Presale! 2 new cookbooks from Food52. Claim your signed copies »
🔕 🔔

My Basket ()

All questions

Royal Frosting hardening when dry.

I've only attempted royal frosting a few times. The first time was perfect. Ever since, I've had a hard time getting the right consistency so that it flows nicely from a squeeze bottle, so I try to thin it a little with either water or light corn syrup. However when it dries, it dries REALLY hard. And it doesn't taste so great either. What am I doing wrong?

Thanks for your advice!

asked by chelleb over 5 years ago
8 answers 2447 views
4375bef9 1837 458d b3ed e78dda234de6  img 0272
added over 5 years ago

Glycerin might help?

That said, I've never seen royal frosting *not* dry really hard, as that is the whole point of it. Maybe a different kind of frosting is more suitable -- what are you decorating?

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added over 5 years ago

Royal icing is supposed to dry, and dry fairly hard. As for taste, I've never thought that it tastes great because it's (primarily) egg whites and sugar. It's more decorative, and not (in my opinion) a flavor enhancer. I've never used a squeeze bottle for royal icing as I prefer a bag, but that's probably because I've iced thousands of cookies w/ a bag.

I think Tammy is right-you don't sound pleased w/ the icing itself and maybe something else would be better, dep on what you're doing.

22b9ddc9 fc61 48a3 949e dee341974288  liz and dad
added over 5 years ago

I agree with Tammy and spiffypaws. Royal frosting/icing is supposed to dry hard. Let us know what you are decorating.

I sometimes add a little flavoring, like lemon extract, or almond extract, to make it tastier.

84baef1b 1614 4c3d a895 e859c9d40bd1  chris in oslo

Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking

added over 5 years ago

Yes--always hard and truly, not very tasty. That's why it's used to "glue" gingerbread houses together. Very stable, great to look at, not so amazing to eat.

F8c5465c 5952 47d4 9558 8116c099e439  dscn2212

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added over 5 years ago

Yes, agree with all of the above. It's job is to dry hard. But you can add some flavor to it with rose water. To taste and consistency.

F8c5465c 5952 47d4 9558 8116c099e439  dscn2212

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added over 5 years ago

OK, the long answer. There are several consistencies of royal icing. There's icing for "embroidiery", there's icing for outlining, which is quite stiff, "flow" icing which is very soft and fills in the lines of outlining icing. And so on. It is traditionally flavored with rose water to give it some taste, but its function is generally to look good. Does all this help you?

Bb911bcd 2446 4d8f 848f cdc2090e999a  leaf cake
added over 5 years ago

Perhaps you intended to use royal icing, but if you want a softer icing that you can still use to decorate, use a buttercream frosting:

3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream or half and half

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.

Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.

If you refrigerate it the frosting with harden, but you can let it sit at room temp for about 10 minutes and all will be well, and you can also add 1 or 2 more TBLs. of liquid.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added over 5 years ago

The only time I ever use it is for gingerbread houses. It's just edible glue as far as I'm concerned!

Join Our Email List!

Inbox Inspiration:

Our newsletter is brimming with recipes and features that have us talking—dive in!

A Joyful Home:

Sign up to get $10 off a first purchase of $50 or more in our shop full of tools & treasures.

Come On In:

Join our humming community and get dibs on events, peeks at new cookbooks, and a surprise or two.

Please enter a valid email address.