These 4th of July Sugar Cookies will be the perfect treat for Fourth of July or Memorial Day. The royal icing looks stunning and makes a festive cookie.

4th of July sugar cookies on a platter.
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Impress your friends and family with these fabulous 4th of July cookies decorated in red, white and blue. The star shaped cookies are so tasty and look amazing.

They are really fun to decorate, and anyone can make these. While they look like bakery quality, they are simple to make. I also make 4th of July Chocolate Covered Pretzel Rods for another fun treat.

Why We Love This Recipe

This sugar cookie dough is easy to make and turns out so delicious. The star shapes are festive for parties and cookouts. You will love these fourth of July cookies with frosting.

Ingredients

Ingredients for 4th of July sugar cookies - flour, baking powder, salt, unsalted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, egg whites, powdered sugar, cream of tartar and gel food coloring.

Cookies

  • Flour. Measure accurately by spooning the flour into the cup instead of scooping.
  • Unsalted butter. Softened at room temperature. 
  • Eggs. Room temperature eggs.
  • Vanilla Extract. Always use pure vanilla extract.

Icing

  • Egg whites. Be careful not to get any yolk while separating the egg whites.
  • Powdered sugar. Sift the powdered sugar to remove any lumps.
  • Gel Food Coloring. I prefer gel good coloring for the icing.

Find the complete list of ingredients at the bottom of the page.

How to Make 4th of July Sugar Cookies

  • Step 1. Preheat the oven. It should be set to 325 degrees F. 
Mixing bowl with softened butter and sugar.

Step 2. Cream the softened butter and sugar together. Continue to mix in a large bowl until smooth and not grainy.

Eggs added to the butter mixture.

Step 3. Next, add the eggs to the mixture and combine.

Add the vanilla to the mixture.

Step 4. Once combined, add the vanilla extract. 

Separate mixing bowl with dry ingredients.

Step 5. Sift the dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Next, the flour, baking powder, and salt need to be sifted together.

Wet and dry ingredients combined together.

Step 6. Combine the ingredients. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture.

Ingredients blended together.

Step 7. Mix until well blended. Continue mixing to make sure all ingredients are thoroughly blended.

Dough formed into a ball.

Step 8. Next, wrap the dough in plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough for about 6 hours or overnight.

Dough on cutting board with flour.

Step 9. After it has been refrigerated, allow the dough to soften. Spread flour on the wood cutting board, rolling pin, and batter if needed.

Batter rolled out and cookie cutters to make shapes.

Step 10. ​​Roll the dough. Use the cutting board and use a star cookie cutter to cut out the cookies.  

Cookies placed on baking sheet.

Step 11. Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper. Transfer the cookies with a metal spatula to the cookie sheet. Then bake for 8 to 10 minutes until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges. Next, allow to cool on a wire rack.

Mixing bowl with icing ingredients.

Step 12. While the cookies cool, make the icing. You can use a stand mixer or hand mixer to combine the ingredients.

Powdered sugar added to bowl and combined.

Step 13. Mix together the ingredients (except the food coloring) on medium speed for 4 minutes. If the icing is not stiff enough add more powdered sugar.

Spatula in icing.

Step 14. The icing should be a 15-second consistency.  This means that when you slice a spatula across the top of the icing, it would take 15 seconds to disappear.

Icing divided into 3 bowls.

Step 15. Separate the icing into 3 small bowls. 

Food coloring added to 3 bowls.

Step 16. Mix the icing with the red, white, and blue gel food coloring.  

Icing placed into piping bags.

Step 17. Place the frosting into piping bags.

Icing piped on cookies.

Step 18. Finish decorating the cookies. Place the remaining white icing in a decorated bag fitted with tip #1 and use it to decorate the cookies based on your preference. 

Cookies decorated with icing.

Step 19. I love making the stars look like flags or top with patriotic stripes, dots, or more stars.  Allow the icing to cool completely for 2 to 3 hours. Do not cover the cookies while the icing is cooling. 


FAQs

How long do decorated sugar cookies keep?

They will keep up to 5 to 7 days. Just store at room temperature inside an airtight container.

Also, make sure the icing has cooled completely before storing.

Why is my icing too thick or too thin?

