Colored Drips Recipe (White Chocolate Ganache)

Colored drips to a cake is the perfect way to take your cake decorating skills to the next level! Itโ€™s such a elegant, yet playful cake design. If you’ve never made a drip cake before, fear not! I’m going to share everything you need to know to make a colorful drip cake, and more.

Rainbow Colored Drips, ready to be added to a cake

The Secret To My Colorful Drip Recipe: 2 Ingredients

Just because colorful drip cakes are beautiful, doesn’t mean they need to be complicated. We’ll start by discussing the most basic part of a colorful drip, the ingredients it’s made with! The beauty of my recipe is that it’s made with only two ingredients.

All you is a cup of white chocolate chips, and some heavy cream. You simply heat up the cream, and pour in the white chocolate chips. Let them melt, give them a quick stir, and you have silky smooth ganache.

The ratio of white chocolate to heavy cream is super important in this recipe.  By using so much white chocolate, the mixture will thicken as it cools. This allows you to create those beautiful, perfect drips! Since this recipe uses white chocolate and cream, it is technically a white chocolate ganache.

How To Color White Chocolate Ganache

This white chocolate ganache base can be colored any shade, using food coloring. A lot of people worry that adding food coloring will cause the ganache to seize up.

While adding food coloring would cause melted white chocolate to seize (and create the chunkiest mess!!), it won’t cause this white chocolate ganache to seize. Why, you ask?? It all comes down to the heavy cream that is incorporated into the mixture.

Heavy cream does have a ton of fat in it, but it also has water in it! By melting the chocolate into the heavy cream, you prevent any seizing from the moisture in the food coloring. The cream will keep the mixture nice and smooth, even with the addition of food coloring.

If you want your colorful drips to be a super vibrant color, I highly recommend using gel food coloring. A small amount of liquid food coloring can work too, but you won’t be able to get as strong of a color. You also can throw off the consistency of the mixture if you add too much liquid food coloring.

Gel food coloring is incredibly concentrated, so it allows you to use less. A tiny drop will create beautiful, bright colors like the ones in my Peeps cake below! It also is thicker, and will not change the consistency of the white chocolate ganache. My favorite brand of gel food coloring is Americolor, but any brand will work.

How To Make The Perfect Colored Drip Cake

Drip cakes don’t have to be scary, but there are a few things to keep in mind to make sure you get that perfect drip look! The most common issues people run into when making drip cakes include:

  • Runaway drips – drips that run all the way down the cake and right off the cake board
  • Watery, thin drips, that looks more like colorful streaks than drips
  • Ganache that seems to melt the buttercream
  • Short, stubby drips that resemble candle wax

Most of these problems are caused my adding the ganache to a cake when it isn’t right temperature.  You can also have issues if the cake hasn’t been properly chilled. If you follow my tips below, I promise you can avoid all of these issues!!

Step #1 : Chill Your Cake

My first tip is to make sure your cake is properly chilled. Once frosted, you should allow it sit it your fridge for at least 20 minutes, or in your freezer for 10 minutes. This makes sure the frosting is cold and firm to the touch.

Chilling the cake helps the buttercream keep it’s shape, and stand up to the slightly warmed ganache. It will also help slow down the speed at which the drips run down the cake, which will help them from running all the way down the cake.

Step #2 : Temperature Of Your Ganache

The second tip is to make sure your ganache is the right temperature!! It should be just slightly warmer than room temperature. When I say that, I mean it should be barely warm to the touch.

If your ganache is too warm, it will be thinner than you want, and will run straight down the cake and pool at the bottom of your cake board. On the other hand, if it’s not warm enough, you will end up with short, stubby little drips. Neither of these will create those beautiful, long drips.

The best way to ensure your ganache is the right temperature is do a test drip. THIS IS SUCH A CRUCIAL STEP!!! Make one drip on the side of your cake, and let it flow. Allow it to slowly run down the side of the cake for a couple minutes.

If it’s the length and look you’re after, then go ahead and add drips to the rest of the cake. If not, adjust as needed. Either pop the ganache into the fridge for a couple minutes to allow it to cool off a bit more, or pop the bottle (or bowl) in the microwave and heat for 5-10 seconds.

Then test out one more drip, just to be safe! While these extra steps may lengthen the process, it’s worth it to make sure your drips are perfect.

