Chat icon



Fondant holds a special place as the versatile base material for a multitude of sweet creations. Technically, it is a mix of tiny little sugar crystals (45-60%) into a saturated sugar solution. Its smooth, pliable texture forms the canvas for crafting cream candies, chocolate-coated treats, frostings, icings and more. Beyond its standalone allure, fondant plays a pivotal role in guiding crystallization (as a sugar crystals seed) in other confections like fudge and chewy candies, ensuring their desired sugar crystal size and dispersion for optimal quality. Therefore, controlling the particle size and water content (10-15%) is very important during its production.

As it is used in different confectionery products, fondant can be found in wide range of consistencies, going from a rolling fondant (such as cake decorating fondant) to fluid fondant that can be pumped into continuous processes. The use of crystallization modifiers and humectants are used to achieve softer textures.

Main Ingredients

The key ingredients in a fondant are very simple:

  • Crystalline Sweetener: Sucrose is the most used. Polyols such as maltitol or isomalt are used in sugar-free confections. These provide bulk and crystals that will form the body of the fondant. 
  • Texture modifiers (softens): Corn syrup. Will reduce crystallization, provide water and act as humectants.
  • Humectants: Sometimes added to modify texture, reduce viscosity and prolong shelf life. Invert sugar, glycerol or sorbitol.
  • Invertase: Used to soften fondant during storage. It might be useful to have a more viscous product during production (for enrobing or panning) and then a softer product when going to consumer.
  • Stabilization agents: Sometimes gelatin, agar, or other stabilizers could be added to give elasticity or modify texture.
  • Flavors and colors

Industrial Production

The industrial production of:

Mixing and sugars dissolution: Granulated sugar is mixed with water and heated to create a sugar syrup. It’s very important to assure all large crystals are completely dissolved to form smaller crystals afterwards, achieving a smoother texture. Corn syrup or glucose helps control crystallization, preventing large sugar crystals from forming and resulting in a smoother fondant.

Cooking: Either continuous or batch process can be used, cooking to the right temperature to assure crystals are dissolved is crucial. 

Cooling: Should be done statically. For example, in a cooling wheel all the way to the beating temperature. This controls the nucleation and, therefore, the final crystallization rate and size.

Beating: Intense agitation is applied to generate massive nucleation of sugar crystals. 

Stabilizer incorporation (optional): If used, stabilizer is added to the syrup mixture, imparting structure and pliability to the fondant.

Colors and flavors incorporation (optional): Flavorings and colorants are added at this stage to achieve the desired taste and appearance.


The right formula will depend on the final use for the fondant, whether it needs to be hard, fluid or soften over time.

A general formula is shown below. For a softer texture, increase the amount of corn syrup or add humectant agents. For increased elasticity or texture modifications, use stabilizers. Water added with stabilizers needs to be accounted into the final solids calculation.

Ultimately, creating a fondant will depend mostly in the control of crystallization during the cooking and beating steps.

Packaging Barrier Properties

Shelf Life

Most common shelf-life issues in fondant are 

  • Moisture content: High moisture content can lead to microbial growth and reduce shelf life. Proper drying and storage are essential.
  • Hardening: Due to loss of moisture or over-crystallization. This can be improved by proper packaging or addition of humectants or doctoring agents.
  • Temperature and humidity: Exposure to high temperatures and humidity can cause fondant to become sticky or lose its shape. Airtight packaging is crucial to prevent fondant from drying out or absorbing moisture from the environment.

Back to Top   ▲