How to make flowers out of cake icing

Updated April 17, 2017

Beautiful cakes and cupcakes are made beautiful by various methods of decorating. A popular method of decoration is the creation of edible flowers made out of icing. Butter cream and Royal icing are used along with basic cake decorating tools in making these colourful flowers. Fairly easy to make, icing flowers will turn an ordinary baked treat into a vision for the eyes and a delicious dessert, especially for special occasions such as weddings and birthdays.

Attach the rose tip to the pastry bag. Fill the pastry bag with butter-cream or royal icing. Both kinds of icing can be made at home, if preferred. Hold a rose nail in one hand, and then hold the pastry bag in the other hand, preferably the hand you use most often. Squeeze the pastry bag lightly and apply a small dab of icing on the flat surface of the rose nail. Place a square of the wax paper on top. Push it down to hold it in place on the rose nail.

Place the tip at an angle against the waxed paper while still holding the rose nail. The purpose of the rose nail with the paper attached is to give the decorator a small platform to build the flower on. Once the tip is at a 45-degree angle against the plastic paper on the rose nail, it is time to make the first petal.

Slowly turn the rose nail with one hand. At the same time, slowly turn the pastry bag the opposite direction, gently squeezing it. Keep both hands moving at the same slow speed while turning the rose nail and pastry bag until they are back at the starting point. The result is the first petal formed from the icing. Repeat this process, with the newest petal created next to the last, until all petals are formed.

Change to a small piping bag with a small cake decorating tip. Pipe a small dot or several, if desired, in the centre of the petals. Remove the wax paper from the nail when the flower is finished. Create the rest of the flowers that are needed with a few extra in case one breaks. Leave them to dry for 24 hours before using. When using butter-cream icing, put them in the refrigerator, as butter-cream softens when left out. Royal icing flowers can be left undisturbed for 24 hours before they start to melt.


For larger flowers, use larger cake decorating tips. Experiment with petal shapes by angling the tip in various ways.


Leaving buttercream icing flowers out at room temperature will cause them to melt and lose shape.

Things You'll Need

  • Coloured butter-cream or Royal icing
  • Filled pastry bags with tips
  • Rose nail
  • Rose cake tip
  • Small wax paper squares
  • Small cake tip size 3
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About the Author

Connie Whiting has been a professional writer since 1999. She is published in Red Rock Press Anthologies and "Legacy" magazine. She is also an experienced food column writer. Past positions include certified dental assistant and virtual assistant for “Your Invisible Assistant” a service focused on travel arrangements and media writing. Currently, Connie writes for Demand Studios while pursuing an Associate of Arts.