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Instagram and Pinterest are exploding with gorgeous cakes that look like modern works of art. But can mere mortals make these edible sculptures? It turns out there are myriad online cake decorating classes for all levels, from basic buttercream recipes to elaborate epic cake masterpieces (and everything in-between).
Learn how to decorate cakes for a fun hobby, a side hustle, or even to make it a new career for yourself with these best online cake decorating classes.
Best Online Cake Decorating Classes of 2021
- Best Overall: Cake Flix
- Best for Beginners: Sugar Geek Show
- Best Free Class: Cakes by Lynz
- Best for Advanced Decorating Techniques: Cakeheads
- Best for Piping Techniques: The Wilton School
- Best for Cupcakes: Lady Berry Cupcakes
- Best for Sculpted Cakes: Avalon Cakes School
- Best for Starting a Cake Decorating Business: Sugar Sugar Cake School
Why We Chose It: CakeFlix has over 1,300 cake decorating courses to fit every skill set, from basic to super advanced.
Extensive library of classes
Classes for all skill levels
Ability to buy individual classes
Great forum to ask questions
Course selection can be overwhelming
CakeFlix is our top pick because it has more than 1,300 tutorials (as of May 2021) that cover everything from standard layer cakes to advanced specialty cakes. Started in 2002 by Paul Bradford, a cake decorator who has made cakes for royalty and celebrities, this cake decorating business grew to seven different outlets and a staff of 35 until Bradford decided to focus on teaching this trade.
Since 2011, CakeFlix has added one tutorial every week and continues to add more on a weekly basis. The winner of multiple Cake Master awards, CakeFlix courses range from basics like simple cake recipes and making and using buttercream to intermediate skills like making a stacked wedding cake and advanced elaborate cakes that look like actual sculptures of pirates, goblins, and gravity-defying sea turtles. CakeFlix has over 200,000 members.
Membership is tiered with Standard, Premium, and Pro levels, but there’s a free seven-day trial membership. A standard membership is about $7 per month with limited access to certain courses. Premium and Pro memberships start at $14.95 and $29.95 per month, respectively, and give you access to all of the site's pre-recorded videos. You also get a discount if you pay for a yearly membership. Premium gives you access to special features like private Facebook groups and support every day of the year, while the pro level includes business classes so you can leverage your newfound skills into a viable career. All classes are recorded so you can watch them at your leisure, but every tier has regular live streaming shows as well.
Why We Chose It: Sugar Geek Show beginning tutorials not only cover the basics but also extensively address common troubleshooting issues, so you can start with a great foundation before you move to the more advanced stuff.
Specific tutorials and videos for common issues
Lots of free tutorials and blog posts
Seven-day trial membership
Only one instructor
Sugar Geek Show is the blog and online school of Liz Marek, a Cake Master-nominated website with over 200 cake-making and decorating tutorials. A former graphic designer, Marek accidentally started her cake career by making cakes for her friends and family, and through word of mouth, her efforts turned into a business. After writing a successful cake decorating book, she and her husband started up Sugar Geek Show and closed down their bakery to focus on teaching.
Sugar Geek Show has tons of free recipes for cakes on Marek's blog, as well as great tutorials on sculptural cakes in the paid section, but what makes it stand out even more are the troubleshooting and cake basics tutorials. Focusing on the fundamentals of cake making and decorating, Marek helps guide you through common issues that occur like creating airless space buttercream, leveling cakes, and how to stack cakes. There are even tutorials on how to box a cake and how to cut a cake (something that sounds easy until you’re faced with serving a three-tiered wedding cake).
Membership is tiered at $19.99 per month for a premium membership and $29.99 per month for the elite membership. Both memberships offer access to the recorded tutorials as well as access to members-only forums, but elite members get to keep new tutorials forever and have access to the special Facebook group. There's a discount if you pay for a year in advance. All membership tiers off a free seven-day trial period.
Why We Chose It: Cakes by Lynz is a YouTube channel with over 419,000 followers and over 100 videos that explain everything from basic cake and frosting recipes to more advanced decorating techniques and projects.
