Conversation Heart Cookies

24 Servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Chill Dough 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 21 minutes

Easy Conversation Heart Cookies are perfect for Valentine’s Day parties at school or home. Crunchy and colorful, these are super fun to make!

These adorable Rolled Sugar Cookies are perfect for parties, bake sales, or simply indulging your sweet tooth. If you’re in the mood for more Valentine-themed dessert ideas, consider trying out our Valentine’s Day Red Velvet Cupcakes or Valentine’s Day Iced Strawberry Brownies for a fun and festive Dessert.

Sabrina’s Conversation Heart Cookies Recipe

These Conversation Heart Cookies not only taste amazing but are great to make with the whole family! Inspired by the classic conversation heart candies we used to give and receive as kids, the recipe starts with a straightforward process using common pantry staples to create buttery sugar cookies.

After cutting them into charming heart shapes for that festive touch, bake them until they’re delightfully crisp without being overly hard. The crowning glory of these cookies is the royal icing, which adds a burst of vibrant color and an extra layer of sweetness. What’s especially wonderful about royal icing is that it sets and hardens as it dries, making it ideal for drawing and writing notes because the colors stay precisely where you want them on these iced cookies!

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  • 1 ½ cups Unsalted Butter: Begin with softened, unsalted butter to ensure a smooth creaming process with the granulated sugar. However, for the ideal cookie texture, it’s advisable to bake the cookies with chilled butter. To achieve this, it’s recommended to let the dough rest and chill for a couple of hours before baking, allowing the fat in the butter to firm up before it goes into the oven.
  • 3 cups Sugar: Sugar adds sweetness to the cookies, creating that perfect balance between sweet and buttery. 
  • 4 large Eggs: Large eggs provide structure and moisture to the cookie dough, helping bind the ingredients together.  
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract enhances the flavor of the cookies, giving them a delightful aroma.  
  • 5 cups Flour: Flour forms the main structure of the cookie dough. You can use all-purpose or pastry flour, but avoid self-rising flour.
  • 2 teaspoons Baking Powder: Baking powder helps the cookies rise and become slightly fluffy.  
  • 1 teaspoon Salt: Salt enhances the flavor of the cookies and balances the sweetness. 

Royal Icing Recipe:

  • ¼ cup Meringue Powder: Meringue powder is essential for creating a stable and firm icing that can be piped and holds its shape well.  
  • 2/3 cup Water: Water is used to dissolve the meringue powder and thin the icing to the desired consistency.
  • 5 cups Powdered Sugar: Powdered sugar is the primary sweetener and thickening agent for the icing. Sift it to avoid lumps.
  • Assorted Food Coloring (4-6 drops per color): Use gel or liquid food coloring based on your preference, adjusting the quantity for the desired color intensity.
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Kitchen Tools and Equipment

  • Bowls: Essential for combining ingredients, choose various sizes to accommodate different steps of the recipe. Use glass or stainless steel bowls for easy cleaning and temperature control. Use medium bowls to hold the various colors of icing. 
  • Rolling Pin: Required for rolling out the cookie dough to a uniform thickness. A wooden rolling pin works well, and you can dust it with powdered sugar to prevent sticking.
  • Cookie Cutters: Heart-shaped cookie cutters are central to this recipe. Ensure you have a variety of sizes for creative options.
  • Parchment Paper: Line your baking sheets with parchment paper to prevent cookies from sticking and make cleanup a breeze. You can also use a silicone baking mat if preferred. 
  • Piping Bag and Tips: A piping bag with a #5 tip for outlining and larger tips for filling with icing is handy for decorating the cookies. If you don’t have a piping bag, you can use a resealable plastic bag with a corner snipped off as an alternative.
  • Stand Mixer: While not absolutely necessary, a stand mixer (electric mixer) can greatly simplify the mixing process, especially for the cookie dough. It ensures thorough and consistent mixing. If using a stand mixer, be sure to use the appropriate attachments for creaming the butter and sugar, as well as for preparing the royal icing.
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How to Make Conversation Heart Cookies

Time needed: 1 hour and 21 minutes.

