So I was making these gingerbread cookies yesterday with my now 2 1/2 year old, and discovered when we went to frost them that I only had half the powdered dry milk that I needed. What’s a mama to do? Well, I altered the frosting recipe, and ended up with one that is much more buttercream-like, easier to work with, and amazingly tasty. Isn’t it great when life works out like that? This would also be good on a cake, though you’re going to want to at least triple it, maybe quadruple. This makes exactly enough frosting for a 1/2 batch (rolled to 1/8″ thick before cutting) of the cookies I link to above, not nearly enough for any cake.

The hand in the photo is said eldest daughter; she decided “enough with the taking pictures of cookies, it’s time to eat one!” The photo, like most of ‘my’ photos on this blog, is actually taken by my husband. He got a new camera lens that is apparently very good for portraits…of people or food :-). He has been playing with it a lot, and we’re getting some nice pictures generally, so I thought he deserved to get some actual credit around here!

I still recommend coconut on top of the frosting on these cookies; so so tasty. That’s what you see on the snowman cookie in the picture. Without further ado, frosting!

Maple Frosting on Gingerbread Cookies

Maple Frosting


  • 1/4 cup softened butter
  • 1/4 cup real maple syrup
  • 1 tsp real vanilla
  • 1/4 cup high-quality powdered dry milk (like the one in this link)
  • 1/4 cup maple sugar


1. Cream together the butter, maple syrup, and vanilla with a mixer at medium-high speed. It should mostly integrate, though it will likely still be a little separated. If you’re using a stand mixer, this should use the whisk attachment, not the paddle (this is true of any frosting you make in a stand mixer; it’ll be a lot fluffier and have a more frosting-like consistency).

2. Add the powdered dry milk and maple sugar. Mix well until well-combined and creamy. Scrape down sides and mix more than once if necessary to achieve this. Use immediately to frost the dessert of your choice!