Cookie Decorating for All Ages

I do an annual cookie decorating program that’s a huge hit in my community! I usually do it in the winter and have a winter theme, but you could do it anytime of year. I’ve learned a ton over the past decade and make tiny improvements each year. Here’s what I learned and how you can run it fool-proof. You’ll need a few weeks lead-time for the bakery and liquor store, and I always get teen volunteers to help setup and cleanup. I contact my local high school’s Acts of Kindness Club and they donate their time to be used toward volunteer hours for graduation requirements.

Family Day in action

List of supplies: Total cost about $125.00 ($75 for supplies, and $50 for cookies)

  • 80 cookies (ordered from local bakery-I have them match my theme: ginerbread men, mittens, snowman, etc.)
  • Beer flats donated from local liquor store (Most important part! This keeps the mess inside these little boxes. No cleaning up sprinkles all over the floor!)
  • 4 14 oz bags of M&Ms
  • 1 24 oz bag of raisins
  • 2 75’ rolls of waxed paper
  • 8 cans of white frosting
  • 4 cans of sprinkles
  • 6 tablecloths or wrapping paper to wrap 6 tables (at least 48 feet/16 yards)
  • 100 plastic knives or spoons (grocery store doesn’t always have just knives in bulk)
  • 25 plastic spoons (for dividing up supplies)
  • 100 napkins
  • 200 mini cups (1x for frosting, 1x for goodies)
  • Baby wipes x 6 for each table
  • Gloves to prepare food with

Family Day Cookies (3)

Family Day Cookies (4)

Family Day Cookies (2)

Family Day mms

Family Day frosting


Before the program:

  • Line each cardboard flat with wax paper.
  • Each can of frosting fills 10 cups = 80 cups
  • Each bag of M&Ms/sprinkles/raisins fills 20 cups = 80 cups

Keep all empty food containers so families with food allergies can check ingredients labels.

Family Day 1 cookie

Family Day 2 cookies

  • Each flat will have:
    • 1 cookie
    • 1 napkin
    • 1 spoon or knife (whichever is readily available at the store)
    • 1 cup of frosting
    • 1 cup of M&Ms/sprinkles/raisins
  • You can mix the cardboard flats to have either 1 setup or 2 setup (just make sure you have 2 of everything!)
  • Stack the flats in rows in the alcove by the door where the garbage can is.

Family Day Stacked Up

During the program:

  • As a child leaves the table, clean up their flat. Throw away any extra frosting/candy DO NOT LET OTHERS EAT THEIR LEFTOVERS
  • Place a new cardboard flat on the table so a new child can sit in his place.

Family Day Cookies (6)

Family Day Cookies (1)

If you have any extras, you can use gallon-size bags to made classroom packs for local preschools. My outreach locations occasionally get a little extra-special treat and they are grateful!

This is a huge hit in the community, and lots of community are involved with the program. A win-win!

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