Royal Icing Recipe (Fresh Egg White)

Royal icing is a hard white icing, made from egg white and icing sugar (mix or pure). A little addition of an acidic substance like lemon juice, citric acid or cream of tartar, the texture of the icing can be improved. I use white vinegar and am very happy with it. Royal icing can be used on products like Christmas cakes, wedding cakes, gingerbread houses and many other cakes and biscuits, either as a spreadable smooth coating or as piping decorations. Royal icing is also used to make decorations such as flowers and figurines for putting on the cake.


One way to use royal icing is by piping ornaments or decorations in certain shapes or forms over a plastic sheet. When the decorations are completely dry (overnight is recommended) they can be lifted and glued with soft royal icing onto a cake.


Additional added liquid like lemon juice, water or egg white will bring royal icing into a runny condition to coat products like cookies or dry baked pastries. Flooding work is commonly used with royal icing.

Ingredients

The weights in the recipe table below will yield the following 'weight per unit' and 'number of units'. If you would like to change the recipe to cater to a different 'weight per unit' and/or 'number of units', you can use the Recipe Calculator Tool below the ingredients table.
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Weight Per Unit: 720
Number of Units: 1
WEIGHT
(grams)
ALTERNATIVE METRIC INGREDIENT IMAGE CONDITION
A 100 3.5 ounces Egg White Egg white is the common name for the clear liquid (also called the albumen or the glair/glaire) contained within an egg. In chickens it is formed from the layers of secretions of the anterior section of the hen's oviduct during the passage of the egg. It forms around fertilized or unfertilized egg yolks. The primary natural purpose of egg white is to protect the yolk and provide additional nutrition for the growth of the embryo (when fertilized). Egg white consists primarily of about 90% water into which is dissolved 10% proteins (including albumins, mucoproteins, and globulins). Unlike the yolk, which is high in lipids (fats), egg white contains almost no fat, and carbohydrate content is less than 1%. Egg whites contain just over 50% of the protein in the egg. Egg white has many uses in food (e.g. mousse) and also many other uses (e.g. in the preparation of vaccines such as those for influenza). (Fresh) Egg yolk and fat free
B 600 21.1 ounces Icing Sugar Mixture Icing sugar mixture, also known as confectioners' sugar or powdered sugar, is pulverised granulated sugar crushed together with a small amount (about three percent) of cornflour. This icing sugar is great to use when making icing for kids' birthday cakes or dusting sweet treats.
C 20 4 teaspoons Vinegar Vinegar is a liquid consisting mainly of acetic acid (CH3COOH) and water. The acetic acid is produced by the fermentation of ethanol by acetic acid bacteria.[1] Vinegar is now mainly used as a cooking ingredient. Historically, as the most easily available mild acid, it had a great variety of industrial, medical and domestic uses, some of which (such as its use as a general household cleanser) are still promoted today.The term "distilled vinegar" is something of a misnomer, because it is not produced by distillation but by fermentation of distilled alcohol. The fermentate is diluted to produce a colorless solution of 5% to 8% acetic acid in water, with a pH of about 2.4. This is variously known as distilled spirit, "virgin" vinegar, or white vinegar, and is used in cooking, baking, meat preservation, and pickling, as well as for medicinal, laboratory, and cleaning purposes. (White)
720

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Method
STEP ACTION DETAIL CONDITION
1 MEASURE Weight all ingredients. Double check
2 PLACE Place all ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
3 MIX Mix them by hand to blend them together. Sloppy mix
4 WHIP Whip the mixture on a high speed (use a paddle, not a whisk). Gradually decrease the speed as it whips to achieve a smooth result. White and creamy
5 STORE Scrape sides down and store in an air tight container.
Important Notes
  • Do not over whip royal icing. If over whipped, it will appear creamy at first but air bubbles will quickly disturb creaminess. Over whipped mixture will produced weak decorations and they may break easily.
  • Always cover the container with a wet towel or air tight lid to avoid the surface of the icing developing a crusty layer. If this dried layer is then mixed in with the rest of the icing, there will be lumps.
  • Mixing bowl must be completely fat free. If a trace of oil or fatty residue (maybe from a previous product mixed with the same mixer) is mixed together with the icing, it will make the mixture sloppy and it can never achieve the optimal firm texture.
  • White vinegar will allow the icing to be remixed back to a good condition if it has been resting too long.
  • Additional egg white will produce sloppy and runny texture to use for spreading or flooding work.

12 Comments

  • Profile photo of klteif

    How many days or weeks can we store the royal icing ?

  • Profile photo of Macdacruz

    My apologies Serdar, I did not notice the measures in grams… I am so excited to start training that I was reading the recipe and never noticed the ingredients in metric units. Thank you

  • Profile photo of Macdacruz

    Hi Serdar
    Can you convert the ingredients in metric units without disturbing the recipe? I am concern with the decimals when we convert as we have to round it and it may alter the consistency. Please advise.
    Thank you

  • Profile photo of Mariaxxx

    Can I use this recipe for string works?

    • Profile photo of Serdar Yener

      Yes but not so good. Good string work needs royal icing produced with very fine icing sugar and additional tsp of glucose to a 250 g. Also a little tylose will help.

  • Profile photo of Shirlene de Zilwa

    Wiping the bowl and attachment with white vinegar is said to remove all traces of fat. Hope this is helpful!

  • Profile photo of Samira Burgess

    Hi Chef, this recipe of royal icing does not work it is too runny , I have tried it many times and word for word but it does not work, can you advice pls. why is that and if you have a better recipe. many thanks in advance.

    • Profile photo of Serdar Yener

      there is oil in your mix. Either drop of egg yolk mixed with egg white maybe the bowl or whisk has some oil from last mixing. Try again and let me know

  • Profile photo of jenny MARX

    I HATE ROYAL ICING!!! have tried your recipe (vinegar) and my sisters recipe (lemon juice) and it never sets, is always so runny I cant use it. some many different ways I am confused, on internet some say whip lots , you say don’t, use only metal bowls , don’t use metal bowls, I am tired of wasting ingredients. HHHeeeelllllppppp please

    • Profile photo of Serdar Yener

      Hi jenny Please calm down. Take a break and just do few simple steps. Metal bowl no problem but NO FAT NO EGG YOLK. Mix everything together and run the mixer with medium speed till you have smooth royal icing.

  • Profile photo of Ross Francis

    If used and dried for Royal Icing items, how long does the dried item last?

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