My Fondant Won't Stay Smooth, Help

Decorating By makenice99 Updated 14 May 2015 , 9:38pm by MKC

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makenice99 Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 6:50pm
post #1 of 15


Ok, what am I doing wrong? I have looked through the gallery and viewed all of the wonderful fondant covered cakes and they look beautiful so bright and perfect. No sagging, puck marks nothing. So I have been trying fondant on sample cakes for my family & co workers and well I am not getting the same look as you all.

When I first roll out the fondant it looks fine. I cover my buttercream cake smoothing while I go, using 2 smoothers. Then I tried the Chef Chris Garren method of using a piece of fondant to smooth out the finished cake as well. Once I finish the cake it looks great, I set it aside of the table. Then I go to make my Happy Birthday or other occasion message & other shape cut outs about 10mins or so.

I go to the cake and the fondant has pucked up in different spots, have chip marks just not processional and finished looking. What and I doing wrong. I am using Satin Ice fondant. Dusting my work space with corn starch and not putting the fondant cake in the fridge. I am applying the fondant right after I applied the buttercream with an only a 5 to 8 min rest for the cake while I color and roll out the fondant.

I have tried different fondant thickness but thats not helping. My computer takes forever to download photos or I would post a photo of my failed attempts.

14 replies
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Karen337 Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 6:56pm
post #2 of 15

Were you working on round or square cakes? I haven't worked much with fondant, but I believe the technique you use to smooth it depends on the shape of the cake.

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TexasSugar Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 6:56pm
post #3 of 15

How much buttercream did you use on the cake? Did you let the cake settle any before or after putting on the buttercream?

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makenice99 Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 7:55pm
post #4 of 15

So far I have only tried round 10" cakes.

I filled the cake put a crumb coat placed it in the frezzer for 5 minutes. Removed and applied buttercream. After the buttercream was on I set to side on the table about 5 to 10 minutes to color and roll the fondant. Should I give it more time from frosting to covering in fondant? Do you put your fondant cake in the fridge like they do on the TV shows?

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divinecc Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 8:17pm
post #5 of 15

My fondant used to sag and bulge then I found out that after you torte and fill you should let your tiers settle. 3-4 hrs Lots of people loosely wrap the tier in plastic wrap and put a 12" tile on top to help with this (it was either Leah_s or Indydebi who came up with the idea) When your cakes sit after filling the air releases from between the layers, if you do not let them settle the air releases between your cake and the fondant with no where to go. Also I have noticed when I use the tile method my cakes are studier and hold up to the fondant better. Anyways thats what I took from the forum I read a couple months ago and it worked for me.

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snowballwinters Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 8:34pm
post #6 of 15

I always press my cakes right out of the oven and haven't had any issues with bulging/sagging. But i have had some problems with little tiny air bubbles in the fondant as I roll it and then when I cover the cake I still have a few, has anyone had this problem?

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divinecc Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 9:38pm
post #7 of 15

I press mine as well, I am not talking about the cake itself but when filled the air between the cake and filling needs time to release....just something others have suggested and it works well for me! icon_smile.gif

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sillywabbitz Posted 20 Sep 2010 , 10:02pm
post #8 of 15

are you dampening your buttercream? If your buttercream has crusted and you haven't dampened it before you apply the fondant it has nothing to stick too. Sugarshack runs a damp paper towel over her "set" buttercream ...just lightly so that the fondant will stick.

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Karen337 Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 12:13am
post #9 of 15

I don't know if you'll find these helpful, but I like these short tutorials from Ateco. They are designed especially for the Satin Ice fondant. You might have already seen them, but FWIW.

He recommends rubbing cracks and indentations with shortening.

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makenice99 Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 2:38pm
post #10 of 15


Thank you all so much for helping me. However, I think I didnt explain the problem correctly. While I love the tips on tort fill and letting it sit with a tile to settle and will defiantly use this method going forward. I am not talking about the middle bulging where the two layers meet.

When I put on the fondant various places around the cake form these droopy, bulges, bumps. It even happened when I tried putting a gumpaste dress onto the top of a buttercream only cake. What is causing the bulge?

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Sweetwise Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 2:42pm
post #11 of 15

Most likely the cornstarch. Just like whiskey is made, the corn part of the cornstarch feeds on the sugar and the moisture and ferments, creating a gas. The method of "dusting" your countertop is becoming old fashioned. Try this method out

Also check out the video on Fondant Survival. Good tips on what might be going wrong!

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Karen337 Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 2:45pm
post #12 of 15

I also wonder if you are smoothing it correctly.

You do smooth the fondant in a downward direction down the sides of the cake, right?

Only once it's really tight against the sides of the cake can you do the final smoothing around the sides.

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makenice99 Posted 21 Sep 2010 , 7:33pm
post #13 of 15

Oh My God, thank you all so very much. Those video hit the nail on the head. I learned so many things I was doing wrong. The main problem I believe was as mention by Sweetwise the cornstarch. Also, I was applying to much color & wasnt letting the fondant rest.

I have never thought to mix color dust and gels for more intense shades. That is too cool!

Thanks a bunch all.

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Jenmarlene Posted 14 May 2015 , 4:26pm
post #14 of 15

just learned something here, thanks guys!!

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MKC Posted 14 May 2015 , 9:38pm
post #15 of 15

Some of my tips:

- I don't use cornstarch when rolling my fondant. I use a thin coat of shortening on my counter. It helps the fondant stick to the cake and it doesn't change the chemistry of the cake/fondant.

- I refrigerate my cakes (with the final coat of icing or ganache) overnight before putting the fondant. I do not bring the cake to room temperature before putting the fondant.

- I color my fondant one day before using. Some colours will mature with time. Either they will become darker or lighter.

- I knee my fondant. Wait half an hour and knee again to use. I've learned this trick and it's been very successful. It gives me a very smooth fondant on my cakes.

- I do my decorations well ahead of time so that when the cake has fondant, I can place the decorations right away.

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