Special Occasion Cake Toppers

How To Make Succulent Cupcake Toppers

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Last Updated on 27th July 2023 by Vicki

Four edible succulent decorated cakes in flower pot cases.
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Hi all, this post shows how to make these succulent cupcake toppers. I’ve been wanting to make these cupcakes for a while now. So when I saw these flower pot cases, I just knew I had to give them a go, for my mum’s birthday! If you wanted to purchase some of these flowerpot cases, then here’s a link to where I bought them from – Lakeland. These cupcakes would also be perfect for Mother’s Day. If you are interested in this idea, you may also like my daisy cupcake toppers too.

I actually made four different succulent cupcakes, which can be seen below.

4 succulent cupcakes in flower pot cases

The two in this tutorial were definitely the easiest to make out of the four, especially when it came to assembling them. Please note, this post has been updated to include how to make the other two succulents too! Tutorials are at the bottom of the page. Click here to go straight to them.

Succulent Cupcake Topper Tutorial

To make this first topper, I used Renshaw Flower and Modelling Paste in Leaf Green. I made the shapes using my sunflower and daisy plunger cutters. It’s important to allow time for the flower paste to dry before decorating and assembling. I left mine to dry overnight in celformers. Celformer flower formers are cups that help to create the shape you need. I’m not sure you can still purchase the celformers that I have, but here’s a link to Wilton’s Flower Formers. These are basically the same thing, but as I don’t have them, I can’t comment on them.

green modelling paste rolled flat

Roll out some green modelling paste to about 5mm thick. This is much thicker than if you were making flower petals, but succulents are much thicker.

Green fondant in a sunflower plunger cutter

Cut out a shape using the largest sunflower cutter. TOP TIP! To help you get clean edges, gently brush around the edges with a food graded brush.

shaping a flower shaped piece of green fondant

Use a ball tool to gently flatten the centre of the shape. This helps the shape to curve. A foam pad is helpful here, as you can shape the modelling paste without ripping it.

shaping a flower shape

Using a smaller ball tool, apply a gentle pressure to each leaf so you make a long indent. As can be seen above.

Smooth off any bumps in the middle with your larger ball tool.

Gently pinch the ends of each leaf with your fingers to create a point.

You should now have something that looks similar to the image above.

Flower shaped green fondant

Place the shape in the largest celformer.

Repeat this process with three more layers, each getting smaller. I found missing one size out, as you go down in size, worked better when assembling the succulent. Put the shapes in their corresponding celformers, going down in size as you do so. Cut out 2 of your smallest shape, so you have an extra one. You will see why later!

The smallest one may need to be pushed into the smallest celformer with a tool.

fondant succulent cupcake toppers

Above you can see all my separate layers, drying in their celformers. I left them overnight to dry.

Decorating The Leaves

The colour I used on the tips of the leaves was Sugarflair’s edible blossom tint in burgundy.

Gently apply the dust to the pointed edges of the succulent with a food graded brush.

fondant succulent cupcake toppers

Carry on until all the sizes have been dusted.

Assembling The Cupcake Topper

Stick a small amount of modelling paste in the middle of the largest shape as can be seen above. Doing this helps the next layer to stick and also raising it slightly, making it look more realistic.

Secure the second layer in place with a little edible glue or vodka. Try to place the second layer so the leaves are in between the first layer.

Repeat the process again, by applying a tiny ball modelling paste in the middle and then sticking on the next layer.

Repeat the process again for the final layer.

Take one leaf off your extra piece, apply some burgundy dust to the tip.

As with the previous layers, stick a tiny ball of modelling paste in the centre.

Making a succulent cupcake topper

Now, stick you extra leaf in the very middle of the plant to fill the hole.

So that’s your first succulent cupcake topper finished! Read on for the second tutorial.

Succulent Cupcake Topper Tutorial 2

You’ll notice that the modelling paste used in the tutorial below is much darker than the cupcake topper I made for my mum. This is because I redid the topper for the tutorial. To make the colour below, I added PME Pea Green food colouring paste to my white modelling paste. To make the colour of the succulent that I gave to my mum, I just mixed some of my white modelling paste with my green modelling paste. I wanted the colour to be a lighter green than what I had used before, so I had a variety of colours.

6 ball of green fondant

Roll 6 pieces of modelling paste into equal balls. Mine were about the size of marbles.

