No Thanks
Let

Keep In Touch With MarthaStewart.com

Sign up and we'll send inspiration straight to you.

Martha Stewart takes your privacy seriously. To learn more, please read our Privacy Policy.

Martha's Favorite

Martha's Favorite

Fireworks Cookies

Put on a show with a display of these patriotic cookies.

  • yield: Makes about 7 dozen 1 3/4-inch cookies, 5 dozen 2 1/4-inch cookies, 30 2 3/4-inch cookies, or 13 3 1/2-inch cookies

Ingredients

FOR THE COOKIES

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

FOR DECORATING THE COOKIES

Cook's Note

Cookie dough can be refrigerated for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw before using. Storage: Decorated cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Make the cookies: Sift flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt into a large bowl.

  2. Step 2

    Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture, then vanilla. Refrigerate dough, wrapped in plastic wrap, for at least 1 hour.

  3. Step 3

    Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Roll out dough to a scant 1/4-inch thickness on a floured surface. Cut out cookies using a 1 3/4-, 2 1/4-, 2 3/4-, or 3 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, rerolling scraps once. Transfer to a baking sheet. Refrigerate until firm, about 30 minutes.

  4. Step 4

    Bake until edges just start to brown, 17 to 19 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack, and let cool completely.

  5. Step 5

    Decorate the cookies: Pipe an outline of white icing around edge of 1 cookie, leaving a 1/4-inch border, then "flood" with more white icing to cover.

  6. Step 6

    Immediately pipe a red or blue dot in the center of cookie. Then pipe concentric rings of colors around the center dot (using the same color as the dot, or alternating colors).

  7. Step 7

    Immediately drag a toothpick through the colors to create bursts, starting from the center dot and working toward the edge, then alternate dragging inward and outward as you work around the cookie. (Or drag around the cookie in 1 direction or curve the lines for a pinwheel effect.) Let dry. Repeat with remaining cookies and icings.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, July 2011

Reviews (8)

  • 4 Jul, 2013

    I am a seasoned baker and these have to be the worst cookies I have ever made. The dough was extremely dry so I tried to fix it, but it didn't work. Because they were dry, once they were cooked, they were very hard. (I dropped one and it shattered into pieces!) After I saw how the cookies turned out, I didn't even want to waste my time making the frosting. I am sad to say that I didn't bring them to the event I was going to and I probably will never make another Martha Stewart recipe again!

  • 20 Jul, 2012

    I made these cookies for the 4th, and they were a big success! Because everyone else didn't like the frosting recipe, i just searched for a royal icing recipe and that worked. The cookie part was delicious! When doing the design part, spread the frosting on the cookie and QUICKLY drag the toothpick through! Good Luck

  • 11 Jul, 2011

    I agree something is wrong with the frosting recipe-it does not set up on the cookies. They taste like meringue. This would probably work on cupcakes as is. There is too much water, or not enough powdered sugar. We were disappointed to not to be able to take these cookies to our picnic. They look lovely but crumple when picked up and taste not so good.

  • 6 Jul, 2011

    The icing recipe is incorrect! It should be 2 lbs sifted powder sugar, not 1 lb!!! I (like Ly1) made this for a 4th potluck, and almost cried at the merangue, sticky tops. I still served them (they tasted fine), but they were messy. This was the first time I used a different royal icing recipe that I normally use, mainly because the mag was on my counter when I was making the icing. They did look fantastic, and I will make them again - just with the correct icing recipe!

  • 5 Jul, 2011

    Frosting recipe was too thick and when I tried to dilute with water my frosting separated on me! Next time, buying store bought cookies so I can save energy for getting frosting right. Decorating was REALLY fun and I was shocked how good they looked- mess-ups and all. If I put each color frosting into a ziplock bag and cut the corner I could refill my squeez bottles easily. Mix gel coloring thoroughly or it will come back to haunt you as beading splotches. Pretty enough to try again!

  • 4 Jul, 2011

    Did this design on cupcakes! They are so beautiful! Thanks Martha!

  • 3 Jul, 2011

    I made these for my dad for father's day. They were so yummy! My dad was amazed by the firework pattern. I didn't have gel colors so I used regular liquid food coloring. It wasn't as bright, but it looked cool anyway.

    I thought the icing recipe worked really well. It didn't flow all the way to the edges of the outline on its own, but it spread quite easily, and I didn't have to dilute it after I did the outlines. It was my first time "flooding" and it turned out great with this recipe.

  • 3 Jul, 2011

    Just made these, whatever you do DO NOT use the frosting recipe...it's a meringue consistency, doesn't flow well and it is incredibly hard to work. Just make regular royal icing with enough water added to flow. This is a cute idea, but with this frosting recipe...NOT worth it. Now I'm back to the drawing board for our neighborhood 4th of July picnic this afternoon. Could cry really.