Chocolate Cake Writing Tutorial

Chocolate Cake Writing Tutorial

Using examples, both good and bad, from my portfolio.
Link to the >> video version of this cake writing tutorial <<

Note: this cake writing tutorial involves piping with a parchment paper piping cone filled with melted chocolate. Follow this link to view my video tutorial on how to make parchment paper cones.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

First and foremost, always remember to check and double check spelling before committing to cake writing (Mazel tov is two words not one).

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Writing with melted chocolate will look classier and more legible than frosting. Genuine chocolate works best since it has a thinner, smoother pour due to its higher cocoa butter content.

Recipe for Writing Chocolate

  • ¼ cup chips or chopped chocolate, melted
  • ½-1 teaspoons of vegetable oil

Add vegetable oil, stirring with a small whisk, until a good writing consistency is achieved. The chocolate should be pourable but not drippy. This technique works best using a parchment paper cone.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Some people prefer to write in cursive, which works well because you never have to pick up your pen.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

I prefer to write with a deliberately wonky style font because it is the most forgiving of all cake writing fonts.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Bubble-ended letters are a playful look that helps make the start/stop points look like they’re done on purpose.

 How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

If there’s space, you can always write on the cake board. Mistakes can be scraped off and redone on a board.

 How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Writing blindly without a strategy may result in some words getting crammed against a starfish followed by an unexpected amount of extra space at the bottom of the cake, the solution to which is to underline the sentiment over and over and over and over and over and over again….or better yet, plan the placement of words in advance of writing. Take a shorter inscription, Congratulations Meredith, for example.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Congratulations, at 15 letters, is a toughy. It helps when writing long words in chocolate to refrain from dotting i’s and crossing t’s until the skeleton of the word is in place. Stopping to dot i’s and t’s breaks rhythm and is more likely to cause a misspelling, wobble, or drip.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Congratulations

To center long words horizontally on a cake, note where the true center of the word lies. In this case, tu marks the center point of Congratulations. So aim to reach the middle of the cake around tu. Sometimes I will write tulations first, starting in the middle of the cake then finish with Congratu by writing it from right to left. That technique ensures there will be enough room for the entire word.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

To center two or more words on a cake, first, type the phrase into a word processing document (or you can do it in your head). Then, center justify the font and study the outcome.

Congratulations
Meredith

Note first how the words line up horizontally. Meredith is a shorter word than Congratulations so on the cake, Meredith should be tabbed in. Note that the M at the start of Meredith falls under the g in Congratulations so when it comes time to write Meredith, begin directly under that g.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

To achieve vertical symmetry, write words from the inside of the phrase out.

For example, for the 4-line inscription, Happy Birthday, Barbara & Jeff, begin by writing the center portion of the text, Birthday, Barbara.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Then add the top and bottom elements. This method guarantees that the text will be evenly distributed vertically. More commonly, a cake reads Happy Birthday So-and-So with only one person’s name. In that case, begin by writing the word Birthday across the middle then finishing with Happy on top and So-and-So on the bottom. >> Watch a video of me writing happy birthday for a cake here <<

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

To distract the eye from flaws or asymmetry or to simply to enhance a cake’s face, fill the blank spaces around words with polka dots or swirls.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

To include inscriptions on the vertical sides of cakes, roll out a 1/8” thick slab of fondant, modeling chocolate, or, marzipan. Write on it, allow it to dry, then affix it to the side of the cake with a dot or two of buttercream.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

The benefit of using rolled modeling chocolate for plaques is that it can also be curved like this tag on a present cake. The plaque method is handy since it avoids writing directly on the surface of a cake. Make a mistake? No worries; just flip the plaque over and write on its back side or conceivably, write on as many plaques as it takes to get it right.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

Last but not least, practice, practice, practice. Practice on parchment or wax paper. Get some chocolate and practice right now! Doodle away.

How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies

This chocolate cake writing tutorial was brought to you by

Kristen Coniaris

Author of
Wicked Goodies


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More Helpful Tutorials by Wicked Goodies

VIDEO >> Chocolate Cake Writing
How to Write on Cakes with Chocolate by Wicked Goodies VIDEO >> How to Make Parchment Paper Piping Cones

How to Make a Parchment Paper Piping Cone by Wicked Goodies

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Chocolate Buying Giude by Wicked Goodies

Sample the book, Cake Decorating with Modeling Chocolate

Cake Decorating with Modeling Chocolate

View the Wicked Goodies Cake Galleries
Cake Gallery by Wicked Goodies


Comments

Chocolate Cake Writing Tutorial — 41 Comments

  1. A great cheat for beginners: on a piece of paper, write out the full-size text. Flip it over and trace the backside so that the text is backwards. Trace the backwards side using a hot glue gun. When the glue has dried, you can press the design onto the frosted cake, making an imprint that you can trace.

    This works for text, coloring book designs, or anything else that you are nervous about getting right on the cake!

  2. Thank you for the tutorial in writing. It has taken me a long time to learn to write on cakes. I believe practice makes the difference.
    You seem to have a wide range of writing styles. Is there a book you would recommend to practice the different styles of penmanship?
    Example: Script vs. Wonk

    • Hello and yes, I agree. Practice helps tremendously. I have been interested in the art of handwriting since I was a little kid. At some point, I had calligraphy pens and spent a lot of time practicing that. I got this book when I first became a cake decorator: Speedball Textbook by Joanne Fink (fyi they may have a newer addition available now). It doesn’t show how to do any of the writing styles. It just shows pages and pages of handwriting ideas. Nowadays many of those ideas are more readily available on your home computer as “fonts”. Maybe there are better books out there on this topic but I wouldn’t know, as I found that one to be sufficient. I flip through it now and can see how much it influenced the direction that I took with chocolate cake writing.

