How to ice a cake with royal icing

Dan Lepard shows you how to cover a cake in royal icing for a perfectly smooth finish.

--First, apply a thin, even coat of royal icing, about 5mm/¼in thick, to smooth the cake surface.

-Place the cake on a cake turntable (if you have one) and place a scoop of icing on top of the cake.

-Spread the icing over the top of the cake with the spatula so that it just tips over the sides.

-Lean against the turntable to hold it firmly in place (without touching the cake), hold the metal ruler horizontally at a 45° angle and pull it towards you evenly across the surface of the icing to smooth it.

-Spread an even layer of royal icing around the sides of the cake. You need to work swiftly as the icing will dry in contact with the air after a few minutes, but don’t rush. Even, careful movements will give the best result.

-Trim away any excess icing from the edge of the cake with the spatula.

See recipe in full

Extravagant five-tiered wedding cake Extravagant five-tiered wedding cake

By Dan Lepard

Skill level


Equipment you will need for this technique

  • offset spatula
  • cake scraper
  • long metal ruler
  • cake turntable (optional, but very helpful)

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