An Amateur’s Guide to Decorating Marvel Cookies

Baking, Cook, How-To, Learn, Williams-Sonoma Test Kitchen

It’s no surprise our Marvel Hero cookie cutters are a hit among customers — they’re fun and easy to use, and I can’t think of a cuter treat for a kid’s birthday party.


Each cutter stamps details of the superheroes’ faces into the cookie dough, providing a template for piping the accents. Our decorating guide is a great resource for getting started, but don’t be intimidated by the detail required if cookie decorating isn’t your forte. I experimented with the cutters to simplify the process, proving that you don’t have to be a professional to achieve great results.


Here’s how I decorated the Marvel cookies with just two pastry bags and a little bit of imagination.


Mix the dough. I used Williams-Sonoma’s basic sugar cookie recipe and refrigerated the dough for about half an hour before rolling it out. Then I rolled the dough out about 1/4-inch thick on a floured work surface.


Cut the cookies. This is the fun part! Use the cutters to stamp superhero shapes into the dough — it’s amazing how defined the details are.


Bake the cookies. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely before decorating.


Mix and color your icing. While the cookies are baking and cooling, mix your icing. I made a big batch of royal icing, which is a perfect consistency for spreading and piping. Though the official guide calls for many different hues of icing, I narrowed it down, mixing the four necessary colors in large ramekins (in addition to black and white).


I mixed red for Spider-Man, green for The Hulk, bright blue for Captain America and red and yellow/tan for Iron Man. I just kept adding food coloring until the icing reached the desired shade. For best results, use food pastes — they work better than traditional liquid food coloring to achieve bright colors.


I reserved some of the original icing for white, but making the black was a little trickier. Strongly brewed coffee and cocoa powder helped to create a deep black/brown shade. I filled one pastry bag with white icing and a second bag with the black, so that all of my piping was done in black and white. It sounds small, but that decision made decorating much faster and easier.


Keep it simple. If you don’t have time or don’t want to mix colors at all, you don’t have to. Pipe dark icing along the details created by the cutters, and the superheroes will still look fantastic.


Get crafty. If you do want to incorporate colors, here’s a fast and easy way to do so. I used a small offset spatula (a woefully undeappreciated kitchen tool!) to spread the color on the surface of the cookie first, so I could keep the black and white icings in my piping bags.


I spread the colors on the designated portions of the cookies, using professional images as a loose template. Don’t worry if you smear the edges a bit; you can cover up imperfections once you start piping in black and white.


Let the base color dry for several minutes, then pipe the details on top. Again, consulting other photos helps during this process, because the base color may have concealed some of the details.


Enjoy! Remember, these cookies can be as simple or as involved as you like, so have fun with them.


See what some of our customers have been making with our Marvel cookie cutters!




Photo Credits

Top left: Lydia Chin, Cookies and Cravings and Calories, Oh My…

Top right: Jennifer Jolicoeur

Bottom left: Susie Petitti Tilton

Bottom right: Leila Edwards Harris


About the authorOlivia Terenzio grew up in Mississippi, where she cultivated a love of sweet potatoes, crawfish and cloth napkins at a young age. A passion for sharing food with friends and family led her into the kitchen and later to culinary school, where she learned how to roast a chicken and decorate a cake like a pro. As a Williams-Sonoma blog editor, she’s now lucky enough to be talking, writing and thinking about food all day.

5 comments about “An Amateur’s Guide to Decorating Marvel Cookies

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  2. Heather Noteboom

    I was wondering exactly how you made the black food coloring. I am in the process of trying to make black fondant and was wondering about your coffee method because it could do the trick.

  3. Olivia Ware Post author

    Heather, I used instant coffee and cocoa powder to make the black color (which is really more like a very, very dark brown). I mixed a tiny bit of hot water with the instant coffee so it was very concentrated, then added cocoa powder and the coffee to the white icing until I reached the desired color. Good luck!

  4. Lydia Chin

    How thrilled was I to see that my cookies made it on this blog! I absolutely love the WS theme cutters, I have them all, including the Star Wars one I featured on my blog as well!

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