  1. Step 1: Prepare the Cookie Dough

    Start with the wet ingredients. Beat butter with sugar until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla extract, mixing well. Stir in the other dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, and salt) until fully combined and the dough forms. Chill the flour mixture for at least an hour.dusting dough with powdered sugar

  2. Step 2: Shape and Bake the Cookies

    Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll out the chilled dough on a powdered sugar-dusted surface (avoid a floured surface). Use heart-shaped cookie cutters to create your desired shapes. Carefully transfer cookies to parchment-lined baking sheets or waxed paper. Bake for 6-8 minutes until edges are lightly golden brown. Allow to cool on a wire rack.cutting shapes into flattened dough with heart shaped cutter

  3. Step 3: Prepare the Royal Icing

    While the cookies cook, in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine meringue powder and water until well-mixed. Gradually add powdered sugar and mix until stiff peaks form. Reserve a portion for piping and add food coloring to the rest for filling. Add your chosen colors to each bowl of icing making sure to reserve one as all white. 6 heart shaped cooked cookies on a baking sheet

  4. Step 4: Decorate the Cookies

    Use a #5 tip on a piping bag to outline the cookies with icing colors. Fill in the shapes with colored icing, leaving a border. Allow the first layer to dry for 2 hours if layering colors. Use white royal icing for writing or additional decorations. Add any desired sprinkles or edible decorations before icing sets.decorating heart shaped cookies

  5. Step 5: Share and Enjoy

    Once the icing has fully set, share your homemade Conversation Heart Sugar Cookies with loved ones or package them beautifully for gifting. Enjoy baked cookies!decorated heart shaped cookies with phrases like Love, XOXO, I*heart*U, DM, Be Mine

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Can This Be Made Ahead?

Yes, these Conversation Heart Cookies can be made ahead of time. You can prepare the cookie dough and chill it overnight in the refrigerator. Additionally, you can bake the cookies and store them in an airtight container for 2 days before decorating with royal icing to maintain freshness and flavor.

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Nutritional Facts

Nutrition Facts
Conversation Heart Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 411 Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value*
Fat 13g20%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Trans Fat 0.5g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 62mg21%
Sodium 152mg7%
Potassium 45mg1%
Carbohydrates 72g24%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 50g56%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 400IU8%
Calcium 33mg3%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Tips for Conversation Heart Cookies

Family Baking Activity

Conversation Heart Cookies Recipe are a delightful baking project that the whole family can enjoy. Let your kids help prepare the classic sugar cookie dough, blending butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a stand mixer or you do it with beaters. Kids can sift the flour, baking powder, and a pinch of salt, then you add it in to keep it mess free for a perfect cookie base. Kids of all ages will love shaping the dough into heart shapes and bake. Once you mix the icing, divide into bowls and let others add the food coloring for a fun, playful touch.

Have a Cookie Decorating Station

This activity is a fun and engaging way for kids and adults alike to get creative at your Valentine’s Day party. Use piping to outline the cookies beforehand. Prepare the icing in different colors in bags and set out cookie decorations like candies, heart shaped decorations and edible glitter. Let guests fill in the cookie outline with their chosen colors and top them off with heart-shaped decorations. If you want to add decorative elements like a touch of glitter, do it before the icing sets. For edible decorations, use the icing as glue.

Gift the Cookies

After baking and decorating, share these homemade treats at Valentine’s Day parties or package the decorated sugar cookies beautifully in plastic bags with ribbons to give as fun gifts.

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How to Store Heart Cookies


To keep your Conversation Heart Cookies fresh, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days. Layer parchment paper between the cookies to prevent sticking and maintain their texture. They’ll stay good in the fridge for about 7 days. 


