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How to Make Powdered Sugar

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Bowl of powdered sugar (c) 2011 Elizabeth LaBau, licensed to About.com, Inc.
How to make powdered sugar at home. Next time you run out of powdered sugar in the middle of the recipe, don't run to the store! Instead use this quick and easy method for making homemade powdered sugar.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 5 minutes

Here's How:

  1. You'll want to use either a food processor or a high-speed blender to make powdered sugar. High power and sharp blades are the keys to successful powdered sugar, so choose whichever tool in your kitchen is most powerful. Add the sugar and the cornstarch to the processor or blender. Most commercial powdered sugars have corn starch, and some recipes that call for powdered sugar rely on the corn starch to act as a binding agent, so my recipe uses corn starch. However, if you don't like the taste or texture of corn starch, and if your recipe will not suffer without it, you can successfully omit the starch in this recipe.
  2. Cover your processor or blender with a kitchen towel to prevent sugar dust from getting everywhere. Turn the blender or processor to the highest speed, and blend for 1 minute. After a minute, check the texture of your sugar. If it is still grainy, continue to blend in 30-second increments until it is completely powdery.
  3. It is possible that some blenders or processors will not be able to pulverize all the sugar and a slight graininess will remain. In this case, only use homemade powdered sugar in recipes where a grainy texture will not be noticed, like in baked goods.
  4. This recipe is most successful in small quantities--too much sugar in the blender or processor makes it difficult to get a true powdery texture. If you need larger quantities, it is better to make the powdered sugar in multiple batches. Store homemade powdered sugar in an airtight container at room temperature.

What You Need

  • A food processor or high-speed blender
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp corn starch (optional)
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