How to Decorate Sides of Cake With Chocolate

Are you looking to elevate your cake decorating skills? In this article, we will explore the art of adorning the sides of a cake with chocolate. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced baker, learning how to decorate sides of a cake with chocolate can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your baked creations. From selecting the right tools and ingredients to troubleshooting common issues, we will guide you through the process step by step.

To start off, let’s delve into the essential tools and ingredients needed for chocolate cake decoration. We will also cover how to prepare the chocolate for decorating and provide tips for creating smooth and professional-looking designs. Additionally, we will discuss how to add extra decorative elements to the chocolate sides, as well as offer inspiration and ideas for unique chocolate side decorations.

With our comprehensive guide, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to master the art of decorating sides of cake with chocolate. So get ready to impress your friends and family with beautifully adorned cakes that not only taste delicious but also look stunning. Let’s dive in and explore the world of chocolate cake decoration.

Tools and Ingredients Needed for Chocolate Cake Decoration

Essential Tools for Chocolate Cake Decoration

To decorate the sides of a cake with chocolate, you will need a few essential tools. These include an offset spatula for spreading the chocolate, a bench scraper for smoothing and shaping the chocolate, and parchment paper or acetate sheets for creating clean lines and shapes.

Key Ingredients for Chocolate Cake Decoration

The key ingredient for decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate is, of course, chocolate itself. Use high-quality chocolate that melts smoothly and evenly. You can choose from dark, milk, or white chocolate depending on your flavor preferences. Additionally, you may want to have some additional ingredients on hand to add variety to your decorations, such as chopped nuts, sprinkles, or edible gold leaf.

Add-Ons and Extras

In addition to the essential tools and ingredients, consider having some extra supplies on hand to enhance your chocolate decorations. This may include food coloring to tint white chocolate different colors, piping bags and tips for more intricate designs, and edible markers for details or personalization. Get creative with your cake decoration by experimenting with different textures and flavors.

Preparing the Chocolate for Decorating

When it comes to decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate, one of the most crucial steps is preparing the chocolate for decoration. The right consistency and temperature of the chocolate can make all the difference in achieving a professional and polished look. Here are the key steps and tips for preparing the chocolate for decorating:

1. Choose the Right Chocolate: Select high-quality chocolate for your decoration, whether it’s dark, milk, or white chocolate. Using good quality chocolate will ensure a smooth finish and better taste.

2. Melting the Chocolate: Break the chocolate into small, even pieces and place them in a microwave-safe bowl or double boiler. Gently melt the chocolate, stirring regularly to avoid burning or overheating.

3. Tempering the Chocolate: Tempering is essential for achieving a glossy finish and stable texture. Once melted, take out one-third of the melted chocolate and set it aside. Stir the remaining two-thirds of chocolate until it reaches 88-90°F (31-32°C) for dark chocolate or 86-88°F (30-31°C) for milk or white chocolate.

4. Re-incorporating reserved Chocolate: Add back the reserved portion of unmelted chocolate to help bring down the temperature while stirring constantly until fully combined with no chunks remaining.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your melted chocolate is perfectly prepared for decorating, giving you a smooth and professional look on your cake’s sides.

Applying Chocolate to the Sides of the Cake

When it comes to decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate, there are several techniques and methods that can be used to achieve beautiful and professional-looking results. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to apply chocolate to the sides of a cake:

  1. Start with a chilled or frozen cake: Before you begin applying the chocolate, make sure that your cake has been properly chilled or even frozen. A cold cake will help the chocolate set quickly, making the decorating process much easier.
  2. Melt the chocolate: Use high-quality chocolate for best results. You can melt the chocolate using a double boiler or in the microwave, stirring frequently until smooth and fully melted.
  3. Apply a thin layer of chocolate: Once the chocolate is melted, pour a small amount onto the top of the cake. Use an offset spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the top and allow it to flow down the sides.

After applying a thin layer of chocolate, you can continue building up more layers for a thicker coating or create decorative patterns using different colored chocolates. By following these steps and tips, you can achieve a professional-looking finish on your cake that will impress your guests and elevate any special occasion.

Tips for Creating Smooth and Professional Looking Chocolate Decoration

Creating smooth and professional-looking chocolate decorations on the sides of a cake can take some practice, but with the right tips and techniques, you can achieve stunning results. Here are some helpful pointers for achieving a flawless finish on your chocolate cake decoration.

Use High-Quality Chocolate

The first step to creating smooth and professional-looking chocolate decorations is to use high-quality chocolate. Opt for couverture chocolate, which contains a higher percentage of cocoa butter, resulting in a smoother and more fluid texture when melted. Avoid using baking or compound chocolate, as they may contain additives that can affect the texture and appearance of the final decoration.

Proper Chocolate Tempering

Tempering the chocolate is crucial for achieving a glossy finish and ensuring that the decoration sets properly. Use a digital thermometer to ensure that the chocolate is tempered to the right temperature – around 88-90°F (31-32°C) for dark chocolate, 86-88°F (30-31°C) for milk chocolate, and 82-84°F (28-29°C) for white chocolate. Follow the tempering process carefully to avoid any streaks or dull spots on your chocolate decorations.

Techniques for Applying Chocolate

When applying the tempered chocolate to the sides of the cake, use an offset spatula or a bench scraper to create an even layer. Work quickly but carefully to spread the chocolate smoothly across the surface, rotating the cake as needed for uniform coverage.



If necessary, apply multiple thin coats of chocolate rather than one thick layer to prevent unevenness or dripping. Additionally, ensure that any excess drips are cleaned up promptly to maintain clean lines and edges on your cake decoration.