      I never learned how to write cursive in school so I am not very good at it. I developed the wonky style out of a need to have an alternative. So if you’re already good at cursive, stick with that. Wonky style just happens to work well for people like me who are cursive-impaired.

  3. I melted the chocolate quickly in the microwave, and I’m going to be doing the egg decorating in a shopping centre so the fridge isn’t an option. They’ve still not set solid overnight:(. I’ll try today without the oil and see if that makes a difference…

    • If you can find a good quality white chocolate, you may be able to do it without needing any oil. Then I would suggest melting the chocolate like this: melt half of the chocolate very gently, remove from the heat, then add the other half of chocolate and stir periodically over the course of a few minutes until all the chocolate is melted. If you do that, it should set up harder for you than if you melt all the chocolate together at once.

  4. Help – I need to have this sorted by end of this month, aaagh!! I thought I had everything to a T – 100gs white chocolate, 1 tsp veg oil, perfect consistency, wrote beautifully on my chocolate Easter eggs…but it hasn’t dried. The writing is still gooey. I need to be able to package the eggs up after about 20 mins – what did i do wrong?
    Cheers. Linda

    • Did you put them in the fridge? That ought to make it set up fast. Also, depending on how to you melt your chocolate, you can end up with very different results. So if you melt your chocolate very gently, it will keep its temper better and that will make it set up stronger but if it’s exposed to a lot of heat, that will ruin the temper altogether and it will never fully set up right again. Just a tip.

  5. I’ quite new with these writing techniques,and you did a very good tutorial too, but I wanted to ask if I got it right, should we melt the chocolate in a bowl with simmering water then if melted add the veggie oil or pour everything in the bowl then melt it?

    • I would wait to add the oil until the chocolate is melted. For you need to see the consistency of the melted chocolate before you know how much oil you need to add. When using high quality dark chocolate, I find that I often don’t have to use oil at all.

  6. hello I need to do a cake with a paragraph on the vertical side of the cake… to look like a verse

    any suggestions of tricks please – contemporary cursive

    Cheers twisted.tastes

    • Vertical writing is the hardest kind of writing to do, but there are some tricks. First, it helps to work with a cake that’s covered in modeling chocolate or fondant, as those are easier surfaces to write on sideways than frosting or icing. It definitely helps to use a paper cone, which allows for more control of the wrist at that angle. For vertical writing, I use melted chocolate with a couple drops of water. The water seizes up the chocolate just enough to make it firm for sideways piping (so it doesn’t drip). It helps to press into the surface of the cake a little with the tip of the paper cone. You have to keep constant contact with the surface of the cake otherwise the chocolate can drip. I highly recommend decorating each tier separately before assembling the cakes if this is a stacked cake. Good luck!

  7. Writing on cakes is something that always makes me VERY nervous! Your tips are superb… i can’t wait to try them out on my next cake that needs a message :)

  8. Thanks for your help making a 30th birthday cake they want text I was panicking as my handwriting is terrible I am going to get practising and see how I go with your tips. I love your writing style and ideas. One question is can I write it and set the letters on parchment and move them over it does it not look as good that way?

    • Yes you can do that! It works great for things like monograms if you want to put them on the side of the cake but it’s also good if you want to make sure that you get it looking right before it goes on the cake. I suggest piping onto a piece of parchment paper that is taped to an inverted half sheet pan and using the fridge or freezer to get the pan and the letters cold enough to move. It helps to use a small offset spatula or pair of tweezers to move letters around back and forth. Be prepared for the chocolate to crack. I would suggest writing your phrase 2-3 times over so that you have extra letters in case some crack. You can still used cracked ones if the pieces are placed flush together on the cake. One more thing: you will get better results from using a good quality chocolate and melting it very gently so that it holds some of its temper.

  9. Love this tutorial. Your posts are always so detailed and such a great help! I would love to see another chocolate one with your over-the-top of the cake drip technique, it makes my mouth-water through my eyes!

  10. wow, cool, amazing, awesome! i like pineapples and pizza and gelato. Do you ms. wicked goodies? don’t say cooking! :)

  11. Hello, can I just trace the works I want on a parchment paper using choc. and when it becomes hard (maybe put them in fridge?) can I directly place them on the cake? – is it doable?

    Thanks for your tips!

    • Yes – that trick works great for adding monograms to wedding cakes and inscriptions to the sides of cakes. Letters like that are very prone to cracking though so I recommend piping 2 sets of the inscription so that backup is available. Also I would thin down the chocolate with melted cocoa butter instead of oil because the cocoa butter will help strengthen the chocolate (whereas oil will prevent it from fully setting up).

  12. thanks for the tutorial( i actually didn’t feel i needed it), but i now see what i’ve been doing wrong, it all makes a lot of sense now. thanks

  13. Thanks for sharing this. Never thought of using chocolate for writing but this looks way better than writing with frosting. I love your wonky style writing.

    • Thank you soooo much for the information and instructions on writing with chocolate ! It seems much simpler ( and I need all the help I can get as a cake-decorator-newbie ) They are all so beautiful !

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