Basic Cake Decorating Edibles and Equipment

Wednesday, April 26 2017

It's easy to make your bakes look beautiful if you have the right tools. Here's a list of the basic edibles and equipment you'll need to get started and achieve professional results.

1. Cake drums, boards and cards

Use these as a base for all of your cakes, with thicker cake drums supporting the whole cake and thinner cake boards underneath each cake tier.

2. Ribbon

A perfect finish for your cake. Wrap a ribbon around the cake drum and secure it at the back with a little royal icing or double-sided tape.

3. Cake leveller/layer cutter

This handy tool will help you achieve a perfectly level cake and evenly cut tiers.

4. Apricot jam (glaze)

This can be used as an edible glaze or adhesive.

5. Clear alcohol

Combine dust food colours with a little clear alcohol to create an edible paint. Either vodka or gin works well.

6. Icing sugar shaker

Easily dust your work surface with a fine, even layer of icing sugar.

7. Non-stick board

Provides the perfect work surface for rolling out and working with sugarpaste, florist paste and modelling paste.

8. Non-stick rolling pins

Use a large non-stick rolling pin for rolling out sugarpaste to cover your cakes and a small rolling pin for finer work.

9. Spacers

Place spacers on either side of your sugarpaste whilst rolling it out to achieve an even thickness.

10. Cake smoothers

Smooth the top and sides of your sugarpaste-covered cakes to achieve a flawless finish.

11. Turntable

A turntable that rotates and tilts will make it easier for you to decorate your cakes.

12. Cake dowels

Providing stability to stacked cakes. Insert evenly spaced, cut to size dowels into your cake before attaching the next tier.

13. Royal icing

As well as a decorating medium, royal icing can be used as a glue when stacking cake tiers or attaching decorations.

14. Cocktail sticks

Useful food-grade tools that can provide stability in models or be used to add tiny details to delicate sugar flowers.

15. Piping bags

Pipe detail with royal icing, fill cakes with neat swirls of buttercream or use in patisserie.

16. Piping nozzles

Metal tips that fit inside piping bags to produce a certain size and shape of piping.

17. Cutters

Basic circular pastry cutters and other simple shapes can be used to create a whole array of decorations.

18. White vegetable fat

Shortening or Trex can be used to grease a non-stick board and soften paste.

19. Edible glue

A sugar glue that can be used to attach dry sugarpaste, florist paste or modelling paste pieces together.

20. Confectioners' glaze

An edible-when-dry varnish for use whenever a high gloss is required.

21. Glaze cleaner

For cleaning confectioners’ glaze from brushes and other equipment.

22. Cornflour

A little cornflour inside a pouch of muslin can be used to dab a non-stick board to make it easy to cut out clean shapes.

23. Ruler

A handy reference tool for proportions and straight edges.

24. Cutting wheel

Essential for achieving a clean cut and giving your sugar work a neat finish.

25. Dresden tool

Use the different tapered ends to soften and shape flowers and leaves in sugar.

26. Scribing tool

Also known as a scriber needle, this tool is essential for transferring designs onto celebration cakes.

27. Ball modelling tool

The double-ended ball tool can be used to add details to models, cakes and sugar flowers.

28. Bone modelling tool

This tool can be used to soften and cup petals and add detail to sugar models.

29. Palette knives

Ideal for smoothing cake fillings and coverings.

30. Small, plain-bladed knife

A small sharp knife is useful for cutting into paste and other edibles.

31. Large, serrated knife

Perfect for carving cakes or cutting layers.

32. Craft knife

Ideal for adding details and cutting small elements of a design.

33. Paintbrushes

Use food-grade paintbrushes for all cake decorating requirements, including painting and dusting.

34. Pointed modelling tool

Also known as a CelStick, it is designed for frilling and softening finely-rolled florist paste and modelling paste.

35. Food-grade foam pad

Place flowers on a foam bad to soften the edges and add movement.

36. Non-toxic glue stick

Use to glue ribbon to a cake drum, ensuring it does not come into contact with the cake.

37. Double-sided tape

Another option for securing ribbon to a cake drum.

Cake decorating and sugarcraft equipment is available from or your local sugarcraft stockist.

Essentials for your tool kit