Decorating Cookies Using Wet-On-Wet Technique


So far I’ve shared my best sugar cookie recipe, my royal icing recipe, and an easy way to cut out cookies.  Now I’m going to share a simple technique called wet-on-wet.  This is a very easy way of decorating cookies.  Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, I thought heart cookies would be appropriate.



First you want to thin the royal icing slightly by adding water drop by drop.  Be careful with this as it is doesn’t take much water to thin it.  Generally I thin mine a drop at a time until, when I pull a spoon through it and count, it takes about 8-10 seconds for the spoon track to fill back in completely.  With practice you’ll get a feel for what consistency works best for you.

After it’s thinned, divide and add color.   I use AmeriColor Gel Paste Food Color.  I have tried other brands but I prefer AmeriColor.  It literally only takes a drop to color a small bowlful, and so a box of these colors lasts a really, really long time.



Next fill squeeze bottles with thinned icing.  I use larger squeeze bottles for the main color and small ones for the accent colors.  You can get the larger squeeze bottles from any craft store, but the smaller ones are a little harder to find.  I found this set of three icing bottles which includes a large one and two smaller ones, on Amazon.




Then outline the cookie using the thinned icing.  Sometimes I outline with thicker icing and let it dry, and then flood the middle with thinned icing, but on these I just outlined and flooded in one step.




Next fill inside the outline with icing.  Try not to put too much icing on the cookie.  Since you’ll be adding more for the wet-on-wet technique, you don’t want so much that it will overflow the cookie.




Help the icing reach the edges by gently pushing the icing outwards, using tiny circular motions.  I use wooden skewers for this purpose but any small pointed stylus-type instrument will work.




Now get one of the smaller, colored icing squeeze bottles …




… and make dots along the edges of the cookie.  This technique is called wet-on-wet because you haven’t given the base icing color time to dry.  My dots aren’t exactly straight here, but they’ll turn out okay!




Next using the skewer, insert the tip into the icing just before the first colored dot (this picture shows the tip in the middle of the dot, but you want to start in the white icing just before the colored dot).




Now slowly pull the skewer through the center of the colored dots.



Look!  Hearts!




Pull down to the end of that row and stop.





Now do the other side.





If you’re feeling fancy, do the same thing with a second color just inside the first.




This technique is so much fun.  You can make all kinds of swirly designs.








And also?  This is what happens if the tip of your icing bottle gets clogged, you don’t take the time to unscrew the cap and unclog it, and you think that using brute force on the bottle will solve the problem.  Not that I would know…





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2 Thoughts on “Decorating Cookies Using Wet-On-Wet Technique

  1. Wow Karen, that is so cool. So pretty and professional looking. I must try this. I have your cookie recipe, the icing recipe and now this. I will be making cookies for the kids at Sunday School at my church for Easter. I have a cross cookie cutter that I will be using. I hope my cookies come out have as good as yours.

    I’ll write about the clothes I wear when walking tomorrow on my blog. Maybe others would be interested too.
    It will be something else to write about other than all the snow we are getting. : )

  2. Pingback: YOU Made It and Love It — A Link Party (and last week’s favorites!) | Make It and Love It

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