Adorable, festive, and colorful, these bunny sugar cookies are inspired by everyone’s favorite marshmallow Easter candy. A list of simple tools and plenty of icing options included!
Inspired by Easter’s cutest marshmallows, these bunny sugar cookies will undoubtedly bring some colorful cheer to your kitchens. Remember when I asked what baking means to you? Many of you, myself included, said that baking is a therapeutic release– especially getting creative and decorating cakes, cookies, and cupcakes. So while we’re making an adorable Easter treat, we’re simultaneously soothing our souls. Thanks, bunny cookies.
These PEEPS Inspired Bunny Sugar Cookies Are:
- the cutest cookies around
- a fun, kid-friendly Easter project
- super simple to decorate
- made from my soft sugar cookies
- easy to freeze
The One and Only Cut-Out Sugar Cookie Recipe
Sugar cookie success is in your near future. I use and depend on one single recipe for all of my cookie cutter sugar cookies. If you haven’t tried my sugar cookies yet, you’re in for a real treat. Loved by many, these sugar cookies are soft and thick with an irresistible buttery vanilla flavor. They hold their shape and have a flat surface for decorating. They’re a classic recipe to keep in your back pocket for regular use, just like chocolate chip cookies and pie crust.
- The dough comes together with only a handful of basic ingredients. After that, roll the dough out and chill the rolled out sections of dough. Cut the chilled dough into shapes and bake.
You could also use my chocolate sugar cookies as the base!
The Trick is the Order of Steps
Notice how I roll out the dough BEFORE chilling it in the refrigerator? That’s the trick. To prevent the cookies from over-spreading, the cookie dough must be refrigerated. Roll the dough out right after you prepare it, then chill it. (At this point the dough is too soft to cut into shapes.) Don’t chill the cookie dough and then try to roll it out because it will be too cold to work with. I divide the dough in half before rolling it out and highly recommend you do the same. Smaller sections of dough are much more manageable.
Another trick! Roll out the cookie dough directly on a silicone baking mat or parchment paper so you can easily transfer it to the refrigerator. Pick it up, put it on a baking sheet, and place it in the refrigerator. If you don’t have enough room for two baking sheets in your refrigerator, stack the pieces of rolled out dough on top of each other.
I’m making and decorating heart-shaped sugar cookies in this video, but the cookie recipe and process is the same!
3 Icing Options
Without any intricate designs, decorating these bunnies is a breeze. You have 3 icing options depending on your skill level and ingredients available. All we’re doing is applying 1 layer of white icing, topping with sanding sugar sprinkles, and adding tiny dots of melted chocolate for the eyes and nose.
- Royal Icing: Royal icing is the gold standard for decorating sugar cookies. My recipe is fairly simple, easy to work with, tastes sweet, and isn’t cement-hard.
- Easy Glaze Icing: This easy cookie icing is easier to make than royal icing. However, it doesn’t provide the same sharp detail. It also takes a good 24 hours to dry.
- Vanilla Buttercream: A half batch of my vanilla buttercream is plenty to decorate today’s batch of bunny sugar cookies. You can see how we decorate these shamrock sugar cookies with buttercream. It doesn’t completely dry, so stacking the decorated cookies isn’t ideal.
I used my royal icing on the pictured cookies. The taste reminds me of marshmallows, so it’s perfect for these PEEPS inspired bunny sugar cookies!
What You Need for Bunny Sugar Cookies
There are many options if you can’t shop online or get to the store. Some of the following links are affiliate links.
- Handheld or Stand Mixer
- Rolling Pin
- Bunny Cookie Cutters – Here are the exact cookie cutters I used for these photos. I used the small and medium sizes. You can use any bunny cutter cutters you have. I also love these for Easter! If you can’t get bunny cookie cutters, use any shape you have. While your cookies won’t be bunnies, you can still use icing and sanding sugar.
- Sanding Sugar Sprinkles – These are sold in most grocery stores in the baking aisle. You can also order them online. I like Wilton or CK Products brands. Any sprinkles are fun, but the sanding sugar sprinkles help the cookies resemble PEEPS.
- If you’re decorating with royal icing, you need: Piping bags (reusable or disposable), Wilton round piping tip #3 for the icing, and Wilton round piping tip #1 for the chocolate eyes and nose. You can also skip the piping bags and tips and dip the tops of the cookies into the royal icing. This is what I do for my animal cracker cookies.
- If you’re decorating with my easy glaze icing, you need: A squeeze bottle. This works wonderfully to apply the easy cookie icing. It’s a little too large for the chocolate eyes and nose, so you can skip the face or use the piping tip listed above.
