So, you’re looking to make your own black food coloring, huh? It’s the perfect solution when you’ve got cookies, cakes, or icing that need a little dark magic. And let’s face it; store-bought black food dye can be hard to find and kinda pricey. But guess what? Making it at home is super easy and affordable. All you need are three basic food colors you probably already have in your kitchen. Say goodbye to runny, grayish-black messes and hello to vibrant, jet-black food coloring that will make your treats stand out or, should I say black out!
Making black food coloring at home is easier than you think! All it takes is a few minutes, the perfect ratio of colors, and some store-bought liquid food dye. No need to hunt down black food dye in stores, especially when it’s not always available. You can create the perfect shade of midnight black with just a few drops of green, red, and blue food coloring. It’s a simple recipe that works great for frosting, cakes, cookies, and pretty much anything you want to give a dark and mysterious touch. Just follow the steps below, and you’ll have that pitch-black color ready in no time!
Why Learn How to Make Black Food Coloring?
- Save Time: No need to run around looking for black food dye at the store. Whip it up at home in minutes with the colors you already have.
- Cost-Effective: Making your own black food coloring is more affordable than buying it ready-made. A few drops of each color, and you’re good to go!
- Endless Creativity: Unlock unlimited possibilities for your baked goods and treats. Get creative and add that dark, mysterious touch to your creations.
- Perfect for Last-Minute Needs: Need black food coloring for a last-minute project? No worries, make it at home and save yourself the stress.
- Achieve a Deeper Black: Sometimes, store-bought black dye can turn out grayish. By making your own, you can get a richer, deeper black color.
- Great for Themed Parties: Hosting a spooky Halloween party or a chic black-and-white event? Make your own black food coloring for on-theme treats.
What Colors Do You Mix To Make Black?
To make black food coloring, you only need three ingredients green, red, and blue liquid or gel food coloring. This recipe uses Watkins natural liquid food coloring. You can get a box of four for around $7 on Amazon. You can use any brand of food coloring that you prefer. If you have some that you purchased from a local store, those will work too.
Can you use gel food coloring to make black?
Absolutely! You can use gel food coloring to make black.
To make black with gel food coloring, you’ll still be using the same basic color mixing principles. Typically, you’ll want to mix red, blue, and green gel colors. Because gel food coloring is more concentrated, you might need less of it to achieve a deep black color. Just be sure to add a little at a time, mixing thoroughly, until you get the shade you’re looking for.
You will need to make sure that the gels blend together completely to avoid patchy colorwork. Although, when you use gel food coloring, it usually requires less dye to achieve a deep black and therefore may save the taste of whatever you’re adding it to. You can get gel food dye pretty much anywhere; if you’re looking for a natural, chemical-free option, it is harder to find. Chefmaster offers natural, plant-based liquid-gel food coloring as an option.
I will add that, in general, liquid food dye are best for making pitch-black foods like fondant, gum paste, and buttercream frosting.
How to Make Black Food Coloring
Making black food coloring is really easy for the most part. In fact, it is the easiest of all food dyes to make, and there’s really no wrong way to do it. You don’t have to worry too much about adding too much of the wrong color. If you get in an extra drop of red, you haven’t ruined the whole batch. While Halloween may be the most popular time to dye food black, you may find that you need to create and over the hill cake or add outlines to your royal icing cookies, so it’s always a good idea to keep this recipe handy.
Ingredients You’ll Need to Make Black Food Coloring
- Blue Food Coloring: This is the primary base for our black food dye. It gives depth to the color and acts as the foundation for the darker shade we’re trying to achieve.
- Red Food Coloring: Red helps to balance out the blue and green, adding richness and depth to the color. Without red, the color might lean too much towards a dark green or navy.
- Green Food Coloring: Green is key for neutralizing the red and blue colors. It helps to darken the mix and bring it closer to a true black color.
Remember, creating the perfect black food coloring is all about balance. It’s important to mix these colors together in the right proportions to get the desired shade of black. And don’t forget; you can always adjust by adding a little more of one color or another if needed.
How to Mix black food coloring
Blue, Red & Green Ratios For Black:
- 3 parts blue food dye
- 2.5 parts red food dye
- 1 part green food dye
- Add blue, red, and green food dye to a small bowl and mix together to achieve desired black color. If one color is more prominent, balance it out with another color. For example, if there is too much green, add more red.
