Tutorials

YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Make Pâte à Choux (And Coconut Cream Pie Puffs!)

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

One of my favorite things to do on this site is to dissect baking basics and give a how-to on staple recipes and kitchen techniques. Throughout this so-called “You Need to Know” series, we’ve learned how to make caramel, meringue, browned butter, and more. Today, we’re going to walk through a diverse pastry called pâte à choux and even learn how to use it in the making of coconut cream pie puffs. If you’re up for learning, put on your food science hats (and aprons!) and let’s dive in!

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

What is Pâte à Choux?

Also known as choux pastry, pâte à choux (pronounced pot-a-shoe) is a common variety of puff pastry. Used to make cream puffs, eclairs, and numerous other treats, pâte à choux makes lightweight pastries with semi-hollow interiors perfect for stuffing and filling. It’s high proportion of liquid to dry ingredients creates a dough that is almost paste-like and bakes into puffed-up treats with airy interiors. Pâte à choux requires liquid (typically water), fat (butter), a binder (eggs), and dry ingredients (flour, salt, and sometimes sugar), and is cooked on the stovetop prior to being baked or fried. Let’s talk about how to make it.

How Do I Make Pâte à Choux?

Water, butter, and salt are combined on the stovetop in a pan over heat. Once the butter melts and the mixture begins to boil, flour (and sometimes sugar!) is added, stirring all the while to keep the butter and flour from forming large clumps. The mixture is cooked over the course of a few minutes to dry out the paste. You’ll know it’s thoroughly cooked when it pulls away from the sides of the pan and forms one large mound of dough. Remove the paste from heat and place it in a bowl to cool slightly before the eggs are added.

Once slightly cooled, we paddle in the eggs using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. As you stir, the dough will become smooth, somewhat shiny, and soft enough that the dough droops off the spoon in soft peaks. If it’s not soft enough, the dough will require extra liquid to make make the pastry puff up adequately in the oven, but be careful- too much liquid and the pastries are at risk of spreading in the oven instead of puffing vertically. There’s a reason baking is called a science, guys! Once your paste is complete, you’re ready to pipe, bake, or fry the dough in whatever manner you’ve decided upon.

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com
How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com
How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

What Do I Do with Choux Pastry Once I’ve Made It?

Most commonly, choux pastry is baked. First, the prepared dough is added to a piping bag and piped onto a prepared sheet pan. For profiteroles or cream puffs a large round piping tip is used to pipe small, macaron shell-sized rounds of dough. For eclairs, a large round or French star tip is used to pipe strips of dough. To make Paris-brest, rings of dough are piped, baked, halved, and filled.

Prior to baking, a thin coat of egg wash (One egg whisked with a teaspoon of water) can be applied to make the pastry richly golden and slightly shiny, but this is completely optional. The dough will puff and contort its shape slightly in the oven, so be sure to smooth any tall peaks or bumps in the dough before it’s baked. In this case, a wet fingertip can be used to gently pat down the dough as needed.

While baking, the liquid heats, turns to steam, and causes the pastry to puff, creating a cavernous interior. If you used a fancy star tip to pipe your dough, you’ll notice some small striations in the final baked goods, but typically they’re barely noticed.

If not baked, choux pastry can also be fried. In the case of French crullers, beignet cream puffs, or even churros, the dough is piped or scooped directly into a heated pot of oil. The choux is fried on one side, flipped, and then finished off on the other side. The outcome is crisp, almost crunchy pastries with soft, doughy insides. Can you say YUM?

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Coconut Cream Pie Puffs

So here’s the main event: coconut cream pie puffs. We can put our new skills to work and get cracking on these southern pie-inspired treats. Here, a baked pâte à choux shell is filled with a coconut and vanilla bean custard before being topped with melted white chocolate and toasted coconut- so delicious. Since we already know how to make pâte à choux, I’ll explain what happens once we have a dough.

Making the Puffs

First, we use a large round tip to pipe out rounds of dough. Bake the puffs in the oven while you prep your custard. Here, flour, sugar, and milk are combined on the stovetop and cooked until barely thickened. Next, we add some of the hot mixture to a few beaten eggs. The mixture is all combined back on the stove and cooked until it’s viscous to a mayonnaise consistency. Remove the custard from heat, and add a little butter, vanilla, and shredded coconut. If you want to be super extra, you can toast your shredded coconut beforehand; that way, your coconut cream pie puffs have even more flavor.

Filling the Puffs

Once the custard and puffs have cooled, add the coconut mixture to a piping bag fitted with a round tip. Pipe the custard directly into each pastry. Just squeeze your piping bag until you feel the puffs fill up. Set aside, melt some white chocolate over a double boiler, and decorate your little puffs as pleased. I like to garnish with extra toasted coconut, because it’s SO PRETTY, don’t you think?

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

I hope you guys learned a smidge and are eager to get cracking on these coconut cream pie puffs. Admittedly, I’m not an expert at pastry, so we’re really learning this together. If you’re reading this and you happen to be, oh, Dominique Ansel or Rose Levy Beranbaum, please give me all your pointers and forgive, what I’m sure is, my many mistakes in the above text. If you’re really into pâte à choux now, take a peek at the tiramisu cream puffs, too! Same technique, different filling! Happy baking to you all!

How to Make Pate a Choux and Coconut Cream Pie Puffs by Wood and Spoon. This is a step by step photographic tutorial on how to prepare French puff pastry with eggs and flour to make cream puffs profiteroles eclairs etc. Coconut cream pie custard filling is stuffed in the bites and topped with white chocolate and toasted coconut. For more on how to make this bite sized delicate fancy dessert read the recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

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YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Make Pâte à Choux (And Coconut Cream Pie Puffs!)

These coconut cream pie puffs come with a tutorial for how to make pate a choux cream puffs! Stuffed with a coconut custard and topped with a white chocolate glaze, these cream puffs are delicious and cute desserts for the spring.

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 25
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 120
  • Yield: 15
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

For the pate a choux (Adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum):

  • ½ cup (120 gm) water
  • 4 tablespoons (55 gm) unsalted butter
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ cup (70 gm) all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs

For the filling:

  • 3/4 cup (150 gm) sugar
  • 41/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (480 gm) whole milk
  • 3 large egg yolks, slightly beaten in a bowl
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup sweetened grated coconut

For the topping:

  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • ½ cup toasted shredded coconut 

 

Instructions

For the choux:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with a sheet of parchment paper. Fit a piping bag with a large round tip (I use Ateco 809) or snip the end off of a quart-sized freezer plastic bag.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the water, butter, sugar and salt until the butter has melted and the mixture is boiling. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add all of the flour, stirring vigorously to combine. After a few moments of stirring, the dough will form a moist ball that pulls away from the sides of the pan. Return the pan back to the heat to cook, paddling the dough with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula for 3 minutes. Dump the dough into a large bowl and add the eggs one at a time, stirring vigorously after each addition to combine.  The dough should be viscous enough to hold a soft peak when you pull the wooden spoon out of it. If it is too stiff, add a teaspoon or two of water. Scoop the mixture into the piping bag and squeeze out tablespoon-sized round balls (see photo) of dough, about 2 inches apart on the prepared pan. Barely moisten a fingertip to smooth out any peaks on the rounds so that they are rounded disks, similar to the shape of a baked macaron cookie. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, then decrease the oven temp to 350 and bake an additional 15-20 minutes, or until the puffs are golden brown. Allow to cool prior to using.

To prepare the filling:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, flour, and salt, whisking to combine. Slowly add the milk. Turn heat to medium temperature and whisk constantly until the mixture is bubbling and thickened. Continue to cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  2. Slowly drizzle a small amount of the cooked mixture into the beaten egg yolks, whisking all the while. Once about a cup of the mixture is incorporated, pour the mixture back into the original saucepan and place back on the heat. Cook an additional 1-2 minutes while continuing to stir.
  3. Add the butter and vanilla, stirring until incorporated. Stir in the coconut. Allow to cool to room temperature. You can do this in the fridge as well. When cool, stir and outfit a piping back with a large round tip. Fill the bag with the custard and insert the tip discreetly into the side of a crack in a puff. Fill with the custard slowly until full and then repeat with the remaining. Set aside while you melt the chocolate for the topping. 

For the topping:

  1. Set up a double boiler over low heat and add the white chocolate to the bowl. Stirring regularly, gently melt the chocolate. Be sure to not let the chocolate get too hot or it will seize! Once my chocolate starts melting a good bit, I usually remove the pan and bowl from heat to stop the cooking and keep it going gently. Once melted, spoon pours of white chocolate on top of each pastry and sprinkle with toasted coconut. Enjoy once the topping has set!

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YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Whip Egg Whites (and Make Meringue Cookies!)

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

I’ll be honest- meringue is my arch nemesis. On top of pies, in a buttercream, WHEREVER, meringue is really just kinda no bueno in my book. I have failed time and time again when it comes to whipping egg whites the right way, so much so that I’ve nearly given up. But today, in continuation of our “You Need To Know” tutorials, we’re going to talk the ins and outs of egg whites, how to deal with them, what to use them for,  and how to know if you’re doing it all right. Prepare yourself for total domination of the egg whites.

What Is An Egg White?

Let’s put on our nerdy glasses and science caps for a second. An egg white (aka the albumen) is one of five portions of a whole egg and accounts for about 3/5 of an egg’s total weight. It’s primarily made up of protein and water and is viscous in consistency. When beaten, the protein structure of the egg white breaks down, and over time, those unfolded proteins will rearrange into a new, expanded form. Whipped egg whites can increase in size up to 8 times larger than its original volume, and this foaming ability makes it an all-star aerator in baked goods.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

How Do You Whip Egg Whites?