April Showers Blue Drip Cake

When you spend hours making a cake from scratch, it’s worth taking the extra 10 minutes to ensure your ganache drips will turn out beautifully ๐Ÿ™‚

If you’re more of a visual learner, here is a video tutorial showing exactly how I add drips to my cakes.

Techniques For Adding Drips To The Cake

There are two ways to easily add colored drips to a cake. One way is to  use plastic bottles. I prefer this method, since it makes the process so much easier. The ganache is contained in your hand, and can also easily be heated or chilled.

Easy drip method - Adding ganache drips onto a cake using a plastic squirt bottle

If you donโ€™t have any plastic bottles on hand, you can also use a spoon or an offset spatula to carefully push the ganache over the edge of your cakes, creating each drip. I used this method to make the pink drips on my circus animal cake.

Whenever I use a spoon, I feel like I’m going to dribble ganache all over my counter, or on the cake where I don’t want it. I actually prefer the way drips look when they’re added to a cake using the spoon method, but I rarely  do it because it’s harder to film!

Additional Tips

  • This drip recipe can be used on any type of buttercream cake, as long as it’s chilled
  • I don’t recommend adding a colored drip to a fondant cake – it can do weird things to the fondant, and create a goopy mess
  • For the white chocolate, I love using the whole foods mini white chocolate chips, because they melt so easily!
  • You can also use normal white chocolate chips, white chocolate wafers, or even a chopped up white chocolate bar!
  • The ratio of heavy cream is different if you white candy melts, and they cannot be swapped for the white chocolate in this recipe! They are not interchangeable
  • Be sure you use heavy cream or heavy whipping cream! You need the high fat content to create the right consistency in this recipe. Milk cannot be used in place of the cream.

If you try my colorful drip recipe, please tag me @chelsweets, and use the hashtag #chelsweets, so I can see your beautiful creations!!

Yield: 1 cup

Colored Drip Recipe

Colored Drip Recipe
This colorful drip recipe is perfect for any drip cake! It's made using only two ingredients, and comes together in less than five minutes! It can be made in any color, using gel food coloring.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 minute
Total Time 6 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup heavy cream (77 grams)
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips (175 grams)
  • gel food coloring (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat heavy cream in a heat-proof bowl in the microwave for 45 seconds, until it's just beginning to bubble. Gently pour white chocolate chips into the heavy cream, making sure they are fully covered with cream. Allow mixture to sit for 1 minute.
  2. Stir slowly until the cream and white chocolate are combined. Some bits of chocolate may not be fully melted yet. Heat the mixture again for 20 seconds, and stir. Repeat as necessary until all the chocolate bits are fully melted and incorporated.
  3. Add in gel food coloring, if desired. Allow to cool until desired viscosity is reached (barely warm to the touch).
  4. If it seems too thin or thick, you can add a touch more chocolate chips or heavy cream! The type of cream and white chocolate that you use can affect the consistency, so feel free to adjust as needed.

Notes

if you canโ€™t find heavy cream at your grocery store, heavy whipping cream will work too!

Extra ganache can covered with plastic wrap, or kept in an airtight container for up to a month in the fridge!

Nutrition Information

Yield

12 cake slices

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 109 Total Fat 7g Saturated Fat 4g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 2g Cholesterol 10mg Sodium 19mg Carbohydrates 12g Fiber 0g Sugar 12g Protein 1g

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105 thoughts on “Colored Drips Recipe (White Chocolate Ganache)

  1. What type of gel coloring can I use? I’ve heard only an oil based otherwise the chocolate will seize. Is this true for drip cakes s well?

    1. I use americolor gel food coloring. You are correct! If you are adding gel food coloring into just melted chocolate, you would need to use flo-coat to make sure it doesn’t seize up! However, if you add it to this ganache recipe, it will not seize up because of the heavy cream! So you don’t have to worry about that with this recipe ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Here in a Australia, our white chocolate melts with a slightly yellow tinge. Should I add white colouring first to get a white base before adding other colours? Otherwise my “blue” always turns out a green kind of colour. Or do the Americolours over-ride this problem?

    1. Our white chocolate is actually off white too! I usually can get the color I’m after with Americolor gel food coloring though! But maybe your white chocolate is even more intensely yellow? I never add white base, but it is probably a good idea if it helps you get the color you’re after ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Thanks so much! I will either make different stuff for bark or just do with lollipops! Easier that way! Love all your cakes!

