The 10 best cake decorating tools on the market today
1. Sugarflair Concentrated Food Colours Mixed Set of 10: £20.73 Amazon. Anyone who has ever tried to colour icing red with a basic supermarket food colouring will know that it's almost impossible to get the intensity of colour you want with a liquid formula. The solution is a highly concentrated set of pastes, such as these from Sugarflair. Just a tiny dot on the end of a cocktail stick goes a long way.
2. 50 Disposable Piping and Icing Bags: £6.59, Lakeland
We find old-fashioned fabric piping bags both unhygienic and annoying, as you have to use them with the right size coupler for your nozzle. Instead, bulk-buy plastic ones that you can snip the end off to fit your nozzle. They also fare well in the dishwasher for two or three washes.
3. Wilton 1M Piping Nozzle: £1.58, Cake Decorating Store
Piping nozzles are a really easy and fairly inexpensive way to experiment with decorating. Use them to pipe swirls or even roses on top of cupcakes, or to add trims and embellishment to larger cakes. The 1M is a classic and a particular favourite of ours for a cupcake swirl.
4. Tala Cake Leveller: £3.50, John Lewis
If you need to trim off an uneven rise before icing or cut one large sponge into several layers for filling, a leveller helps you do it. Adjust the blade to the height you want and cut using a light sawing motion, keeping the feet of the leveller on your flat work surface all the time. This one from Tala can cut up to 5cm high and fit cakes 25cm wide.
5. Cake Boss 1-Piece Decorating Turntable: £17.99, Amazon
A turntable isn't a necessity, but it does make decorating work a whole lot easier. Work on all sides of a cake without having to lift and turn it y placing your cake on top and spinning it as necessary. We particularly like the Cake Boss version for its turn lock and rubberised ring around the edge so your cake doesn't slip.
6. PME Veined Rose Leaf Plunger Cutter Set of 3: £8.06, PME
These plunger cutters are a really easy way of getting detail into sugarpaste or marzipan leaves, both cutting and veining in one step. Rose leaves are a versatile choice: use the edge of a circular cutter or back end of a piping nozzle around the edge to turn them into holly leaves.
7. Cake Icing and Marzipan Smoother: £2.99, Lakeland
For a smooth finish when covering a cake the traditional, formal way in marzipan and fondant, this inexpensive tool is invaluable. The non-stick surface glides across the top and sides of your iced cake to level the surface, work out any bubbles and smooth any tucks.
8. TinkerTech Rose Jubilee Petal Cutters: £4.50, Squires Kitchen Shop
If you want to have a go at making your own sugarpaste flowers, roses are a really beautiful but simple place to start. Cut one small petal and roll it up to form the central bud, then add petals around it - preferably in odd numbers - increasing the size of petal cutter as your flower gets bigger.
9. Professional Sabatier Angled Blade Palette Knife: £5, ocado.com
An offset palette knife is a simple way to make covering a cake in buttercream far easier, and to improve the quality of your finish as it allows you to work the top of your cake with a flat blade, without the handle getting in the way.
10. Set of 4 PME Patterned Side Scrapers: £4.70, Cakes Cookies and Crafts Shop
As the vogue for pared-down buttercream-iced cakes continues, this set of patterned side scrapers really comes into its own. Simply run around the edge of your iced cake to create a subtle pattern in the buttercream.
Invest in the kit to help you harness all that Bake Off inspiration.