Egg whites are most easily whipped with an electric hand or stand mixer, but this process can be done by hand with a wire whisk as well. To whip egg whites, start with a clean, grease-free bowl and whisk attachment and begin to process the egg whites on low speed. Large, foamy bubbles will begin to appear, and once the egg whites transform from viscous liquid to loose foam, you can increase the speed of your mixer. Although the bubbles start out large, smaller, more fine bubbles will begin to appear and the foam will continue to increase in volume. You’ll stop your mixer when you reach the desired level of foam formation. So what if a recipe calls for “firmly whipped egg whites” or “egg whites with soft peaks?” We need to know what we’re looking for! Let’s start by breaking down the stages of egg white foam formation.

Foamy Egg Whites

To prepare foamy egg whites, whip your fresh, room temperature egg whites in a clean bowl until large bubbles begin to appear. At this phase, the egg whites will appear like bubbles in a foamy bathtub and will not hold their shape.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Soft Peaks

Soft peak egg whites will have a slight sheen to them and fine textured bubbles. At this phase, the whipped foam will still slide around in the bowl, and if you lift a beater out of the mixture, the peak will droop over without holding its shape. The foam is definitely fluffing up at this phase though, and you will likely see a trace of your beater in the mixture.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Firm Peaks

This is the narrow gap between soft and stiff peaks. Here, a beater lifted out of the bowl will yield a defined tip that may fall over slightly but will keep its overall pointy shape.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Stiff Peaks

At this phase, peaks are stiff, shiny, and stick to the inside of the bowl. If you lift a beater out of the bowl, the peak tip will stick up tall with a slight sheen. If you were to turn your bowl upside down at this phase, the foam would stick to the inside of the bowl without falling out! Avoid beating your egg whites past this stage as you’re likely to create an unstable, overbeaten egg white that will eventually break and deflate.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

How Can I Ensure Successfully Whipped Egg Whites?

Starting out with room temperature eggs in a clean, grease-free bowl will begin the process on the right foot. Room temp eggs whip more readily than cold ones and any trace of fat (think butter, cooking spray, egg yolk) will inhibit foaming. For best results, separate your egg yolks from their whites while cold and allow the whites to come to room temperature on their own. You can ensure your bowl is truly grease-free by wiping off the inside of it with a paper towel saturated with lemon juice.

There’s  also a few things that you can add to your egg whites to increase stability. Some recipes may call for adding an acid like cream of tartar, vinegar, or lemon juice, and typically 1/8 teaspoon of any of these per egg white is enough to give aid. Sugar also stabilizes egg whites and can be added in little by little near the end of the whipping duration. Avoid adding sugar in too early or too quickly as this can inhibit foam formation. More sugar incorporated into the mixture will result in a mixture that is glossy and shiny.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood
Foamy, soft, and stiff whipped peaks.

Is There Anything Else I Need to Know About Whipping Egg Whites?

Even stabilized egg whites are delicate, so take care when incorporating them into baked goods. Most recipes will call for gently folding the foam into whatever batter you’re working with. If you opt to beat your egg whites by hand, consider using a copper bowl or whisk! The copper in the bowl or whisk reacts with one of the proteins in the egg white, causing foamy bubbles to expand. Finally, if you’re looking for a suitable substitute for whole egg whites, consider using liquid egg whites from a carton. Just check to make sure you’re not purchasing one with a bunch of add-ins to the ingredients list.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

What Do I Use It For?

Whipped eggs whites are used in a number of foods like cakes, meringues, and souffles. The foamy nature of whipped egg whites provides air, height, and a light texture to foods that benefit from the added fluff. You’ll find a small list of recipes at the bottom of this page that contain whipped egg whites, so if you’re in need of inspiration, start there! In the coming weeks, I’m going to be sharing a variety of whipped egg white-containing recipes, starting with today’s crispy Easter meringue cookies.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Easter Meringue Cookies

These Easter meringue cookies are made up of stiffly whipped egg whites to which vinegar has been added for stability and sugar has been added for sweetness. They bake up in the oven into crisp, weightless bites of sweetness that make for a cute and accidentally fat-free snack. The texture and taste of these cookies reminds me of the marshmallows you might find in a box of cereal or a packet of hot cocoa mix, and that is in no way disappointing to me.

For a little added flair, I’ve dipped these cookies in chocolate followed by either sprinkles or finely chopped pecans. Both add flavor and texture in a fun and festive way that is sure to add some springtime cheer to your home. If you’re interested in turning these basic meringue cookies into Easter meringues (aka resurrection cookies), check out the link here for a how-to on incorporating the Easter story into your baking. It’s a fun way to engage kiddos in the kitchen and to celebrate Easter beyond the bunny.

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

I hope you all have found this tutorial useful and that you’ll give whipped egg whites a try! See below for a list of a few airy egg white-containing treats so that you can get some practice ASAP. Happy baking, friends!

If you want to know how to whip egg whites into baked goods, check out these recipes:

Milk Chocolate Chip Cake

Flourless Chocolate Cake

Mint Chocolate Souffle

Sweet Potato Meringue Pie

Baked Alaska

You Need to Know How to Whip Egg Whites and Make Meringue Cookies. This is a tutorial on whipping egg whites to firm, stiff, soft, or foamy peaks and how to make a meringue! Learn how to make easter resurrection cookies with pecans and how to troubleshoot what went wrong with your egg whites. Why did they defeat, not fluff up, not whip, etc. Learn how to use up egg whites in this tutorial post on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

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Easter Meringue Cookies

These easter meringue cookies are light and airy, crispy marshmallow cookies dipped in chocolate and either sprinkles or pecans. A fun and festive fat-free treat for springtime!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 60
  • Total Time: 360
  • Yield: 8 Dozen
  • Category: Dessert

Ingredients

  • 3 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • ¼ teaspoon white vinegar or cream of tartar
  • Dash of salt
  • 2/3 cup (130 gm) sugar
  • Food Coloring, if desired
  • White Chocolate or almond bark for dipping, if desired
  • ½ cup sprinkles or finely chopped toasted pecans, if desired

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees and line two large sheet pans with parchment paper.
  2. In a large clean, grease-free bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, use the whisk attachement to whip the egg whites on low speed until foamy bubbles appear at the top. Add the vanilla bean paste and vinegar (or cream of tartar) and continue whipping until really foamy. Increase the speed to medium-high and slowly add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until it has all been incorporated. Continue whipping until stiff glossy peaks appear (see notes in blog post above for help on this), about 8 minutes. If you’d like to add in food coloring, add a small bit and gently whisk or fold in.
  3. Outfit a pastry bag or large Ziploc bag with a large piping tip (I used a Wilton 2A) and pipe small 1-1/4”-2” diameter cookies about 2” apart on the parchment paper. Do this swiftly so as not to allow  the foam to deflate. Place both sheet pans in the oven and bake for about 50 minutes to an hour. The cookies should feel firm to the touch. Turn off the oven and keep the door closed and allow them to cool to room temperature completely, even overnight. The cookies are done when the bottoms feel fry, pop off the paper easily, and almost sound hollow when tapped.
  4. If you wish to dip your meringues, gently microwave ¾ cup of white chocolate or almond bark for dipping and in 20 second increments, stirring regularly until melted and smooth. Do not overheat as the chocolate may seize. Quickly dip the bottoms of each meringue in chocolate and then dip in either sprinkles or the chopped pecans. Allow to cool on wax or parchment paper and eat within 1-2 days. Keep in a dry, moisture free place covered and air tight as meringues will get sticky over time, particularly in humid climates.

Notes

  • To follow the Easter story, check out the link in my blog post.

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You Need to Know: How to Make Caramel

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

Approximately half of my all-time favorite recipes either begin or end with caramel. No other food satisfies my sweet and salty craving like a rich caramel sauce; no other flavor works better with my favorite chocolate cakes, apple pies, and creamy ice creams. Homemade caramel is a tricky yet essential skill that every home baker needs to master, so in today’s post we’re going to talk all the nitty gritty on how to make caramel.

WHAT IS IT?

Caramel is little more than the product of sugar that has been heated and cooked to the point of caramelization. A finished caramel has a unique taste and can be manipulated to flavor a number of confections.

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

HOW DO YOU MAKE IT?

This is the question that used to keep me up at night. I’d lie awake, shuddering at the burned, sugar-coated mess in my kitchen sink, wondering where I went wrong. After a bit of research and some time spent with my food scientist hat on, I’ve figured out what works best for me to create a delicious, no-fail caramel every time. Let’s dig in. 

Two Ways to Make Caramel:

There are two methods to make a caramel: dry and wet. In some instances, sugar is heated in a pan solo and allowed to melt, cook, and caramelize without the help of any other ingredient. In other cases, sugar is dissolved in a bit of water and the syrup itself is what caramelizes on the stove. Although many of the baking resources I revere prefer a dry caramel, I have found, in my personal experience, that a wet caramel is much more simple to nail every time. So from here on out today, we’re going to talk about that method. If you’re just dying to make a dry caramel, I’d recommend checking out David Lebovitz’s explanation of that process here. He will help you to avoid the grainy mess that a dry caramel can often be.

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

Step One: Combine the Sugar and Water 

Gather up all of your ingredients and have them ready before you start cooking. Once a caramel is on a roll it’s hard to get that train to stop. So have everything you need to finish out your caramel prepped and ready.

You’ll need a large, heavy-bottomed pan, a rubber spatula, and your water and sugar to get started. I chose to use my enamel-coated cast-iron pot, but any kind of stainless steel or light-colored pan will work. If you plan to add cream of milk to the caramel after it’s done (as you would with an ice cream or caramel sauce), you’ll need to be sure to use a large pan as liquid added to caramel will bubble up fiercely. Try to avoid using any pan with a dark-colored bottom, as it is more difficult to tell when your caramel has reached the appropriate level of doneness.  Combine the sugar and water in the pan and place it over medium-high heat.

