What is food coloring paste?

Written by gwen bruno
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What is food coloring paste?
Paste food colouring creates deep, vivid colours. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Clyde Robinson)

Food colouring comes in four different forms: paste, liquid, gel and powder. It is used to tint foods, including frosting, sugar, coconut, candy and cookie dough. Paste food colouring is one of the most concentrated forms of colouring.


Food colouring paste consists of dye or pigment that is often blended with glycerine, propylene glycol and dextrose, according to International Foodcraft. Gums may also be added.


In commercial applications, paste food colourings are useful for taffy and hard candy. Food colouring in paste format can be hard to measure, according to International Foodcraft.


Because paste food colouring is twice as concentrated as regular food colouring, only a small amount is required. Much more vivid and deep colours can be created, according to Baking911.com. Unlike a liquid colouring, paste colouring does not water down icing or food.

Colours Available

Paste food colouring offers the home baker a much wider selection of colours than are available in liquid food colouring. Cake Craft brand paste food colouring is available in 42 shades.

Where to Buy

Most grocery stores carry only liquid food colouring. To purchase paste food colouring, check craft stores or other stores that carry cake decorating supplies.

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