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10 best cake decorating tools

From piping bags to pastry brushes, the right baking kit will help you create a showstopper

Georgia Green
Monday 15 October 2018 09:33 BST
Georgia's cakes have attracted celebrity fans
Georgia's cakes have attracted celebrity fans

Ever dreamt of creating a showstopping cake, but not sure how? What you may not realise is that it’s surprisingly achievable.

I started my cake business, Georgia’s Cakes, three years ago, and now have more than 100,000 followers on Instagram. I’ve even attracted fans such as Cara Delevingne, Suki Waterhouse and Lorraine Pascal.

Today, my wedding cakes are displayed in Harrods Food Hall, while I make others for birthday events and brand launches. I trained at Le Cordon Bleu, but you don’t have to be a professional baker to wow your friends, family and social media followers. You just need to have the right equipment.

Here, we’ve put together a list of essentials that will help you gain the confidence and skills to transform your Victoria sponge into a masterpiece.

Tala Tilting Icing Turntable: £15, Dunelm

It’s worth investing in a turntable; and no, we’re not referring to the DJ setup – although that could be interesting.

A baking turntable makes decorating a cake smoother and more efficient, as well as giving you a full 360 degree view of the cake without having to handle it too much.

We like the Tala tilting turntable, which you can adjust to different angles, enabling you to reach the top of the cake more easily.

It also has a strong non-slip surface.

Buy now

PME Stainless Steel Metal Plain Side Scraper: £4.95, Cake Stuff

Every baker loves a smooth and sharp-finished cake. It’s also one of the most challenging aspects of decorating. That’s where the side scraper steps in.

Plastic scrapers tend to bend, so we recommend the PME metal scraper. This is tall enough for the average layered cake, has a nice clean edge and is very stable.

Buy now

Tala Angled Palette Knife: £2.99, Ocado

Also known as an “offset spatula”, a palette knife helps spread buttercream evenly between cake layers, while keeping the edges of the cake sharp and tidy.

This particular shape prevents the handle – and your hands – from touching the cake as you’re decorating.

They come in various sizes, but we found that this one is very easy to work with as it gives you more control.

Buy now

Roll of 100 21” Piping Bags: £8.50, Amazon

Taller cakes have become one of the latest trends in the baking world.

Cakes with more layers need more buttercream, and this calls for a large piping bag. These ones are easy to use, high quality and great value for money.

Buy now

Refillable silicone pastry brush: £8, Joseph Joseph

The pastry brush is great for drenching sponge in sugar syrup, adding moisture and flavour to your cake. But we’ve found that brush bristles often come off.

Fortunately, Joseph Joseph has answered our sugar syrup prayers. This brush is made of silicone, which means it’s bristle-free. It’s the best alternative to soak your cakes.

Buy now

Digital Thermometer: £5.98, Nisbets

If you want to experiment with caramel, a thermometer is essential.

You can go for old-fashioned sugar thermometers, but we’ve found digital readings to be much more accurate.

A probe is also safer. By avoiding direct contact with a hot pan or caramel, you’ll avoid any burns.

Buy now

Vogue High Heat Spatula: £7.91, Amazon

The idea of baking may well conjure up a picture of a trusty wooden spoon, but we’ve always found them a bit tricky when it comes to stirring, scraping and cleaning.

Flexible spatulas allow you to scrape the bowl clean to ensure nothing goes to waste.

They’re also heat resistant, which means you can use them to make caramel without them melting into the pan.

Buy now

Colour Splash Food Colouring Gel Set: £6.99, Craft Company

When it comes to food colouring, we’d recommend staying clear of liquids. They dilute the mixture. As the colour is often quite weak, you’ll also need to use quite a lot.

Gel colours are much more concentrated, can be used in smaller doses and are usually much brighter.

Colour Splash comes in a wonderful range of shades. The neat tubes also keep your work clean – no more stained hands!

Buy now

Wilton 1M nozzle: £1.95, Cake Stuff

Piping nozzles can transform a plain cake into a flourishing masterpiece.

One nozzle can be used in many ways, and we found that you can’t go wrong with a classic Wilton 1M tip.

From cupcakes swirls to small details on larger cakes, this nozzle is a great introduction to the world of piping.

Buy now

Wilton 5 Piece Brush Set: £6, Hobbycraft

Whether it’s painting onto fondant cakes or brushing chocolate with lustre dust, a true artist needs good quality brushes. If you use regular paint brushes, you may well find that the bristles fall out, so it’s worth investing in ones made for cake and biscuit decorating.

The liner brush of this set is great for details, the round brush is good for thicker lines, the small flat brush is ideal for shading, the angled flat brush is useful for curved strokes, while the wide flat brush is the one for painting larger areas.

These finishing touches will elevate your cake to the next level.

Buy now

The Verdict: Best cake decorating tools

You don’t need every piece of equipment to decorate a cake, but you will need the right set of tools for the particular style you’re after.

Buttercream cakes are particularly popular at the moment. If you’re making one, we’d recommend the Tala Angled Palette Knife, PME Stainless Steel Side Scraper and 21” Piping Bags.

Our must-have tool to help with every cake would be the Tala Tilting Icing Turntable – so get spinning!

Georgia Green is the founder of Georgia’s Cakes.

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