How to make gel icing

Updated April 17, 2017

Gel icing can be used in many ways to decorate cakes and cookies. It's perfect for cakes that have an aquatic theme because it's clear and resembles water if tinted blue. Gel icing glistens and adds liveliness to your cake when contrasted against or mixed with a cream frosting. It's great for writing messages directly on the cake or making intricate designs on waxed paper, drying and transferring them. Making gel icing yourself is easy, saves money and enables you to customise colours. It stores well and if tightly sealed and refrigerated, can keep for several months.

Place 2 tbsp cold water into a saucepan. Add 2 tbsp unflavoured gelatine to the water, but do not mix. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes.

Put the saucepan over low heat until the mixture is clear and the gelatine has dissolved. Do not boil.

Add 475ml (2 cups) light corn syrup to the clear gelatine mixture. Once the entire mixture is heated through, remove from heat and let cool.

Slowly add food colouring and mix thoroughly until desired colour is achieved. You can also separate and make smaller batches of different colours. Keep it clear, stored and refrigerated in tightly sealed containers if not using the icing right away.


Decorate using icing bags or plastic squeeze bottles.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Small saucepan
  • Gelatine, unflavored
  • Light corn syrup
  • Food colouring
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About the Author

Stefano Marrero has been writing since 1992. He has contributed to various websites, including Octane360, covering everything from Sony televisions to potholes. Marrero has also written for several urban magazines and blogs. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from California State University, Long Beach.