Tuesday, April 28, 2009

How to Frost a Cake

I decorate cakes on the weekend as the lead cake decorator at a small local shop called Cookies Kitchen in Newhall CA. I usually take picture every weekend of the cakes I decorate and post them on my family blog, http://olsens7.blogspot.com/. While there I thought why not take pictures with my I-Phone and show you how to level, fill and frost a double layer cake! All you need is:
  • Large Spatula
  • Pastry bag
  • Either a 1A or 2A tip (that's the tip I used to decorate the cake at the top
  • Your Favorite Frosting (I have a favorite chocolate and vanilla butter cream, if any of you would like to know I will post it tomorrow)
  • Large cutting knife (some use string, or a cake leveler but I prefer a knife)
  • Plate or cake board
  • Damp rag

***TIP: If you would like to know how the Pro's prepare and fill their bag check out my YouTube video for help: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zx7aMdOf61s ***

Step 1: Bake your cakes as usual and let cool completely (you can make them the night before and wrap the cake in plastic rap and freeze)

Step 2: With a large fat knife, cut off the tops of your cake to make levelStep 3: Flip the cake over so that the bottom is now your top and place on your plate. Repeat on other cake and set aside.
Step 4: With your filled bag and tip make a double layered ring around the cake.Step 5: Fill with light layer of pudding, jam, chocolate or what ever filling you desire. ***Make sure it it not too runny or it will come out of the cake (it needs to be the thickness of pudding) and make sure it does not go over the top of your frosting barrier.***Step 6: Place the second cake, top side down, on top of your filling.

Step 7: With your filled bag and tip, place frosting on the cake. This will be your base coat. ***I like to zig-zag it on. You can use the spatula to put the frosting on but I like to touch the cake as little as possible so the top layer won't slide off and I think it saves time.***
Step 8: With your spatula slightly touching the cake (make sure the spatula is perpendicular with the board) turn the wide flat part of the spatula so that it is at a 30-60 degree angle with the cake. ***You do not want the spatula to be flat on the cake and touching. This will not help push the excess frosting along the cake. You will end up cutting into the frosting and cake..not a pretty site.***
Step 9: When your cake is lightly frosted, place it in the freezer or fridge so the frosting crusts and hardens (may take 15-20 minutes depending on how cold your fridge or freezer gets). This will make the dreaded bulge in the middle of the cake a thing of the past (go to your local grocery store and check out the double layer cakes. The bulge in the middle of the cake is there...ugh!)
Step 10: Apply a thicker layer of frosting on to your cold cake.
***Remember the 30-60 degree angle of the spatula to the cake! Another expert tip is to ALWAYS frost with a clean spatula. When you first place it on your cake to frost make sure the spatula is frosting free. Also when you frost and remove excess frosting, before you place the spatula on the cake make sure you wipe the spatula clean. Placing a frosting laden spatula on a cake is like using a knife with teeth to frost you cake. It will leave scratch marks in your cake. Just remember SMOOTH cake = CLEAN spatula! ***
Step 11: When the sides are smooth it is time for the top of the cake. Smooth the top flat with a CLEAN spatula and at a 30 degree angle to the cake, start from the outside pushing the frosting in towards the center.
***You may have to touch up the sides a little and voila! Frosted cake!!!*** Step11: Decorate your cake as desired!!!


  1. What a great tutorial! You make it look so easy. Nice job!

  2. Thanks :) I know with a little practice, cake decorating can be easy for everyone.

  3. All I have to say is: I Love You!

    I have never ever been good at frosting cakes, and I try so stinkin hard!! I had my very first "success" with an egg shaped cake (I even posted it on my cooking blog www.icookandtell.blogspot.com). But, looking at this post, I think I can really do it now... I hope :)

  4. What a beautiful cake! You make it look so easy, but I know I'll have a number of ugly cakes before I can make one anywhere near as pretty as yours. The good thing is that ugly cakes still taste good!