Learning how to make black icing the easy way is a great trick to have because black is one of the toughest colors to achieve. Many people complain that their black frosting turns out grey or a black that is not deep enough. Another problem bakers encounter is how staining black food coloring is! Do you want to know how to solve both these problems in one go? Today we are going to learn how to achieve the deepest, blackest icing that does not stain anybody’s mouth.
The Secret Ingredient to Making Black Icing
The usual problem is how white buttercream is at the start of the process. Well, this is very easy to solve. Before even putting in the cavalry (black gel food coloring), we need to darken the base a little bit. This will give it the best chance it has. It will prevent the icing from going grey or needing too much artificial food coloring to actually be black as night. For this purpose, we can use one of two things.
And with black cocoa, we mean exactly that. Although you can use dutch processed cocoa or natural baking cocoa, black cocoa has a higher pH and is less acidic than its counterparts. Its flavor is similar to black bittersweet chocolate. It reminds me of an Oreo cookie!
Of course, as usual with the best kinds of ingredients, it is somewhat hard to find in grocery stores. Consider buying some online, as I do!
It goes without saying that it will add some flavor to your frosting, but it is worth it for the end result it will help you achieve.
Activated Charcoal Powder
Alternatively, you can use food-grade activated charcoal powder to darken the base color of your buttercream. Activated charcoal comes from coconut shells that are burned and turned into a fine powder. It has amazing properties! Some people even use it to brush and whiten their teeth!
Apart from being very, very black, it has many health benefits. It is a natural detoxifier and when ingested it can treat poisoning, high cholesterol, and other digestive symptoms.
And What If I Do not Have any Food Coloring?
Then using just black cocoa, activated charcoal, or a mixture of both is good enough. Of course, it will not be as black as it can. Remember that the trick to the blackest icing possible is darkening the base so that the food coloring can dye it properly.
Some people do like the color they achieve with these natural ingredients, though, so do not feel obliged to add any other!
Now, How to Make Black Icing?
Our personal favorite option is, and always will be gel food coloring. Why? Because it adds concentrated color without adding any moisture. You will also need less of the stuff. This is great because of two things. One, the less you put in, the less it will stain your mouth! Two, believe it or not, food coloring does have a taste. So you need to use as little as you can to avoid it.
Find black gel food coloring for you icing here.
What do you think? Are you still scared of black icing now?