- Add the food dye to whatever food you want to color (ie, frosting, cakes, etc.). If it looks too grey, add more of the dye mixture until the desired color is achieved.
When to Use Black Food Coloring
Foods to Dye Black:
- Frosting: Perfect for making spooky Halloween cupcakes or edgy birthday cakes.
- Cookies: Black cookies can be used for space-themed parties or as part of a black-and-white dessert table.
- Cakes: Make a stunning black fondant-covered cake for a modern wedding or chic event.
- Macarons: Offer a unique treat by making black macarons for a sophisticated party or dessert buffet.
- Donuts: Create eye-catching black glazed donuts for a gothic-themed brunch or party.
- Pasta: Surprise your guests with homemade black pasta for a dramatic dinner presentation.
- Bread: Bake a loaf of black bread to accompany a Halloween dinner or themed event.
- Rice: Serve black rice for a striking contrast in sushi rolls or as a side dish.
- Ice Cream: Make black ice cream for a fun twist on a classic dessert during a summer get-together.
Special Occasions for Black Food Coloring:
- Halloween: From spooky cookies to creepy cakes, black food coloring is a must-have for your Halloween treats.
- Gothic Weddings: Create an elegant and dramatic dessert table with black frosted cakes and treats.
- Space-themed Parties: Serve galaxy-inspired desserts with deep black and sparkly elements.
- Film Noir Movie Nights: Set the mood with black-and-white snacks and desserts.
- Black Tie Events: Offer sophisticated black desserts to match the formal attire.
- Black and White Parties: Create a visually stunning dessert table with black and white treats.
- Pirate-themed Parties: Serve black treasure chest cakes and pirate-themed treats.
- Milestone Birthdays: Celebrate with a black cake for a modern and mature birthday party.
- New Year’s Eve: Create black desserts for a classy and glamorous end-of-year celebration.
Does black icing taste bad?
If you use too much food coloring, your frosting or food may end up with a bitter taste. This is because the liquid and gel dye can alter the flavor. The bitter taste is most evident with the liquid food coloring.
If you want to ensure that your icing or frosting tastes good, consider adding less than 1/8 teaspoon of black food color at a time until desired shade is achieved, then mix well before adding more food coloring.
To avoid an unpleasant aftertaste, mask sure you use only a small amount of black food coloring. To make your frosting an even darker shade of black without adding more dye, you can add cocoa powder to your frosting or icing for some extra flavor. You may also want to consider using natural food coloring.
Why does my black icing look purple?
Sometimes black icing will look purple rather than black. This is because the properties of food coloring change with temperature changes which can alter how dark or light the color becomes in your icing! To fix this, you’ll need to mix in more green liquid dye until it reaches a pitch-black darkness.
What is the Best Way to Color Black Icing?
The best way to color black icing is to use a food coloring that will produce a true black. There are three kinds of food coloring liquid, gel, and powder. Liquid food coloring can be used for frosting or other decorations on cakes in the kitchen. Gel is an option as well and is easily accessible. Powder food dye is not recommended as it is the most difficult to get an even color if you are not using a black powder.
Where can I buy black food coloring?
During specialty seasons, like Halloween, it is easy to find in the baking aisle of most large supermarkets or grocery stores.
If it’s “Off-season,” you may need to order it online at Amazon, Walmart, or other big-box retailers like Target if you don’t feel up to mixing it yourself.
What is the best store-bought black food coloring?
The best store-bought food coloring is Watkins. Watkins is a safe, chemical-free food coloring and can be found in many stores. You can see if you can get it locally here. Or you can get it off Amazon and if you’re a Prime member get it in two days. You can try the store brand if you’d like but keep in mind that not all food dyes are created equal.
Making and mixing black food coloring from food dye is easy.
Getting the taste right after is the hard part.
Making black food coloring is simple and easy. You can create your own from a package of red, green, and blue liquid food dye (or gel food dye). Just mix together the correct ratios to get that perfect shade of black! Just be careful not to overdo it or you will end up with inedible food, especially frosting. What are some recipes that call for black food coloring? Let us know and we may even share them!
How To Make Black Food Coloring
- 3 Drops Blue Food Coloring
- 2½ Drops Red Food Coloring
- 1 Drop Green Food Coloring
- Add blue, red, and green food dye to a small bowl and mix together to achieve desired black color.
- Add the food dye to whatever food you want to color (ie: frosting, cakes, etc).
Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.