How to Make Dark Red Icing with Food Coloring

How To Make Dark Red Icing With Food Coloring

Last Updated on December 4, 2021

How to make dark red icing with food coloring? Getting the right shade had always been a considerable challenge, especially for beginner bakers. Food colorings usually go by primary colors such as red, yellow, and blue; getting the shade you want would rely on the skills and techniques you will use.

It is best to understand that adding more dark food coloring to the mixture will darken the icing’s full color. However, always be careful when using it since dark food coloring can add a bit of bitter flavor. On the other hand, when you darken the red slightly, it will have a near bright appearance. Doing this will make the icing less artificial. Keep in mind that less is better till the ideal shade of the icing is achieved. In addition to that, if the icing gets darker than usual, you can add a tablespoon of the original icing. Likewise, make sure to do a little test batch before adding it.

The most important thing to do when deepening the dark red icing color is to wrap it with a cling wrap and time. Additionally, set it aside for approximately thirty minutes to two hours. As a result, the colors will deepen as time goes by.

Choosing The Proper Food Coloring

It is best to avoid utilizing natural brands when choosing the proper food coloring for dark red icing. It is because natural brands are usually in brown or greenish shades. With that, use paste or gel food coloring rather than liquid varieties. For this reason, liquid food coloring has plenty of water in it. In addition to that, it can affect the consistency of the dark red icing. Moreover, if you use a lot of it, it will result in unusable or unstable icing.

Food Coloring AmeriColor


  • Mixing bowl
  • Rubber spatula


  • A cup of vanilla frosting
  • one-fourth teaspoon of red gel food coloring
  • one-eighth of brown gel food coloring

Step by Step Instructions on How to Make Dark Red Icing with Food Coloring

Step 1

Please make sure the icing is at room temperature before blending it.

Step 2

Place the vanilla icing in the mixing bowl, add the red gel food coloring, and mix using a rubber spatula.

Step 3

Drop in the brown gel food coloring and fold in so that the color will mix; make sure not to create air so that there will not be any air bubbles when piping.

Dropping food coloring

Step 4

When the color is too light, gradually add 1/16 tsp of brown food coloring until the right color is achieved. If the color ends up darker, add a tablespoon of icing to lighten until the desired color is acquired.

Tips and Tricks for Making Dark Red Icing with Food Coloring

When dealing with icing, it is better to use gel or paste food coloring than liquid because too much liquid can alter the icing’s consistency. If you use too much, you will end with sticky and sloppy icing. If you do not have that much food coloring, I recommend starting color sampling with a small bowl. When flavoring your icing, it is best to use high-quality natural extracts.

A useful trick is to cover the frosting with airtight plastic wrap and let sit for a few hours; the color will deepen over time. You can also experiment with cherry red colors, add bright pink to red, colors like burgundy, add purple, and colors like maroon and dark brown. Over-dying your icing will make it taste bitter; you can restart and make a fresh batch; be cautious the second trial. In a white dish or bowl, begin with a little amount to combine the colors so that the icing’s original color can be visible.

As much as possible, create the red icing two days or a day in advance. For this reason, it will deepen as it sets. Likewise, a rich red will appear even richer several days after making it. Remember, utilizing a considerable amount of red icing color will add a bitter flavor to the red icing. With that, add a small amount of more flavorings like no-color almond extract or clear vanilla to balance the dark red icing taste.

Moreover, use No-Taste Red, which will add all the color whenever you use food coloring in huge icing quantities. In addition to that, it does not affect the flavor of the dark red icing.

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