17 March, 2015

How to cover a cake with fondant | Cake Decorating For Beginners

If you've seen the majority of pretty cake designs, most of them will have covered their cakes with a layer of fondant. I've heard so many people say that they are intimidated by fondant, but don't be! I'm going to show you how easy it is to cover a round cake with fondant icing.

How to cover a cake with fondant

Step One: Crumbcoat your cake
Crumbcoating is really important because it will lock in any crumbs that might get loose and end up in your fondant, which won't look great! It'll also help keep your fondant stuck to your cake, so it won't come loose once it's dried!

The best way to crumb coat your cake is to use buttercream and cover your cake. I've seen a lot of cake decorators who liberally apply the buttercream, however I prefer to keep it light so that you don't end up having a sickly sweet cake. I've never had any problems with my crumbs getting out or my fondant not sticking to my cake so it works fine for me! However, if you have some lumps or bumps that need evening out or if you want to have a thicker coat of buttercream then go ahead. What ever works best for YOUR cake! :)

Another tip I have which some cake decorators may gasp at- don't worry if your crumb coat isn't perfect. Seriously, it's going to be covered in fondant so why does it matter? As long as your buttercream is not going to affect the way your fondant looks then don't worry too much about making it 100% perfect.

For this, I would use a spatula and then I would use a scraper to scrape off any excess buttercream that might cause lumps and bumps under my fondant.

Step Two: Measure your cake
With a ruler, measure your cake's height and width. This is important for making sure that your rolled fondant is going to be big enough to cover your cake. Tip: I always like to make sure I have WAY too much fondant- because at the end I can just cut off all the excess and re use it another time!.

How to cover your cake with fondant

Step Three: Roll out your fondant
Before you start working with your fondant, you might want to spread something like Trex on your work surface (but only a very thin layer or it'll be too slippery!) to stop the fondant from getting stuck to your work surface. I have used icing sugar before but it just doesn't do a good enough job!
Then, using a rolling pin, start to roll your fondant out. Remember that you will need to make sure it is big enough to cover the WHOLE of your cake with no gaps, so make sure you are rolling it both long and wide and measure it before you put it onto your cake.

How to cover a cake with fondant

Step Four: Add Fondant to cake!
Now comes the fun bit right?! Pick up a part of your fondant and attach it to your rolling pin. Then, roll your fondant up LOOSELY around your rolling pin, leaving a section hanging down. Pick up your rolling pin, and then unravel the fondant down over your cake so it is completely covered on all sections.

Step Five: Smooth out your fondant
Using your smoother, smooth the fondant on the top of your cake to make sure it is in place and then start to smooth the sides. You will need to pull the fondant tight to the cake to make it flat, and then smooth it out after that. You may end up with excess fondant, but that's okay, just cut it off!

For this, I would always use a smoother simply because your hands can leave marks or fingerprints in your fondant.

How to cover a cake with fondant

Step Six: Cut off Excess Fondant around the bottom
I know I just mentioned this, but just to explain further- cut off the excess around the bottom, but make sure you that you leave a straight edge and be careful not to cut the cake!

And that's it, you will have a perfectly covered cake! Working with fondant is not as scary as it can seem but does take some practice. If you don't want to waste a cake and want to practice with fondant, you can buy a cake dummy which you can use to lay the fondant over!

Sian's fondant tips:

  • Excess fondant is good, but make sure you don't roll your fondant too thin or it will tear while you lift it to cover the cake! 
  • Make sure your fondant doesn't dry out by wrapping it in clingfilm when you're not using it. 
  • If your fondant is drying out or cracking while you use it, work some Trex into it which will give it more moisture!
  • Once finished, store your cake in an airtight container to avoid the cake and the fondant from drying out! 

Please let me know in the comments below if you found this post helpful but also please feel free to tweet me @cakeydreamer, I'd love to see pictures of your fondant covered cakes or answer any questions! If you use instagram, feel free to use my hashtag #cakeydreamerbakes to show off your finished cakes!


  1. I really found this post helpful, so thank you for sharing Sian! I've avoided using fondant for a little while now as I worry it may be too difficult to work with, having read your post I feel it's a lot easier than I first imagined so might just have to give it a go! :D Can you recommend any brands of fondant? (and/or even where I can buy it) x


    1. Aww thank you Jess! Let me know if you do try it!

      In terms of brands, I always use Renshaw because it's great quality and they have some fab colours! I've also heard Culpitts is good too though, but I've never used it myself. If you have a Lakeland near you, they normally sell the smaller packs for around £1.79 or Hobbycraft also stock it.

      Hope that helps! xxxxx

    2. As if I needed another excuse to visit Hobbycraft, ahaha! Thank you xxx

    3. Haha I know right?! Hobbycraft is one of my regular spots... Although I'm well known in my local Lakeland too! xx

  2. I don't really like the taste of fondant icing so I don't tend to use it on my cakes but when I have made cakes for other people I completely skipped the crumb coating step haha no wonder it looked a bit lumpy. Ah well I'll know for next time, good informative post :) xx


    1. Haha I don't like a lot of it so I only have small slices of cake with it on. But I love decorating with it so it's all worth it!
      I actually have a post coming out next week that's more detailed about crumbcoating, so that might help you! :) xx

  3. You make this look so easy! I don't think I'd be able to do this without any kinks!

    Corinne x

    1. Haha thank you! It's not that hard, it just takes practice I guess. But I still get the occasional kink! (that sounds so odd haha)

  4. Just found your blog and this will come in so handy. I've been trying a few cake recipes but I'm terrible at baking!!! You make it seem so easy though :D


    1. Thank you! Haha, just keep trying, it'll definitely come to you! :) xx


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