Syllabus: Cake Course - FPC110 - Buttercream Decorating Techniques | The French Pastry School

Syllabus: Cake Course - FPC110 - Buttercream Decorating Techniques

FPC110 - Buttercream Decorating Techniques

Course Description:

In this course, students will learn how to cover both real and dummy cakes in various shapes and sizes using buttercream.  A smooth finish will create a canvas for other decorative embellishments that will taught.  Excellent piping techniques are essential for any cake decorator and take practice to refine. The details they add give cakes a traditional, elegant, or whimsical look.

Students the Course is Expected to Serve:

This course is a necessary component to completing the 10-week L’Art du Gâteau – The Professional Cake Decorating and Baking Program.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites:

Principals of Gateau; Buttercream Decorating Techniques; Celebration Cakes; Gumpaste, Piping, and Fondant; Cake Baking and Construction; Airbrushing and Mold Making; Sculpted Cakes; and Capstone Course

Training Objectives:

  • The student will learn basic techniques of cake baking with several different sponge cakes.
  • The student will learn to create various buttercreams and a ganache, including Swiss meringue buttercream, Italian meringue buttercream, chocolate buttercream, coffee buttercream, and chocolate ganache.
  • The student will learn professional piping skills (including buttercream rose construction) through practice with various handmade buttercreams on silpat baking sheets and resin dummies.
  • The student will learn to complete a buttercream sponge cake, from building, cutting, filling, and crumb coating the cake to a final buttercream coating and piping.

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • The student will be able to understand the relationship between sponge cakes and buttercream in order to efficiently fill and coat cakes in class.
  • The student will be able to create smooth and even coatings using professional techniques.
  • The student will perfect buttercream piping techniques to create elegant cake embellishments.

Course Outline:

  • Cake layers 
  • Cake flavors 
  • Coating cake 
  • Piping 

Methods of Instruction*:

  • Lectures
  • Whole-group discussions facilitated by the chef instructor
  • Technique and recipe demonstrations by the chef instructor
  • Chef instructor-supervised production of recipes by students

Methods of Evaluation*:

  • Appropriate and accurate responses to instructor’s questions during demonstrations and class discussions
  • Chef instructor observations during recipe production
  • Proficiency evaluations of key course recipes


*Further explanation of the Methods of Instruction and Evaluation across the program may be found in the Catalog.