      2. Hey Chelsea! Will it harden enough to paint over with gold lustre dust mixed with alcohol or do you recommend using royal icing if I need to paint. I’ve been having problems getting my chocolate Genache to get hard enough to paint over. I hope this makes sense?

  3. Hi Chelsey!! I loooove your cakes and love to watch your videos… I am learning so much! Thank you! I was going to make a vanilla cake with strawberry filling, I was wondering if I could use a strawberry glaze to make drips like you do? Or do you think it would be better to just color the white chocolate ganache red? I’m not sure if the glaze will harden enough to hold the drips..

    1. So happy to hear that! Yah, I’m not sure of the consistency of your glaze, but I would be concerned about that too! Sometimes red white chocolate ganache can look a bit gory!! I added some to a game of thrones cake, and it looks a lot like blood. So keep that in mind when considering the shade of your drips!! Hope that helps!

  4. Thank you for this recipe! I’m doing a watercolor cake this weekend. Will this “harden” enough for me to paint silver with color dust? If not, what do you think I should use?

    1. It might be because you added it when it was a bit too warm, or because it’s not thick enough! You can try adding a bit more white chocolate next time, or adding it when it’s slightly cooler.

  5. Does this recipe make a sufficient amount to do a drip on a 11″ cake or would you recommend I double it? Thanks so much!

    1. depends on it you plan on covering the entire top of the cake, or just lining the perimeter with drips! I’d say double it to be safe, but you’ll def have some leftovers!

  6. Having real trouble with my vanilla sponge seems to be getting very dark/ burnt bottom and sides! I use a light coloured tin and have the over fairly low.. any idea how i can stop this? Looks like you trim round the edges?

  7. Hi Chelsea your cakes are so beautiful. I just have a question please.Can I use this white chocolate ganache to frost a cake? If I can, can I put it in the fridge?For how many days I can put it? Thank you

  8. Hi. Every time I try to make this the colour goes funny. Iโ€™ve tried different ways, melting chocolate and adding gel colour before cream, microwaving the choc and cream together and then adding the gel colour, adding to the cream and then to the chocolate…… each time itโ€™s fine until the chocolate and cream are combined. Please help. Iโ€™ve even tried using coloured candy melts with white choc chips and the same thing happens to that, once I combine with cream the colour completely changes and is unusable. ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ

    1. it might be the white chocolate you’re using! I’d recommend trying a different brand, I use mini white chocolate chips from whole foods! What brand of gel food coloring are you using? I use americolor and it works great!

  9. hello
    I’m having the same issue as Anna. I am making a gold drip cake for the first time and in researching I have found some using royal icing and others white ganache painted with gold luster and alcohol. The ratio of chocolate is also different. You are 3 to 1 and another was equal parts. please help

  10. Hi i dont know if you will get this in time but i will be attempting to make a color drip cake for my nieceโ€™s art themed birthday party. The party will be saturday(2/17) but I wanted to get a head start so i was going to make the cake tonight and wanted to know would it be best if put the ganache on tonight and refrigerate or wait until the day of the party to add the ganache.

    1. you can do either! The drips will stay in place if the cake is kept in the fridge, so whatever is easiest! I usually make mine a day in advance, to make life easier!

  11. Hi, im looking at making a drip ICE CREAM cake. Would this Ganache work on an ice cream cake and be ok until served? Thanks!!

    1. it should, but it might not drip quite as much as on a regular buttercream cake, since the ice cream with be fully frozen! I’ve never tried it before, and my main concern is that it won’t spread out or drip as well!

  12. Hey chels would you recommend if i just use white chocolate without the heavy cream if i want the chocolate to harden on the cake?

  13. First off thank you! I read through all questions and answers and learned so much. I still have one more question. Iโ€™m making a volcano cake and freezing it, as itโ€™s easier to travel with (driving 900 miles). Can I freeze the ganache, or should I wait until I arrive to complete it? Thank you.

    1. first of all, thank you for reading my previous relies!! And second, wowza!! 900 miles is so far! you could make it in advance if you think your car is going to be cool for the entire trip! But to be safe, I’d recommend adding it once you get there! If sun shines into your car and it gets warm, it might cause the ganache to continue to “flow.” Probably best to decorate once you get there!

