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How to make Royal Icing

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Use this tutorial on how to make royal icing recipe for piping and decorating sugar cookies. This quick and easy cookie icing dries hard and tastes great.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Servings 1 cup
Calories 976
Author CakeWhiz


  • 1 1/2 tbsp Meringue powder
  • 3 tbsp Warm water NOT hot
  • 1/2 tbsp Light corn syrup
  • 2 cups Powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract


  • In a deep bowl, add meringue powder and warm water.
  • Beat this for about 1 minute until you have a white and frothy mixture.
  • Add powdered sugar, corn syrup and vanilla extract and start mixing at medium to medium-high speed.
  • Continue mixing until your icing becomes thick and peaks start forming, as shown in this picture. This usually takes about 5 minutes of mixing at high speed.
    Note: This icing is at the “thick consistency stage.” You can add some water to thin it out if you need your icing to be thinner. Please remember that a little water goes a LONG way. Add only 1/4 tsp water at a time and make sure to mix properly again.
  • You can now color your icing with gel colors. Use a toothpick to add gel colors into your icing.
  • Mix with a spoon until the color is fully blended into your icing.Note: The color of your icings will get deeper and better the longer they sit.
  • This icing dries very quickly, if exposed to air. Make sure you store it in a plastic container with a tight lid.
  • Also, cover your entire container in saran wrap.



  • Use this icing immediately for your decorations OR allow it to sit at room temperature (fully sealed) until needed.
  • Use within 1 week. But, remember that you will have to whip it again because this icing has a tendency to separate into sugar and water, the longer it sits.
  • This is a small batch royal icing recipe and yields about 1 1/2 cups of icing. It’s great for times when you just need to decorate a few cookies.
  • Recipe can easily be doubled or tripled. 
  • Outline icing should be the consistency of toothpaste and filling or flooding icing should be the consistency of corn syrup.
  • For true white icing, use clear extract to avoid discoloration OR use white gel coloring. 


Calories: 976kcal | Carbohydrates: 248g | Sodium: 14mg | Sugar: 243g