I used to work as a cookie decorator for one of those bakeries that makes cookie bouquets. I picked up a lot of decorating tricks there and one of my favorites is adding white food coloring to your frosting base.
It didn’t make sense to me at first. Especially when we were using royal icing which was pretty white to begin with. But I dutifully added in the white food coloring. Lo and behold, it became whiter! A true, pure white.
When should you use white food coloring?
I like to always use a little bit but I especially notice the difference in my buttercream. Because I use real butter in my buttercream, it’s always a little bit yellow.
The spoon on the left is my buttercream without any coloring added. The spoon on the right is with white added in. As you can see, it makes a true white color.
I typically always add in some white first, even when I’m making other colors. It takes the yellow out of the equation and my colors are more true.
What kind of white food coloring should I use?
Brand wise-it’s up to you. I’ve used both Wilton and Americolor with good success. My only advice is to always use gel food coloring for your frostings and oil based food coloring for your chocolate.
Pro Tip: Buy a big bottle. You’ll use a LOT more white than you think to get pure white frosting. It’s not like normal food coloring where a drop or two will do.
How do you use white food coloring?
Just open up the bottle and pour some in with your mixer going. Stop it, wait a few minutes and see if you like the shade. I typically use at least a tablespoon when making a standard batch of buttercream. It’s pretty hard to over-use white.
To make things a little easier in the kitchen, I’ve created a handy printable conversion chart (cause honestly, who can remember how many teaspoons are in a tablespoon?). Sign up below and I’ll send it to you!
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