No-Muss Piping Bag Technique

March 31, 2012

Author Notes: About 30 years ago I learned this technique from the talented pastry chef, Carolyn Backus. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why I've never met anyone else who uses this technique. A real no-brainer in my book! Sooooo useful!! Cookie dough, buttercream, whipped cream etc etc! I guarantee you, after you start using this technique, you will thank Carolyn Backus in your sleep!

photos to follow

Makes: piping life a whole lot neater!


  • 1 12 or 14" cloth pastry bag fitted with piping tip
  • product that you are going to pipe- buttercream, whipped cream, cookie dough.....
  • saran, cut into about 15" lengths and laid flat on counter
In This Recipe


  1. With a rubber spatula, place about 2-3 cups of filling onto a saran square, in a tube-like horizontal shape. Fold up bottom of saran over filling, and roll up. With the left hand on the left end and your right hand on the right end, twist the ends in opposite directions to tighten the form of the tube of filling. This leaves you with a 'firecracker'.
  2. Line up your rolls. Untwist one end of your first roll and use your right hand to squeeze the right end and your left hand to guide the filling,pushing the filling down to the 'opening' of the saran tube.This open end now goes down into your pastry bag.Twist the cloth bag's top end to make it tight with the saran tube inside. Pipe the filling, squeezing and compacting the filling as it lessens. When you have used up all the filling, open the pastry bag and simply lift out the spent saran! Replace with a fresh saran tube! No more messy pastry bags!
  3. Being thrifty, of course, I squeeze out and use all the remnants from the saran tubes. For cookies,I use the remnants to serve as anchors under the corners of parchment paper, or to form a not-perfect 'cookie for the home team'!
  4. photos should show: * piping bag; empty square of saran; saran square with filling placed on top, before rolling up
  5. * piping bag; filling rolled up into a sausage shape, filling pushed down to left end of sausage; right end twisted
  6. * used up, empty saran sausage just removed from piping bag ; clean, non yucky piping bag waiting for new sausage

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