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How to make army green colored frosting?

How to make army green colored frosting?

Making army green colored frosting can be a fun way to decorate cakes and cupcakes for military-themed parties or events. The rich, earthy hue evokes camouflage and rugged style. While it’s easy to purchase ready-made green frosting from the grocery store, learning how to make it from scratch allows you to achieve the perfect shade to match your theme. With just a few simple ingredients and techniques, you can whip up a batch of olive drab frosting worthy of any mess hall.

Choose Your Base Frosting

The first step in creating army green frosting is deciding on a base recipe. There are two main options:

Buttercream: Made by whipping butter with powdered sugar, buttercream provides a light, fluffy texture that pipes and spreads beautifully. It’s a classic choice for frosting cakes and cupcakes. However, it can be somewhat soft and delicate in warm environments.

Cream Cheese: Cream cheese frosting contains a mixture of cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar. It has a richer, dense consistency than buttercream. The cream cheese helps make it more stable, so it won’t melt as easily. Cream cheese frosting pairs wonderfully with moist cakes like carrot or red velvet.

Either buttercream or cream cheese frosting can work well as a base for green army frosting. Consider the flavor and texture you want, along with how you plan to use the frosting. For example, buttercream may be better for detailed piping work, while cream cheese would be ideal for a cake sitting out at an outdoor military event.

Choose Your Green Food Coloring

Once you’ve selected a base frosting, the next step is picking a green food coloring. There are a few options:

Liquid food coloring: The most widely available form of food coloring. A few drops mixed into frosting provide intense, vivid color. Look for a natural green shade without a yellowish tint.

Gel food coloring: Produces more saturated, darker colors than liquid food coloring since it’s more concentrated. You’ll only need to use a tiny amount. Wilton and AmeriColor make army green gel food colors.

Powdered food coloring: Made from finely ground pigments, powdered coloring won’t dilute or thin out frosting. However, it can create a subtle, pastel effect rather than a bold military green.

Natural coloring: You can achieve a subdued green tone by using things like spinach juice, matcha powder, avocado, or chlorophyll. But they likely won’t give the deep, intense army green you’re looking for.

For most purposes, a high-quality gel or liquid food coloring designed to produce rich greens will work best. Just be sure to start with a small amount and gradually mix in more until you reach your ideal army green shade.

Mix Up Your Army Green Frosting

Once you have your ingredients, it’s time to mix up that camo-inspired frosting! Follow your base recipe, then add in the green coloring. Here are a few tips:

– Cream the butter: For buttercream, beat the butter first until smooth before adding other ingredients. This incorporates air for fluffiness.

– Add coloring slowly: Mix in just drops or toothpicks of coloring at a time until the desired color develops. You can always make it darker, but you can’t undo adding too much.

– Check consistency: Add more powdered sugar or milk if needed to reach the proper consistency for piping or spreading. The green coloring may thin it slightly.

– Save some base frosting: Set aside about a cup of uncolored base frosting first. You can use this to lighten the shade if you over-color the batch.

– Test the color: Dab a bit on a white plate or napkin to see the true color since green may look different in the mixing bowl. Adjust as needed.

– Let flavors meld: If using cream cheese frosting, allow it to chill for at least an hour so the flavors can properly blend.

Don’t be afraid to tint small test batches first to perfect the olive green color before mixing up a large bowlful. Getting the army shade just right may take some trial and error.

Matching the Army Green Color

To get an authentic army green color, it can help to have a paint swatch for reference. Two main options are:

Olive Drab #3: The official color of US Army combat uniforms from 1981-2008. It’s a muted gray-green. Match this to emulate the classic armed forces look.

Olive Green #498: Adopted by the Army in 2015, this is their current shade. It’s a deeper forest green with less gray. Use this for a more modern army style.

There are also paint color samples at hardware stores labeled “Army Green” you can use for visual guidance. Just remember lighting affects color perception, so your frosting may not look exactly the same. The goal is to evoke the feeling of army green rather than precisely match it.

