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asked January 28th 2018

Piping a Buttercream Dam


I am looking at making my first wedding cake for October, for a three tiered cake covered in fondant with buttercream fillings.

I have come across information about making a piped dam with buttercream, so the cake doesn't bulge out with the weight.

Is the buttercream used for the dam made of thicker consistency? and do you use a dam for every tier ? Thank you.


Hi Dival

It best to make a stiffer buttercream if making a dam. It should be piped around about half an inch to an inch in from the edge of each layer, allowed to crust over slightly before adding the filling. It really depends on the type of filling being used. If it's something which is likely to squish out, a dam is a good idea as it contains any seepeage and bulging. If the filling is fairly thick and unlikely to spill out, there is no need for a dam. During the crumbcoating process the gaps between the layers are gradually filled in.
For great tutorials on how to use buttercream please refer to Paul's free tutorial here:

Using Buttercream – How to use buttercream

... and a couple of answers here may help too.

cake bulging

Please post again with any questions you may have as you go along. 🙂


Thanks very much for all your help x


You're welcome Dival x 🙂


Hi Dival, if you mix enough icing sugar into your buttercream receipe so it is very thick it will enable you to roll into a sausage to use as a dam. You can also use ready to roll sugarpaste to make a substantial dam, again roll into sausage shape and place slightly inside the edge of the cake . Do this for each layer of cake.


Thank you, that's really useful information xx

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