How To Pipe Buttercream

Piping beautiful swirls onto cupcakes is one of those things that people often think is harder than it is. Yes it does take a bit of practice, but it’s really not all that hard! Here are a few of my top tips for how to pipe buttercream and my latest tutorial video, which shows you how to easily pipe 4 different professional looking buttercream cupcake styles with just one piping tip!

  • Always make sure you completely cover the cupcake with your frosting as it helps prevent the cupcake from going stale and it looks better if you can’t see bits of the sponge peeping out. If your piping style doesn’t go right to the very edge, flat ice the cupcake first.
  • Always try and maintain constant and even pressure on the piping bag as this will ensure your swirls have a nice even thickness and flow to them.
  • Always remove any large air bubbles before piping or when the air bubble reaches the tip it will fart all over your cupcake and ruin your nice smooth flow. This is mainly a problem when re-filling the bag and there is a gap between the old buttercream and the new. To remove the bubble, gently manipulate the buttercream in the bag with your fingers until you have pushed the bubble to the side. You can then squeeze the buttercream back down towards the tip.
  • To make filling your piping bag easier, stand the bag in a pint glass and then roll the top of the bag down over the sides of the glass. This will keep the bag fully open and help prevent air bubbles and a sticky mess.
  • When using tips such as petal tubes, ensure your buttercream is a slightly stiffer consistency than usual so that the petals hold their shape and stay in place better. It is virtually impossible to pipe a rose using a petal tube with light, creamy buttercream.
  • You might be tempted to make your swirls huge so they look impressive, but remember that someone has to eat it and buttercream can be quite sickly if you have too much.
  • Don’t be afraid to experiment with different tips and come up with your own styles. Use leftover buttercream to practice your piping on the bottom of a glass.