All videos are free to watch
Lots of basic and advanced tutorials
Easy to find videos by category
Videos have ads
Only one instructor
Though there are loads of YouTube videos on cake decorating, Cakes by Lynz is one of the most comprehensive dedicated cake decorating channels with over 100 videos broken down into categories like gumpaste flower tutorials, cupcake piping techniques, and cake decorating for beginners. A self-taught baker, Lynsey Jackson explains basic techniques as well as more advanced cake projects from her home in Kent, England.
Jackson's video tutorials help you do simple things to improve your cake decorating skills, such as how to make truly white American buttercream, how to cover a cake in smooth buttercream, and how to dowel and stack a tiered cake. More advanced cake projects include a gravity-defying hand mixer cake, a birthday bear cake, and a moon landing space rocket cake. Jackson does break down each step on how to make the cakes, with clear instructions as well as a list of tools you need (and links to buy those tools if you don’t have them).
All videos and tutorials are free, though like many YouTube videos, there are ads at the beginning and middle of each one.
Why We Chose It: Shawna McGreevy was picked by Cake Masters as one of the top 10 cake artists in the United States, and she explains all her tips and tricks down to the tiny details on her elaborate cakes.
Good mix of free and paid tutorials
Facebook group with over 1.3 million members
Tutorials explore different techniques
Some might not like the videos' casual approach
Cakeheads is the website by Shawna McGreevy, a self-proclaimed cake-making addict. Her enthusiasm shows with her stunning cakes and tutorials on her site. Expect a more casual approach to her videos, but the knowledge she imparts is 100 percent professional, with tips and instructions on how to make everything down to the small details.
With more than 1.3 million members in her Facebook group, there’s also a robust community of cake decorators who love to share their work and knowledge. In fact, some of the tutorials on her site are made by her members, including how to make edible lace, how to make sugar poppies and vines, and how to model and make Frankenstein’s face. All these different perspectives mean Cakeheads is a great resource for learning advanced and different decorating techniques and tips on achieving stunning and showstopping cakes.
There are plenty of free tutorials on the website but most of them focus on details of the cake (like the topper decoration). If you want to learn how to make the entire cake and have access to the aforementioned Facebook group, it’s $20 per month or $180 per year.
Why We Chose It: Live virtual classes for individuals and groups means you get real-time instruction to solidify your skills in piping frosting methods.
Live online classes with trained instructors
Option for individual classes
No on-demand option
Wilton is one of the leading companies for bakeware and baking tools, so it makes sense that it would be an excellent source of knowledge for learning how to use that equipment. Though it offers an in-person school, Wilton also hosts a series of live online classes.
Classes are 30, 60, and 90 minutes and vary from decorating basics, painting with buttercream, and piping cake borders to making buttercream flowers and preparing cupcakes for cats and dogs. Each hands-on class is taught by Wilton-trained instructors in real-time, giving you instant feedback and tips on your technique.
Prices start at $20 for a 30-minute, one-on-one class and $10 for a group class of the same length (classes max out at four people). You can invite friends to be part of that group class, or you can just let other folks sign up. Classes are offered in both English and Spanish, with the language clearly indicated in the class title.
Why We Chose It: Lady Berry Cupcakes focuses specifically on decorating cupcakes, with each tutorial purchased individually as well as an option for a virtual live workshop or private class.
Specializes in only cupcake decorating
Wid range of cupcake-focused designs
Live and on-demand videos
No subscription option
Lady Berry Cupcakes is one of the only online cupcake decorating-focused educational services out there. Based in London, the school offers in-person classes but with over 130 video tutorials that you can purchase, you are bound to find a cupcake video tutorial that suits your needs without flying across the Atlantic.
Tutorials include a basic beginner's cupcake decorating online tutorial and one on making roses for cupcakes to videos on Peppa Pig cupcakes, Star Wars cupcakes, and 3D Jungle animal modeling videos. Each video must be purchased individually and there's no option to subscribe. But once you’ve purchased the video, you have lifetime access to it.
Video prices start around $8 for the more basic design tutorials and go up to $56 for some of the specialty tutorials.
Why We Chose It: Avalon Cakes School has tutorials for show-stopping, realistic-looking sculptures and whimsical creations that make cakes look like works of art.
