Food Crush

This Is The Easiest Way To Make Buttercream Icing Flowers (And Avoid A Pinterest Fail)

Decorate your baking like a Cake Boss.

Three cupcakes topped with yellow and purple buttercream flowers.

These took about five minutes to decorate. Photo, Amy Grief.

Russian piping tips are a life-saver for those of us too impatient to learn how to make buttercream roses with regular old piping tips. If you’ve ever tried making a perfect icing flower using those shapeless nozzles, you know you’re in for a classic Pinterest fail. But with these simple tools, you can now up the ante on your decorating game without putting in too much effort.

What are Russian piping tips?

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While their connection to Russia is a mystery, these piping tips are all the rage on social media and baking blogs because they let beginners pass as the Cake Boss.

These stainless-steel tips act as little molds that pipe out perfect buttercream roses, tulips and a bouquet’s worth of other flowers. There are also smaller tips that let you add leaves to your flowers, because no sugar garden is complete without a healthy dose of foliage.

There are plenty of Russian piping tip sets available on Amazon, I used these ones, which are now on sale for $15! Even the big guns are on this trend — Wilton sells an Easy Bloom Cake Decorating Tip Set for only $8.

How to use Russian piping tips

As someone who loves the naked cake look (because I usually mess up anything I attempt to ice), I can vouch for how easy it is to use these tips.

  • You can use them with plastic, disposable icing bags – my Amazon kit even came with some
  • If you want colourful flowers, use food colouring to dye white icing
  • Once you attach the tip (follow the instructions that come with your set), fill the icing bag with buttercream — the stiffer, the better. If your icing’s too soft, the flowers will fall. Bonus: Russian piping tips work with store-bought icing, like Duncan Hines and Betty Crocker! (I resorted to Betty Crocker after running out of icing sugar in the testing process)
  • With the tip directly on top of your baked good, squeeze out some icing and then gently lift up the icing bag. You should be left with beautiful little flower If you haven’t worked with an icing bag before, it does take a bit of practice
  • Play around with your Russian piping tips and pipe flowers onto a piece of parchment paper before moving on to your baked goods

Within a few short minutes, you’ll surely graduate from Netflix’s Nailed It! to Cake Boss.

Watch: How to decorate cupcakes