Last Updated on December 3, 2022
Whether for cupcakes, cookies, brownies, or cakes, chocolate frosting is a delicious addition. However, you may have wondered, can you color chocolate frosting?
Traditionally, most people just use vanilla frosting as a base for making colored frosting since it is white. This allows you to make whatever colors you want. However, you can use chocolate frosting to make certain colors as well.
Chocolate frosting can be great for making darker colors. Since it is already brown, you don't have to use as much food coloring to achieve a dark color. This allows you to have a wonderful chocolate taste in different colors, without any after-taste from too much food coloring.
Read more about Using Oil-Based Food Coloring
Types of Food Coloring
When it comes to food coloring, there are several different types. The most common type is traditional liquid food coloring or liquid dye. It is inexpensive and is often made with synthetic dye in a water base. Typically, it is sold in small dropper bottles and can be found at groceries, craft, and superstores.
Liquid gel dye is similar to traditional food coloring. It consists of synthetic coloring with a base of water, as well as glycerin or corn syrup. Like traditional food coloring, it’s sold in small dropper bottles. It is much more concentrated than liquid dye and a few drops go a long way.
Gel paste dye is a popular choice among professional bakers and it is typically sold in small pots or jars. Similar to liquid gel dye, it is made from synthetic coloring with water, glycerin, or corn syrup base. Since it is a paste, it is very thick and there is not much room for trial and error when using it.
For those not wanting to use synthetic dyes, natural food coloring is also available. They are free of any glycerin or corn syrup and are sold in small dropper bottles. The color typically comes from plants and vegetables such as saffron turmeric, carrot juice, and beets.
Lastly, there is also powdered dye. It comes in jars and is a completely dry powder. It is great to use in recipes that are sensitive to liquid.
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Making Black Frosting with Chocolate Buttercream
Most people avoid black frosting because it has so much food coloring in it to achieve such a dark color. However, if you start with chocolate buttercream instead of vanilla, you won't need to add nearly as much food coloring.
Start by adding a few drops of black food coloring at once and mix them into your chocolate frosting. If it is still not black enough, add more food coloring until you reach your desired shade. Let the frosting sit for 20-30 minutes, as this allows the food coloring to become more saturated into the chocolate buttercream, producing a darker color.
Making Red Frosting with Chocolate Buttercream
For a gorgeous, dark red coloring, chocolate buttercream makes a wonderful base. The brown coloring from the chocolate buttercream with red food coloring creates a deep, dark-hued red.
To make the red frosting, start by adding about five drops of red food coloring to your chocolate frosting and mix. If it is still not red enough, add a few more drops of red food coloring. You can also add some melted chocolate to the frosting to give it a darker color.
If you are wanting a burgundy frosting, start with a chocolate frosting and add purple food coloring. Start with a chocolate frosting that is dark in color and add five drops of purple food coloring at a time, stirring after each addition. You may also add a few drops of red food coloring to reach the desired shade of burgundy.
Making Dark Purple Frosting with Chocolate Buttercream
Dark purple is another beautiful color you can make with chocolate frosting. Start by using a chocolate buttercream with less cocoa powder so it has lighter color. Then, add three drops of purple food coloring at a time until you reach your desired color, stirring after each addition.
You can also add a couple of drops of blue food coloring as well. This can help give the purple frosting a lovely jewel tone.
Dying Chocolate Frosting
Can you dye chocolate frosting orange?
Dying chocolate frosting is notoriously difficult and the lighter the color you're looking for, the more difficult it is to achieve. If you're looking for a dark, burnt orange, you can try adding a few drops of orange food coloring to your chocolate frosting. However, it's very unlikely to achieve the color that you're looking for, and when trying for a lighter color, it's best to work with candy melts and use oil-based food coloring.
Can you dye chocolate frosting pink?
It is almost impossible to create the pink chocolate frosting. The lighter the shade you want, the harder it becomes. As pink is one of the lightest colors there is and a more pastel shade, we do not recommend trying to color your chocolate frosting this color. If you're looking to make pink-tempered chocolate, this is much easier to achieve and you can do this by melting chocolate and coloring it with pink oil-based food coloring.
Can you dye chocolate frosting white?
There is a simple answer to this: no. Because of how dark chocolate frosting is, it's impossible to make it light enough to pass as white. If you're looking for a chocolate flavor that comes with the color white, it's best to use candy melts or simple white chocolate. You do not need to color this and tempering chocolate is relatively easy once you've had some practice. You will not be able to make chocolate frosting the color white, so using candy melts may be the best way forward.
Can you color the chocolate frosting green?
You may be able to color your chocolate frosting green. However, it's worth noting that the color of the frosting will be a dark green and it may not be the most appealing shade of green - green and brown do not tend to make the nicest color! If you do want to try this, all you need to do is add a small amount of green food coloring (a few drops should do) to your chocolate frosting.
Gently mix the color evenly into your chocolate frosting. Add more of the food coloring, if needed. Keep stirring until you have achieved the shade you're looking for.
It's also worth noting that the longer you leave chocolate frosting with food coloring, the darker it becomes - so you may want to work as quickly as possible!
Can I use Wilton Icing Color for chocolate?
When it comes to coloring chocolate itself, you need to be very careful. It's important not to use water-based food colorings. This includes traditional food coloring, as well as a gel food coloring.
Using these types of food coloring can make your chocolate unusable. Wilton recommends using oil-based food colorings. Wilton has specially formulated food colorings to use specifically on chocolate. They currently offer two of these sets, in a selection of colors. These sets include:
- Primary Colors Set. Yellow, Orange, Red, and Blue.
- Garden Colors Set. Green, Pink, Violet, and Black.
You can use these colors individually or mix them to make new colors that are not yet available in their candy melts range.
Beautiful and Delicious Buttercreams for Decorating
Chocolate frosting can be a great base for adding food coloring. It can create beautiful colors like black, red, burgundy, and dark purple. The great thing about starting with chocolate is that it requires less food coloring, so you don't have to worry about affecting the taste.
Do you have any questions on whether can you color chocolate frosting? If so, please ask them in the comments down below.
Ever since she was a young girl, Anna has been a lover of desserts. As an adult, she enjoys
baking a variety of desserts from cakes, cookies, brownies, bread, and more from scratch. She
enjoys sharing her passion for baking with others who also have a sweet tooth. From properly
measuring ingredients to making sure they are the correct temperature, Anna knows the
importance small details can make in baking. She wants to share her experience with others in
hopes they can make the most delicious baked goods. When she’s not busy blogging, Anna
enjoys trying new recipes in the kitchen.