6 green fondant tear shaped shapes

Next, roll them into tear shapes.

Tear and ball shaped green fondant

Repeat the process again, but with slightly smaller balls.

12 Tear shaped green fondant

You should now have something resembling the image above.

6 tear shapped pieces of green fondant around a disc of green fondant

Next, take a piece of green modelling paste and flatten it into a disc shape. Make sure it isn’t stuck to the surface, before applying a little vodka or edible glue all over the top.

6 tear shaped pieces of fondant being stuck onto a green disc of fondant

Now, stick the larger tear shapes on the disc shape as can be seen above.

6 shaped pieces of fondant stuck together like a flower

Keep going until all the 6 shapes are on the disc. If needed, you can also apply a little glue to either side of the tear shapes, so they stick to each other.

pieces of green fondant stuck together like a flower

Now, stick a ball of green modelling paste in the middle, as can be seen above. Apply a little vodka or edible glue to the top.

Pieces of green shaped fondant stuck to together like a flower.

Apply vodka or edible glue to the flat side of the remaining tear shapes and stick them on top of the first layer. Try to arrange them in between the first layer of shapes.

Green fondant succulent cupcake topper.

Keep going until the second layer is complete. Make sure you leave a small hole in the middle.

Green fondant succulent topper

Form one last tear shape and stick it the remaining hole. Place the topper in a safe place and it leave overnight to set.

green fondant succulent cupcake topper

Once set, you can enhance your cupcake topper with some edible dust. For this tutorial I used Sugarflair’s Apple Green edible dust.

Preparing The Flower Pot Cupcake Case

Chocolate cake in flowerpot cupcake case

I trimmed off the top of my chocolate cupcake until it was about 1cm down the pot.

Buttercream Chocolate Rose Swirl

Next, I piped some chocolate buttercream on top. You could just spoon it on if you preferred.

Spooning Oreo crumbs on the top of chocolate buttercream

I blitzed some Oreos in my blender until they resembled soil. I then carefully spooned the Oreo crumbs on top of the buttercream. It’s a good idea to place the cupcake on a small plate while you do this, as the crumbs do tend to go everywhere!

Now all you have to do is place your succulent cupcake toppers on top of your cupcake. It’s a good idea to give it a little twist so it touches the buttercream underneath which helps it to stick.

I hope you found this tutorial useful. I have to say that my mum did look twice to see if they were real plants or cupcakes! If you have a go at making them, I would love to see any photos. Please tag me @acakeonlife on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter so I can see them.

POST UPDATE! New Tutorial!

Hi everyone, I’ve had a few requests to make tutorials for the other succulent cupcakes I made. So here’s the first one!

Succulent Cupcake

To make this succulent cake topper, I coloured some white modelling paste light purple using PME Regal Purple food colouring paste.

Tube of light purple icing

Make a sausage shape with your modelling paste. Mine was about 1cm thick.

Chopped up pieces of purple modelling paste

Cut this into 6 equal parts.

6  tear shaped pieces of purple modelling paste

Form each part into a flat tear shape.

Using a ball tool to shape the fondant petals

Use a ball tool to shape each leaf.

Flat circle and 6 tear shaped pieces of purple modelling paste

Make a flat circle using a piece of purple modelling paste.

Putting the 6 tear shaped petals together in a ring

Stick the edges of your leaves on the flat circle.

Modelling paste leaves shaping in a celformer

Place the leaves in the largest celformer and leave overnight to dry.

Succulent leaves made from modelling paste

Continue the leaf making process to make 5 slightly smaller leaves and 4 even smaller leaves.

6 small fondant leaves being modelled with a ball tool

Repeat again to make 6 tiny leaves.

Two small fondant leaves

Take two of the smallest leaves and stick a ball of modelling paste in one, as can be seen above.

Two small fondant leaves

Now stick the other leaf on top, pinching it at one end.

Diamond shaped modelling paste

Squeeze the pinched end together to create a diamond shape. These will be your middle leaves.

Leave all the leaves to dry overnight.

Assembling The Succulent

Adding dust to the edge of the leaves

Once dry you can shade the edge of the leaves. I used Sugarflair Blush Pink dust to shade mine.

Purple leaves  dusted with pink

Dust the edges of all the leaves.

