The Ultimate Guide to Preparing and Coloring Your Icing

The Ultimate Guide on Preparing and Coloring Your Icing

Preparing your cake icings could be one of the most exciting parts of baking. However, this is also extremely challenging. We have to grip all our creative juices to form and produce the perfect combination of colors we are after, learn all the know-how and techniques in icing, the proper storage, etc. But as you try to do it over and over again, you will surely get the hang of it.

How to color icing?

  • Only get a small amount of each color you wanted to combine.
  • Icing colors are all highly concentrated and have rich colors; make sure to just mix enough amounts in every mixture you will make.
  • Always begin with your base color and mix a small amount of the second one.
  • If you still haven’t achieved your desired color on the first try, you may use a clean toothpick to add just a little bit of the color you want to add at a time.

You may also check this Icing Coloring Chart to get a complete guide in making your own icing color.


Helpful tips in solving common problems in icing preparation:


  1. Deep colors – If you want to achieve deep colors such as black, brown, or red, use larger amounts than the normal. These are only recommended if you want to put an accent color on your icing.
  2. Darken and deepen – It is advisable to color icing 1-2 hours before decorating for colors that may change as they set. Colors deepen if you are making buttercream icing. While colors fade slightly in royal, boiled, or even in Flow icing.
  3. Fading colors – This happens when you leave and expose your icing under direct lights such as sunlight or even under fluorescent lights. It is best to keep your icing in a cool room as possible.
  4. Lemon juice/Water – You may not commonly hear this one but lemon juice or even water does sometimes cause colors to change. (i.e. violet that turns blue). You may opt to just remove it if you have this as one of your ingredients. Replace it with milk instead if you are to make a buttercream icing.
  5. Bleeding – This usually happens when you are not able to store your icing properly. For icing frozen cake, for instance, you shouldn’t put your icing right away without thawing it first. On the other hand, icing your tightly covered cake stored in a room temperature right away could also cause bleeding.
  6. Stain removal – This could be one of the major problems at home because colors especially the deep color combination can stain your kitchen tools even your preparation and cooking area. But this can be removed using lukewarm water and bleach. You may also use commercial cleaner on your stuff if the stain is still visible. Vinegar or lemon juice can also be used to soak the stained area of your garments or carpet for instance. And lastly, be sure to allow everything to dry; especially if you are to apply a commercial cleaner to it.


After learning everything you need to know about icing preparation, you may now start planning your next pastry recipes. And if you are looking for durable, safe, high-quality tips, and has a wide selection of design; to level up your icing game, check Gourdo’s best-selling Wilton Icing Tips variants.