Chinese Character Painted Cookies

toddler hands holding plate with 2 cookies decorated with Chinese characters

Chinese Character Painted Cookies are a fun activity to learn Chinese. Cooking is a necessary life skill that I like to incorporate into our daily activities. It doesn’t matter how smart and successful a person is, they still need to eat! And cooking can be a very relaxing activity.

I love pretty decorated cookies, but don’t like that the amount of sugar icing needed to make them. So I searched online for a way to decorate cookies without icing and found a super simple way to make cookie paint with just 2 ingredients. I was skeptical that the paint would work but it was easy enough for the kids to use and the colors came vibrant. This is definitely something we’ll do again. With higher quality colors the results will be even better!

Chinese Character Painted Cookies


  1. Separate egg yolk into small dishes or a cleaned paint tray. One yolk is more than enough for an entire batch of cookies.
  2. Add a couple of drops of food coloring to each portion of yolk and mix well.
  3. Roll out your cookie dough according to recipe/package instructions. Cut out desired shapes.
  4. Use a fine paintbrush to write the Chinese characters onto the cookies.
  5. Bake according to recipe/package instructions.


Food coloring comes in a wide variety of options. For this first batch, I used the cheap food coloring I bought for our home science experiments. I was surprised by how well the colors turned out. For our next batch of cookies, I will experiment with gel food colors for shimmery metallic colors or powdered food coloring for more intense colors.

After cutting out your shapes, the leftover dough can be used for thumbprint cookies. The kids had lots of fun making those. The dough is edible play dough!

decorated sugar cookies on a baking tray

toddler hands holding decorated sugar cookie


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Hope you enjoyed this post. Check out these other fun activities to learn Chinese.

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