By following these tips and techniques, you can create professional-looking and smooth chocolate decorations on the sides of your cakes with ease. With practice and attention to detail, you’ll be able to achieve flawless results every time, elevating the overall presentation of your desserts.

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Adding Additional Decorative Elements to the Chocolate Sides

Once you have successfully applied chocolate to the sides of your cake, you can take your decoration to the next level by adding additional decorative elements. These can include but are not limited to:

  • Fresh fruit: Adding fresh fruit such as strawberries, raspberries, or blueberries can not only add a pop of color but also a refreshing taste that complements the richness of the chocolate.
  • Edible flowers: Delicate edible flowers like pansies or violets can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your chocolate cake. Just make sure they are safe for consumption and free from chemicals.
  • Nuts and seeds: Sprinkling chopped nuts or seeds like almonds, pistachios, or sesame seeds on the chocolate sides can provide a delightful crunch and extra flavor dimension.

It’s important to consider both the visual appeal and the flavor profile when choosing additional decorative elements for your chocolate sides. You want them to complement the chocolate without overpowering it, so a balance is key.

Lastly, don’t be afraid to get creative and experimental with your decorative elements. The beauty of decorating with chocolate is that it provides a versatile canvas for various decorations, allowing you to showcase your unique style and creativity.

Decorative ElementDescription
Fresh fruitProvides color and refreshing taste
Edible flowersAdds elegance and sophistication
Nuts and seedsOffers crunch and extra flavor dimension

Troubleshooting Common Issues With Chocolate Cake Decoration

When decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate, there are some common issues that may arise. One of the most frequent problems is the chocolate not adhering properly to the cake, resulting in a messy and uneven appearance. This can happen if the chocolate is too hot or too cold when applied to the cake. To troubleshoot this issue, it is important to make sure that the chocolate is at the right temperature before applying it to the cake.

Another common problem is air bubbles forming between the chocolate and the cake, causing an unsightly bumpy texture. To prevent this issue, it is essential to spread the chocolate evenly and smoothly along the sides of the cake. Using a offset spatula can help achieve a more uniform application and reduce the likelihood of air bubbles forming.

Additionally, some decorators may encounter challenges with the chocolate cracking or breaking once it has been applied to the cake. This can occur if the chocolate becomes too firm or brittle due to overcooling. To avoid this issue, it’s important to work quickly and efficiently when applying the chocolate to prevent it from setting too soon.

Common IssueTroubleshooting Tip
Chocolate not adhering properlyEnsure chocolate is at right temperature before applying
Air bubbles in chocolateSpread chocolate evenly with offset spatula to prevent air bubbles
Chocolate breaking or crackingWork quickly and efficiently when applying chocolate to prevent overcooling

Inspiration and Ideas for Unique Chocolate Side Decorations

One of the best things about decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate is the opportunity to get creative and unique. There are endless possibilities for using chocolate to add visual interest and elevate the overall look of your cake. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced baker, there are plenty of ideas and inspirations to consider when it comes to decorating with chocolate.

One popular idea for unique chocolate side decorations is creating a textured effect using different types of chocolate. For example, you can use a combination of milk, dark, and white chocolate to create a marbled effect on the sides of your cake. Or, you can incorporate other ingredients such as nuts, dried fruit, or edible flowers into the chocolate to create a visually appealing and delicious decoration.

Another trend in chocolate side decorations is using stencils or templates to create intricate designs on the sides of the cake. This allows for precise and detailed patterns that can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your dessert. You can find various stencil designs online or at baking supply stores, or even create your own custom designs for a truly personalized touch.

Finally, consider drawing inspiration from nature or seasonal themes when decorating the sides of your cake with chocolate. For example, you can create delicate chocolate leaves for an autumn-themed cake, or use edible gold or silver dust to add some holiday sparkle to your dessert. The key is to let your imagination run wild and have fun experimenting with different ideas until you find a unique chocolate side decoration that perfectly complements your cake.

Conclusion and Final Tips for Perfect Chocolate Cake Decoration

In conclusion, decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate can add an elegant and professional touch to any baked creation. With the right tools and ingredients, preparing the chocolate for decorating can be relatively simple and straightforward. By following the tips provided in this article, anyone can create smooth and professional-looking chocolate decorations that will impress any guest or customer.

One final tip for perfect chocolate cake decoration is to practice patience and precision. Taking your time to apply the chocolate to the sides of the cake and using the right techniques will ultimately result in a stunning finished product. Additionally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different decorative elements such as edible flowers, sprinkles, or colored chocolate drizzles to make your cake truly unique.

Overall, decorating the sides of a cake with chocolate is a skill that can be mastered with practice and attention to detail. Whether you are a professional baker or just enjoy making desserts at home, adding chocolate decoration to your cakes will take them to the next level. So go ahead and get creative with your chocolate cake decorations – the possibilities are endless.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Get Chocolate to Stick to the Side of a Cake?

One way to get chocolate to stick to the side of a cake is by using a technique called “chocolate ganache.” This involves heating cream and then pouring it over chopped chocolate, stirring until smooth. Once it has cooled slightly, you can pour it over the cake and use an offset spatula to spread it evenly around the sides.

How Do You Decorate the Sides of a Cake?

Decorating the sides of a cake can be done in various ways, such as using a piping bag to create designs with buttercream frosting or royal icing. Another option is using edible decorations like fondant or chocolate shavings pressed onto the sides of the cake.

How Do You Put Chocolate Sprinkles on the Side of a Cake?

Putting chocolate sprinkles on the side of a cake can be achieved by gently pressing them onto the sides of the cake after applying a thin layer of frosting or ganache. It’s important to work carefully and avoid pressing too hard so as not to smudge the frosting or ganache underneath.

A turntable can also be helpful for even application.



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