This natural decorating sugar recipe replaces artificial food coloring with fruit juice or natural dyes to produce colorful sanding sugar perfect for creating beautiful cookies. Source: EatingWell Magazine, November/December 2013

EatingWell Test Kitchen


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Place sugar in a small bowl. Stir in juice concentrate (or dye) until evenly blended. Adjust color with more additions as desired.

  • Spread the colored sugar in a thin layer on a small parchment-lined baking sheet. Turn on the oven to 350 degrees F for 2 minutes, then immediately turn it off. (The warm oven dries the sugar, but too much heat will burn it.) Let the sugar stand in the oven for 1 1/2 hours.


Make Ahead Tip: Refrigerate colored sugar airtight for up to 1 year.

Tips: Find clear (or white) sanding sugar (aka sparkling or coarse sugar) in well-stocked baking stores, gourmet food shops or online at

Find a rainbow of natural liquid dyes plus a rainbow of already-dyed decorating sugars at

Nutrition Facts

7 calories; total fatg; saturated fatg; cholesterolmg; sodiummg; potassium 1mg; carbohydrates 1.6g 1% DV; fiberg; sugar 2g; proteing; exchange other carbs; vitamin a iuIU; vitamin cmg; folatemcg; calciummg; ironmg; magnesiummg; thiaminmg; added sugar 2g.