How to Decorate Cupcakes – Easy Buttercream Swirls

by Zena-Marie on 18 April 2012

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Here is a quick, easy picture tutorial on how to decorate your cupcakes with cute buttercream swirls. It will make even the most basic of cupcakes look fabulous.

You will need:

Your butter cream of choice. You can add flavouring and colourings.

If you are adding colour you may want to consider using gel colours. These give a more vibrant colour than liquid food colourings that you get in supermarkets. You can find gel colouring at cake shops or they are available in our online shop.


You should only need about this much but play around with it until you feel comfortable.


Mix it all together.

Once you butter cream is prepared you will need:

A piping bag

A piping nozzle (I used a large star shaped nozzle)

A pair of scissors

And a large glass

Place the nozzle inside the piping bag and snip the end of the bag off.


Make sure the bag is cut far enough back that the end of the nozzle is clear of the piping bag.


Twist the end of the piping bag. This will prevent any of the buttercream coming out until you are ready.



Place the piping bag into the glass and fold the top of the bag over the edge of the glass.

Fill the piping bag with the buttercream you prepared earlier.

Using the glass will allow you to fill the piping bag without needing two pairs of hands.

I like to use an elastic band on the end of the bag just to make it easier. It stops all the buttercream coming out of the top of the bag.

You are now ready to start piping.


For this demonstration I am using cheap cupcakes I picked up at the supermarket. They came with little blobs of icing on top which I removed before starting to pipe the butter cream.


Starting at the outer edge gently squeeze the piping bag allowing the buttercream to gently fall onto the cupcake. Keep the nozzle raised slightly above the cake to prevent dragging the surface of the cake.


Keep going round keeping the tip of the nozzle raised slightly above the cake.


Make the circles smaller as you work your way into the centre of the cake.

Keep going until you get to the middle.

When you’re finished you should have something that looks like this.


You can further decorate your cupcake with sprinkles and a ribbon.

There you have fabulous boutique style cupcakes. For more cupcake decorating idea’s check out my pintrest board.


If you want to find out more simple, stylish idea’s to make your parties, crafts and interiors fabulous don’t forget to subscribe using the box at the top right of this page.

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