Sugar Icing Instructions

Written by jenny harrington Google
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Sugar Icing Instructions
Sugar icing works well for decorating cakes. (white icing letter l on a blue cake (series spells love) image by davidcrehner from

Sugar icing is one of the simplest ways to make a cake icing. It doesn't contain raw eggs like other icing recipes, yet it still hardens and can be used for decorative use. Icing consists of sugar combined with butter and other liquids. The main difference between an icing and a frosting is the consistency. Frosting is thick and rich, while an icing is thinner and better suited to glazing cakes or for use in decorative elements.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Microwave-safe bowl
  • 4 tbsp. Butter
  • Medium bowl
  • 2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Mixer or whisk

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  1. 1

    Place 4 tbsp of butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on 50 per cent power at 20-second intervals until the butter is completely melted.

  2. 2

    Measure 2 level cups of icing sugar, also called confectioner's sugar. Pour the sugar into medium-sized bowl.

  3. 3

    Add the melted butter, 2 tbsp milk, and ½ tsp vanilla extract to the sugar in the bowl.

  4. 4

    Beat the ingredients together with a hand mixer at medium speed until they are thoroughly combined. You can also use an electric mixer or mix by hand with whisk.

  5. 5

    Pour the icing over a slightly warmed cake as a glaze. Alternatively, smooth it onto cakes or cookies with a spatula.

Tips and warnings

  • Replace the vanilla with almond, lemon or another flavoured extract. You can also replace the milk with orange juice for a citrus icing.
  • Use less liquid if you want a stiffer icing that's better suited for decorative elements.
  • Use liquid or paste food colouring to tint your icing to the desired colour before placing it on the cake.

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