What do you use to paint on fondant?

Updated November 21, 2016

Many television shows depict people decorating cakes with fondant. The fondant on the cakes is always elegant and brightly coloured. Most of the tools for decorating are also used in regular craft painting. Fondant artists use paintbrushes, food colouring, pallets and sponges to brighten up plain white fondant.

Food colouring

Use a powdered or gel food colouring. Powdered food colouring is mixed with either vodka or lemon juice to give it the same consistency as watercolour paint. The more powder that you add to the vodka, the more intense the colour becomes. Powdered food colouring can also be brushed on without mixing with the vodka to give the fondant a "dusting" effect. Gel food colouring is also mixed with vodka or lemon juice to make it less tacky when dried. Gel food colouring can also be kneaded into the fondant to give it a solid colour.

Watercolour pallet

A watercolour pallet is used to mix the colours. Watercolour pallets are different than regular paint pallets because there are multiple grooves where the paint is mixed. If a watercolour pallet is used for food colouring it should not be used for any other paint.


Regular paintbrushes are used to paint on fondant as long as they are new. Pastry brushes are also used to cover larger areas. As long as the brushes are soft they will work for painting on fondant.


Using an airbrush machine is common when painting fondant. The airbrush machine is first filled with the powdered food dye that has been mixed with vodka. Then, the airbrush machine is aimed at the fondant to create a design or cover large areas.


Stencils are also used when painting on fondant. Stencils are made out of a thin plastic that has a design carved into the centre. The stencil is laid on or held to the fondant. A brush or sponge is then filled with food colouring and is dabbed on top of the stencil. When the stencil is removed the design is printed on the fondant.

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