Traditional fondant is a simple powdered sugar-water mixture cooked to the soft-ball stage. After it's cooked, fondant can be beaten and kneaded until pliable, then formed into decorations or candy. Fondant has revolutionized cake and cupcake decorating, which is why it's often referred to as "cake fondant." This versatile mixture can be colored, flavored, rolled, imprinted, and cut into any shape. It can also cover an entire cake or cupcakes. Though you can purchase fondant, homemade is softer and easier to work with. Also, unlike commercial fondants, freshly made fondant usually has a better flavor. Traditional homemade fondant requires standing over a hot stove with a candy thermometer, but this easy fondant recipe is prepared in the microwave without need for a candy thermometer. It's made with marshmallows, white baking chocolate, and vanilla—and it tastes as sweet as it looks.
In a medium microwave-safe bowl combine 3 cups tiny marshmallows; 1/2 ounce finely chopped white baking chocolate with cocoa butter; 1 tablespoon butter, cut up; and 1-1/2 teaspoons milk or whipping cream.
*Tip: Clear vanilla can be found in the cake-decorating department of hobby and crafts stores.
A spectrum of colors is available in paste-style food coloring. The advantage of using paste food coloring to color fondant is that the color will not be diluted when you mix it with the white fondant. Use the colors as packaged or combine them to create custom colors. Paste food colorings are available at hobby and crafts stores.
Tip: Wear plastic gloves to avoid discoloring your hands. If you are using different colors, you will want to use several pairs of gloves.
To customize the flavor of your fondant, simply replace the vanilla in the above recipe with a few drops of your favorite extract, such as almond, lemon, or orange.
To use fondant, roll it out with a rolling pin on a surface coated with additional powdered sugar. For large sheets to cover cakes and cupcakes and for cutting out decorations, roll out a sheet about 1/8 inch thick. If you are going to cover a cake, you might want to invest in a special wide rolling pin designed for fondant.
Now that your fondant is made, use these tools and techniques to decorate.
Sometimes called "cake fondant," this mixture was made for cake decorating. Get inspired by some of our favorite fondant cakes, then use our easy fondant recipe to make one yourself.