Step Two: Allow the Sugar to Dissolve

The first phase of making a caramel is allowing the sugar to dissolve into the water. Throughout this phase you can stir the mixture in your pan as you please. You’ll notice the mixture changes from being a grainy water to a slightly viscous syrup. Continue to stir occasionally until the sugar has just barely dissolved. To verify that the sugar has dissolved, carefully rub a bit of the non-boiling mixture between your fingers. If you notice a grainy feel, the sugar has not dissolved yet. Keep cooking until the mixture feels smooth between your fingers.

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

Step 3: Caramelize the Sugar Syrup

Once the sugar has just barely dissolved, STOP STIRRING YOUR MIXTURE. Other recipes may contradict this statement, but in my experience, stirring a caramel will lead to a pan full of rock candy- no joke. So just leave it alone while it comes to a boil and begins to bronze. Some recipes may call for you to “baste” the sides of your pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to prevent crystals from forming along the perimeter of your pot. You’re totally welcome to do this if you prefer, but I find that if you truly leave it alone on the stove the crystal build-up on the pan won’t be too bad.

Once the syrup has come to a boil, you’ll likely notice the color will first begin changing around the edges of the pan. If you see that some parts of the syrup are browning a lot faster than others, you can give an occasional gentle swirl to the pan- one time, barely moving it, and really just to allow the mixture to caramelize evenly. Be sure to not swirl the mixture all over the sides of the pan. Continue to let the mixture cook on the stove.

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

As you begin to see the mixture turn golden, do not leave your pan’s side. The caramelization process happens quick, and you want to be there when it’s time to remove it from the heat. From golden, the mixture will continue to darken. Pull you pan off of the heat  when you see the mixture turn to the color of a shiny copper penny. That’s how you know it’s done!

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

Step 4: Stop the Cooking Process

Once the caramel is the perfect shade of auburn, you need to stop the cooking process to prevent it from burning. If you’re making a caramel sauce or chewy caramel candies, this is when you’d carefully add the cream or milk to your pan. If you’re using the caramel to line your pan for a upside-down cake or flan, now is the time to add it to the dish! And if you need to stop the cooking process so that the warm caramel can be spun or added to a number of other dishes, have a bowl of ice water ready to dunk the bottom of your pan in. If you don’t stop the heat, the caramel will likely burn, so have your next steps laid out for you before you even begin the process. 

You Need to Know How to Make Caramel by Wood and Spoon Blog. This is a tutorial with visual cues on how to caramelize sugar. Learn how to know when caramel is done, when to pull caramel off the heat, and how to prevent a crystallized, grainy caramel mess! Learning about caramel is an essential baking skill that you can master today! Read more here on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood caramel sauce, salted, spun sugar, drizzle

HOW CAN I USE IT?

More often than not, when I’m making caramel, I use it to create a caramel sauce. There’s almost always a jar of homemade caramel sauce in my fridge waiting to be spooned over ice cream, layered into cakes, or sandwiched in between cookies. I’ll leave a few links below to some of my favorite caramel-containing recipes.

Caramel Apple Pie

Espresso Caramel Thumbprint Cookies 

Chocolate Caramel Crumble Cake

Turtle Ice Cream

ANYTHING ELSE I NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CARAMEL?

Yes. David Lebovitz wrote a whole post about this that you need to read here. If you’ve never made homemade caramel before, you’ll want to give this a read ASAP. He’s really a food genius, so you can trust what he says!

Give homemade caramel a try in your home kitchens this weekend. If you follow these steps, I feel confident you can have success in the kitchen! I’m sharing my favorite recipe for homemade caramel sauce below as well, so if you want to finish out the caramel in a decadent, use-everywhere kind of sauce, this is your chance! Happy Labor Day weekend and happy baking!

If you liked this post on how to make caramel, you should check out:

How to Brown Butter

How to Make Whipped Cream

How to Make Ganache

 

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How to Make Caramel and Caramel Sauce

Learn how to make homemade caramel and homemade salted caramel sauce here!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 2
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 17 minutes

Ingredients

To make caramel:

  • 1/4 Cup Water
  • 1 Cup Sugar

To make salted caramel sauce:

  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, slightly warm
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

To make caramel:

  1. Stir the water and sugar together in a large heavy-bottomed, light-colored pan. Set the pan over medium high heat. Stir occasionally, allowing the sugar to dissolve. Once the sugar granules have dissolved completely, quite stirring the mixture and allow it the sugar to come to a boil. Once the mixture begins boiling, watch it carefully as the mixture turns from clear, to pale yellow, to golden. You can swirl the mixture occasionally to keep it browning evenly. After about 9 minutes of boiling, the mixture willl turn into a deep color, similar to a shiny copper penny. Remove the mixture from the heat and use immediately. 

To make salted caramel sauce:

  1. Once you caramel has completed browning, remove from heat and immediately being to slowly add the heavy whipping cream, whisking vigorously to incorporate. Wear oven mitts during this process to ensure that the fierce steam and bubbling doesn’t spatter or burn your hands. Place back on low heat and continue stirring for about 1-2 minutes until the mixture is smooth and incorporated. Add the butter and salt, stir to combine, and allow the mixture to cool in a heat-proof container. Keep refrigerated until ready to use. 

Notes

Once the sugar has caramelized to the correct color it will burn if you do not stop the cooking! Read through the post for more tips on creating the perfect caramel!

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Doughnut Croquembouche

Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Listen, I’ve searched through and through my family tree to hunt out any trace of French in my lineage. It’s nowhere to be found. Apparently my undying fascination of French culture is built on a foundation of croissant consumption, not some innate inner tug towards the homeland. Regardless, I will forever get starry-eyed over the language, the scenery, and those precise methods of cooking. There’s something about that place that is almost fairytale-like, you know?

Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

So even though there’s not a hint of Parisian in my blood, today we’re whipping out treats for Bastille Day which is coming up on July 14th. Why? Well, I think there’s some of you out there who are a little like me- willing and ready to celebrate just about anything at any point in time if there’s fun and food and a party to be had. So let’s do this. Let’s celebrate the French Revolution, okay?

Croquembouche is a classic French dessert usually made by towering a cone-shaped stack of profiteroles and spinning it in a web of candied caramel. I’m not typically one to shy away from making intricate, time-requiring desserts, but the thought of making over a hundred homemade cream puffs while risking third-degree burns to spin magma-hot candy around said tower was all out-terrifying to me. No thank you. Instead, I decided we’d take the easy (and delicious) way out by making a doughnut croquembouche. Spoiler alert: I even skipped the effort of homemade doughnuts and bought these! That means less time baking, more time spent eating doughnuts- a wise decision, if you ask me. 

So here’s your tutorial: a DIY doughnut croquembouche for you to make for Bastille Day, a wedding, a birthday party or whatever else is deemed worthy of loads of doughnut holes (which is really anything my opinion.) Let’s get started!

What You’ll Need:Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

One New 5″x18″ Styrofoam Cone (I bought mine here)

12 Dozen Doughnut Holes (I ordered mine a day in advance from our local donut shop for less than $20)

1 Bag of Mini Powdered Sugar Doughnuts

About 300-400 Toothpicks

Additional Powdered Sugar and A Sifter, If Desired

Directions:

Begin by inserting toothpicks about halfway into the base of the styrofoam cone. The toothpicks should be placed in sets of two about an inch apart. You can go ahead and stick in a few doughnut holes to make sure that you’re spacing out your toothpicks well. I chose to place toothpicks into the bottom quarter section of the cone before putting the doughnuts on, but you can do this however you’d like. Make sure your doughnuts are snug together on the cone so that the styrofoam cone isn’t visible beneath. Continue filling in the cone from bottom to top until you get to the very end of the cone. Arrange doughnuts on the peak of the cone and feel free to use toothpicks to stick a couple more doughnuts on top of the tippy top doughnuts as well. 

Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Next, fill in the cone with some of the powdered sugar doughnuts. I chose to do this step last so that I could space the powdered sugar doughnuts out well. Alternatively, you could use some powdered sugar doughnuts as well. Simply remove a doughnut hole and barely squish the doughnuts around it to make room for the slightly larger powdered sugar mini doughnut. Place the mini doughnut on the toothpicks and continue arranging a few more around the cone as desired. I chose to place one on top as well, but this is your choice.

Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

Finally, if desired, use a fine sifter to sift on a sprinkle of powdered sugar. Be sure to do this step just before serving. 

What Else You Need to Know:

  • Each doughnut requires about two toothpicks to ensure that it stays on the cone well.
  • Be gentle with the top of the cone! I broke mine while trying to pull out a toothpick. You can glue this back on, but it’s an added step that isn’t necessary.
  • If you use a larger or smaller cone, the amount of doughnuts and toothpicks you’ll require will differ.
  • Fresh doughnuts taste best, so do try to assemble this the day you’re planning to serve it. 

And That’s All It Takes to Make a Doughnut Croquembouche!

Truly, this has got to be one of the cutest shortcut DIYs I’ve ever made. I hope you’ll give it a try for your upcoming parties. In the meantime, vive la France! Vive la dougnuts! Vive la croquembouche!

Doughnut Croquembouche Tutorial by Wood and Spoon Blog. Learn how to make the classic French celebration dessert for your upcoming parties and wedding! Just in time for Bastille day, this DIY will show you how to shortcut your way to a donut tower using store-bought treats, a styrofoam cone, and lots fo toothpicks. This is a fancy impressive dessert for parties, brunches, and everything in between. Find out the how-to on thewoodandspoon.com by Kate Wood

If You Liked This Tutorial for Doughnut Croquembouche, You Should Check Out:

Alphabet Cream Pie

Marbled Sugar Cookies

Gold Splattered Sugar Cookies

Ganache Tutorial and Homemade Truffles

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Alphabet Cream Pie Tutorial

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

Around here, we look for any reason to celebrate. Whether it’s Christmas Day, the neighbor’s cat’s birthday, or 5 days since someone in our home wet the bed, we hunt out reasons to throw a party like our lives (and sanity) depend on it. There’s something 100% fabulous about celebrating for little reason at all, and I love to find new treats to serve at these any-occasion gatherings. So unless you’ve been living under a giant rock or still haven’t mastered Instagram (shoutout to my husband!), you’ve probably seen the cute little layered cream tarts in the shape of numbers and letters all over the internet. They’re adorable, and I loved the idea so much that I hopped on that bandwagon to bring you a tutorial to make your very own alphabet cream pie. 

