St. Patrick’s Day Cookies: Rainbows, shamrocks and gold

These cookies are uber colorful, super duper easy, and oh so fun to make! This is also a great recipe to make with your kids, so don’t be afraid to let them dive right in. So whether it’s simple gold coins, green clovers, rainbow shapes or just round cookies using all the colors of the rainbow, you are going to love this fun treat.

You might remember this cookie recipe: Valentine’s Play Dough Cookies - but they aren’t actually made with play dough.

They are named that because when the dough is still raw and chilling in the fridge it looks like blobs of colorful play dough. I assure you though, these are 100% edible sugar cookies that everyone will love.

THE RECIPE – First, you’re going to need the recipe. Here’s the printable version or you can see it at the Valentine cookie link above.

Once I made the dough I separated it into two batches. One batch I separated into 4 pieces and the other batch into 6 pieces. The batch of 6 I used paste food coloring to tint each section a color of the rainbow. In case you don’t remember, those colors are:

red, orange, yellow, green, blue and indigo (purple)

For the other 4 pieces I tinted two of them green, one darker than the other, and the other two yellow, again, one darker than the other. In hindsight, the yellows didn’t end up looking any different, so if you want there to be some contrast, add a bit of orange to one of the yellow batches. The green dough is for the shamrocks and the yellow is for the gold coins. After you tint the dough it needs to chill in the fridge for a couple hours.

The gold coins are the easiest. Take your two different yellows, roll a 3/4″ ball of each one, then gently roll the two balls together. Don’t go crazy, just roll them enough to combine the two. Using the palms of both hands, roll into a snake, about 10-12″ long. Start at one end and roll the snake into a spiral cookie.

To make the shamrock cookies you’ll need three green discs.

Use the two shade of green as described in the yellow instructions above.

Next, where the coil ends, pinch the disc into a point.

Use a butter knife or a lollipop stick to create a dent at the opposite end, forming a heart shape.

Place the 3 green hearts together as shown above, insert a lollipop stick.

For the rainbows, simply roll colored dough into snakes. The smallest being purple and the largest red, just curve them around each other and insert a stick.

To make the rainbow twisted coiled cookies, you will need a 1/2″ ball of each rainbow colored dough.

Gently combine them into one ball. From here, you can simple roll into a snake then a coil and be done.

However, if you would like to know how to make these cool striped coil rainbow cookies, you’ll want to watch the video below.

Because the instructions for the striped coils are hard to describe, I made a quick video. I’m really sorry for the cruddy quality. My batteries were almost dead and I had no replacements and I was running low on daylight in my kitchen window. I’m also sorry for the background noise! UGH

Oh yeah, and I don’t talk in it, sorry! Sheesh, not a very good video-er. But hopefully you’ll get the idea of how to do this. Basically, after you roll the dough into a snake shape, then you roll the ends of the snake which twists the colors into a spiral. WATCH…

One last note, when you watch you will see that the snake breaks a couple times, don’t worry! Just pinch it back together it will bake up just fine :)

I hope you enjoyed these. Now go get busy baking. Your kids, husband, significant other, or coworkers will thank you for it :)


If you liked these, you might also like my Rainbow Deviled Eggs and Egg Salad!


  1. Sue says

    I made some coil cookie pops before, and rainbow cookies, but never rainbow cookie pops! Though these cookies are all adorable and colorful, the rainbow pops are my favorite, Amanda! SO CUTE!

  2. Avanika [YumsiliciousBakes] says

    These are awesome Amanda. It's surprising to see how much the dough really is like play doh. I've never made such a sugar cookie. Bookmarked and stumbled :)

  3. Beansieleigh says

    Good Sunday Morning Amanda! I don't think my morning coffee is kicking in yet, but all these beautiful colors might just be doing the trick! I haven't baked in a while, I've been so busy with other things, but these certainly are an inspiration! I just may have to try out this technique of cookie baking sometime soon!.. Hope you're enjoying the weekend! ~tina

  4. Kristen says

    Those look just as cute as the cut out frosted kind, yet they are SO much easier. I love it!! Thanks for the idea and recipe.

  5. MaryBeth says

    When I saw these on Face Book last night I thought they were so darn cute. This would be a great family cooking project.

  6. Vickie from Windsor CA says

    Dear Amanda, When I open my email and see that you have sent your latest posting, I am like a kid in a candy store, I have to open it up before anything else. Your cookies look so cheerful on a rainy day in Northern California. Can't wait to try them.

