Edible glitter is used for decorating biscuits and cakes, or any dessert or food than needs a little sparkle. It is not the same as decorating sugar, as it will not brown or burn in temperatures up to 232 degrees C (450 degrees F). Some edible glitter is available that is insoluble in water for long periods of time, making it useful for decorating beverages. Unflavored and unsweetened edible glitter has no flavour. Several standard colours are widely available, but some companies offer custom colour mixing.
Gum arabic is the primary ingredient in edible glitter. It is made of sap from acacia trees. It is colourless, odourless and flavourless. It is used in commercial food applications to thicken, bind and stabilise foods. The ingredient is also used in newspaper ink, pottery, fabrics, watercolours and medicines. Gum arabic is dissolved in warm water, then painted on clean, polished glass to make edible glitter. When it is dry, it is brushed off the glass and broken into pieces the size of the glitter desired.
Food colouring and dyes
Another ingredient in edible glitter is colour. Since gum arabic is colourless, colour must be added to it. Both natural and synthetic colours are used to colour edible glitter.
Most edible glitter is unflavored. Flavoured glitter is available, though, in a variety of flavours including cheddar, jalapeno, chicken, strawberry, raspberry, mint, butterscotch, sour green apple and lemon, among others. It can be flavoured with artificial sweeteners, providing sweetness and sparkle without adding calories or sugar.