The holidays are almost upon us, so we’re currently getting cozy with DIY loungewear and warming up our gift-wrapping game in preparation. The only thing missing is a good cup of hot cocoa, so we grabbed a mug, added a quick DIY twist (because come on, that’s just what we do!) and topped the whole thing off with these adorable and delicious fresh-baked reindeer cookies. Keep scrolling to see how we made everything!
Let’s get your holiday hot cocoa addiction started ;)
– black charcoal mug
– white porcelain pen
– reindeer cookie cutter
– red candy noses
– instant hot chocolate packet
– 3 cups flour
– 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
– 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
– 3/4 teaspoon salt
– 1 Tablespoon ginger
– 1 Tablespoon cinnamon
– 1 teaspoon cloves
– 1/2 cup butter
– 1/2 cup brown sugar
– 1 large egg
– 1/2 cup molasses
Royal Icing Ingredients:
– powdered sugar
– 1 egg white
Decorating Your Mug
Grab the materials pictured above and the listed gingerbread and icing ingredients, and let’s get started!
These porcelain pens are so easy to use. Press the tip of the pen down repeatedly on a piece of scratch paper until the white ink starts flowing, then begin drawing your design on the mug. Don’t worry if you make a mistake — you can quickly wipe it away with a wet paper towel, dry it off and then continue your design.
To add a little extra oomph, thicken those lines by going over them a second or third time with your pen, then add your final details. Once your design is complete, let it air dry completely for 24 hours and then bake it in the oven at 300º Fahrenheit for 35 minutes to set your design. Let it cool before you use it. Hand wash your mug with a soft sponge or throw it in the dishwasher in between uses.
Using that same basic process, feel free to try your hand at some slightly more advanced designs, like this floral antler mug.
Let’s freeze-frame that for a sec and see what we’re working with. First we drew the antlers, then thickened them up, added some flowers and leaves, and then made little dots surrounding the leaves for an extra accent.
Same idea here with this monogram wreath design. Those extra little dots make everything feel a little snowier.
And for the last two designs, we had to do some straight up typography. This hot cocoa is SO hot right now.
And one last happy phrase to set the holiday mood in motion.
Gang’s all here and ready to be topped with some mini reindeer cookies! Follow the recipe below to see how it’s done.
Making the Gingerbread Reindeer
Let’s get baking! Preheat your oven to 350º Fahrenheit.
Mix together all your dry ingredients (flour through cloves) in a large bowl and set aside.
In a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until creamed.
Add egg and molasses and beat on medium speed until the mixture appears uniform in color and texture.
Add flour mixture to butter mixture and beat on low speed until the dough becomes crumbly and starts to form a ball. Divide dough in half; wrap one half in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator.
Roll out the other half of the dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/8-inch thickness.
Use the cookie cutter to cut out your little reindeer. Carefully remove them with the help of a spoon to keep the legs in tact.
Place cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and refrigerate for 30 minutes before baking. Then bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are firm.
While these are baking, grab one egg and two cups of powdered sugar for your royal icing.
Separate the yolk from the egg whites and set the yolk aside.
Mix together the egg white and powdered sugar on low in a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Increase speed to high once powdered sugar is incorporated and beat until mixture is thick and glossy, but still thin enough to be piped. Add more sugar or water to thicken or thin the icing.
Once the cookies are baked and still warm, cut out little notches in the belly of each reindeer so that they will sit nicely on the edge of your mug. Note: If cookies cool before you’ve cut these notches, dip a sharp knife in hot water before cutting to reduce crumbs and breakage.
Place your royal icing in a plastic bag and snip off the corner to pipe onto your reindeer. Then top them off with a cute red candy nose!
Repeat this process for more batches with the rest of your chilled dough. You should be able to get about three to four dozen reindeer cookies from one batch.
Grab a few of our Reindeer Topped Mug Kits and invite your best friends over for a mug AND reindeer cookie decorating party!
The possibilities are endless as to what mug designs you can create!
What other holiday treats are you cooking up this season? Tell us in the comments below.
DIY, Food Production and Styling: Lee Schellenberger
Photography: Brittany Griffin and Chris Andre