4 Ways to Ice a Cupcake

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Many of us have heard the saying, "You eat with your eyes first" at one point or another in our lives. I don't know about you but I often find myself reaching for food even when I'm not hungry because it looks good. I'm especially weak when it comes to desserts, more specifically cupcakes.

A beautifully decorated cupcake is perfect for any occasion and the best part is that you can easily make them right at home! All you need is a batch of your favorite cupcake, frosting,  a pastry bag, and tips to create pretty bakery-style frosting. There are so many design options when it comes  to frosting cupcakes but these 4 basic piping techniques are all you'll really need to impress.

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Ingredients:

For the buttercream frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3-4 cups confectioners powdered sugar, sifted
  • ¼ teaspoon table salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • About 4 tablespoons. heavy cream
  • Food coloring, optional

Directions:

In a mixing bowl with a paddle attachment, beat butter until creamy and lighter in color (about 2 minutes).Add 3 cups of powdered sugar (low speed) until the sugar is incorporated with the butter.Increase speed then add salt, vanilla extract, 2 tablespoons of cream, food coloring and continue to beat for about 3 minutes.If consistency is too thin, add the 1 cup of sugar. If too stiff, add remaining tablespoons of cream

Frosting Techniques:

1. Ruffle Swirl (Closed Star Tip, Wilton 2D)

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The Ruffle Swirl is created using the Closed Star tip (Wilton 2D). Start on the outer edge of the cupcake and apply pressure to the top of the pastry bag to release the frosting while simultaneously moving your hand in a circle working your way to the center. When you reach the top, gently release the pressure to create a slight peak.

2. The Jumbo Dollop (Round Tip)

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If you're the type of person who loves extra frosting then the Jumbo Dollop is for you. The round tip releases more frosting than most tips so you can pile on the buttercream goodness. Just like the ruffle style, start on the outer edge of the cupcake then make your way to the middle of the cupcake.

3. The Classic Swirl (Open Star Tip)

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For a more classic look, use the popular Open Star tip (Wilton 1M) to create a soft-serve ice cream style finish. Start on the outer edge of the cupcake and squeeze out the icing in circular motions, making your way to the center, then gently release the pressure to form a peak.

4. The Rosette (Open Star Tip)

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To really bring on the "wow" factor, try piping a rosette on top of your cupcake. This piping technique may look difficult but it is very easy to create! Hold your bag at a 90° angle, with the tip close to the surface, gently squeeze out the icing. Then move the tip in a clockwise spiral while applying even pressure until you reach the edges of the cupcake. As you're finishing up your last rotation, gently release the pressure and pull away.


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