During the month of October, pink is everywhere. From jewelry to t-shirts to tattoos, there are endless ways for you to help raise Breast Cancer awareness. If you’re a baker, these homemade awareness ribbon sprinkles make it easy to use sweets to help bring awareness to this cause or another one close to your heart. I use mine during September to honor a special Ovarian Cancer survivor in my life.
How To Make Homemade Cancer Awareness Sprinkles
It all starts with a batch of royal icing. If you don’t have a recipe that you’re in love with yet, I highly recommend my favorite royal icing. What’s so great about it? Well, to start off, it’s yummy (priority #1!). And as a bonus, it doesn’t dry totally rock hard. The addition of a not-so-secret ingredient to the recipe, which I share with you in my step-by-step directions for making royal icing, allows the inside of the icing to remain somewhat soft while the outside dries hard. So, the icing is sturdy enough for detailed piping while providing a pleasant texture that you actually enjoy eating. I call that a win, win!
So, whip up a batch of royal icing or if you’re short on time, you can start with premade royal icing mix. It doesn’t get much easier than “Just add water.”
Add a small amount of gel food coloring to your royal icing and mix well to create the color of your ribbons. For Ovarian Cancer awareness ribbons, I added 1/4 teaspoon of Wilton Teal to 1 cup of icing. If you are making Breast Cancer awareness sprinkles, I suggest using Wilton Rose.
Helpful Hint: It’s important to make sure that royal icing never comes in contact with even a drop of oil. For this reason, I like to use separate spatulas and containers for my royal icing. To learn more about why royal icing and oil just don’t get along, see Lesson Learned: Keep Oil Out of Royal Icing.
Little by little, add water to your royal icing until you reach a 30-count consistency. To test your icing consistency, simply slice a butter knife through the surface. Start to count, “one-one thousand, two-one thousand…”, as the icing fills back in the sliced area. When you have a smooth icing surface again at “thirty-one thousand”, you’ve reached the right consistency.
If you would like to have a multi-colored shading effect in your ribbons, use a food safe paint brush and your gel food coloring to paint a few stripes of color on the inside of your piping bag. Then, simply take your royal icing and “fill ‘er up!”
Use a small decorating tip (I suggest PME #1.5 and PME #2) to pipe tiny ribbons onto squares of wax paper. As you fill up each piece of wax paper, set it aside on a cookie sheet to dry, preferably overnight.
Helpful Hint: Stray fuzzies and pet hair love to float around just looking for wet icing to land in. Don’t let them ruin your decorated works of art! Check out Lessons Learned: Cover Icing While It’s Drying for a simple and affordable way to keep these nuisances out of your icing while it dries.
Once your icing has completely dried, simply pop your cancer awareness ribbon sprinkles off of the wax paper. You can sprinkle them on cupcakes, cookies, cake pops, or any other sweet treat.
For larger cancer awareness ribbons, like the royal icing transfers that I used on Brownies for Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, trade your small decorating tip out for a large petal tip, such as Wilton #104.