Mirror glaze cakes have taken the internet by storm, and I decided it was about time that I try making one!! While we may think using a mirror glaze is a new technique or decoration, traditional pastry chefs have been doing mirror glazed for decades. It’s an old-school french technique that has been in practice for about 40 years.
What Is A Mirror Glaze?
Traditional mirror glaze recipes can seem complicated! I’ve seen recipes that have ingredients I’ve never heard of. At the base of every mirror glaze recipe, sugar and gelatin are the key ingredients. Most recipes heat the mixture to allow the gelatin to dissolve and combine with the other ingredients. The glaze is then allowed to cool a bit being poured over a chilled cake.
A lot of what gives the mirror glaze it’s shine is it being poured at the right temperature, which is around 110 degrees F. Traditional mirror glazes usually sets at about 90 degrees, so they have to be warmer when they’re poured. My recipe is a bit different, so I actually like to pour my glaze when it’s around 90 degrees! This is because my recipe includes a couple different ingredients that make it unique.
How Is This Recipe Different From A Classic Mirror Glaze?
The biggest difference? White chocolate. I don’t know if you’ve ever tasted plain gelatin (or even smelled it), but it is simply disgusting. Every time I mix plain gelatin with water to allow it bloom, my gag reflex kicks in.
With that being said, I wanted to add something to this recipe to cover that flavor! The easiest thing to add was white chocolate and sweetened condensed milk, which are the primary flavor of this mirror glaze.
By adding in both of these ingredients, you’re also giving the glaze a white base, which will make it easier to color. These ingredients also make the mirror glaze a tiny bit thicker, and more forgiving. It covers the cake in a thicker layer of glaze that a traditional mirror glaze.
The only downside is that the white chocolate does make the glaze a tiny bit less shiny!! This mirror glaze will reflect everything when it’s poured, but overtime, it loses its shine. I recommend adding it shortly before you plan to serve the cake.
Why Is This Recipe Easier Than A Normal Mirror Glaze?
Although the traditional mirror glaze recipe involves more ingredients and additional equipment, this easy, five ingredient recipe makes the technique way more approachable.
Another bonus?! It’s made just using your microwave!! If you don’t have a microwave though, you can totally use a stovetop/double boiler to heat the mixture and melt the chocolate. While this all seems insanely simple, it does help to have a digital thermometer, so you know exactly when your glaze is ready to be poured at 90 degrees)
I was shocked by how quickly I was able to make this, and how easy it was to pour over a cake. Traditionally mirror glaze cakes involve pouring the glaze over a perfectly smooth, mousse-covered cake.
I experimented, and found that you can easily pour it over a classic buttercream cake! The key to pouring it over buttercream is that the cake is thoroughly chilled, and that the frosting is super smooth. When I say thoroughly chilled, I mean that the cakes must be fully frozen and firm to the touch (1+ hour in the freezer).
How Much Mirror Glaze Does One Batch Make?
This glaze easily covered two, six-inch, buttercream cakes. It would also easily cover one eight-inch cake. While mirror glaze cakes are beautiful to make, they involve pouring tons of glaze over the cake. This is necessary to make sure the cake is fully covered in glaze. You can try to salvage the mirror glaze that runs off, but it can be more difficult to reuse if you’re combine colors.
I have never reused mirror glaze, but in theory you should be able to refrigerate leftover glaze in an airtight container. If you can reheat it to the right temperature (about 110 degree F) and get it the right consistency, it should still set as it cools.
How To Color This Mirror Glaze Recipe
While this mirror glaze is galaxy themed, you can really create so many different looks with different colors. When creating different colors or glaze, it’s super important that you use gel food coloring to color this glaze.
Gel food coloring with allow you to achieve super vibrant shades, because it’s so concentrated. This also means you don’t have to use much to get the color you’re after. If you try to use liquid food coloring, you will have to use a ton to get bright colors, and this can throw off the consistency of the glaze.
How Do You Make This Easy Mirror Glaze Recipe?
