Homemade tylose glue (also known as sugar glue) is a great, food-safe option for use with fondant and gum paste cake decorations.
Whether you are creating custom cake toppers, attaching polka dots to a fondant covered cake, or even adhering sprinkles to a fondant border, this is a popular go-to glue for cake decorators.
Tylose glue creates a stronger bond when working with fondant or gum paste than “glue” alternatives like water, corn syrup, or even piping gel can provide.
As an added bonus, it couldn’t be easier to make–that is, assuming you have tylose powder on hand ;0)
What is Tylose Powder?
Tylose powder is a hardening agent that is used not only in making our glue today, but it is often used in homemade gum paste recipes.
I also use it all the time in figure modeling for cake toppers, etc. Kneading a bit of tylose powder into plain fondant will result in a more pliable consistency which dries faster and firmer– much like gum paste.
(1-3 teaspoons of tylose powder per pound of fondant is a good rule of thumb, just adjust a bit more or less depending on the softness of the fondant).
Tylose Glue-Eyeballing it…
You may have noticed in many of my videos, I’ll just throw a little tylose powder and a few drops of water into a bowl and mix it up quickly right in the moment that I need it.
Although this technically works in a pinch, it isn’t the best way because the consistency won’t be as nice as if you were to measure the tylose and water, mix it in advance, and allow to fully dissolve.
Using a Recipe…
Our friend Teri, aka MsGF, was nice enough to write up her favorite proportions of tylose powder and water for creating tylose glue, along with photos.
The resulting tylose glue is a perfectly smooth, clear gel that can be kept in small jar for whenever you need it. Hooray for being organized!
How to Make Tylose Glue
I will post Teri’s step by step below, which includes her favorite “small batch” tylose glue recipe as well as the proportions for a larger recipe. (Find the full, printable recipe card at the bottom of this post)
½ tablespoon distilled water (room temp) you can also use boiled water/tap water
1 level Pinch of Tylose Powder (1/16th tsp) I use my handy Pinch Spoon
- Here are the key players…The little container is from the Dollar Store, it holds 35ml (2 tablespoons). By the way, how cute is the 1/16 teaspoon “pinch” spoon?!)
- First, add the water to the clean, dry container. Next, add the tylose powder. (This is ½ tablespoon of water and level pinch of tylose).
Stir the tylose and water together with a toothpick.
Next, put on the lid and let it sit.
Within an hour the tylose will be dissolved. You can see that there are still tiny air bubbles but the tylose powder is dissolved.
It is fine to use it at this point, just give it a little stir first with a toothpick.
After leaving overnight, it becomes perfectly clear and has a nice consistency.
Teri noted that she keeps her tylose glue at room temperature with her cake decorating supplies and uses it over a 2-3 week period. Some decorators also keep theirs in the refrigerator.
You will know when it is time to make a fresh batch when it is no longer clear. Simply rinse out the container and make more!
Larger Recipe for Tylose Glue
2 Tablespoons Water
¼ level teaspoon Tylose Powder
- ½ tablespoon distilled water (room temp) you can also use boiled water/tap water
- 1 level Pinch of Tylose Powder (1/16th tsp)
- *See notes for larger batch
- Add the water to a clean dry container.
- Add the Tylose powder on top, and give it a little stir with a toothpick.
- Put on the lid and let it sit. Within an hour, the tylose powder will have dissolved, although it will still have tiny bubbles. It is fine to use at this point- just give it a little stir with a toothpick.
- After sitting overnight, the tylose glue becomes perfectly clear and has a nice consistency.
- It keeps for 2-3 weeks at room temperature. You can refrigerate also. You will know when it's time to make a new one as it will no longer be clear.
For a Larger Batch of Tylose Glue:
2 Tablespoons Water
¼ level teaspoon Tylose Powder
Storing Tylose Glue
You can keep the freshly made tylose glue at room temperature for 2-3 weeks. You will know when it’s time to make a new one when the color is no longer as clear.
Tips for using Tylose Glue
Teri passed along a few more hints for working with tylose glue:
Less is more when using tylose glue. You don’t need to cover the back of the whole item to be glued. It will stick.
If you accidentally use too much and it oozes out from behind the fondant, I use a dry brush to pick up some and wipe it off on a paper towel then use a dry clean paintbrush with cornstarch and put some cornstarch on the wet spot, let it sit. After it’s dry (one hour +/overnight) I use a big fluffy brush to wipe off the cornstarch and it’s barely noticeable. That’s my fix.
Thanks so much for stopping by today! We hope that you fill give this quick and easy tylose glue recipe a try. Thanks again for sharing your tips and favorite proportions with us, Teri!