Clam Cookies & Airbrushing Sanding Sugar

I feel kinda clammy today. Not really but, I did make some clam cookies to show you that you can airbrush sanding sugar. I had my good friend Johnna aka Polka-dot Zebra over so we could play with some cookies. It was way back when we first bought our airbrush guns. We sprayed every thing we could get our hands on and one of those things was a heart that had sanding sugar on it

Simple-Clam-Cookies-thebearfootbaker.comIt led to these clam cookies. I think it gives the a little something special. After all, they have pearls in their mouth so why not a little bling on their shells. Notice the small purple clam. It wasn’t airbrushed. Look at the large purple clam and the depth the airbrushing gives the shell. It is a very simple way to make your cookies pop.

Supplies for Clam Cookies:

Candy Corn Cookie Cutter
Candy Beads
Thick White Icing
Royal Icing Eyes
#2 &#10 Tips
Bamboo Forks
15 Second Icing in these colors:

  • Pink
  • Purple
  • Blue
  • Yellow

Sanding sugar to match your icing or colors you just like.

Clam Cookies by www.thebearfootbaker.comBegin by outlining the top cookie of your clam cookies. Each clam requires 2 cookies. One for the top and one for the mouth.
Next, flood every other section and sprinkle with sanding sugar while the icing is wet. Shake off the remaining sugar.
Then, flood the remaining sections and sprinkle sanding sugar. Shake off the remaining sugar and let the cookie dry completely.

Clam Cookies www.thebearfootbaker.comWith your airbrush gun set on medium and the airbrush gun about a half and inch from the cookie, spray the creases and the edges.

Look at the difference. I will warn you that some of the sanding sugar will let go of the cookie but, if you use and airbrush gun station like this one, it will be contained for an easy clean up.

Easy Clam Cookies thebearfootbaker.comIf you are feeling really creative,  use different colors of icing underneath the sanding sugar. It will give your clams and entirely unique look.Clam Cookies with thebearfootbaker.comUse the second cookie for the mouth. Flood and pipe with pink icing. When it dries, airbrush the edges with pink.

Once it dries, set up the cookies for assembly. I used these bamboo forks I got from World Market. They slide onto the bakers rack and hold the mouth of the cookie open while it dried. I had to use a cookie under the skewers to hold them in place.

Glue the cookies together in the back of the cookie with the thick pink icing. I had to place a bowl behind them to keep them from sliding. Let them dry completely.

Clam Cookies The Bearfoot Baker (2)Once your clam cookies are glued together and dried, add the white border with the thick white icing to the top and bottom cookies. There is no wrong way to do this step. Just use a #10 piping tip and squiggle the line as you pipe. Add royal icing eyes while the icing is still wet. Add a candy bead pearl in its mouth with a touch of icing and let all of it dry completely.

Now you have cute clam cookies but wait, I want to show you more airbrushed sanding sugar.

Fun Clam Cookies  with www.thebearfootbaker.comThese are cookies I made following LilaLoa’s tutorial from a guest post she did for me. You should check out her blog here. She is very talented. Anyway, here is my attempt at her tutorial. This is before airbrushing.

Airbrushed Clam Cookies thebearifootbaker.comAnd this is them after airbrushing. I hope you make some sugar cookies with sanding sugar so you can have some fun. Be careful though, it is addictive.

In the meantime, here are a few more beach themed cookies and royal icing transfers for you to enjoy.
Starfish Royal Icing Transfers
Starfish Cookies
Goldfish Royal Icing Transfers
Lobster Cookies
Jellyfish Cookies
Octopus Royal Icing Transfers

Bear hugs,



  1. Oh yes, I did know this – he he – since all my cookies are usually sanded! Cute little clams!

  2. I had no idea! What airbrush color did you use here? Brown? Black? Do tell!

  3. Cute and very original clam cookies! Your airbrushing technique is so good that if I ever bought an airbrush I think I’d have to hire you for private lessons:)

  4. You’re so cute. And so are these clams. What will you think of next?? Love em!

  5. Such a cute idea…these are all ADORABLE!

    I have a “love/hate’ relationship with airbrushing. LOVE the look…HATE the mess. I do not know how you are able to do so much airbrushing with minimal mess. Just doing two cookies for samples, it took me at least four separate swipes with a clean rag to get it all off of my countertop. And YES, I had parchment paper on the bottom, as well as foam core on the sides to create a box. And we won’t even go into how many times I had to blow my nose to get it all out (sorry, TMI?). I know that some cookies “require” airbrushing but oyyyy, what a mess!

    Kudos to you for mastering it somehow!

  6. Lisa, these clams are adorable little guys! Every time I think there’s no way I “need” an airbrush, I see a set of your cookies and realize how much the shading can make a difference. I love how the pink shading really makes the clams’ mouths look like they have depth! And I agree – if there’s a little bling on the inside, why not on the outside of the shell :)

  7. Oh wow! I LOVE the results of doing that! And those cookies…how crazy adorable!

  8. What fun! I just came across your blog and although I’m not a baker, always admire those that do. Such a neat trick and your cookies are so cute!

  9. Wow! These are awesome! Really, the three dimensional element is so cool and the clams have the cutest faces. I love them and I love the use of the candy corn cutter!!!

    • Thanks Michelle! I didn’t want to buy a clam cutter so I went digging through the endless cutters I own. Hahahaha

  10. Oh, Lisa, you have outdone yourself with these cute little clams! The little eyes are getting me! :)

  11. You cookies are really colorful and cute and the airbrushing on the sugar sure does add some sparkle and depth. So fun! Pinning.

  12. I cannot stop smiling at these!

  13. So cute!

  14. Robin Bennett says:

    How adorable, Lisa! These are so cute.

  15. Perfect timing my friend! How funny that I text you to ask about a good small clam shell shape on THE SAME DAY you were adding this blog post. I love you! These are sooo cute. Now Delaney’s birthday clams will be so much prettier with shell *bling*. And to top it off you even mentioned our fun baking day :) We need another one of those SOON… or maybe just a shopping for baking stuff/idea day again. Thanks

    • Great minds do think alike! I can’t wait to see what you do for Delaney’s birthday. You always have the cutest ideas.

      You are so right about us getting together! We need to do it SOON!!

  16. Oh, good grief! The cuteness factor on these in the the ozone! Lisa, you never cease to amaze me!

    Cute as cute can be!

  17. So cute and funny! Your oysters and shells are absolutely ADORABLE. Greetings from Italy, Evelin :)

  18. I’m speechless! These are amazing :)

  19. The eyeballs make me smile :)

  20. These clams are as cute as can be!

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