Clementine Spice Sugar Cookies


  • Prep Time15 mins
  • Total Time1 hr 15 mins
  • Makes30 cookies
*PLUS extra time for drying
Clementine Spice Sugar Cookies

Produced by Sun Ngo; Photography by Maya Visnyei; Food Styling by Eshun Mott; Prop Styling by Catherine Doherty, Lustre Dust by Jenna Rae Cakes,

This customizable cookie is made of sugar, spice and everything nostalgic. Lustre dust and vodka—yes, vodka—are the secret to their gorgeous finish.


  • 1 cup butter, softened

  • 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar

  • zest of 5 clementines, divided

  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice

  • 1 egg

  • 1 egg yolk

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 3 cups (375 g) all-purpose flour


  • 3 1⁄2 cups icing sugar

  • 2 tbsp meringue powder

  • 8 to 9 tbsp water

  • gel food dye

  • 1 to 2 tbsp vodka

  • lustre dust


  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine butter, sugar, zest of 3 clementines and spices. With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream the ingredients until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 min.

  • Add egg, yolk, salt and vanilla. Mix to combine.

  • After eggs are incorporated, scrape down the bowl and add baking powder and flour, mixing until just combined.

  • Flatten dough into a disk and refrigerate for 2 hrs or up to 3 days.

  • When you’re ready to bake, preheat oven to 325F.

  • Allow dough to soften slightly on the counter and roll to 1⁄4-in. thickness, then cut out your desired shapes and place on a silicone- or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 15 min, or until the edges just start to turn golden, turning sheet halfway through. Let cool completely before icing.

  • Icing: While cookies are cooling, use an electric mixer in a mixing bowl to combine icing sugar, meringue powder and 5 tbsp water. Beat until stiff peaks form, adding drops of gel food dye until desired colour is achieved. Cover with a damp paper towel and plastic wrap until ready to use.

  • When ready, reserve 1 cup of icing in a separate bowl. Add remaining zest to original mixing bowl. Mix in remaining 3 to 4 tbsp water, one at a time, until you reach a “flooding” consistency (icing should ribbon on surface, then level out smoothly when drizzled). Transfer thicker icing and flooding icing to separate piping bags.

  • Pipe a thin line of thicker icing around edge of each cookie, then fill with flooding icing, using a toothpick to spread and smooth if needed. Let dry. Leftover icing will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.

  • To paint: Mix lustre dust and vodka in a small bowl to a paint-like consistency. (Add dust or vodka as needed.) Paint cookies in various brush strokes and colours, as desired. Allow cookies to dry, 5 to 6 min.

Decorating tip

You don’t have to be a pro to decorate these treats. Mix up your brush strokes, swipe on a little gel food dye or sprinkle with lustre dust or gold flakes.

Find more of our best holiday cookie recipes, from Whipped Shortbread to Classic Nanaimo Bars.

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