Hard Glaze for Cookies

star rating (6) rate this recipe »
dairy free, quick-n-easy
Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Total time:
Yield: 1 1/4 cups

Recipe photo

This smooth, shiny glaze is ideal for cookies that will be decorated with food-safe pens. It covers cookies very well (the color of your dark gingerbread won't show through), and dries to a hard enough finish that iced cookies can be stacked on top of each other (perfect for storage or for putting into a holiday gift basket). Try building on the base layer of coating with an outline or decorations in a contrasting color.

Hard Glaze for Cookies

star rating (6) rate this recipe »
dairy free, quick-n-easy
Hands-on time:
Total time:
Yield: 1 1/4 cups
Published: 01/01/2010


  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup meringue powder
  • 3 to 4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup cool water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Food color or paste

Tips from our bakers

  • To color this glaze, add food color or paste a drop at a time, and stir until the color is evenly distributed. To make the color deeper, repeat until you have the hue you're looking for.
  • Keep the glaze tightly covered when not in use; if left uncovered the top will begin to dry and make chunks.


1) In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the meringue powder, salt, and confectioners' sugar. Add 1/3 cup cool water and the vanilla and stir, or beat on slow speed. The mixture will seem hard and lumpy, but the sugar will dissolve after 4 or 5 minutes and everything will smooth out.

2) Add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing well after each addition to achieve a spreadable consistency. For a very smooth, shiny glaze, the icing should be the consistency of corn syrup or molasses.

3) To use, dip the tops of cooled cookies in the glaze, then sweep a spatula over them to remove the excess. Place the cookies on a rack for several hours for the glaze to harden and dry. This may take as long as overnight, depending on the humidity of your kitchen and the consistency of the glaze.

Yield: 1 1/4 cups glaze.

Nutrition information

Serving Size: 2 teaspoons Servings Per Batch: 36 Amount Per Serving: Calories: 46 Calories from Fat: 0 Total Fat: 0g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 21mg Total Carbohydrate: 12g Dietary Fiber: 0g Sugars: 11g Protein: 0g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.


  • star rating 04/12/2014
  • David from East Boston, MA
  • Omg...wonderful
  • star rating 12/14/2011
  • mntypythn3077 from KAF Community
  • Super easy and tasty, I didn't even get out the mixer for this recipe, just a bowl and whisk. I used the glaze on the lightly spiced cut out cookies. The cookies have a shiny and smooth finish. I bet it would be really good with a little fiori di sicilia in it too.
  • star rating 12/13/2010
  • lari29 from KAF Community
  • Easy recipe! I never made icing before or even decorated cookies with store-bought icing. Very straightforward. The icing dried quickly as well. I used it for light spice holiday cookies and the icing tastes great with it. Thanks to you, I am no longer afraid to decorate cookies with homemade icing!
  • star rating 03/31/2010
  • Susan from Texas
  • I've used this recipe for my sugar cookies and it works great.
  • 02/09/2010
  • Angela from TX
  • I don't have any meringue powder - is there any substitution?
    Please call our hotline for substitution assistance: 800-827-6836. Frank @ KAF.
  • star rating 10/17/2009
  • Georgia from Illinois
  • Another recipe straight to my favorites box. The hints given in the sidebar were particularly helpful. In the past, I've tried spreading a glaze with both a spoon and an offset spatula with varying degrees of success. Dipping the surface of the cookie and then wiping the excess with a spatula while holding the cookie upside down produced 36 perfect cookies in a row! I didn't try piping. I'll save that for Christmas.

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