  14. Hi! I read all the previous answers and -correct me if i’m wrong- should pour the ganache while it is hot unto a cold cake? Also just a quick question what is your opinion if I dyed the ganache purple and poured it on an ombre kinda gradient cake ( dark purple starting from the bottom until it hits white at top ) would this look alright? How about if I add strawberries on top. Because it’s a chocolate cake, but i’m kinda going for half choc. half strawberries and cream ( The frosting is cream cheese ). Anyway thank you so much for this recipe and please say any Thought, comments, or concerns.

    1. yes! The ganache shouldn’t be hot, but it should be warm! I think that color combo would look great, but I think i would skip the strawberries, unless someone specially asked for them. Hope that helps, happy baking!!

  15. Hi there! Love your skills. I’ve been trying to find a food gel color that would give me a super vibrant deep pink color. Is there a specific brand that you use to get those awesome deep pinks and purple colors?

    1. You can def use a pot, but I really don’t recommend liquid food coloring, it can throw off the consistency if you add a lot, and won’t give you as vibrant of a color!

      1. Thanks. I used a 1/2 ratio and heated on the stove. I did use liquid food color and it turned out ok. Maybe next time i will try a 1/3 cream to chocolate as the drip did run more than i had hoped…

      2. you can add more chocolate, or let it cool more before you add it to the cake! the ratio my recipe recommends 1/3 ratio, so i’d def say try that next time!

  16. Hi there your rainbow drip lollipop cake is amazing. If I make the cake and ice it with buttercream and after refrigerating do the rainbow drips can I refrigerate overnight and add lollipops just before serving, or a couple hours before as I think they’ll go sticky in the fridge. Also, for the kinda ombre blended colors on the cake do you do a white buttercream base then pipe messy lines of color around the cake and then use your smoothing thing to smooth and blend the colors? Thanks so much

    1. Yes, i’d say add the lollipops right before serving, otherwise they can get goopy from condensation! and yes, that is exactly what I do! I pipe bits of colored frosting on top of white buttercream, then smooth them together ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Hi I want to make your rainbow drip cake for my daughters birthday next weekend. If I make one lot of the white chocolate ganache will that be enough to separate into the 6 different colours to drip around the cake in rainbow sections or do I need to make up 6 different lots of ganache to do the whole cake?

    1. I just made one batch and separated into the different colors… had plenty to cover a 6 layered cake with lots left over…

      1. Awesome thanks so much! It’s a busy week so I don’t want to give myself extra work!

      2. No prob… I did my recipe 2:1 chocalte to cream and it was still very liquid and ran down the whole side of the cake. If you are covering the too of the cake i recommend doing that first and then letting it drip down the sides . I did my drip and then decided to do the top. Cake still came out good though

      3. Ok so I will make the cakes, trim then chill and stack with buttercream between layers. Crumb coat and chill then coat with buttercream and refrigerate before putting on he ganache but after the ganache is on does it need to be stored in the fridge or at room temperature overnight (will be icing the cake the day before the party). I won’t add the lollipops until the cake is out at the venue and ready to be displayed so they won’t go all gooey but it’s the overnight storage I’m concerned about as I don’t want the icing to melt into each other and look icky!

      4. I stored mine in the fridge but i am in bermuda where the humidity is 80%… better safe than sorry to store in the fridge. As it probably will get softer over night.

      5. If it seems too thin, I’d recommend letting it cool down a bit more before adding it to the cake!

      6. yes I almost always have leftover! I like to keep them in my fridge for future projects ๐Ÿ™‚

    2. One batch of ganache should be enough to cover one cake, even if you are making six different colors! because you won’t need much of each color <3

  18. Hi, if I want the ganache to be black, should I use dark chocolate chips with black gel food color? I am worried that using the white chocolate chips will give me a grey color. Dark chocolate chips seem to make more sense, but I thought I would ask a pro before I mess up and start flinging dishes around the kitchen haha (birthday party this weekend, sigh)

    1. YES! That is exactly what you should do, and what I do for black drips ๐Ÿ™‚ I also always try to use as little gel food coloring as possible, and using chocolate as a base makes it so much easier!!

  19. This was super easy to do and it turned out really well for my first time…I did a blue drop and the consistency was great! Thanks for this!

    1. I’m so happy to hear that Mallory!! Thank you for sharing!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ I live for these types of comments!

    1. You should be able to! but chill the frosted cupcakes before you do, so the buttercream will keep its shaped once you add the warm drip!

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