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

Let me give you the quick scoop on these. I have no idea where they originated from, but I will tell you that they have taken over the internet. These desserts typically start with two sets of baked tart shells cut into the shape of numbers or letters. A cream filling is piped on each set of tarts that are then layered together and decorated with a million different treats: fresh fruit, macaroons, mini marshmallows, cookies, flowers, sprinkles, and the rest of the kitchen sink. Over time, the pastry cream barely softens the tarts so that you have a creamy layered dessert that is as beautiful as it is delicious. Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

I decided I didn’t want to fuss with tart shells and pastry cream. I wanted something I was more familiar with, something that would taste better, something way easier. So I introduce to you the alphabet cream pie: a few layers of buttery pie crust, filled with a simple lemon and vanilla bean whipped cream cheese, and topped with all of my favorite fresh fruit. Although this alphabet cream pie takes a step or two to make, it is the simplest version of this fancy pants treat that you will find and is incredibly fun to make. Let’s get started! Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

What You’ll Need:

Paper or stencil to trace letters/numbers

Paring knife or X-acto knife to trim out letters/numbers

Parchment paper for lining baking sheets

Piping bag fitted with a large round tip (I use Wilton 1A ) or a large plastic bag

1 Recipe for pie dough (see below)

1 Recipe for cream filling (see below) 

Items to decorate the pie

 

Directions:

You’ll need a stencil to trace out the numbers or letters for the alphabet cream pie. I printed out block letters on sheets of computer paper, cut them out, and used those to trace my letters onto the dough. You could also sketch it out on a piece of parchment paper. Using a stencil is vital so that your stacked letters match up. You’ll have enough dough to cover approximately two half sheet pans, so be sure that you letters aren’t any larger than what would fit on the pan- otherwise you’ll require more dough!

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and roll the dough out on a floured surface to ¼” thick. If the dough is too hard, allow it to rest at room temp about 5-10 minutes.  Use a paring knife or a clean X-acto knife to cut out the letters. You’ll need two of each letter or number as they will stack one on top of the other. (Sidetone: I opted to do “HBD,” which is millennial shorthand for “Happy Birthday,” but you could just as easily do a number 16, 21, or 50 for a special birthday, or even just one single giant letter to celebrate someone awesome!) Place the letters on a parchment-lined baking sheet at least an inch apart. If the dough got soft and the letters smooshed a bit, just use the stencil to reorient the letter how it was meant to be shaped. Place the prepared pan in the fridge or freezer to firm up (5 minutes for freezer, 10 minutes for fridge) and then bake in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until the letters are barely puffed and golden. You can bake multiple pans in the oven, just be sure to quickly rotate the top and bottom pans about halfway through. Allow the letters to cool thoroughly on a cooling rack prior to use.

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

When the letters have cooled, prepare the serving platter or workspace you’re going to assemble the pie on. Place about half of the cream filling in a large piping bag fitted with a large round tip. If you don’t have this, feel free to fill a gallon or quart sized plastic bag with some cream and snip the tip off of the corner of the bag. Your round dollops won’t be as perfect, but no one will care. Pipe a dot or two of cream under each letter (once it has chilled, this will adhere it gently to your serving platter), and then begin piping ½ tablespoon-sized dollops all over the letters. I prefer to use rows and columns, but you can do it however you please. Once you’ve covered the first layer of letters, place the second layer of letters gently on top and then repeat this process. Cover the letters entirely with dollops of cream, refilling your piping bag as needed.

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

When you’ve completed the process, you’re ready to decorate! I use fresh fruit, like strawberries and blueberries, or even little candies. You are free to decorate with little cookies or edible flowers as well. If you use non-edible flowers, just wrap the stem or base of the flower touching the pie in a tiny piece of aluminum foil to keep them food safe. You can also color any remaining cream filling and use a star tip or another decorative piping tip to pipe on little colorful dollops of cream. The pie itself will keep in the fridge for a few days, but the items on top of the pie may begin to weep and bleed. As a result, I recommend eating this treat the day it is made.

Alphabet Cream Pie recipe and tutorial by wood and spoon blog by Kate wood. this is a tutorial for those letter / number pastry cream filled tart cookies that have been popping up all over the internet! Find out how to make this simple dessert that is perfect for celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, etc. You make two sheets of pie crust letters and fill the whole thing with piped out lemon whipped cream cheese filling. The tart is topped with fresh fruit, macaroon cookies, flowers, candies, sprinkles and whatever else feels festive. Learn how to stencil and prepare this fun treat! recipe on thewoodandspoon.cpom

This alphabet cream pie is totally festive and the perfect treat to celebrate the birthdays, anniversaries, and everyday happenings in your life. Make it for someone awesome and top it with all of their favorite things. It will be the celebration pie to beat!

If you like this alphabet cream pie tutorial, check out:

Painted Sugar Cookies 

Marbled Sugar Cookies

Gold Splatted Lavender Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies

Easter Cake 

 

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Alphabet Cream Pie

This alphabet cream pie is a take on those popular letter/number tarts that are taking over the internet! This is two layers of shaped baked pie dough filled with a lemon vanilla bean cream cheese whipped filling and topped with fresh berries. 

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 120

Ingredients

For the pie crust:

  • 3 ½ cups (420 gm) all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons (12 gm) sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon (4 gm) salt
  • 2/3 cup (135 gm) chilled solid vegetable shortening, cut into pieces
  • 3/4 cup (11/2 sticks, 170 gm) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 10 tablespoons (approximately) ice water

For the cream filling:

  • 8 ounces (225 gm) regular cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup (150 gm) sugar
  • 3 cups (680 gm) heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
  • 11/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest

Instructions

To prepare the pie dough:

  1. Give the dry ingredients a whiz in the food processor to combine.
  2. Pulse in the shortening and butter, just until barely evenly dispersed and pea-sized clump exist throughout.
  3. Begin adding ice water 2 tablespoons at a time until moist clumps begin to form. I typically use about 6 tablespoons of water.
  4. Remove dough from food processor and separate in two round disks. Wrap in Saran wrap and chill for at least one to two hours prior to use.

To prepare the cream filling:

  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and lemon zest together until smooth, about 30 seconds. Add a few tablespoons of the cream and beat to incorporate. Add a bit more cream and beat to incorporate. Once the cream cheese mixture is thick and liquidy, add the remaining cream and the vanilla, beating until thickened and stiff peaks form. Refrigerate until ready to use, but best used immediately.

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YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Make Ganache (and Homemade Chocolate Truffles!)

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

There are a few recipes that every home baker needs to know like the back of their hand. Ganache, with only two ingredients and two steps to create it, is one of a few baking fundamentals that can elevate homemade dishes to sweet, chocolatey bliss. Despite its simplicity, ganache often scares bakers away from attempting to make it themselves at home. Today, in an effort to conquer this Everest, we are going to cover the basics on ganache so that you can create decadent, chocolate dishes with ease from here on out. We’re also going to learn how to make 4 different types of homemade chocolate truffles from a single ganache base, so if you’re interested in making some treats for your valentine (or yourself, no judgement here!), this is a post you’ll want to listen in on. Let’s get started!

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

What Is It?

Ganache is the mixture of warmed cream and chocolate that can be used to glaze, fill, coat, or whip into baked goods and desserts. Ganache can take on a variety of forms depending on the cream to chocolate ratio, and the concentration and preparation of these two ingredients will alter the final product.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com
The three different types of ganache, photographed just after being mixed together.

How Do You Make It?

All ganaches begin by heating heavy whipping cream until hot but not boiling. The warm cream is poured over finely chopped chocolate and allowed to rest for a few minutes until the chocolate has melted enough to be stirred into the cream. When combined, the chocolate and cream transform into a smooth and rich liquid that we know as ganache.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

What Are the Different Types of Ganache?

The proportion of cream to chocolate will determine how viscous your final product will be. A higher cream:chocolate weight ratio will land you a more thin chocolate glaze, while a ganache with more chocolate than cream will result in a thick, fudgy texture. Here are three basic cream:chocolate ratios that you need to know. 

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

1:1 – One part cream to one part chocolate

Using the same weight of cream and chocolate will result in a thick fudge sauce consistency. When warm, this ganache can be poured thickly over cakes, breads, and ice cream, yet when chilled, the ganache can be used to fill cakes, pastries, and tarts. If whipped, this ganache ratio will transform into a hardening frosting that is perfect for cakes to be covered in fondant. You might remember this ganache from marble loaf pound cake .

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com
1:1 Ganache after cooling for a bit.

1:2 – One part cream to two parts chocolate

Ganache will become thick and viscous as you increase the amount of chocolate to cream. The more chocolate, the thicker it will be. We will use this ratio later today to prepare homemade truffles, but you might remember a similarly rich ganache from the mint chocolate sandwich cookies.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com
2:1 ganache after cooling a bit.

2:1 – Two parts cream to one part chocolate

When warm, this ganache will be a thin, pourable glaze that can be used to coat baked goods, but when allowed to cool, this ganache ratio will whip into a light and fluffy frosting that will stay soft upon setting.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com
1:2 ganache before and after whipping.

What Else Do I Need to Know About Ganache?

There’s a few other things that will affect your final ganache. First: time and temperature. A warm, freshly made ganache will be a bit more loose than one that has been resting at room temperature or chilled overnight in the fridge. Given enough time and cool temperatures, all ganaches will firm up somewhat from their warm state. For example, if you’ve prepared a thick ganache with more chocolate than cream, you’ll find the ganache is pourable and saucy while warm, but will harden up to a firm, malleable consistency after some time in the fridge. Cold ganache will always be more firm than a warm one, so if you find that your final outcome is not as thick as you anticipated, it may be that you just need to let it rest a bit more.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

The type of chocolate that you choose to use will also affect your final ganache. While most recipes call for bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, ganache can be made with white or milk chocolate as well. The type of chocolate you choose will affect the flavor and texture of your ganache, so be sure to use chocolate that you would normally enjoy eating on its own.