Tips for Coloring Buttercream Army Green

Buttercream’s lightly sweet flavor pairs nicely with the natural tones of army green. For best results:

– Use unsalted butter for the purest flavor

– Cream butter thoroughly before adding sugar

– Sift powdered sugar to prevent lumps

– Add milk or cream to reach a silky consistency

– Use gel coloring for vivid green color

– Chill completed frosting briefly to firm it up

– Fill a piping bag to create camo stripes or decorative accents

– Use frosting leaves, chocolate rocks, or graham cracker sticks to decorate like an army obstacle course!

Tips for Coloring Cream Cheese Frosting Army Green

The rich texture of cream cheese is perfect for making frosted army tank cakes or cupcakes. Follow these tips:

– Allow cream cheese to soften fully before mixing

– Use a stand mixer or electric beaters for best volume

– Add softened butter once cream cheese is smooth

– Use cool, stiff butter for maximum structure

– Opt for liquid coloring to prevent thin consistency

– Add just a touch of milk if frosting seems too stiff

– Refrigerate overnight for the best flavor

– Use an offset spatula to create a smooth, straight sides on cakes

– Finish with chocolate rocks, cocoa powder, or cookies to resemble army terrain

Test for the Perfect Army Green

Test Batch Number Food Coloring Used Frosting Base Color Result
1 Green gel coloring Buttercream Too light, add more coloring
2 Green gel coloring Cream cheese Nice olive shade but slightly muted
3 Green liquid coloring Buttercream Vibrant army green achieved!

Testing batches using different coloring and frosting bases is key to achieving the perfect army green hue. The vibrancy of liquid coloring with the lightness of buttercream produced the ideal military-inspired shade. Now you’re ready to frost those cakes and cupcakes with confidence!

Army Green Frosting Uses

Once you’ve whipped up a batch of army green frosting, how will you use it? Here are some creative ideas:

– Camouflage cake: Use multiple shades of green to create camo print frosting effects. Finish with an army soldier figurine on top.

– Olive drab cupcakes: Top each cupcake with a tiny plastic army jeep, tank, or helicopter for an edible armored platoon.

– Jungle warfare cookies: Spread green frosting and add graham cracker “logs” and chocolate “rocks” to resemble an obstacle course.

– Green beret cake pops: Mold chocolate cake pops into round beret shapes. Insert a toothpick and dip into green frosting to make wearable army hats.

– Mess hall cupcakes: Recreate a camouflage patterned tablecloth look by piping olive and black frosting onto cupcakes.

However you choose to decorate them, your army green frosted treats are sure to be a big hit at any military event. Not only do they look terrific, but they also taste delicious!

Storing and Serving Army Green Frosting

Proper storage and serving techniques will keep your army green frosting looking freshly mixed:

– Store buttercream frosting in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 5-7 days. Let it come to room temperature before piping or spreading.

– Cream cheese frosting can be refrigerated for up to 10 days. Soften at room temperature for 30 minutes before using.

– If frosting seems too soft, briefly chill again before decorating cakes or cupcakes.

– When piping onto treats, work quickly and have everything ready so frosting doesn’t melt.

– For cupcakes, swirl frosting generously into peaks for a camouflage effect.

– Serve frosted cakes and treats at room temperature for best flavor.

– If displaying treats, keep platters in a cool spot out of direct sunlight to prevent melting.

With proper handling, your army green creations will look freshly frosted from the mess hall!


Whipping up army green colored frosting for your military-themed baked goods is fun and easy with the right techniques. Start by selecting a richly flavored buttercream or cream cheese base, then mix in concentrated gel or liquid green food coloring. Test batches with paint swatches for an authentic olive drab or olive green shade. Use buttercream frosting to decorate cakes with camouflage patterns or cream cheese frosting to create mini armored vehicles atop cupcakes. However you choose to display it, homemade army green frosting is sure to be a big hit at any barracks or USO event.