Go Back
+ servings
featured splatter paint christmas cookies

Splatter Paint Christmas Cookies Recipe

Course: cookies, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Dry Time: 20 hours
Total Time: 22 hours 12 minutes
Servings: 36 2-inch cookies
Calories: 149kcal
Author: Becky Hardin
These splatter paint cookies are the perfect way to treat friends and family this Christmas. Delicious sugar cookies are topped with frosting and then decorated with colorful red and green paint splatters that are ideal for the festive season.
Print Recipe



For the Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter 226 grams (2 sticks)
  • cup granulated sugar 133 grams
  • 1 large egg 50 grams, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 4 grams
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract 1 gram
  • cups all-purpose flour 270 grams
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse sea salt

For the Icing

  • ¼ cup light corn syrup 78 grams, divided
  • ¼ cold water 57 grams, divided
  • 4 cups powdered sugar 452 grams
  • ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1 gram (or almond extract)

For the Splatter Paint

  • Food coloring white, red, and green
  • Extra water or vodka


For the Cookies

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
    1 cup unsalted butter, ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract and beat at medium speed until well incorporated, about 1 minute.
    1 large egg, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, kosher salt, and coarse sea salt together.
    2¼ cups all-purpose flour, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • In one addition, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed just until no flour is visible. Do not overbeat the dough or the cookies will be tough.
  • Scrape around the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure all of the flour has been incorporated.
  • Divide the dough in half and place one half on a large piece of parchment paper. Roll out the dough to be ¼-inch thick, and transfer the dough with the parchment paper to a large sheet pan.
  • Roll out the other half of the dough and place the rolled dough (with the parchment paper) on top of the first half of rolled dough on the sheet pan.
  • Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. (To freeze the cookie dough at this point, cover the rolled dough on the baking sheet with plastic wrap and foil. Freeze until ready to bake).
  • After the cookie dough has chilled, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut the rolled and chilled cookie dough into desired shapes. Place onto the prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges and bottoms are just beginning to darken.
  • Remove cookies from the oven and let cool for 1 minute on the baking sheet, then use a metal spatula to transfer cookies to a cooling rack. Repeat with remaining cookies. Allow cookies to fully cool before icing.

For the Icing

  • In a liquid measuring cup, whisk the corn syrup and water together.
    ¼ cup light corn syrup, ¼ cold water
  • In a large bowl, whisk the powdered sugar, 6 tablespoons of the corn syrup/water mixture, and the extract together (reserve the remaining corn syrup/water mixture to thin the icing, if needed).
    4 cups powdered sugar, ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Mix in enough of the white food coloring to make white icing. Pour the white icing about an inch deep into a dish slightly larger than the size of a cookie.
    Food coloring
  • Test the icing consistency by turning a cookie upside down and dipping it halfway top-down and flat into the icing. Let the icing drip off the top of the cookie, then quickly flip the cookie over and place on a wire rack. The icing should be thin enough for dipping but thick enough not to drip off the cookies. (If too thin, add a little more sugar; if too thick, add a little corn syrup/water mixture.)
  • Frost all the cookies with white icing and let them dry several hours or overnight.

How to Splatter Paint Cookies

  • Use a different food-safe paintbrush for each color.
  • When the cookies are completely dry, add several drops of one color of gel food coloring to a very small bowl. Add a tiny bit of water or vodka and mix well.
    Extra water or vodka
  • Before splattering the cookies, test the food color consistency over a piece of paper or paper towel - it should splatter easily - not too watery or thick.
  • Splatter the ‘paint’ by dipping the paintbrush in the food coloring, hold it (brush side down) over what is being splattered, and use your other hand to tap your wrist. Alternately, this is very messy but works a little better, hold the brush (brush side down) over the cookie and flick the food coloring off of the brush and onto the cookie with the tip of a finger on the opposite hand.
  • Use a different paintbrush for each color and splatter one color until done with that color, then repeat with other colors until all cookies are decorated.
  • Let cookies dry overnight before serving.


  • Don't overmix the sugar cookie dough when you add in the flour. The gluten can overdevelop and your cookies can turn out heavy and chewy.
  • Let the cookies fully cool before icing and after each layer of decoration.
  • It is best to start making these cookies 2-3 days before serving to allow the icing to completely dry.
Storage: Store splatter paint cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 1 month.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 149kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 53mg | Potassium: 12mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 165IU | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 0.4mg