Gumpaste Peony Tutorial

Hey there fellow cake friends and welcome to this Gumpaste Peony Tutorial!

Who doesn’t love peonies?


They have a special place in my heart. In my childhood home my mom had this peony bush that bloomed with the biggest, most fragrant, fluffiest, peonies ever (okay, they were probably normal sized but they seemed huge and magical).

But peonies only last a week!

Enter- The Sugar Peony.


I see sugar artists everywhere creating their versions of beautiful, giant sugar peonies. I did the same for about 6 years until I was happy with mine (comment below if you’ve been trying forever to get those elusive fluffy petals!) 


Getting those petals thin and delicate, getting the textures right, it all took a lot of time and practice to figure out!


This is all to say that I’m hoping to save you 7 years of your life and share with you what I’ve learned from experimenting on my own.


So, let’s do it.

Jump straight to the step-by-step tutorial here:

Completed Sugar Peonies from Tutorial

Download your Perfect Peony Tutorial!


– Texturing petals and making them look ultra-realistic
– Dusting your flower to give it beautiful depth
– Repairing petals and much more! 

Tools & Ingredients

The Best Gumpaste Recipe

– 1.5″-1.75” styrofoam ball (cut in half and hollowed out leaving approx. 2mm of styrofoam all around. I get mine at the dollar store). 

18 Gauge Green Wire

Wire Cutters/Needlenose Pliers

Exacto knife

Small rolling pin

JEM veining tool

Ball tools 

Hot Glue Gun

Sugarflair colouring (optional)  

Kitchenaid with pasta roller attachment (or manual pasta roller)  

Silicone placemat for work table  

– Cornstarch  

– Shortening  

Styrofoam block for holding your flowers 

Drying rack

– Foam Pad (for thinning and veining petals)

 – Teardrop Cutters

Bumpy Foam – Plastic wrap (to cover petals as you work. I put a damp towel over a double layer of plastic wrap to keep my petals fresh). – Gum glue (1/8tsp CMC mixed with boiled and cooled water shaken in a bottle with brush– keep refrigerated) 

3” Petal Former

– Flat brushes  

– Petal dust- caramel, moss green, foliage green 

Peony Cutters

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Completed Sugar Peonies from Tutorial

Download your Perfect Peony Tutorial!


– Texturing petals and making them look ultra-realistic
– Dusting your flower to give it beautiful depth
– Repairing petals and much more! 


Gumpaste Peony Centre

1. Step one is to create your sugar peony center. After rolling your gumpaste to a #5 on your pasta machine, cut out 10 petals each of your small and medium peony cutter. Soften the edges of 2 small and 2 medium petals at a time with your large ball tool. Gently cup the edges by dragging your medium ball tool inward from the edge, and attach all petals together using gum glue. Fold all petals in half vertically, slice off the bottom third of the group of petals on a diagonal, and set it aside. Repeat with the remaining 8 petals in the same fashion.

2. Brush the inside of your styrofoam ball with gum glue and attach the petal sets one at a time, adding dabs of gum glue to the adjoining petals if needed. Adjust the petals using your veining tool to secure them until you’re happy with how they look, and allow your sugar peony center to dry overnight.

Creating the Base Peony Petals

3. Cut 5 petals using your large peony cutter, and soften and cup the edges the same way you did in step 1. Apply a V of glue to the bottom ⅔ of your petal and one line of glue to close the V into a triangle. Attach all 5 petals directly onto your styrofoam, making sure the petals reach over the peony center slightly. Hang the peony upside down while you work on the rest.

Creating the Cupped Peony Petals

4. Pick out 3 sequential teardrop cutters (the smallest should be just larger than your large peony cutter) and cut out 6 small, 6 medium, and 12 large teardrops. Work with a couple at a time and using the V edge of the cutter cut out a divot in the centre on the rounded edge of a petal, and 2 smaller divots on each corner left by the first cut.

5. Soften the edges with a large ball tool and use your veining tool to create a few areas of veining across the petal for texture. Use your medium ball tool and in the areas on which there are no veining marks gently cup the petal by dragging the tool inward from the top edge. Allow the petals to par-dry in a 3” mold while you repeat the same process with the remaining 4 small teardrops and 6 medium teardrops.

6. When the petals are par-dried (they should be pliable but able to hold their curved shape on your work surface) you can attach them. Paint a V of glue on the bottom ½ of your  6 small petals and evenly attach the petals around, allowing the top edge to come up above your previous layer. Repeat the same process with the 6 medium petals.

Tips for Peony Success

No pasta roller? No problem. Hand roll your gumpaste to about 1mm thickness or less. I find using a homemade gumpaste gives me the results.

If your gumpaste is giving you headaches give mine a try!

It’s awesome for:

  • Fewer broken petals
  • Less tearing when shaping your petals
  • Taking beautifully saturated colours

Before you go...

Have a question? Leave me a comment below and I’ll get right back to you!

And if you use this Gumpaste Peony Tutorial I’d love to see your work! Tag me on all social @finespuncakess .

Happy Sugar-Flowering!


Want to make this Gumpaste Peony later?
Pin this to your favourite cake board on Pinterest!

light pink gumpaste peony

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