Incredibly creative tutorials
Tutorials are easy to browse
Monthly livestreaming sessions
Many videos seem geared toward experienced bakers
Avalon Cakes School was started by Avalon Yarnes, who started baking at age 15. She’s been featured on TV and in books and magazines, and earned the Best Novelty Cake Artist award from Cake Masters Magazine in 2014. The outlet also named her one of the top 10 cake artists in North America in 2017. Yarnes, along with a number of other talented instructors, have tutorials on how to make gorgeous sculptural cakes, ranging from hyper-realistic to whimsically cartoonish.
You can browse the cake tutorials by categories like 3D Cakes, airbrushing, gravity-defying, sculpted cakes, special effects, and more. It’s the sculpted cakes, however, that are true works of art. Sample tutorials include how to make a super realistic-looking lobster, a ganache-only carved pumpkin cake, and a Frankenstein head. The detail and coloring of each cake truly make these edible works of art.
Membership is a reasonable $14.99 per month for the classic membership and $24.99 per month for the premium membership, which gives you more tutorials. Both options include access to the private Facebook group, live training videos, exclusive cake calculators, as well as the option to download tutorials. You can also sign up for an annual membership at a deeper discount.
Why We Chose It: Sugar Sugar Cake School focuses on modern cake designs but has courses on how to turn your cake decorating passion into a business.
Business courses on starting a cake company
Free guides on running a cake business
Mentorship program and private consulting
Confusing pricing structure
Sugar Sugar Cake School is an Australian company that focuses on contemporary cake design with a lot of elegant abstract decoration tutorials. Courses include ombre and cake texture tutorials, a realistic floral painting course, and watercolor cake tutorials. What sets this school apart from others are the business courses that help you turn your passion for cake decorating into a viable business.
There are plenty of free guides and blog posts for cake businesses, including Instagram tools, the keys to building a successful cake business, and tips on how to avoid baker burnout. Paid courses include nuts and bolts tutorials on cake pricing fundamentals, cake business contracts and form templates, and a cake business startup guide. There is even an option to join a mentorship program or have a one-off private consultation with an expert.
There are plenty of free courses on the site, but premium tutorials and classes can be purchased either individually starting at $8.95 or by topic courses starting at $49 for select courses. Additionally, you can join the Cake Insider Academy, which gives you access to all the courses as well as specific business courses that you can’t access or purchase otherwise. This all-access membership is $234 per year and includes a members-only support group as well as live training on social media organic growth, and more.
Cake decorating can be a fun, casual hobby, a lifelong passion, or a professional career path. Regardless of how you approach it, there are online cake decorating classes to fit your needs. We recommend starting your search with Cake Flix because of the professional quality of its videos, its extensive library of tutorials, the number of experienced instructors providing different viewpoints, and the community of cake decorators who have joined the site and continue to encourage each other.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Do Online Cake Decorating Classes Cost?
Online cake decorating classes range in prices. Some courses, like Cakes by Lynz, are available for free on YouTube. Most, however, charge a fee depending on the site and the way the courses are offered. Live, hands-on classes at Wilton start at $10 for a 30-minute group class. Monthly membership can start as low as $14.95 per month for access to Cake Flix. Other sites like Lady Berry Cupcakes only allow users to purchase tutorials individually, starting at $8.
Is It Worth Paying for an Online Cake Decorating Class?
If you are enthusiastic about cake decorating, it can totally be worth it. You can get access to award-winning instructors who give you step-by-step instructions on how to make beautiful cakes. Some memberships also provide access to private Facebook groups and community sections where you can get personalized help and troubleshooting. However, if you are just a casual hobby cake decorator, free courses like Cakes by Lynz or the individual free tutorials on most of the sites might be enough.
What Do You Learn in an Online Cake Decorating Class?
Online cake decorating classes teach a wide range of skills, from basic recipes for making cakes and buttercream frostings from scratch to how to assemble and decorate a standard cake. You can also learn more advanced skills like working with fondant and gum paste, painting and sculpting 3D cakes, and how to create details work like edible lace. Some courses even have business-orientated classes on how to turn your cake decorating passion into a career.
We researched numerous articles, reviews, and select companies across the internet to find the best online cake decorating classes. A number of criteria came into play, including the depth of knowledge of the instructors, awards they've won, the comments and community support around the program, and the ease of using the online classes. The classes that made our final list stood out due to video quality, breadth of knowledge, variety of tutorials, and approachability.