To make this mirror glaze, begin by mixing the gelatin in a bowl with 1/4 cup of water. Set aside to let it bloom while you begin the glaze. Over a medium heat, stir together the sugar, 1 cup of water, and sweetened condensed milk.
Stir occasionally, until the mixture begins to bubble. At this point, pour in the bloomed gelatin, and stir until fully dissolved. Melt the white chocolate chips in microwave by heating and stirring in 30 second intervals.
Once the white chocolate is fully melted, pour the chocolate into the warm gelatin mixture. Carefully whisk mixture until fully combined.
To make this glaze into a galaxy mirror glaze, divide the glaze evenly between four bowls. Color the bowls black, purple, blue, and pink using gel food coloring.
Once the glazes have cooled slightly, pour half of the black into the large bowl. Then pour about 2/3 of the purple, blue, and pink glazes on top of the black, in a swirling motion. Drizzle some small drops of the white glaze on top of the colors.
Continue to stir the bowl(s) of mirror glaze occasionally to stop a skin from forming, until the glaze has reached 90 degrees, or is slightly warm to the touch.
Pouring The Mirror Glaze Over The Cake
Remove the smoothed buttercream cakes from the freezer (must be fully chilled in the freezer for 1 hour before glazing), and place on a circular object, on top of a large baking sheet (to catch the run-off glaze).
Begin pouring the onto the center of the cake, then slowly work your way out to the edges. Once the cake is fully covered, sprinkle a line of edible glitter over the top. Let the glaze continue to drip for about 10 minutes, then use an offset spatula to scrape away any drips from the cake board. The glaze should be mostly set. Place the cake in the fridge if you don’t plan to eat it within a few hours.
For my second cake, I used all the same colors except for the black, and I colored the white glaze yellow. It also looked beautiful!! I think I’m just a sucker for mirror glaze cakes though!! 😛
If you try any of my recipes, please be sure to tag me @chelsweets and use the hashtag #chelsweets, so I can see your beautiful creations!! 🙂
Mirror Glaze Recipe
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar (300 grams)
- 3/4 cup water, room temp (237 grams)
- 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk (200 grams)
- 2 cups miniature white chocolate chip (350 grams or 12 oz of white chocolate)
- 2 Tbsp unflavored gelatin (18 grams), bloomed in 1/4 cup of additional water
- digital thermometer
- gel food coloring
- Begin by mixing the gelatin in a bowl with 1/4 cup of water. Set aside to let it bloom while you begin the glaze.
- Pour 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar, 3/4 cup of water, and 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk in a heat proof bowl. Heat for 1 minute on high power in the microwave.
- Remove the mixture, and stir to incorporate the ingredients. Pour in the bloomed gelatin, and stir until it's fully dissolved.
- Melt the white chocolate chips in microwave by heating it in 30 second intervals, stirring between each interval. Once the white chocolate is fully melted, pour the chocolate into the warm gelatin mixture. Carefully whisk mixture until fully combined.
- Continue to stir occasionally (to prevent a skin from forming), until the glaze has reached 90 degrees, or is just slightly warm to the touch.
- Divide the glaze evenly between four bowls. Color them different shades using gel food coloring. To create this galaxy mirror glaze, color them blue, purple, black, and pink.
- Once the glazes have cooled slightly, pour them back into one large bowl, alternating colors and drizzling the colors together as you combine them.
- Place a chilled buttercream cake (in the freezer at least 1 hour) on top of a circular object smaller than the cake board, and set this on top of large baking sheet (to catch the run-off glaze).
- Begin pouring the glaze onto the center of the cake, then slowly work out to the edges of the cake in a circular motion until the cake is fully covered.
- Let the glaze continue to drip for about 10 minutes, then scrape away excess glaze from the bottom of the cake board using a small offset spatula.
- If you plan to eat the cake within a few hours, leave out at room temp. Or if made this cake in advance, place the cake in the fridge, to allow the cake to slowly thaw. Remove from the fridge a couple hours before you plan to cut into it.
One batch of this mirror glaze makes more than enough glaze to cover one, eight inch layer cake.