New Baker Hacks: Cake Decorating Essentials

cake decorating essentials

Hello lovelies, it’s been a while! If it isn’t obvious, I’ve been working really hard trying to make this site more functional and visibly pleasing. There is a new header, for one (Does it suck? Let me know why!) and I’ve also added a widget to allow commenting straight from Facebook! I don’t know if I’m going to keep it though. I’ve since read that I won’t be notified if someone comments that way, and given how little people comment I definitely don’t want to miss out on the excitement when it happens. lol. There are also quite a few “background” issues I’ve had to try and sort out despite not knowing what I’m doing. It’s been a real blast (if your idea of a blast is pulling your own hair out). I’d like to add some new pages to the menu in the near future, as well as some other features that will hopefully make my life easier. It’s definitely been a work in progress and I’m not even close to being done!


With that being said, I’m overdo for a post. I recently asked myself, “Self, what cake decorating tools can you absolutely not live without? What, in your mind, are the bare necessities to make a decent cake?”

This post is my answer. The photo above has quite a few tools on it. I’ll post it again here and number the tools so that you can follow along.
cake decorating essentials numbered
 

  1. A flat spatula and offset spatula. The flat spatula is awesome for slabbing icing on the sides of the cake, whereas the offset spatula (the one that looks a little bent) is great for smoothing out the top. Trying to use a flat spatula for the top of a cake is the pits because your knuckles constantly bump into your icing.
  2. Those purple things are extra thick milkshake straws, and you can find them at any grocery/party supply store. They are what I use instead of wooden dowels. I really don’t understand why anyone uses dowels these days—they are so difficult to cut! Much easier to just stick the straw in, snip it with some regular scissors, then be on your way.
  3.  Piping bags. You can buy rolls of them that have like 100 bags in them. The two featured here came from one of those rolls. With that being said, lately I’ve been using some reusable piping bags. I love that I can just lather them up and use them again, plus they are environment-friendly! I would have featured them in this image but they are pretty much multicolored now thanks to all the food coloring I use. When I first started cake decorating I used to use heavy duty sandwich bags. You can get by on those for a while, but even the good ones break. Invest in some real ones and your life will change!
  4. The big white circle that has other items sitting on top of it is my turntable. It took me a very long time to buy one. Don’t be like me. You won’t realize how essential it is to your cake decorating until you’ve had one for a while and then try to decorate a cake again without one. With that being said, get a good one. I don’t really like mine because it doesn’t spin that smoothly. It’s better than nothing though.
  5. Piping tips! They are so cheap, and you can either buy individual ones or special “kits” that have several in a set (like for cupcakes). If I had to narrow it down to just a few I’d choose one round, one star, and one rose (petal) tip. There are literally hundreds to choose from though, so don’t be surprised if collecting them becomes your new hobby.
  6. The small white round thing is a cake board. The one featured here is a standard Wilton one, but they come in plenty of colors and designs. These make transferring your cake so much easier and also act as a guide for when you add your icing (so one side isn’t thicker than another).
  7. Last but not least, my one and only love, the bench scraper. I got this one at the dollar store for, you guessed it, one dollar. I’ve named it “The Closer” since it’s the last spatula I use for the sides of my cakes. The reason it’s essential is because its 90º angle ensures that you can set it flat on your work surface while scraping around the cake, giving you a perfectly vertical line of frosting. No more pear-shaped cakes for you! This one even has a little ruler on the edge, making it a breeze to ensure that all my layers are the same height. I can’t recommend it more. 

So there you have it! There are, of course, a number of other tools that I use when decorating cakes (for example, food coloring). But I felt that the seven listed took precedence. Do you agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments!

Until next time <3

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