How to Airbrush a Cake

Learn how to airbrush a cake like a pro from pastry chef Amanda Oakleaf in this cake decorating video from Howcast.

Hi, my name is Amanda Oakleaf. I am owner, head baker, decorator of Amanda Oakleaf Cakes in Winthrop, Massachusetts where we do custom cakes of all kinds — wedding cakes, birthday cakes, sculpted cakes. Anything you can think of we can make it into a cake. And today I will be talking to you about cake decorating. Next we’re going to airbrush the cake. We have a fondanted cake that’s white, we’re going to make a light teal color. So, we have our three airbrush colors, a little bit of white ‘cos we don’t want it to be too dark, yellow and a light blue. And this is our airbrush gun, it’s hooked up to a compressor, which we just have sitting on the floor, and this is going to spray the color onto our cake. Airbrush color mixes like watercolor if you’ve ever painted with watercolors. The colors look very dark until you spray them out onto a white surface. So, you can kind of play around with how much you want, I would start lighter than you think, because it’s easier to go darker and add more color than to take away color. So just a couple of drops of the blue, a drop of the yellow, mix it up, and I want to test it on paper to make sure I have the color that I want. And then on the airbrush gun, some of them are built differently, on ours this is the chamber where you hold the ink, the sprayer is on the end and then this is our trigger. When you press down, that’s when it starts to flow, when you pull it backwards, that’s when it starts to spray at a wider angle; so it’s a combination of pressing down and pulling back to control your spray. If you have it up front you can draw lines, if you have it spread out all the way to the back at a wide angle you can airbrush the whole cake, which is what we’re going to do. So you want to keep it at the same distance all the way around, you don’t want to get too close or too far away, otherwise your cake will be splotchy. So we’re going to start on the top, and you want to keep the cake moving so you don’t get too much color in one spot. So once you have the top covered very evenly, go ahead and switch to the side, you can start with the corner, and then move to the side. And just keep the same distance away from the cake the whole time, and keep the cake moving and spinning while you spray. Once you get around you can go ahead and touch up any spots that you feel are too light, and then I’m just going to do the base a little, OK. Then we have a darker ring here in the corner where a lot of the color settles, but we’ll go ahead at the very end and pipe on a trim, and that is how you airbrush a cake.