You are here

How To Correct A Runny Frosting?

culinary.explorer's picture


There is your little girl’s birthday and you want to make it special by making your very own birthday cake. Everything is set but for the frosting, which is runny. How to correct a runny frosting and thicken it, so that you top up that extra special bake with the perfect topping?



Here are a few tips on how to correct a runny frosting :


•    If your frosting is warm or hot, try refrigerating it for 2-3 hours and this should set it if temperature is the factor for making your frosting go runny.


•    Another tip to thicken a runny frosting is to add powdered sugar to it, as the sugar will soak up the extra water and thicken the frosting. Also, with this technique, when you frost the cake, the frosting won’t roll out. But remember to add small quantities of powdered sugar at a time to get the right consistency.


•    If you want to go for non-sugary techniques to thicken your runny frosting then adding a bit of heavy cream to the icing and then refrigerating it can do the job, though you should be careful about any drastic change in sweetness this might bring about.


•    Softened cream cheese is also an effective technique to give your icing the “frost-bite”. You have to be careful about the dilution in the sweetness that results from it.


•    Cornstarch is another method for thickening runny frosting, though you might argue that cornstarch is also present in powdered sugar and using powdered sugar will serve twin –purpose. True, cornstarch is present in powdered sugar only in trace amounts to avoid caking of the sugar.


•    Arrowroot starch can also work as it is generally preferred to thicken liquids of acidic nature and frosting and creams are a bit acidic. One notable point about this thickener that it has the most neutral flavor and you need to be less worried about having the flavors of your frosting masked.


•    Shortening also comes in as a good technique to correct a runny frosting. Very commonly used in bakes, this thickener can be added to your frosting and also be made to taste great.

From How to correct a runny frosting to how to prevent it happening


•    The sequence of adding the ingredients at times matters in determining the consistency of the frosting. If the sugar and butter or butter equivalents are mixed first then other liquids especially water or milk can be judiciously added so as to avoid a highly runny frosting. These liquid ingredients are added only to make it easier to whip the frosting.


•    Avoid adding too much liquid initially itself overestimating the thickness of the frosting. Because this can take you into a vicious circle of slimming the icing and then thickening the runny frosting.


•    The same applies to all the starch thickeners wherein you should start with only small amounts and test the results and only then add more.


How to correct a runny frosting and have it set on your bake is only a few tips away from our knowledge base of tips frozen in time.


Photo Courtesy :  myediblememories.typepad.com

Rate This

Your rating: None
4.25
Average: 4.3 (3 votes)

1 Comment

Arica's picture
This saved my life. Thank you! :)