Finally, ganache can be flavored with a few simple add-ins. Extracts, liquors, and even nut butters can be whisked into a warm ganache to to add flavor the the chocolate base. I’ll share a few simple variations below, but be sure to tell me if you have any favorites that I need to try!

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

Homemade Chocolate Truffles

Let’s be honest. There’s nothing sweeter than romance via chocolate on Valentine’s Day and no better way to share that love than by making homemade chocolate truffles. Now that you’ve mastered ganache, you can easily prepare 4 different homemade chocolate truffles to show love to your boo thang. Of course there’s a million other options, but here are a few rich candies to get started with:

Simple Chocolate Truffles

The gold standard for chocolate candies, these babies are the most basic form of truffle, prepared by scooping firm rounds of chilled ganache and rolling it in cocoa powder. These are perfect for the more-is-more kind of chocolate lover in your life. 

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

Peanut Butter Truffles

Here, peanut butter is stirred into the warm ganache before it’s chilled to a thick consistency. Once firm, simply scoop small mounds of chocolate to roll and refrigerate until cold. The chilled balls are then dipped in a coating of melted chocolate and sprinkled with chopped peanuts.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Truffles

Simple, rich, and decadent are these truffles, made by preparing a dark chocolate ganache with the addition of sea salt. Once chilled, balls of ganache are dipped in dark chocolate, and a sprinkle of sea salt gives these little guys a sophisticated look with that sweet and salty taste.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

Hazelnut Truffles

Similar to the peanut butter truffles, these hazelnut truffles are made by stirring chocolate hazelnut spread into the warm ganache. I like to roll the chilled truffles in chopped hazelnuts, but certainly you could dip these in chocolate as well.

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

A Few Other Truffle Filling Variations:

Boozy Truffles: Add 1 tablespoon of rum, bourbon, coffee or orange liqueur into the warm chocolate ganache recipe. 

Vanilla Truffles: Add 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract to the warm chocolate ganache. Roll the finished balls in powdered sugar.

Coconut Truffles: Add 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract to the warm chocolate ganache and roll the finished balls in toasted sweetened coconut.

Peppermint Truffles: Add 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract to the warm chocolate ganache and roll the finished balls in crushed candy canes. 

You Need to Know How to Make Ganache and Homemade Chocolate Truffles by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This simple tutorial will teach you the ins and out of preparing ganache from bittersweet , milk, semisweet, dark, or white chocolate. From there, learn to make a few different types of truffles including coconut, orange, coffee, peppermint, hazelnut, Nutella, peanut butter, and sea salt. This recipe and how to will teach you how to make pourable glaze, whipped, thick and fudgy filling ganache, and more. Find the recipe and learn how to make homemade candy for Valentine's Day on thewoodandspoon.com

Ok, I’m Obsessed with Ganache. How Do I Get Started?! 

Ganache and homemade truffles are one of the easiest recipes you’ll make all year. Once you know how to make a base ganache you can make a ton of different treats like peanut butter chocolate cheesecake, mint brownie ice cream cake, and pretzel millionaire bars. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, you’ll be glad to have this technique in your pocket, and you honey booboo will be even more thrilled. Give these homemade chocolate truffles a try and let me know what you think! #MonthofChocolate will continue next week, so stay tuned for more milky cocoa goodness!

 

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Chocolate Ganache

Making homemade ganache is simple and only requires two ingredients. Use some basic ratios to learn how to make the perfect ganache your recipe needs!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 5
  • Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • Dark Chocolate, finely chopped
  • Heavy Whipping Cream

Instructions

  1. Place the chocolate in a bowl and set aside while you prepare the cream.Warm the cream in a saucepan over medium-low heat until cream is hot and beginning to steam. Do not boil.
  2. Pour the warm cream over the chopped chocolate and cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Allow it to rest about 5 minutes, and then use a spoon or spatula to stir the chocolate and cream together. If the chocolate is not completely melted you can microwave the chocolate and cream together in 15 second increments, stirring until the two have combined. 
  3. Allow the ganache to cool to your desired consistency. You can expedite this process by placing the bowl in the refrigerator. Stir it regularly to keep it uniform in consistency.

Notes

For a thick glaze/ cake or pie filling:

  • Use a 1:1 chocolate to cream ratio.
  • Weigh equal amounts of cream and chocolate. For example, you may use 2 ounces of heavy whipping cream and 2 ounces of chocolate to make 4 ounces of ganache.
  • If you plan to frost a cake with this ganache, allow it to cool and then whip with a paddle attachment until fluffy in the bowl of a stand mixer. 

For truffle thick ganache:

  • Use a 1:2 cream to chocolate ratio.
  • Weigh out double the amount of chocolate to cream. For example, you might combine 2 ounces of cream and 4 ounces of chocolate to make 6 ounces of truffle thick ganache. 
  • If you plan to use this ganache to make truffles, chill the ganache until it is firm enough to scoop.

For a thin glaze/ whipped ganache:

  • Use a 2:1 cream to chocolate ratio.
  • Weigh out double the amount of cream than chocolate. For example, you might combine 4 ounces of cream and 2 ounces of chocolate to prepare 6 ounces of thin ganache. 
  • For whipped ganache, allow the cream to set out or chill in the fridge until slightly thickened and viscous. Place in the bowl of a stand mixer and use the whisk attachment to beat until light and fluffy. Be sure to not overbeat- you may make butter!

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Homemade Truffles

If you know how to make ganache, these homemade truffles are a cinch! Four variations will make for a beautiful homemade dessert!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 18

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces (115 gm) bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 2 ounces (60 gm) heavy whipping cream
  • Cocoa powder (for classic truffles)
  • 1/4 cup (60 gm) creamy peanut butter (for peanut butter truffles)
  • 6 tablespoons (90 gm) chocolate hazelnut spread (for hazelnut truffles)
  • Sea Salt (for dark chocolate truffles)
  • 1 cup (180 gm) chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate for dipping, optional
  • Toasted peanuts or hazelnuts, finely chopped, optional

Instructions

  1. Place the chopped chocolate in a small mixing bowl
  2. Heat the heavy whipping cream until hot. Pour over the chocolate, stir to combine, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow to rest 5 minutes and then stir to combine until smooth. Microwave in 15 second increments if the chocolate is not thoroughly melted. If you plan to make classic truffles, refrigerate this mixture until firmed but still malleable. Scoop out 2 teaspoon sized balls and roll them in cocoa powder. Refrigerate to firm and then serve at room temperature. 

For peanut butter truffles:

  1. Stir the peanut butter into the warm ganache and place in the fridge to chill. Once the ganache is set but still scoopable, spoon 2 teaspoon sized balls (I use a small cookie scoop) of ganache and roll gently in your hands. Place the balls back in the fridge to cool. In the meantime, melt the additional chocolate in a double boiler set over medium-low heat. Roll each chilled ball in the melted chocolate and place on a piece of parchment or wax paper to set. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts and cool completely in the fridge.

For hazelnut truffles:

  1. Stir the chocolate hazelnut spread into the warm ganache and place in the fridge to chill. Once the ganache is set but still scoopable, spoon 2 teaspoon sized balls (I use a small cookie scoop) of ganache and roll gently in your hands. Roll each ball in the finely chopped hazelnuts and place in the fridge to set. 

For sea salt truffles: 

  1. Sprinkle in a small pinch of salt and stir to combine. Place in the fridge to chill. Once the ganache is set but still scoopable, spoon 2 teaspoon sized balls (I use a small cookie scoop) of ganache and roll gently in your hands. In the meantime, melt the additional chocolate in a double boiler set over medium-low heat. Roll each chilled ball in the melted chocolate and place on a piece of parchment or wax paper to set. Sprinkle with sea salt and allow to firm up at room temperature or in the fridge. 

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can't wait to see what you've made!

 

Marbled Sugar Cookies

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

This past week was  good for my soul. Going back home to Florida is beautiful in and of itself, but the glorious addition of Christmas spirit and celebration made my time there extra cozy. Something about being back in my parent’s house is comforting, and the familiarity of those rooms and the faces I see in them fills me with loads of nostalgia. It feels good to be welcomed back and to know that I am known there.

We spent the week wrangling the babies and carting them to see old friends. My mom and I made the trek with Aimee to Disney World (because if you go to Florida without visiting Mickey, did you really go to Florida?), and oh man, does my girl love her some theme parks. Although she’s already been to Disney a number of times, the Magic Kingdom never fails to bring the magic. I love to watch her take it all in like that.

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Christmas was not without the usual annual traditions. Mimi made her famous sugar cookies , and I pretty much destroyed my weight in butter and flour. On Christmas morning, we took our time opening gifts, ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the package’s contents, and even though it takes my family FOREVER to open gifts, I love that everyone takes time to appreciate the items they received and the people who gave them. That much gratitude feels good. I think I need to practice it more often.Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

The moral of the story is that I never get too old for home. A few moments at home make me feel like a kid again- a little less hung up on the stuff that the adult me usually has to worry about. Ending the year happy, hopeful, and refreshed for the coming year is a good way to be, and I’m grateful my parents afforded me that chance. And speaking of ending the year on a good note…

Let’s talk about these marbled sugar cookies.

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

Do you have plans for New Year’s Eve yet? If not, I would argue that now is that time to make some. These marbled sugar cookies are every bit as festive and sassy as any respectful NYE bash deserves, so if you’ve been waiting for the perfect party theme to come to you, consider it done. These marbled sugar cookies are the perfect treat to ring in the new year.

