How to Frost a Cake

Properly frosting a cake is no longer a mystery with these five simple steps and strategies that will give your cake a sweet makeover.

How to Frost a Cake

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Easy Steps to Frosting a Cake

Frosting adds moisture to a cake and helps hold moisture in. Since a cake is more likely to crumble if you frost it while it's still warm, you should let the layer (or layers) cool in the pan and then on a wire rack.

View Recipe: Espresso Layer Cake

Watch: How to Properly Cool Cakes

Step One: Unwrap and Prepare Layers

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Step One: Unwrap and Prepare Layers

Unwrap the cake layers, and place 1 layer on a cake stand. Slip strips of wax paper beneath the edges to keep the stand clean.

Step Two: Frost Between the Layers

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Step Two: Frost Between the Layers

To frost between the layers, place about 1 cup of frosting onto the center of the layer, and sweep outward with a spatula. An offset spatula, which allows for even spreading, is best because it keeps your hand away from the cake.

Step Three: Add Next Layer and Crumb Coat

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Step Three: Add Next Layer and Crumb Coat

Place an unfrosted layer bottom-side up on the frosted layer. Apply a thin layer of frosting (known as a crumb coat) to the entire cake to seal in any loose crumbs. Allow it to set in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes.

Step Four: Frost Top of Cake

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Step Four: Frost Top of Cake

To frost the top of the cake, place about 1 cup of frosting onto the center of the cake, and spread to the edge. Cover the top with an even layer of frosting.

Step Five: Frost Sides and Refrigerate

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Step Five: Frost Sides and Refrigerate

For the sides, load the spatula with frosting, and lightly push into the cake as you turn the cake stand. Continue spreading until the cake is evenly coated. Let the cake set in the refrigerator for 15 minutes before decorating it.

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