  7. Anonymous says

    Ohhhhh my gosh. Inspiration just hit while looking through this post.
    I want to take a bunch of colors (like orange-yellow-red or green-blue-purple), run them through a pasta machine on the thickest setting. Then I'd cut out fun shapes, stick them onto partly rolled out plain sugar cookie dough, give it a couple good rolls with a rolling pin, then cut out cookies in heart and flower shapes.
    I would call them confetti cookies!

  8. Amanda says

    Thank you everyone!

    @Vickie – wow, blush! Thank you so much for such a great compliment! :) :)

    @Anon – That sounds like a fun idea! Would love to see them if you try it :)

  9. Stephanie says

    I love these cookies, especially the rainbow ones! I want to do a "you are my sunshine" themed party in the future and those would be perfect!

  10. marla says

    Oh happy day Amanda – I love this post. Those cookies are adorable. Guess I gotta start thinking about St. Patricks Day. When is it anyway??

  11. Amy {The Idea Room} says

    So fun! I love the shamrocks and rainbows! I made some of these last year and my kids loved them. Never thought to make them for St. Patricks Day. Sharing with my FB fans :)

  12. SweetSugarBelle says

    I love everything about these!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOu inspired me to try some different things =) ♥

  13. Sophia says

    Hey these cookies are amazing. I was wondering what type of food colouring you're using. My batch were not as vibrant.

  14. The Outlaw Mom says

    These are awesome! Do you need to push the lollipop stick all the way through the cookie layers/coils, or do the layers just stick together when baked? Can't wait to try these! Thanks for the recipe

  15. Amanda says

    @Outlaw Mom – They do "plump when you cook 'em" (hee hee, sorry couldn't resist that Ballpark Frank commercial blast from the past, I digress). Just insert the stick into the cookie about an inch or so is good! :)

  16. Deeba PAB says

    These just rock Amanda…cool cookies! I can see your 'crafty' talent sneaking into these beauties! Gorgeous!!

  17. RedTedArt says

    Oh my word, these are just too brilliant! We made rainbow cookies once, but they were not quite as spectacular as yours!!! Fabulous!

    PS thank you for linking up Kids Get Crafty!

  18. Alison @ says

    Love it! Who wouldn't want one of these sweet cookie suckers for St. Patrick's Day?

  19. Miz Helen says

    Hi Amanda,
    I know that you made these cookies for the kids, but guess what I am going to take them to my woman's retreat next week end. My friends will love them. Thank you for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and you come back!

  20. Lolly Jane says

    my son walked by and saw these as i was blog hoppin & said "i want to make those!" so it's on today's agenda. THANK YOU!! (:

  21. Christina @ The Tattered Tag says

    Yummy cute!! I invite you to link up any & all of your delightful creations to The Homespun Bake Shop @ The Tattered Tag. It's a great new place for delicious inspiration. Also, happy to be a new follower. :)

    Drop by The Tattered Tag

  22. Huggs and Kisses xo says

    I love these cookies! They are so adorable. I loved them so much that I posted it on my blog along with a link back to yours. Thank you for sharing!!

  23. Amanda says

    @Anon – I have made these with both Philadelphia brand and a generic brand, same great results each time :)

  24. Amanda says

    Hi Anon – If you followed the recipe exactly, I would say yes, add small amounts of flour until well formed. However, if you used liquid food coloring that will adversely affect the outcome of the dough. If you substituted margarine for butter, I'm not sure how that would affect the dough as I have only used butter, but in that case I would think a little more flour would help. In order for the dough to stay soft and crack-free you don't want too much additional flour. You may want to try chilling it a bit first to see how it turns out. I've made this dough three times following the recipe and haven't had an issue, so please make sure all of your measurements were correct first :)

  25. Miz Helen says

    Congratulations Amanda!
    You are featured on Full Plate Thursday today 3-17-11. Please pick up your Red Plate and enjoy!

  26. Jenni Price says

    Amanda these are super impressive! I love how the colors twist up and I can hardly believe they are cookies!


  27. Carrie says

    I’m planning the St. Patrick’s Day party for my daughter’s class. I can’t wait to make these..they will be a hit with the kids! I found some cello candy bags from Box and Wrap that have shamrocks on the bags….so cute. It’s the extra special touches that make the party great. Thanks so much for the recipe.


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