If you already have a favorite cutout sugar cookie recipe, you can use that here! The magic is in the glaze which, with a little help, gets swirled into a monochromatic pool of sugar that will make your average sugar cookie look anything but. Making marbled sugar cookies is simple and requires very little time and ingredients, so you’ve got more time for popping bottles and prepping for your midnight kiss.

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.comTo make the glaze, we combine powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk in a large bowl, whisking until a thick glaze forms. To test viscosity, run your whisk or a knife through the bowl of the glaze. The mixture should slowly move back together until you can’t see any trace of the whisk any longer, a process that should take about 6-8 seconds. Add more milk for a thinner icing and more powdered sugar if your icing becomes too thin.

Next, separate the icing into three different bowls. For a traditional monochromatic marble, use gel food coloring to color one bowl of icing black, one bowl a light grey, and one bowl white. If you know you’d prefer cookies that are primarily one color (I prefer a predominantly white cookie) make sure you keep the majority of your glaze that color. Pour a good bit of white glaze into a separate shallow bowl and drizzle with just a smidge of your two other colors, like in the photo below. You can use a toothpick or knife to swirl it a little, but keep in mind that as you dip your cookies into the glaze the mixture will stir a bit on its own.

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

When you’re ready to begin icing your cookies, dip the tops of your baked and cooled sugar cookies straight into the glaze. I try to only cover the tops of the cookies. Pull each cookie straight out and flip it over carefully to see how your glaze looks. If it’s not as marbled as you would prefer, you can tilt the cookies side to side to get a little extra swirl action. Otherwise, place the finished cookie on a cooling rack or sheet of waxed paper to dry!

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

You’ll repeat this process with the remaining cookies. If you start to run out of icing in your dip bowl or if it gets a bit too swirled, just add more of your reserved glaze to the pot and resume the cookie making! I like to make a diverse bunch by changing the concentration of each icing glaze color. I find I prefer a cookie with lots of white and deep streaks of black.

Marbled Sugar Cookies DIY Tutorial from The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a how to for sugar cookies frosted with black and white grey to look like stone marble! Simply dip the cookies in the powdered sugar glaze and watch the swirls decorate each dessert. These cookies are simple and a perfect treat for the holidays, particularly New YEar's eve parties! Check out this party recipe on thewoodandspoon.com

These marbled sugar cookies are mega festive and perfect for any casual or black tie New Year’s Eve affair. Give them a try and let me know what you think! Happy baking, happy new year, and happy everything else to you and yours. I’m looking forward to baking with you in the coming year. 

If you like these marbled sugar cookies, be sure to check out:

Painted Sugar Cookies

Gold-Splatted Lavender Vanilla Bean Cookies

Soft Frosted Sugar Cookies

Raspberry Lemon Linzer Cookies

Funfetti Cookies

 

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Marbled Sugar Cookies

These marbled sugar cookies are decorated to look like stone and make a festive addition to parties!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 60
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 36

Ingredients

For the cookies:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
  • 1 egg
  • 11/2 teaspoon princess cake and cookie emulsion (or 1 teaspoon vanilla and 1/2 tsp almond extract)

For the glaze:

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 36 tablespoons of whole milk or heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract, vanilla extract, or bakery emulsion
  • Gel food coloring in desired colors (I used black)

Instructions

To prepare the cookies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until smooth and well combined, about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg and extract and cream until combined. Add the dry ingredients and stir on low just until combined.
  4. Dump the dough crumbles out on to a lightly floured surface and work together into one ball with your hands. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to just over 1/4″ thicken and use a medium sized cookie cutter to cut shapes. If the dough ever gets too soft, refrigerate briefly.
  5. Place shapes on a baking sheet and freeze briefly for about 5 minutes.
  6. Once chilled, bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes and then cool on a cooling rack. Allow cookies to cool completely prior to icing.

To prepare the icing:

  1. Sift or whisk powdered sugar to remove lumps.
  2. Add 3 tablespoons of the milk and the extract, whisking until combined. Continue to add milk until it is the right viscosity. You will want thicker frosting for piping. To test viscosity, run your whisk or a knife through the bowl of frosting- your frosting should slowly move back together until you can’t see any trace of the whisk any longer. This process should take about 10 seconds. If the frosting is too thick, it will not pool back together, and if it is too thin, it will pool back together too quickly. The ten second test doesn’t lie. Add more milk for a thinner icing and more powdered sugar if your icing becomes too thin.
  3. Cover tightly in a tupperware or with a wet paper towel if you are not using it immediately, as frosting will dry out and become clumpy. Whisk occasionally and add more milk if it becomes too thick.

To glaze the cookies:

  1. Divide the glaze into three bowls. Add gel food coloring to one of the bowls a single drop at a time. It is important to not add too much as it is easier to darken the glaze than it is to lighten it. I keep one bowl of glaze white and dye the other two bowls grey and black.
  2. Pour a small bit of white glaze into the bottom of a bowl just big enough for your cookies. Drizzle a small bit of grey, black, or both glazes and barely swirl with a toothpick or knife. Carefully dip the tops of the cookies into the glaze and allow any excess to drip off. You can further “marble” the cookies by tilting them side to side. Place the cookies on a cooling rack or wax paper and allow to set completely. It will take about 4-6 hours for the glaze to set up completely. Be sure that they are completely dry before storing in a tupperware or cookie box!

Notes

Read the blog post for more tips on icing these cookies!

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Share a photo and tag us — we can't wait to see what you've made!

Cookie recipe adapted from Bridget

YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Make Whipped Cream

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com

There’s a few skills that every baker, professional and novice alike, needs to have in their repertoire. This is the second installment in the “You Need to Know” series where we explore basic baking techniques and tap into the know-how that is required to master them. In today’s edition, we are going to whip our way to the cloud-like heaven that is perfectly whipped cream, so if you need to know the ins and outs, keep reading!

 

What is it?

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com

Whipped cream is cream or heavy cream that has been whipped until the texture changes from a fatty liquid to a light and fluffy foam. As the cream is whipped, air bubbles are incorporated into the fat, resulting in an airy mixture that is approximately double the volume of the original liquid. A high amount of fat is required for the whipped cream to be stable, so heavy whipping cream or one that contains at least 30% fat is typically recommended for best outcomes. 

How do you make it?

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com

Whipped cream can be prepared in a number of ways and with very little equipment.You can use a chilled bowl and wire whisk, a hand mixer, a stand mixer, or even a a glass jar with a lid!  The key is to start with very cold cream, because the fat in the cream will melt at warmer temperatures, resulting in a lack of stability for the emulsification. I prefer to make my whipped cream with a hand mixer fitted with the beater attachments, because it’s a lot easier to monitor the progress of your whipped cream with a low-powered hand mixer as opposed to a high-powdered stand mixer. Feel free to use whatever you have on hand and feel comfortable working with.

Step One: Begin whipping!

Pour the cream into a mixing bowl and begin whipping at low speed. If you are using a stand mixer, I use the whisk attachment on speed 2 or 4. Beat the mixture steadily until you notice the cream beginning to froth and barely thicken.

Step Two: Add sweetener and flavoring!

Once your cream is frothy, it is stable enough to add sweeteners and flavoring. For a traditional sweetened whipped cream, a small portion of granulated or powdered sugar is typically used, however, you can use honey, brown sugar, or even agave nectar. The color and texture may differ slightly, but all can be used successfully. Vanilla extract, lemon zest, almond extract, or even cocoa powder can be added to your cream for flavor, but use in moderation, adding only until the desired flavor is achieved.

Step Three: Watch for peaks!

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com

After the add-ins have been included, continue whipping and increase the speed. The cream will transform from a bubbly liquid to a thickened mixture that barely retains a trace of the beater or whisk as it spins around the bowl. Man your post at the mixer because once the cream begins to thicken, you’re only a few moments away from perfect whipped cream. Keep whipping and watching, and you’ll soon notice soft and fluffy mounds forming on the top of the cream, finally increasing in volume to thick, smooth clouds that barely billow up onto themselves in the bowl.

Once your cream gets close to doubling in volume, turn off your mixer and pull the whisk from the bowl. The cream is adequately whipped once it holds its shape on the end of the whisk without wilting over or plopping off the end of the attachment. Be sure to not over-beat the cream- you may end up with butter!

What if I over-beat it?

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.comIf you continue beating your cream beyond the point of whipped cream, you’ll notice small lumps in your bowl, forming a grainy, thick mixture. Don’t fret- as long as you haven’t breached the fine line between whipped cream and butter, you can still rescue it! Add a few extra tablespoons of cream into your bowl and slowly whisk it into the mixture. If it’s not beyond repair, the mixture will smooth right back out and you’ll be back in the game. If you happened to take it too far, that’s okay too! You’re well on your way to making fresh, homemade butter, and we all know there’s plenty of room in the kitchen for that.

What do I use it for?

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com
Cream whipped to medium peaks, perfect to be used as a topping!

How To Make Whipped Cream Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. This is a step by step picture explanation of how to whip cream. Starting with heavy whipping cream and using a wire whisk, hand blender, or stand mixer, this tutorial will give you the recipe for soft, medium, and stiff peaks - even to the point of making your own butter! Learn how to make whipped topping on thewoodandspoon.com
Cream whipped to firm/stiff peaks- perfect for folding into a no-churn ice cream or icebox pie!

Whipped cream is an excellent topping for cakes, pies, coffees, and sundaes, but is often incorporated into recipes in a number of other ways. You may fold whipped cream into trifles or cream pies, no-churn ice cream or icebox cakes. With nothing more than a bit of cream and a handful of fresh fruit, you are well on your way to preparing a simple dessert that takes little time and zero fuss. Homemade whipped cream is fantastic on its own and adds a sweet and creamy mouthfeel when incorporated into homemade desserts.

Is there anything else I need to know about whipped cream?