To freeze leftover cookies, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Then, transfer them to an airtight container with parchment paper between layers. They can be frozen for up to 2-3 months. When ready to enjoy, let them thaw at room temperature for a few hours.

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Frequent Questions

Can I use salted butter instead of unsalted butter in the cookie dough?

Yes, you can use salted butter, but remember to eliminate the additional salt in the recipe.

What can I use if I don’t have a stand mixer for the royal icing?

If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can use a hand mixer or even whisk the royal icing by hand. It might take a bit more effort, but it’s doable.

How can I prevent the cookies from sticking together during storage?

To prevent cookies from sticking together, place parchment paper between the layers when storing them in an airtight container.

Can I add additional flavors to the royal icing for variety?

Yes, you can experiment with different extract flavors (e.g., almond, lemon, or orange) to customize the taste of the royal icing. Just be cautious with the quantity to avoid overwhelming the cookies with flavor. It’s recommended to start with 7-10 drops of flavoring fore each cup of icing before adding more if desired.

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Recipe Card

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Conversation Heart Cookies

Easy Conversation Heart Cookies are perfect for Valentine's Day parties at school or home. Crunchy and colorful, these are super fun to make!
Yield 24 Servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 21 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


Rolled Sugar Cookies:

  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter , softened
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Royal Icing:

  • 1/4 cup meringue powder
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • assorted food coloring 4-6 drops per color


Sugar Cookies:

  • In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth.
  • Beat in eggs and vanilla.
  • Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • Cover, and chill dough for at least 1 hour (or overnight).
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Roll out dough, using powdered sugar on the surface and rolling pin ¼ to ½ inch thick.
  • Using assorted cookie cutters, stamp out the shapes you'd like to ice. (We used heart shape cookie cutters.)
  • Carefully, with a spatula, place cookies 1 inch apart on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

Royal Icing:

  • To a stand mixer add the meringue powder and water on medium speed for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add in the powdered sugar and continue to mix on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until the mixture holds stiff peaks.
  • Set aside ⅓ of the icing for piping.
  • Add gel colors of your choosing and if you need to thin for thin piping add small amounts of water at a time.
  • Using a #5 tip on your piping bag, pipe a border first then fill in with the desired color with a larger tip, leaving a 1/2″ border around the cookies.
  • If layering colors allow the first layer to dry for 2 hours.
  • Add white royal icing to piping bag and use to add writing on the cooking.


  • Click on the yield amount to slide and change the number of servings and the recipe will automatically update!
  • Click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.
  • To convert measurements to grams, click on the Metric option next to Ingredients in the recipe card.


Calories: 411kcal | Carbohydrates: 72g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 152mg | Potassium: 45mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 400IU | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
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Variations on Heart Cookies

  • Chocolate Chip Conversation Heart Cookies: Add chocolate chips to the cookie dough for a delightful twist on the classic recipe. Fold in 1 cup of chocolate chips into the dough before chilling. Adjust the baking time, as the cookies may need an extra minute or two due to the added moisture from the chocolate.
  • Gluten-Free Conversation Heart Cookies: For a gluten-free option, substitute the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend. Be sure to check the blend’s instructions for any necessary adjustments or additional binding agents, like xanthan gum.
  • Vegan Conversation Heart Cookies: Make these cookies vegan by replacing the eggs with flaxseed eggs (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed mixed with 2.5 tablespoons water per egg). Use vegan butter and ensure your chocolate chips and food coloring are dairy-free. The rest of the recipe remains the same.
  • Lemon-Flavored Royal Icing: Add a refreshing twist to the royal icing by incorporating lemon zest or a few drops of lemon extract. This variation adds a bright citrus flavor that pairs well with the sweet cookies. Adjust the quantity to your taste preference. Be sure to use Lemon Yellow food coloring for this icing!
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More Valentine's Day Treats

Conversation Heart Cookies Pin

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


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