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Hi Bold Bakers!
Knowing how to make powdered sugar is an absolute life-saver in the kitchen — in fact, I think this should be on every top 10 best baking hacks list on the internet! The trick to making powdered sugar lies in the question: what is powdered sugar? Powdered sugar is simply blended granulated white sugar. Yep, it’s true, and it’s just that easy.
You know those times when you want to make buttercream frosting, and halfway through, you realize you have no powdered sugar? Those days of worrying are gone! I’ll teach you the ins and outs and how easy powdered sugar is to make right here!
Is Confectioner’s Sugar The Same As Powdered Sugar?
Powdered sugar is a sweet thing that goes by many names, and yes, confectioners’ sugar is powdered sugar’s nickname. Powdered sugar is also called icing sugar or 10X sugar. Why does powdered sugar have “10X” on its label? That’s the number of times the granulated sugar has been processed.
How To Make Powdered Sugar:
To make powdered sugar, you will need a powerful blender, like a spice grinder, Nutri bullet, Vitamix, or food processor. Though, some of my helpful commenters have told me they’ve had success using their coffee grinder or a Magic Bullet by working in batches. The more you make this recipe for powdered sugar, the more you’ll get a feel for which appliance works best for you.
To make powdered sugar, you’ll blend granulated sugar and cornstarch (known as cornflour in some areas). If you do not have cornstarch, be sure to see my note below.
Blend the sugar and cornstarch until it becomes fine — this will take around 4 to 5 minutes. Stop blending, and then give it a stir with a spatula to make sure all of the granulated white sugar is getting blended.
To know if you’ve made powdered sugar, run your fingers through the powder. If it feels gritty, then keep blending.
Why Does Powdered Sugar Have Cornstarch?
Cornstarch helps keep your powdered sugar dry as you store it, which means it prevents the powdered sugar from clumping and caking. Most store-bought powdered sugars contain cornstarch as well because of its anti-caking properties!
Want to make powdered sugar but don’t have any cornstarch? No worries, as long as you are using your powdered sugar right away. Simply make this recipe without the cornstarch!
How Long Does Powdered Sugar Last?
Powdered sugar’s shelf life is indefinite as long as it is stored properly. (Again, if you make this powdered sugar without cornstarch, please use it immediately instead of storing it to avoid clumps and moisture.)
Can Powdered Sugar Go Bad?
If stored properly, powdered sugar can be used indefinitely. However, there are ways to tell if your confectioners’ sugar has gone bad. A clear sign is mold in your package or container. If you find mold, throw away the entire batch of sugar. Another red flag to toss the bag is if you notice any pantry pests in the sugar.
You should also pay attention to the clumps. Small clumps in powdered sugar are fine, and you can use a sifter to be rid of them, but if there are large, wet clumps, it is a sign your powdered sugar has not been stored properly.
How To Store Powdered Sugar
The best way to store homemade powdered sugar (or store-bought) is in an air-tight container at room temperature, away from moisture.
5 Ways To Use Powdered Sugar
- Best-Ever Buttercream Frosting to decorate cakes, cupcakes, and more
- Rolled Fondant to cover cakes or create amazing Homemade Sprinkles
- Snowball Cookies are perfect for the holidays or any time of year
- Royal Frosting for delicious and easy cookie decorating.
- Easy Homemade Beignets are perfected when dusted with homemade powdered sugar, and this recipe requires no frying.
Watch The Recipe Video!
How to Make Powdered Sugar
- 2 cups (16oz/450g) granulated white sugar
- 2 tablespoon cornflour (cornstarch)
- First, you need a small, powerful blender, like a spice grinder, Nutri bullet, Vitamix, or food processor. I had the best success in a blender. You might have to try a few different appliances to see what works best.
- Add in the sugar and cornflour/cornstarch. The cornflour is important as it keeps the sugar dry.
- Blend it all together until fine, around 4-5 minutes. Stop, and stir with a spatula to make sure it gets mixed all around so that it is all blended.
- After a few minutes, run it through your fingers; if it feels gritty, then keep blending. You might still feel a little texture at the end, but that’s ok. If you can’t seem to get it really fine, you might need to try a smaller, stronger blender.
- Store your Homemade Powdered sugar in an airtight container; it will keep indefinitely.