Yep, probably. If you want to get your nerd on, be sure to check out this article from Serious Eats. If you’re interested in more photos of the different phases of whipped cream, this post from King Arthur Flour is really helpful. And if you’re just wanting some inspiration on how to use whipped cream, be sure to check out this page of my blog that includes a number of recipes requiring a little fluff of cream. 

To all of my American friends, have a great Labor Day! Be sure to reference this post next time you need a little whipped cream in your life. And don’t forget to vote for the Saveur Blog Awards! The polls are open until Wednesday, the 6th of September, and you can find me in the “Best Baking and Sweets” category. Have a great week! 

 

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Homemade Sweetened Whipped Cream

Learn how to make whipped cream, step by step with photos, in this quick and simple tutorial.

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (240 mL) heavy whipping cream, very cold
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Instructions

  1. Pour the cream into a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on medium-low speed until the mixture becomes frothy and foamy. Add the sugar. Increase the speed to high and whip until you notice traces of the mixer attachment in the cream. Continue whipping, watching carefully, until the mixture thickens into smooth pillowy clouds, nearly doubles in size, and barely holds its shape on the end of the whisk attachment. Use immediately. 

Notes

  • For vanilla whipped cream: add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • For chocolate whipped cream: add 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • For honey whipped cream: add 3 tablespoons good honey in place of the sugar.
  • For lemon whipped cream: add 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest or more, according to your preferences. 

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YOU NEED TO KNOW: How to Brown Butter

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

Brown butter. A sexy ingredient, if you ask me.

If you’ve been around the block a time or two, you’ve probably already become acquainted with brown butter. You know it by its nutty aroma and speckled amber hue. You’ve already been allured by the rich caramel flavors, seduced by the complexity it adds to sweet and savory dishes alike. But for the average home baker, brown butter is a mystery. What is it? Where can I find it? How do I make it?

If you fall into that second category, allow me to make the introduction. It gives me great pleasure to welcome you to the magical world of brown butter. 

 

WHAT IS IT?

Brown butter, or beurre noisette, is basically regular old butter that is gently melted and cooked until it browns which results in a change of flavor, aroma, and color. Butter is made up of water, fat, and protein. When it is cooked beyond the point of melting, the water will slowly evaporate leaving the butterfat and milk protein to continue cooking. As the proteins cook, they will begin to brown, which will be evident in the changes that you’ll notice in your pan. 

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

 

HOW DO YOU MAKE IT?

A fine question, dear friend. I’m glad you asked. To make brown butter, all you need is a quality stick of butter, a metal pan for your stovetop (I use this one), and a whisk or a spatula to gently stir with. I prefer to use a a light bottomed pan and a whisk, so whip those out if you have them. To help explain the browning process, I’ve taken some photos and notes. Let’s get started!

Step One: Melt the butter

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

Place your butter in a pan over medium-low heat. I like to cube my butter into equal sized chunks, and I prefer a light-colored pan so that I can monitor the browning process easily. Use whatever you feel comfortable with. Allow the butter to melt, stirring occasionally, until the butter is entirely liquid. As the butter continues to heat, it will begin to sizzle and foam, which is a good indication that the water has begun to evaporate.

Step Two: Begin browning the butter

Once the water has completely evaporated, the protein in the butter can begin browning! This is when you need to stay glued to your pan. Once you notice that the butter isn’t sizzling as much, begin whisking it regularly to ensure that the proteins brown evenly. We don’t want to burn the butter on the bottom of the pan while the liquid skimming the top remains unaffected. So keep whisking and watching. You’ll notice little golden flecks beginning to form on the bottom of the pan which is a thumbs up that you’re getting super close. 

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

Step Three: Brown that butter!

The butter will continue to darken and brown as it cooks. Man your post at the stove and keep that whisk moving to ensure that the milk proteins cook evenly and you don’t wind up with burnt bits of butter. You’ll notice the changing aromas as the butter continues to brown. Trust me when I tell you that it tastes as good as it smells. Keep stirring and agitating the butter until you reach your desired degree of darkness. Then, remove the pan from the stovetop and pour the butter, browned bits and all, into a separate bowl. Don’t leave it in the pan or the residual heat will continue to cook and brown your butter, likely resulting in a burnt finish.

The trickiest part of this process is knowing when to pull you pan from the heat. There are a few different degrees of brown butter. Some recipes may call for a lighter, less-browned butter, while others may encourage you to continuing cooking, even to the point of nearly burning it. So to help identify what you’re looking for, I’ve got you covered with a photo lineup of the different varieties of brown butter. 

First up is a super-light, golden brown butter. At this phase of the game, you’ll notice deep golden flecks forming at the bottom of the pan, but the overall hue is still pretty light. This degree of brown butter isn’t as rich in flavor, but may be just the ticket for a number of dishes. If a recipe you’re using calls for “lightly browned butter,” this is exactly what you’re looking for.

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

Next up is the OG of brown butter- the gold standard. When in doubt, go for this degree of brown butter. Here, the color is darker, and the flavor is richer. This butter will give off a strong nutty, almost caramel scent and those same flavors will be present in the taste as well. This is the brown butter we fold into streusel crumbs, toss in our pasta sauces, and whisk into sugar for a delightfully decadent cake glaze.

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

If you’re willing to take the risk and allow your butter to brown in the pan just until the point of burning, you can score the darkest butter of all. Ultra-dark brown butter adds scads of flavor when chilled and creamed into cookies, cakes, and more. The extra color results in an extra oomph of flavor, so you’ll land terrific tasting treats every time.  

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

 

HOW CAN I USE IT?

I have a very specific rule of thumb about when it is most appropriate to use brown butter. Are you ready? Ok, here it is:

USE BROWN BUTTER ALL THE TIME BECAUSE IT’S THE BEST.

That’s it! Simple, right? Ok, I’m kind of kidding. When making things like pasta sauces, salad dressings, toppings for breads and sauces for proteins, brown butter is a perfectly acceptable substitution for regular butter and oil. However, when adding brown butter to baked goods like cookies, cakes, and pie crusts, there’s a few things to consider. Remember how we cooked all of the water out of the butter? Well, water is a really important part of baking! We need water to add moisture, to create steam in the oven, and to do a number of other nerdy food science stuff that I won’t bore your with here. So if we substitute brown butter for regular butter, we have to remember that our final outcome will likely be affected by of the lack of H2O. To compensate, sometimes you can add a bit less dry ingredient (like flour) or a wee bit of extra water or fat. But sometimes brown butter just isn’t a good sub and we just have to dry our tears and be okay with that. 

How to Make Brown Butter Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a step by step photo tutorial on how to brown butter / beurre noisette. Will give the instruction and science behind browning butter and how to make the best type of browned butter for your baked goods, sweet and savory dishes. Find out what color brown butter should be and how to know if you've browned it enough! DIY here on thewoodandspoon.com

 

So, do you have any recipes using brown butter?

I thought you’d never ask. Of course! I use brown butter in a number of recipes, a couple of which are already on this site! You can check out my raspberry rhubarb crumb cake (with a brown butter crumb), carrot cake with brown butter glaze, or the ever-delightful hummingbird muffins (with a brown butter streusel) for some delicious and sweet recipe inspiration. I’ll also add the links to a few other personal faves below.

 Chewy, Gooey Golden Rice Krispie Treats

Brown Butter and Peanut Brittle Ice Cream

Brown Butter Pecan Pie

Is there anything else I need to know about brown butter?

Yes. There’s tons. But this isn’t that kind of blog. I’m giving you what I think you want to know as well as a few other science geek tidbits that I just couldn’t hold myself back from. If you have more questions about brown butter or using it in your favorite recipes, please share them with me below in the comments section! I would love to help in any way!

This is the first in what I hope will become a fun and helpful series for you all. Baking becomes so much easier and enjoyable when you understand some basics and have a few tips and techniques up your sleeve to help achieve success in the kitchen every time. So stick around for a few more things you need to know. I can’t wait to share more! Have a great weekend and cheers to you!

 

If you like this tutorial on how to make brown butter, be sure to check out:

Smash Cake Tutorial

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Blue Ombred cake- looks like the ocean! Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Gold Splattered Sugar Cookie Tutorial

Lavender Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookies Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood and Abby Hollar of The Hollardays Blog. This is a simple recipe for homemade cutout sugar cookies flavored with dried lavender and vanilla bean paste. The icing is simple and dries quick and doesn't require a piping bag or tip like Royal icing. The gold lustre luster dust is mixed with alcohol to create a shiny metallic paint that you can splatter on your cookies with a basting brush. Find the tutorial and how to paint cookies on thewoodandspoon.com

Painted Sugar Cookies 

Painted Sugar Cookies Recipe and Tutorial by The Wood and Spoon Blog By Kate Wood. This is a recipe for almond vanilla sugar cutout cookies that doesn't require chilling the dough. The dough holds its shape for cookie cutters. The frosting isn't like a royal icing- it is a simple glaze made with milk and powdered sugar and flavoring. you can pipe or dip the cookies icing on and then paint with food coloring gel and alcohol. Find the how to on the blog thewoodandspoon.com

Cake Baking Tips

Blood Orange Bundt Cake Recipe by The Wood and Spoon Blog by Kate Wood. A vanilla and citrus scented cake made with blood orange zest and juice, this bundt cake is fluffy, moist, and an easy one bowl recipe what to make with blood oranges. The glaze is a simple blood orange juice icing that is pink and so fun to make! This makes a large bundt cake but you can adapt it to make it in round pans or even muffin tins. You could try this recipe in a tube pan with removable bottom as well. Find this winter citrus, festive cake on thewoodandspoon.com

 

 

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How to Brown Butter

This is a quick and simply tutorial on how to brown butter. Making brown butter has never been easier with this photographic how-to!

  • Author: Kate Wood
  • Cook Time: 10
  • Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (113 gm) unsalted butter, cut into equal-sized chunks.

