Make heart-shaped 8-Bit Valentine Cookies for Valentine’s Day and decorate them with the names of your favorite video game characters!
I’m a gamer at heart. I’ve been playing video games since I was 5, and for ten years, was a video game journalist. I went to E3 every year, I wrote about games for Electronic Gaming Monthly, I appeared occasionally on G4. You know, when that was a thing.
I love Castlevania, Bioshock, everything by developer Rusty Lake, and pretty much any games with a mythological bent.
I also love cookies.
And Valentine’s Day. I love the cheesy puns and the over-the-top cuteness of the holiday, so I decided to combine all of these loves into one recipe and make heart-shaped 8-Bit Valentine Cookies decorated with the names of my favorite gaming characters.
To make them, you simply need a little bit of patience, baked sugar cookies, and royal icing.
How to Make 8-Bit Valentine Cookies
- Make the red and black royal icing. Set these aside for a few hours so they can deepen in color.
- Make sugar cookie dough and roll it out until it’s ¼” thick.
- Then, use this 8-bit heart cookie cutter by Nerdy Nummies’ Rosanna Pansino to stamp out your Valentine hearts.
- Bake the cookies until the edges are a light golden brown. Let them cool completely before decorating with royal icing.
- Fit a piping bag with a coupler and a piping tip. Fill the piping bag with black royal icing. Pipe an outline that follows the shape of the 8-bit cookie. Let dry.
- Fill a prepared piping bag with red royal icing and pipe a red line inside the heart’s black outline. Then, starting at the top of the heart and working horizontally, fill the inside of the cookie with icing. Let dry.
- Fill a prepared piping back with white royal icing and write on your favorite video game character’s name. Except Alucard. He’s spoken for.
Tips for Making Valentine Cookies
- Keep your piping tip just above the cookie. You want a line of icing that falls on the cookie. You don’t want to drag the tip across the cookie.
- Fill in any icing holes with more royal icing or by gently moving the icing using the scribe tool.
- If your icing is too thick, it won’t pipe well. (See the Dante and Peach cookies.) Place it back in the mixer and add 1 teaspoon of water.
- If your icing is too thin, return it to the mixer and add ½ tablespoon of meringue powder and ¼ cup confectioner’s sugar.
- Let the cookies dry completely before stacking or sharing them.
- Spray the valentine cookies with shellac if you don’t want to eat them but want them to last for a long time.
Tools You’ll Need to Make 8-Bit Valentine Cookies
- Rosanna Pansino 8-bit heart cookie cutter — I used this to create the cookie shape.
- Decorating bags — I fill these with royal icing.
- Round decorating tips — I used Wilton #1, and Wilton #2 to pipe the royal icing onto the cookies.
- Icing bag ties — I use these to hold the royal icing in the bag so things get less messy.
- Tip couplers — I use these to hold on the decorating tips.
- Food coloring — I used Americolor’s Red Red and Jet Black.
- Scribe tool — to fill in any holes in your icing and move icing around as needed.
- Baking sheets, parchment paper, and a rolling pin.
8-Bit Valentine CookiesPrint Recipe
- 3 Tbsp. meringue powder
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 6 Tbsp. water
- 1 bottle red food coloring
- 1 bottle black food coloring
- Place meringue powder, water, and powdered sugar in stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment. Mix for 7 minutes until soft peaks form.
- Separate royal icing into three bowls. Do not dye one bowl of icing. Cover and set it aside.
- Add red food coloring to another bowl of icing. Stir. Repeat, saturating with dye until it no longer changes color. Cover and set aside for two hours.
- Meanwhile, add black food coloring to another bowl of icing. Stir. Repeat, saturating with dye until it no longer changes color. Cover and set aside for two hours.
- Fit piping bags with couplers and a round #1 or #2 tip. Fill with royal icing and close with bag ties.
Baking and Decorating 8-Bit Cookies
- Make sugar cookie dough and roll to 1/4" thick.
- Cut out cookie shapes using 8-bit cookie cutter. Repeat until all dough has been used.
- Bake cookies until edges are light golden brown. Let cool completely.
- Pipe outline around edge of heart-shaped cookie using black royal icing. Let dry.
- Pipe red royal icing just inside black outline. Let dry.
- Fill inside of cookie with red royal icing. Let dry.
- Pipe character name on cookie with white icing. Let dry.
- For these heart-shaped Valentine cookies, I used a royal icing consistency that's between flood and piping consistency.
- To make jet black royal icing, completely saturate the icing with black food coloring, then wait. At first, the black icing was dark green, but over a few hours, it turned jet black. The red turned from mauve to heart red.
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