

Tip #4: Lift the Stencil Quickly but Carefully

It is recommended that you lift the template from the edges, not from the middle, keeping a finger or two on the cookie to prevent it from moving. Finally, remember to clean the stencil thoroughly between each use and dry it with a clean paper towel or cloth.

Considering that one of our favorite family holidays is approaching, we believe now is the right time to take a look at this video and learn how to decorate the most delicious royal icing cookies for Thanksgiving.


Using stencils is really easy and doesn't require too much effort, but it does require a lot of precision. That's it, now you know how to stencil sugar cookies with royal icing. If you have any questions, please let us know on social media.

Author’s bio

Karen Rutherford is founder and editor in chief at King Desserts. You will often find her in the kitchen trying out some new recipes. As a pâtissière and baking enthusiast, Karen has decided to share her knowledge with the internet audience and provide the best tips and recipes for baking and decorating your favorite sweets.