How to Make Marzipan Models

Updated April 17, 2017

Marzipan is a traditional paste of crushed almonds, sugar and egg whites that is like modelling clay for the creative cook. You can buy the marzipan in most grocery stores or you can make it yourself. Marzipan is used to make flowers for cake decorating, although it can be used to shape almost anything you desire.

Adjust the dough. Marzipan has a consistency similar to modelling clay. If it is stiffer than you like, add a few drops of corn syrup. Add powdered sugar if you would like a firmer dough.

Color the dough. Use a few drops of food colouring in small amounts of marzipan to make different coloured doughs. You might want to buy gel-type cake decorating colours as they come in a wider variety of colours than basic food colouring.

Knead the marzipan or roll it on a clean counter to soften it. Dust your work surface with confectioners' sugar. Keep the marzipan you aren't working with tightly covered to prevent it from drying out. You might want to cover it with a moist towel if it is not in an airtight container.

Attach pieces. After shaping the individual parts of your model, you will need a way to stick them together. You can use a bit of water or some egg white to act as a glue.

Play with your food. This is where it gets fun. Because marzipan is like edible clay, you can shape it into almost anything you imagine. Flatten it and use cookie cutters for flat decorations. Roll it into balls and then sculpt into figures.

Use kids' toys to make interesting shapes and textures out of marzipan. Just make sure the kids don't use them with clay. Who wants to eat Play-Doh?

Let models dry for about 24 hours. The marzipan will be edible for a few days but will eventually harden to tooth-cracking consistency.

Store in a plastic bag in the refrigerator if you are not using the models immediately on a cake.

Things You'll Need

  • Marzipan
  • Corn syrup
  • Confectioner's (powdered) sugar
  • Food colouring or cake-decorating gel


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About the Author

Susan Landis-Steward has been a print journalist and editor since 1985, writing for "The Reflector," "The Multnomah Village Post," "The Evergreen Messenger" and "The Oregonian." She has won numerous awards for her reporting and has been published in top academic journals. Landis-Steward has a Master of Science in writing from Portland State University.