- If you’re decorating with vanilla buttercream, you need: A knife or small icing spatula. So simple.
And, of course, baking sheets and parchment paper. (Or silicone baking mats.) I always use my Nordic Ware or USA Pan half baking sheets for cookies.
Feel free to skip the chocolate eyes and nose. You need a piping bag and super tiny piping tip, linked above. Make sure the chocolate isn’t too warm or it could melt the piping bag (if yours is plastic). They’re adorable even without a little face!Print
Using my tried and true sugar cookies recipe, these adorably festive bunny sugar cookies resemble everyone’s favorite Easter marshmallow candies. Watch the video tutorial above and read through the recipe before beginning.
- 2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)*
- your choice of icing (see recipe notes)
- sanding sugar sprinkles
- 2 ounces (55g) semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped*
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be relatively soft. If the dough seems too soft and sticky for rolling, add 1 Tablespoon more flour. If the dough seems crumbly, keep mixing it. It will eventually come together.
- Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Place each portion onto a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.
- Lightly dust one of the rolled-out doughs with flour. Place a piece of parchment on top. (This prevents sticking.) Place the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. Cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days.
- Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Carefully remove the top dough piece from the refrigerator. If it’s sticking to the bottom, run your hand under it to help remove it– see me do this in the video above. Using a bunny cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes. Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd piece of dough.
- Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 11-12 minutes or until very lightly browned around the edges. If your oven has hot spots, rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.
- Decorate the cooled cookies with royal icing, easy cookie icing, or a half batch of vanilla buttercream. See post above for recommended decorating tools. Sprinkle the wet icing/buttercream with sanding sugar sprinkles. (I usually do this over a plate so I can reuse any sprinkles that fall off.) Don’t go too heavy on the sprinkles because you’ll have a hard time piping on the chocolate eyes and nose. Allow icing to set completely. No need to cover the decorated cookies as you wait for the icing to set. If it’s helpful, decorate the cookies directly on a baking sheet so you can stick the entire baking sheet in the refrigerator to help speed up the icing setting.
- For the optional chocolate bunny faces: Melt the chopped chocolate in a double boiler or the microwave. If using the microwave: place the chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl. Melt in 20 second increments in the microwave, stirring after each increment until completely melted and smooth. Let the warm chocolate cool for 5-10 minutes. Spoon chocolate into a piping bag fitted with the small Wilton round piping tip #1. Carefully pipe 3 tiny dots to form the bunny eyes and nose. Enjoy right away or wait for the chocolate to set.
- Plain or decorated cookies stay soft for about 5 days when covered tightly at room temperature. For longer storage, cover and refrigerate for up to 10 days.
- Freezing Instructions: Plain or decorated sugar cookies freeze well up to 3 months. Wait for the icing to set completely before layering between sheets of parchment paper in a freezer-friendly container. You can freeze buttercream topped sugar cookies, but I don’t recommend layering them since the frosting doesn’t completely set. To thaw the cookies, thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature. You can also freeze the cookie dough for up to 3 months before rolling it out. Prepare the dough through step 3, divide in half, flatten both halves into a disk as we do with pie crust, wrap each in plastic wrap, then freeze. To thaw, thaw the disks in the refrigerator, then bring to room temperature for about 1 hour. Roll out the dough as directed in step 4, then chill rolled out dough in the refrigerator for 45 minutes – 1 hour before cutting into shapes and baking.
- Room Temperature: Room temperature butter is essential and room temperature egg is preferred so it’s quickly and evenly mixed into the cookie dough.
- Flavors: I love flavoring this cookie dough with 1/2 teaspoon almond extract as listed in the ingredients above. For lighter flavor, use 1/4 teaspoon. Instead of the almond extract, try using 1 teaspoon of maple extract, coconut extract, lemon extract, or peppermint extract. Or add 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon. Along with lemon extract, you can also add 1 Tablespoon lemon zest.
- Icing: Depending on your skill level or ingredients available (or time you have!), you can use my full royal icing recipe or my full easy cookie icing recipe to decorate these cookies. You can also use a half batch of my vanilla buttercream. See post above to read about the differences.
- Chocolate Eyes & Nose: Adding the little bunny faces is optional. You need 2 ounces of “baking chocolate” bars found in the baking aisle. They’re sold in 4 ounce bars, so you will use half. I prefer Bakers or Ghirardelli brands. You can also use and melt candy melts, chocolate dipping wafers, or chocolate chips. If using chocolate chips, melt them down with 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil to smooth them out.
Keywords: Easter, easter bunny, sugar cookies, cookies