While you likely have white granulated sugar tucked in the pantry, you might not always have a box of powdered or confectioners sugar on hand. Although it's not called for in as many recipes as regular sugar, it's an essential ingredient to make the best cake frosting or when decorating other sweets.
For those instances when you do find yourself in need of powdered sugar, there's a way to save yourself from running back out to the store: Luckily a good ol' fashioned blender is all you need to hack your own.
I can't deny that the topic of making your own powdered sugar has been debated. Even our own Christine Gallary, our food editor-at-large, wasn't convinced when she tried to do it in her food processor. But that's exactly what caused the problem: a food processor won't cut it; but a blender, particularly a high-powered one, will.
If you only have a food processor or a standard blender at home, this trick probably isn't for you, as the blades are not strong enough. But if you have one of those extra-strong blenders, like a Vitamix, then keep reading because its blade, in combination with the power of the motor, are what make this possible. You can, in fact, make a pretty close imitation to store-bought powdered sugar in this kind of machine. To do so, grind one cup of granulated sugar and one teaspoon of cornstarch in the blender for one minute. The cornstarch prevents clumping and contributes to its floury texture — it's a standard ingredient in the boxed kind. Then sift the mix through a fine mesh strainer to remove any larger granules that might not have gotten blended properly.
Recipes That Make Use of Powdered Sugar
(Image credits: Emma Christensen)