Dark Red Buttercream

Decorating By tal Updated 3 Sep 2011 , 5:14am by Unlimited

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tal Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 3:05am
post #1 of 6

I know there are some posts on here about getting a very deep red color with BC, but I've tried the red gel paste from wilton with no luck! Even letting it sit out did not make it darker.


What do most of you use or do you have any other suggestions?

I also tried about 5 different BC's for decorating - none of them held up well enough to cover the cake OR make the decorations.....I'm feeling so frustrated and I'm doing my first wedding cake in November!!!!!

Anyone's help would be most appreciated and please feel free to email me!

Thank you,

[email protected]

5 replies
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scp1127 Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 3:14am
post #2 of 6

I don't use Wilton gels. I haven't had any problem, but I do use IMBC.

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Ruth0209 Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 3:31am
post #3 of 6

Red buttercream for a wedding cake is a bad idea (red BC on ANY cake is a bad idea, for that matter). It takes so much to make it red that it tastes bitter, it changes the consistency of the BC and it tends to separate, and it stains everyones' mouths and teeth red, not to mention linens and wedding dresses.

I recommend you advise the bride that you need to do her design in red fondant and then buy it pre-mixed. Trust me, you'll be SO glad you did this. Even if you have to absorb the price of the fondant, you end up with a much happier bride and a prettier and more appetizing cake.

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carmijok Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 3:32am
post #4 of 6

I use Americolor gel colors. You can get them at Hobby Lobby. I've only used red buttercream for decor in a Wilton class I took. Here's the cake:


Yes, I know...the roses suck, but my icing was too soft. It certainly couldn't have been my skill-set! ;D

I used Wilton red for that and it came out OK, but I've since switched to Americolor. I don't know if you're going to cover a cake with red BC, but if you do, I would highly recommend you frost your cake first with regular BC and harden it in the fridge and then apply just a couple of thin layers of the red to cover. Red--even the so-called 'no taste' reds--have a bitter chemical taste to them I think, not to mention all the lovely things they do to teeth and tongues. This way you get the taste of the buttercream and the look of the red. Just an FYI!

I use a real butter based buttercream so it gets good and solid in the fridge.

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scp1127 Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 4:15am
post #5 of 6

I should have mentioned that I totally frost the cake in white and only do a skim coat in the dark colors. I frost the cake in IMBC, refrigerate, and lightly frost again in the color. You are right about too much color staining teeth.

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Unlimited Posted 3 Sep 2011 , 5:14am
post #6 of 6
Originally Posted by tal

What do most of you use or do you have any other suggestions?

You just need to use a LOT of food coloring to achieve dark red BC.

Chefmaster paste is ideal, but a lot of any brand will work.

You can even use McCormick liquid red from the grocery store. Keep in mind, when using a liquidyou'll most likely need to add more powdered sugar to stiffen it back up, especially to decorate with. (I used liquid to pipe the red roses in my videoplus additional PS, and they're definitely dark enough.)

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