Instructions

  1. Place butter chunks in a light-colored pan over medium-low heat. Allow the butter to melt completely, stirring occasionally to ensure even cooking.
  2. Once the butter has melted, you’ll notice it begin to sizzle and foam. Continue stirring occasionally. Once the crackling has subsided, you’ll notice small golden flecks forming on the bottom of the pan. Begin stirring constantly with a whisk or a spatula to agitate the butter and keep it cooking evenly. Continue cooking until the desired level of brownness is reached. Remove the butter from the pan to a separate bowl to discontinue the cooking process.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can't wait to see what you've made!

Smash Cake Tutorial and George’s First Birthday!

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Pink Floral Cake.

Hi friends and happy Thursday! I have something a little out of the ordinary for you all today but I have a feeling you crazy cake lovers are gonna go nuts for it. It’s a smash cake tutorial! If there are little ones in your life that you want to celebrate well, or if you just really want to dig into a cutesy mini cake all on your own, today’s tutorial is just perfect for you.

A few weeks ago, we celebrated baby George’s first birthday. The year that has passed since his birth was one of my favorites yet, and it seemed only right that we celebrate this little buddy the best that we could. We hosted a gathering of friends and family at our  home, complete with cake, corn hole, and birthday crowns. The weather was just right and many of our friends showed up, kids in tow, for what ended up being a giant, outdoor free-for-all for more than 30 kids. Seriously, I think my friends could re-populate the nation if need be. The kids ran and threw balls, played in the mud and munched on cookies while the parentals sipped cocktails and chatted. We all know first birthday parties are really just an excuse for moms to throw a celebration, but I’d say it was a success. Luckily, my friend Meghan was there to capture the day, so I get to share some images with you guys! Check it out:

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Balloon arch made from tutorial on the house that lars built. White balloons inspiration.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Balloon arch.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Honey basil margaritas boozer cocktails.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Piñata

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com PInata

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Piñata

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Felt Crown.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Watercolor painted sugar cookies, red and polka dot black and white.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

There were a ton of fun blog recipes and DIYs that made this day personalized and delicious. You might recall the painted sugar cookies from a tutorial that I shared last year. The cocktails were honey basil margaritas, another blog favorite, that were a sweet and sour way to cool off from the warm summer air. The cake was a certain raspberry streusel cake that we all know and love, and even the ice cream, coffee cookie dough, was a no-churn recipe that I shared with you all a few weeks ago.

My mom and I made the balloon arch following a tutorial that I found on the fabulous blog, The House that Lars Built. It was a process, but a ton of fun to make and I think it really added something special. The piñata was also homemade and was similar to one that I made for Aimee’s first birthday party following a fun DIY that I found on 100 Layer Cakelet blog. If you have any ideas for future DIYS, I’d love to hear about them! These are certainly some fun ones you should consider adding to your next occasion. 

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

And what’s a birthday without a layer cake and candles? It would be a shame if I threw my kids a party without making cake, right? I made one large cake for our party guests and one (slightly larger than normal) smash cake for George to dig in to. Since the party, I’ve had several people ask me about making smash cakes for their own littles and I thought this might be a good opportunity to share some DIY decorating ideas with you all. I’ve prepared a few simple cakes that will hopefully inspire you to make mini cakes of your own next time you are celebrating a special little gal or guy. Let’s get started!

To begin, you’ll need:

-A few small cake layers. I prefer to use 6″ cake layers, but you can certainly use a 4″ or 5″ pan as well. I use these pans to bake 3 layers. You can use any of your favorite recipes, but if you want a sure thing, try halving this chocolate or this vanilla cake recipe. Perfect every time. If you use smaller pans or bake few layers, be sure to not overfill your pans as this can cause underbaked cakes and messy oven spills.

-3 to 4 cups of frosting.  I used a plain vanilla frosting for these cakes, but adjust as desired.

-A 6″ cake board. Cake boards aren’t necessary but certainly make decorating and transporting the cake a bit easier. You can just barely see the cake board in all of my photos. 

-A cake turntable. Again, this isn’t necessary but certainly makes frosting your cake a TON easier. Consider investing in one of the inexpensive models or jump to the big leagues with something like this.

An offset spatula. It’s less than $6 and will make your life so much easier. If you’re currently frosting cakes with a knife or a bowl scraper, just buy one of these, ok?

 

Flower Smash Cake

I always say, when in doubt, just throw some flowers on it. Decorating with flowers and greenery can take a plain frosted smash cake to a sweetly styled work of art. I typically like to use flowers that I can find at my local store or florist, but there are tons of ways to put a little nature on your cake. If you’re unsure about using fresh blooms on your cake, take some time to practice with silk flowers and greenery like I did in the following photos. 

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Pink Floral Cake.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Pink Floral Cake.

Before styling your florals, frost and chill your cake as desired. Here, I’ve used 3 thin 6″ vanilla cake layers coated with a vanilla cream cheese buttercream. You can half this cake and frosting recipe to yield enough for your mini smash cake. Coat the outside of the cake in a thin layer of frosting so that a bit of the cake edges show. Chill the cake briefly in the fridge to allow the frosting to set up slightly and then begin arranging! I like to use a variety of blooms, leaves, and twigs in different shapes and shades, but you can use any variety you like. Start by adding some flat leaves, twigs, or stems to the top of the cake and then arrange one or two larger blooms on top. Fill in any unsightly gaps with smaller flowers, berries, or filler.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com Eucalyptus greenery cake topper.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

For George’s birthday cake, I knew I wanted to use natural elements as decoration but I didn’t want the cake to be too feminine. As an alternative to flowers, I used some greenery and stems from my neighbor’s garden. To achieve a similar effect, you can purchase eucalyptus, olive leaves, or other green filler from your florist and arrange it in a minimalistic fashion on top of your cake. Get creative and know that practice makes perfect! The more you work with florals, the more comfortable you’ll get with arranging them on your layer cakes.

 

Stenciled Sprinkle Smash Cake

You can decorate your smash cake with a word or a number in less than 5 minutes and with minimal effort. Simply print out a word or number on a sheet of computer paper. The number should be slightly smaller than the size of your cake. Use an X-Acto knife or scissors to cut out your shape and create a stencil. Center the stencil on top of the slightly chilled cake and sprinkle small nonpariels on top to fill it in. Be sure not to get too many sprinkles outside of the stencil our you’ll be picking them off your cake! Press down lightly to adhere the sprinkles to the cake and remove the stencil. You can use a careful hand or a pair of tweezers to pick off any rogue sprinkles. 

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

I like to use nonpariels, but if you have a different variety of small sprinkles that you’d like to use, feel free! You could also sprinkle on small candies, cocoa powder, or finely chopped nuts. 

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

 

Ombre Smash Cake

Frosting an ombre cake remains one of my favorite ways to decorate a smash cake. To get started, all you’ll need is a small, crumb-coated smash cake, about 1-1/2 cups of white frosting, gel food coloring, and an offset spatula.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Evenly divide your frosting into 3 small bowls. Add a small drop of your gel food coloring into one of the bowls, keeping in mind that you can always add more food coloring, but it’s a challenge to lighten the frosting once you’ve added too much. Stir well with a spatula and then color your remaining bowls of frosting as desired. I typically use 3 shades of the same color and just add more or less food coloring to each bowl to achieve my color gradient.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

Top your smash cake with your lightest or darkest shade. Smooth out the colored frosting on top of the cake using an offset spatula and push any extra frosting off the edge of the top of the cake onto the top third of the sides of the cake as well. Don’t worry about making it smooth yet, just be sure that all sides of the cake have some of that frosting on it. Move on to the next shade and spackle it onto the middle third of your cake. Finish with the final color on the bottom third of the cake and gently work to smooth it out over each side. Holding your spatula parallel to the cake, smooth the sides of the frosting out. The more you spread out your frosting the more that the colors will blend together, so be sure to not overwork it. Clean off your spatula occasionally to ensure that the colors don’t get muddled together as you go over different parts of your cake. Check out this ombre cake tutorial for more help. Rosie does a great job explaining the technique and it’s super helpful to watch her do it in her video. She also sells some gorgeous sprinkle blends that you may want to top your cake with so be sure to check those out!

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Blue Ombred cake- looks like the ocean! Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

 

Rustic Frosted Smash Cake

One of my favorite ways to decorate a smash cake also happens to be the easiest. Rustic or “messy” frosted cakes are all the rage. These cakes require no perfection, no straight edges, no perfectly piped swirls of frosting. All that is needed to create these beauties is a little creativity and an offset spatula.

Smash Cake Tutorial Recipe By The Wood and Spoon Blog. Sharing tips and techniques for decorating mini 6" smash cakes to be served at a little boy or girl first birthday party! You'll find out how to decorate a cake with a stencil and sprinkles, flowers, top with color balls of fondant, ombre layer cake, and rustic frosting style done with an offset spatula or palette knife. Read more about the how to and find some colorful kid birthday party inspiration here! www.woodandspoon.com

To frost one of your own, start with a thinly frosted smash cake. Allow the cake to chill briefly in the fridge and then use your offset spatula to spackle frosting onto the sides of your cake. You may decide to go for big swoops, parallel lines, or thin stripes of frosting. Whatever you choose, just begin adding frosting to the sides of your cake and smooth out the top edge once finished. The great news is that if you mess up- no problem! Just smooth out the frosting and start all over again. When you’re finished, top the cake with a cute candle or topper. For more rustic cake inspiration, be sure to flip through my Instagram feed.

Ok, now that you guys know all of the cute and simple ways to decorate your kiddo’s smash cakes, I wanna see them! I gain so much inspiration from you guys so if you’ve created some recently or in the past that you think I might like, please shoot me an email. If you have any ideas for future tutorials, holler at me in the comments section below so that I can get cracking. Let’s just learn all the different ways to create beautiful food for the people we love, okay? Have a great week and be sure to pop by next Tuesday. We’re going to be talking biscuits and sandwiches and Father’s Day, so you’ll want your appetite. Cheers to you and Happy Thursday!

 

If you like this smash cake tutorial, you might also like:

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