If the icing is too thin, it is likely due to excessive air in the icing. As a result, this occurs when air bubbles form during mixing.

In order to prevent this from happening, mix the icing using the low speed. Also, pop any air bubbles you spot.
Another culprit could be a result of not enough powdered sugar. Try adding ¼ cup powdered sugar to the mixture until it is at a 15-second consistency.

This means that when you slice a spatula across the icing, it takes 15 seconds to disappear.
However, if you have the opposite issue and the icing is too thick, try adding water to the icing in small increments. Continue to do this until it is the desired consistency.

What if I don’t have any cookie cutters?

You can use a mason jar or glass to cut out the cookies. They just won’t be star shapes, but you can still decorate them with patriotic colors.

How long does it take the icing to harden?

The time varies based on the climate. It will take at least a couple of hours but up to 24 hours.

4th of July sugar cookies on a platter.

Pro Tips

  • Allow the cookies time to cool. The icing needs to cool completely before adding the final decorations.
  • Don’t overmix the dough. Do not overmix the cookie dough batter or icing. The consistency will not be the same.
  • Dough thickness. Make sure to roll the cookie dough about ½ inch thick.

July 4th sugar cookies on a platter.

More 4th of July Desserts

Try this festive cookie recipe for your next party. Then please leave a comment and star recipe rating.

4th of July Sugar Cookies

5 from 3 votes
These 4th of July Sugar Cookies will be the perfect treat for Fourth of July or Memorial Day. The royal icing looks stunning and makes a festive cookie.
Prep Time 6 hours 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Cool Completely / Let Icing Harden 2 hours 10 minutes
Total Time 8 hours 50 minutes
Servings 36
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 195

Ingredients

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Instructions

  • COOKIE INSTRUCTIONS:
  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Cream the soft butter with the sugar until the combination is smooth and not grainy to the touch in a mixing bowl.
  • Add all 4 eggs at one time. Continue to mix.
  • Then add in the vanilla extract.  Continue mixing.
  • Sift the four, baking powder, and salt together.
  • Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture. Continue mixing to make sure all ingredients are thoroughly blended.
  • Roll the dough into a ball, wrap it in cling wrap completely covering the entire dough ball. Put the dough in the refrigerator for about 6 hours or overnight. Check to see if the dough is firm. Then pull the cookie dough out of the refrigerator and sit it out to soften up a bit.
  • Put flour out on the wood cutting board, rub flour on the rolling pin, and work some flour into the batter (if needed). ​​
  • Roll the dough out on the cutting board and use a star cookie cutter to cut out bunny-shape cookies.
  • Line the cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Using a metal spatula move the cut cookies to the parchment lined cookie sheet.
  • Bake at 325 degrees F for 8-10 minutes until the cookies are lightly browned around the edges.
  • Check to see if the cookies are thoroughly baked.
  • Take the cookies off of the cookie sheet and put on a wire rack to cool completely.(About 10 minutes).
  • ICING INSTRUCTIONS:
  • Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl mixing on medium speed for 4 minutes. (except your food coloring). If icing is not stiff enough add ¼ C powder sugar until the icing is to a 15 second consistency.  Which means that when you slice a spatula across the top of the icing, it would take 15 seconds to disappear.
  • Separate the icing into 3 small bowls.  Mix the icing with the red, white and blue gel food coloring.
  • Place the approximately half of each icing in piping bags and place the icing on the cookies.  Let this icing cool completely (2-3 hours).  Then place the remaining icing in a decorated bag fitted with tip #1 and use it to decorate the cookies based on your preference.
  • I love making the stars look like flags or top with patriotic stripes, dots or more stars.
  • Allow the icing to cool completely (2-3 hours).
  • Do not cover the cookies while the icing is cooling.
  • After the icing has cooled completely, store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5-7 days.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 195kcal, Carbohydrates 28g, Protein 3g, Fat 8g, Saturated Fat 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat 1g, Monounsaturated Fat 2g, Trans Fat 1g, Cholesterol 39mg, Sodium 99mg, Potassium 38mg, Fiber 1g, Sugar 14g, Vitamin A 263IU, Calcium 21mg, Iron 1mg

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Desserts on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you create delicious desserts on a budget and do not require a ton of time. Together, we are going to make something sweet that the entire family will love!

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