Cupcake decorating with plungers and cutters

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Plungers and cutters to cut out designs are one of the simplest ways to incorporate fondant or gum paste into your cupcakes

Decorated cupcakes decorated with fondantFondant and gum paste can be used to create everything from highly realistic flowers and leaves to playful designs for children’s cupcakes, but some bakers find these types of icing a little intimidating to work with. 

One of the simplest ways to incorporate fondant or gum paste into your cupcakes is by using plungers and cutters to cut out designs from the icing.  These cutters come in a range of shapes, sizes, and designs, and can be used to make nearly anything you can imagine from fondant. 

Fondant plungers and cutters are especially useful for anyone who wants to create large numbers of cupcakes with the same design- you can cut as many pieces as you want without stopping or using a complicated cutting technique.

Essentially, a fondant or gum paste cutter is like a small cookie cutter.  It is simply pressed into fondant or gum paste to cut a certain design out of the icing.  Plunger style cutters are similar, except that when you lift the cutter, the plunger can be pressed gently to push the cut design out of the cutter for you to use on your cupcake. 

Some tools come with a design on the plunger portion which can be imprinted onto the fondant or gum paste.  You can purchase cutters and plungers in a variety of styles, ranging from simple geometric designs to elaborate borders, butterflies, and flowers. 

Cupcake recorating with plungers and cuttersOne reason that so many decorators choose plungers and cutters is for their versatility.  A single design can be used again and again, and changing the look of the design is as simple as changing fondant or gum paste colors.  After you have cut a piece of icing, you can make it even more impressive by adding a few simple touches.  For example, you can layer a small circle on top of a flower design to create a “center” for your flower.  Or, you can cut individual petals out of gum paste to make a three dimensional flower that looks almost real. 

Some bakers choose to use food coloring to “paint” the designs, creating delicate shading or fun effects on cut pieces.  You can also use the negative space on the frosting- that is, the piece that surrounds the shape you cut out- to decorate a cupcake.

Cutters and plungers have an almost endless number of uses, but the best thing about these easy to use baking tools is that they produce professional looking results faster than any other method.  Cutters and plungers for cupcake decorating are made by a number of different companies, but these are a few that are great for people who are just starting and want something they can use for many different designs:

  • Fox Run’s mini alphabet set is perfect for cupcakes, because the small size lets you add complete words and phrases to cupcakes.
  • Wilton’s Decorator Favorites lets you cut designs or press images into fondant and can create a number of beautiful elements for cakes or cupcakes.
  • Wilton’s 32-Piece Gum Paste Flower Set works on fondant or gum paste, and is one of the best selling sets available.  It includes detailed instructions, cutters in a number of sizes, and other tools to get you started.

Looking for more plungers and cutters for cupcake decorating or cupcake baking tools? Visit the webshop.

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