Do I Really Need To Sift Powdered Sugar????

Decorating By ajoycake Updated 24 Apr 2006 , 2:38am by LOVEME

ajoycake Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:19pm
post #1 of 18

Call me lazy but do I really need to do this? Can it really make that much difference??
Please enlighten me!!! icon_confused.gificon_confused.gif

17 replies
TamiAZ Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:21pm
post #2 of 18

I don't... icon_biggrin.gif

JoAnnB Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:24pm
post #3 of 18

Most of the time it is fine unsifted. When you need an icing for fine work, like tup #1 details, it is essential to sift. Otherwise, you will certainly have to strain your icing.

If I add sugar to fondant because it needs just a touch more, I always sift it to avoid tiny lumps. but in the initial mix, I don't sift.

buzzybee Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:24pm
post #4 of 18

Of course there can be lumps but it depends on how you measure it and what the recipe calls for. 3 cups of sifted is not 3 cups unsifted but if you go by weight. I don't know what the diff would be (other than the occasional lump). I have had problems getting my coloring even when I don't sift enough also.

ccoth Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:29pm
post #5 of 18

My wilton instructor told us the 10x on the powdered sugar meant it had been sifted 10 times and that we didn't have to sift it. Not sure if that helps or not!

Lisa Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:36pm
post #6 of 18

I don't sift unless the PS is lumpy. I try not to buy it if it's hard or lumpy. I buy in plastic bags and squeeze the bag to make sure it's light and airy.

Darstus Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:47pm
post #7 of 18

I also do not sift unless I notice limps. Don't think we see this as much a way back when they were packages in a box rather than a plastic bag. Never have any problems!

ajoycake Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:51pm
post #8 of 18

thanks, this makes me feel much better!!!!

bonniebakes Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 10:58pm
post #9 of 18
Originally Posted by ccoth

My wilton instructor told us the 10x on the powdered sugar meant it had been sifted 10 times and that we didn't have to sift it. Not sure if that helps or not!

I've read in other threads that the "sifting theory" (10x means sifted 10 times) isn't true. Sounds like a bakign urban legand! icon_biggrin.gif

dky Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 11:05pm
post #10 of 18

here in Australia we have both a pure version and a mixture which has some cornflour (I think you call it cornstarch).

If using the pure then I sift. When using the mixture I don't.


TJSCAKES Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 11:06pm
post #11 of 18

I always sift my Powder Sugar icon_biggrin.gif The other day I sifted it and then added a little more, but threw it in without sifting it and my frosting was lumpy and everything I tried wouldn't work, so I ended up using it for oreo cookie filling.

Doug Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 11:19pm
post #12 of 18

The scoop! (verified by several sites. so it's the grind not the sift! from "What's Cooking America"

powdered sugar Also called confectioners sugar. In Britain it is called icing sugar and in France sucre glace. It is granulated sugar ground to a powder, sifted, and a small amount (3%) cornstarch has been added to prevent caking. The fineness to which the granulated sugar is ground determines the family X: factor: The X: designations are derived from the mesh sizes of the screens used to separate powdered sugar into various sizes. Thus, 4X would have a larger particle size, whereas 10X would have a smaller particle size.14 X is finer than 12X, and so on down through 10X, 8X, 6X, and 4X (the coarsest powdered sugar). Confectioners or powdered sugar, available at supermarkets, is usually 10X. Always sift it before using.

have to get some 14x -- interesting to see how smooth a frosting that would make.

dky Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 12:45am
post #13 of 18

Yes spot on.

Icing sugar is what we call it here in Australia also.

Pure icing sugar is what is used for royal icing and has lots of lump and must be sifted to make good royal icing.

Icing sugar mixture is our version that has the cornstarch in it and its pretty smooth. No need to sift and great for buttercream.

heychele Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 12:52am
post #14 of 18

I always sift first now. I end up with a smooth creamy buttercream great for smooth cakes where as before I always had trouble getting it flawless.

dtmc Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 2:10am
post #15 of 18

I don't sift and I haven't had any problems with lumps or smoothing. I think it is just preference.

mrboop Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 2:18am
post #16 of 18

I have never sifted my pawdered sugar and my frosting turns out fine even using a tip #1. Maybe someday I'll buy a sifter and try it and see what the difference is.

amycake Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 2:22am
post #17 of 18

I sifted my sugar at first. Now I never do and I don't even notice a difference in the frosting at all. All the sifter used to do is make my hand hurt..LOL

LOVEME Posted 24 Apr 2006 , 2:38am
post #18 of 18

I sift several times.I really think it helps to make a better frosting.I also,sift my cake mix and all dry ingredients when mixing a cake.I think it just makes for a better batter.

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