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Take a Shine to Luster Dust

Food-grade glitter is an easy way to bring color and sparkle to iced cookies, cakes, chocolates, and more.

Published Nov. 1, 2022.

Want to dress up a showpiece dessert with a little more glam? Food-grade luster dust is the answer. 

This fine, shimmery powder, available in a spectrum of hues, is made from pearlescent mica-based colors and ingredients such as sugar and cornstarch. It's also flavorless, so it won’t add any unwanted sweetness or taste to your desserts. 

You can use the dust to add color and sparkle to all sorts of items, including chocolates, iced cookies, cakes, and trifle.

We brushed gold luster dust over the chocolate decorations adorning our Chocolate-Raspberry Trifle, bringing even more drama to this spectacular dessert.

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How to Apply Luster Dust

BRUSH: Put a small amount of dust in a bowl, dip a dry bristled pastry brush into the powder, tap off the excess, and brush the powder onto your surface. A light application will create translucent iridescence, while two or three coats will give a more mirror-like finish.

PAINT: Stir vodka or a clear alcohol-based flavoring, a drop or two at a time, into about ½ teaspoon of powder until the mixture is the consistency of thick cream. Apply to your chosen surface with a clean paintbrush. If a stronger effect is desired, use a few coats, allowing each to dry before applying the next. 

FLECK: Create luster dust paint (described above). Dip a new toothbrush into the paint, aim it at your target, and run your thumb along the surface of the bristles.

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Desserts Illustrated

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Ready to Get Started? Try Luster Dust on One of These Recipes:

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Most roll-and-cut cookies force you to battle rock-hard dough and then rarely even taste good. We wanted it all: ease, good looks, and a crisp, buttery crumb.
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Chocolate-Raspberry Trifle

Complementary textures and flavors make this chocolate-raspberry trifle stunning. Advance assembly makes it a gift for the busy cook.
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Thin, Crisp Gingerbread Cookies

Most recipes turn out dough that is best used for building material. Is there a way to make gingerbread cookies that actually taste as good as they look?
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