How to marzipan your cake.....

Helpful advice for a neat & level cake.

How much marzipan ?

A guide for average depth cakes. Vary the amounts to suit your cake or taste.

6" cake



7" cake



8" cake



9" cake


1kg 250g

10" cake


1kg 500g

11" cake


1kg 750g

12" cake



Which size board ?

Use a board 2"-3" larger than your cake e.g. an 8" cake needs 10" or 11" board.

Apricot jam or Masking jelly ?

To stick the marzipan to the cake use apricot jam which has been sieved and boiled. The boiling makes sure no mould is present. As an alternative try some Imaginative Icing masking jelly. This does not need boiling, has a mild flavour and can be used straight from the container.



Do not worry if your cake is slightly domed, this is quite normal. However if it is very peaked, just trim off a small amount from the top.


Use about two thirds of the marzipan for the top of the cake. Knead until smooth on a clean, dry work surface dusted with icing sugar to prevent it from sticking.


Use your hands to shape the marzipan roughly into the shape of your cake. e.g. Round or Square. Roll out on icing sugar, slightly larger than the diameter of the cake and about a quarter of an inch thick. Make sure the marzipan is not sticking to the work surface .


Spread a thin layer of apricot jam or masking jelly on the top of the cake. Turn the cake upside down and place in the centre of the rolled out marzipan.


Push the marzipan into the gap between the marzipan and the cake. when the gap has been filled, use a sharp knife to trim off any excess level with the sides of the cake.


Spread a thin layer of apricot jam or masking jelly on the bottom of the cake, to fix it to the board. turn the cake the right way up and place in the middle of the cake board. You should now have a neat level cake top.


Remove any cake crumbs from the trimmings of marzipan before adding to the remaining marzipan. Also remove any cake crumbs from the work surface.


Measure all round the sides of the cake with a tape measure or a piece of string.


Kead the marzipan together & roll into a sausage shape. Roll out long enough to fit roud the cake, and just a little deeper than the depth of the cake. Trim one long side level. Dust with icing sugar & roll up like a bandage.


Spread a thin layer of apricot jam or masking jelly on the sides of the cake. With the trimmed edge touching the cake board carefully unroll against the sides of the cake. Trim the end to fit, and smooth off to make a neat join.


Trim off the rough top edge of the marzipan level with the top of the cake using a sharp knife. Give the top and sides a final smooth.


Leave the marzipanned cake, uncovered, to dry in a warm dry room. The kitchen is not a good place, due to moisture from cooking etc....if the only room available is the dining room it may be advisable to buy a cardboard cake box to help keep the dust off (or the family), but still let the moisture out.

Bought marzipan will need only 1 to 2 days to dry.

Home-made will need longer, up to one week, because of more moisture present due to raw eggs and oily nuts.

Good quality easy to use marzipan is available from Imaginative Icing in York or Scarborough.

Marzipan is now available via our Online here

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