Can someone tell me what to use for coloring real buttercream frosting? The kind made with egg whites, butter etc. No SHORTENING.
Can someone recommend and tell me what the best product is to use for coloring? I have used powdered and gel in the past.
You will get different results (colorwise) with different manufacturer's brands - the Warm Brown from AmeriColor will actually change to pink over time. Some blacks will have a green undertone to them, and blues and violets like to change over time and under certain lighting conditions (which I didn't believe until it happened to me!). Mostly we have AmeriColor and ChefMaster brands for buttercream at work, but I use Spectral brand paste (from the UK, which you can get from Beryl's or from Creative Cutters) for fondant because I like the range of colors offered by that brand.
I've noticed the Lucks brand is definitely a liquid, not a gel.
We use chef rubber products a lot. If you want really vibrant colors that don't " speckle" over time, try using cocoa butter colors (they are more expensive and need to be melted so keep that in mind). Otherwise, chef rubber gel colors (fat soluble) and americolor are pretty good, too. I don't like using powders for BC, only because they can speckle a bit if not blended really well (and even then may still). Also, because they don't have the same range of colors as many larger brands of gel and paste colors.
As far as fondant goes...I like powdered colors because they don't tend to make the fondant stickier. However, I find more often than not I don't have the color I need on hand in which case I go with VERY small amounts of paste until I get the desired color. As far as Wilton products go, I don't use them unless I have no choice. They have their uses for home bakers, etc. But, they are typically expensive, come in tiny jars which are messy and don't work as well or give the same results from jar to jar. Hope this helps.
I like Chef Rubber emulsion gel for buttercreams with and without shortening and for fondant but ONLY for pastel colors. A customer recently wanted "concord grape" for her engagement cake and both the emulsion gel and the Wilton gel paste (not together) totally ruined my fondant (even though the final color was perfect!). My sister uses Wilton gel in her fondant w/o any problems (including dark colors like purple and black). I have used powdered colors for gumpaste and again, only for pastel colors for fondant. I have to make a cocoa brown cake (buttercream) soon so I would like to find a product that works as well. If you find one that works for dark colors, please share the info. Good luck.