The Must-Have Cake Decorating Tools for Beginners
You have already perfected the art of baking cakes, so now is the perfect time to move on to the next level, which is
mastering the art of cake decorating. Unlike baking where you have to master and improve on recipes, cake decorating is an entirely different thing. Cake decorating can be something as simple as filling and frosting a chocolate cake with buttercream icing, or it can be as complex as piping intricately designed flowers on top of a cake with several Tiers. The end goal of cake decorating is to create a smooth, polished finish. Clean lines and precision always matter, no matter how complicated or complex the decorations become. Jumping from baking cakes to cake decorating can be somewhat overwhelming, but by using the right cake decorating tools, you will be on the right track most of the time.
Whenever you start a new hobby, or explore a new passion, there’s always that initial investment you have to make. Even if you’re switching from a somewhat similar hobby – such as from baking cakes to decorating cakes – you will still need to make sure you have the right tools in your kitchen in order to become successful. Cake decorating never stops and new thing arrive everyday, you can not learn what you need to know in this line of work in 3 years you learn new things everyday and just keep on learning.
If you’re starting out in cake decorating, here are 14 of the basic cake decorating tools you need to have in your kitchen:
- Mixing bowls– These are great for mixing the ingredients you’ll need when making your frosting.
- Stand mixer– This is a pillar in every baker’s kitchen. Not only is this useful when making cake mixes, you can also use this equipment in making frostings that will give your cake a nice finish.
- Piping bag with different Icing tips– Once done covering your cake with icing or fondant, one of the easiest ways to decorate your cake is through a piping bag. One large and one small round nozzle, and a star-shaped one will get you started, but to make life easier, why not get a set instead of buying individual tips? Having different nozzles gives you the flexibility to come up with different effects for your cake by using just one piping bag to have a few would be better! If you don’t have one yet, you may improvise by using a resealable plastic bag. Snip off a tiny corner, stuff it with icing, and begin piping!
- Gel food colour – These are thicker than liquid food colorings. A little goes a long way, as these provide an intense, rich colour even with just a small amount. As a beginner, you can start with a couple of primary colours, which you can mix together to create new colours but in the long run it is better to have all colours on hand.
- Cake turntable– This is a convenient kitchen gadget to have that makes your work a whole lot easier as it allows the cake to be turned easily. It minimizes the movements you have to make when decorating all sides of the cake. It is also good for your posture as well, as the cake is elevated and is nearer to you as compared to placing it on top of a kitchen counter or table.
- Fondant cutters– These are somewhat similar to cookie cutters, but are specifically designed to cut fondant
instead of cookies, you can use other cutters just make sure you keep them well looked after. By using this, you always have perfectly-cut fondant that is nice and even, in any shape you desire. There are many kinds of fondant cutters in the market today. There are plunger cutters, ribbon cutters, and the regular, ones.
- Oven Thermometer– Your need for a oven thermometers shouldn’t be a surprise and here’s why: unless you have a brand new or regularly calibrated oven, your oven’s temperature is likely inaccurate. When you set your oven to 350°F, it might not really be 350°F inside. It could only be off by a little – 10 degrees or so. Or more than that – 100 degrees or even more! Incorrect temperature ruins baked goods and you waste hours spent on the recipe and money spent on ingredients. The inexpensive remedy to this mess is an oven thermometer. While cheap, they’re irreplaceable in a baker’s kitchen. Place it in your oven so you always know the actual temperature.
- Scales/Weighing– Weighing ingredients is everything, That’s why I use baking recipes in cup and gram measurements. Why do we measure this way? Because a gram is always a gram. An ounce is always an ounce. A cup is NOT always a cup. In baking, precision is everything and that slight mis-measure could spell a baking disaster. I own a small kitchen scale and it is, by far, the most used tool in my kitchen. I recommend it to every single baker.
- Sifter– Some recipes require sifting dry ingredients like flour, sugar, chemical leaveners, and/or cocoa powder. That step is not just for fun or to make your life difficult. It aerates these ingredients and rids any lumps so your recipe turns out! This sifter is super sturdy, durable, stainless steel, doesn’t make a huge mess, and is easy to clean (just use soapy water and rinse off). It’s inexpensive and crucial.
- Rolling Pin– An obvious must. A marble rolling pin is cooler to touch, which makes it perfect for rolling out pie crust and sugar cookie dough. And it’s a great price! Saying that there is nothing wrong with other rolling pins it all depends on what you use it for most!
- Baking Tins/Pans–I recommend at least: 3 x 9-inch round cake pans the whole set eventually, 2 x 9-inch square pans the whole set eventually, 2 x 12 muffin pans, 1 x 9×13 baking pan, 1 x 24- mini muffin pan, 1 x 9×5 inch (or 8×4 inch) loaf pan. These sizes are what I use most often. I like Loyal or Mondo Pan brands.
- Spatula’s & Whisks–Nothing beats spatulas, especially if they are well-made and heavy duty. From stirring and mixing, to scraping the sides of bowls, spreading frosting, cooking, etc. I use them for everything, everyday. As for whisks, this is a no-brainer! I recommend at least 2 of these. Any that you purchase, just make sure they are quality. I’ve broken plenty of flimsy little whisks while trying to whisk heavy cake batters.
- Mearsuring Cups & Spoons–You can’t go wrong with both. They all have soft easy-grip handles and are stainless steel (great quality). Also, make sure you have at least 1 liquid measuring cup too. I own the 3 pack option; it’s convenient to have all different sizes depending on the recipe.