Making a succulent cupcake topper

Place a piece of purple modelling paste in the middle, as can be seen above. This will help to secure your next layer.

Making a succulent cupcake topper

Stick your next largest leaves on your topper. Try to place them in the middle of the leaves below if you can. Next, place another blob of purple modelling paste in the middle.

Making a succulent cupcake topper

Now repeat with the next size down.

Making a succulent cupcake topper

Repeat with you final four leaves.

Succulent Cupcake Topper

Finally, stick the middle leaves on your topper.

That’s the topper finished! Please note, the amount of leaves made are only a guide, you made need more or less. Also, each topper will turn out different. You can see the one in my tutorial is slightly different to the one that I made for my mum. Below you will also find a video of me making this succulent.

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2nd Post Update!

So here’s the final succulent cupcake tutorial! I would say out of the four, that this is the hardest one to make. The one in this tutorial differs slightly to the one I made my mum, as I wanted it to be easier to make. The topper is made from Renshaw Flower and Modelling Paste in Leaf Green.

Circle of green modelling paste in a celformer

Place a flat disc of green modelling paste in a large celformer. TOP TIP : Use cornflour underneath the paste to ensure it doesn’t stick to the celformer.

Cone shaped green modelling paste

Take a piece of green modelling paste and form it into cone shape. Mine was about 5cm long and 1cm at its widest.

Shaping modelling paste with a cake smoother

TOP TIP : Using a cake soother to form the cone, will ensure a smooth finish.

Cone shaped green modelling paste

Next, form a triangle shape along the top of the cone and press the base flat. Then, flatten the wide end.

Making a succulent cake topper

Now stick your leaf on the disc, letting it overlap the sides of the celformer.

Making a succulent cake topper

Repeat this process to make three other similar sized leaves. Stick them together as can be seen above.

Making a succulent cake topper

If you can still see some of the disc below the leaves, then neaten with your brush.

Shaping the succulent leaves

To make your leaves more realistic, you could dry them at different heights. To do this, just prop them up slightly with a food graded product.

5 succulent leaves made from modelling paste

Repeat the leaf making process to make four more leaves. Make them roughly the same length as before but slimmer. Place the leaves to dry on something curved. I used my rolling pin.

5 succulent leaves made from modelling

Lastly, make four more slimmer leaves about 4cm long. Then make one smaller leaf.

Sticking the leaves together

Stick the four leaves around the smallest one, as can be seen above.

Drying the leaves in an eggcup

This is the middle of the plant and needs to dry upright. I used some tin foil in an eggcup to help keep it vertical.

Now leave all your leaves to dry overnight. It is important that they are hard enough to withstand being assembled. Once your curved leaves are dry, it’s a good idea to take them off the curved item, so the underneath can dry fully too.

Finishing Touches And Assembling The Topper

Painting white dots onto the leaves

Once the leaves have hardened, paint white dots all over them. I used my white Fractal Colours Calligra Edible Ink Brush Pen to do this.

Making a succulent cake topper

Stick a circle of green modelling paste in the middle and brush some vodka over it. Leave it for a few seconds to go tacky.

Making a succulent cake topper

Now stick a curved leaf onto the tacky modelling paste. Position it in between two leaves on the first layer.

Making a succulent cake topper

Repeat with the other three curved leaves. Position them as can be seen above.

Making a succulent cake topper

Now stick another disc of green modelling paste in the middle. This will help to secure the second layer and support the final layer. Brush this again with vodka and allow to go tacky.

Making a succulent cake topper

Stick the middle of the plant in position. Use a brush to neaten any excess and reinforce the join between the fresh modelling paste and the middle the plant.

Pin To Pinterest

If you liked this post why not pin it for later? Tap or hover over the image below and hit the Pin It button! I also add every post and tutorial to Pinterest, which you can follow here.

Four edible succulent decorated cupcakes

Until next time, thanks and happy cake decorating!

3 Comments

  • Linda

    WOW!!! These are just fantastic and so realistic! I would love to know how you made the other two, so hopefully you will put up a tutorial for those some time too please? Can’t wait to have a go at making these!

    • Vicki

      Hi Linda
      Thank you so much for your kind words. I am so pleased you like them and that you are going to have a go at making them as well. Yes, I can definitely make a tutorial for the other two. I am working on a couple of tutorials at the moment, but will get round to it as soon as I can 😊

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