How to Make Candles That Look Like Food, Drinks, and Desserts

Everyone loves food!

We spend our lives celebrating using food so we like to surround ourselves with it. Why not candles too? They are cute, no calories, and smell divine too.

If you are fortunate to live in a country that does not limit food imitation, these candle craft projects are fun to make and sell. If you do live where there is a restriction don’t worry.

In this article, I am going to teach you how to make food, drink, and dessert candles that you can create at home. We will cover some basic candle-making technics to mimic food and then move on to the recipes.

dessert candles

Basics Supplies to Make FOOD, DRINK, DESSERT Candles

Do not use utensils for food that has been used for candle making. This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience, read our full earnings disclaimer.

  • Candle Wax – I use soy, a soy/paraffin blend, paraffin, and gel wax. Each recipe will be different depending on the technic. Some recipes will call for a combination of waxes. Here is an article about wax blends.
  • Candle Wicks – Wicks are selected based on the diameter of the candle and you may need a variety.
  • Wick Stickers or Hot Glue
  • Wick Centering Tools
  • Scale – all candle making ingredients are measured by weight (what I use)
  • Double Boiler and a heat source such as a stove or hot plate, oven mitts, hot pad
  • Thermometer
  • Pouring Pitcher for each type of wax
  • Fragrance Oil
  • Long-Handled Spoons
  • Candle Container or Molds
  • Liquid Candle Dye
  • Craft or Artist Paint Brushes
  • Food Mixer / Beaters with a whisp attachment – for recipes with frosting
  • Piping Bag and Tips – for recipes with frosting
  • Paper Towel, Latex* Gloves, Apron
  • Some recipes will call for unique ingredients or tools not listed here

We will start with the simple or easiest recipes and work our way through to the more complex food candle creations.

Working with candle wax and candle wax blends has a few rules to keep in mind.

  1. Soft waxes such as soy do not work well in molds. They do not hold their shape. This type of wax works best in a container.
  2. Soy/paraffin blends are normally brittle and are not as flexible as paraffin while it is warm.
  3. All wax takes on the finish it was molded to. If the surface of the mold is not shiny the surface of the wax will not be shiny. This is true for gel wax. Silicone molds can leave a frosted finish on the surface if it has become worn or etched from use.
  4. Soy wax will absorb gel wax and over time dry it out. They do not make a good pair.
  5. Working with candle wax is very similar to working with chocolate.
  6. Sugar is flammable so embellish sparingly.

Easy Container Dessert Candles

Birthday Cake Candle

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces soy wax
  • 1.5 ounces Birthday Cake Fragrance Oil or Buttercream Fragrance Oil
  • 1/2 pint jelly jar (canning jar) or 8-ounce straight-sided glass jar
  • 1 HTP 105 Wick and wick sticker or hot glue (or equivalent)
  • 1 ounce Mod Podge (optional)
  • 2 ounces candy sprinkles
  1. Prepare the candle jar by brushing on Mod Podge covering the insides of the candle jar walls.
  2. Spread the candy sprinkles around the jar by rolling them around. Let Dry
  3. Lightly Cover the sprinkles with the leftover Mod Podge to seal the sprinkles.
  4. Attach the wick to the center of the bottom of the jar.
  5. In a double boiler, melt the soy candle wax to 185 F.
  6. Remove from water and cool to 165 F, then stir in the fragrance oil.
  7. Let cool to about 135 F and gently pour in the prepared jar.
  8. Use a wick centering tool to hold the wick upright and centered.

Strawberry or Cherry Cheesecake Candle Recipe

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces soy wax
  • 2 ounces gel wax
  • ¾ ounce Cheesecake Fragrance Oil
  • ¾ ounce Strawberry or Cherry Fragrance Oil
  • Red and Brown Liquid Candle Dye
  • ½ Pint Canning Jar
  • HTP 105 Wick and sticker (or equivalent)
  1. Attach an HTP 105 wick to the center of a ½ pint Jelly Canning Jar
  2. Melt the soy wax in your double boiler until it reaches 185 F.
  3. Remove from heat and divide into 3 bowls or glass measuring pitcher.
  4. In one bowl add the cheesecake fragrance oil, stir until clear.
  5. In the second bowl add 1 drop of red candle dye and the strawberry or cherry fragrance oil, stir until clear.
  6. In the third bowl add ½ drop (or tip of a toothpick) brown candle dye, stir until clear.
  7. Melt the gel wax to 185 F and fold into the red candle wax mixture but do not completely mix.
  8. Fold the soy candle wax in each bowl as the wax cools until it has the consistency of mashed potatoes.
  9. With a fork, fluff the brown candle wax until it looks like crumbles.
  10. Spoon each layer in the candle starting with the brown crumble at the bottom.
  11. Spoon a layer of the Cheesecake scented white candle wax on the brown crumble.
  12. Spoon a layer of the Strawberry or Cherry scented red candle wax mixture next.
  13. Alternate layers until all of the candle wax is used. Keeping the wick centered as you fill the jar.
  14. Sprinkle any leftover crumble on top. Trim the wick to about ¼”.

You can also top these off with a swirl of candle wax frosting and sprinkles.

You cannot make candles with real fruit. Organic material will spoil. Yuck.

How do you make candle wax look like frosting?

Many dessert candles are made with candle wax that is meant to look like frosting. Once you learn this technique, adding to the top of your candles finishes it off.

You can use candle wax frosting on top of candles that look like cake or pie. You can put a dollop on as a garnish. It can be used to hold embeds.

Soy candle wax has a melting point of around 120 F. When the candle wax is still warm, between the temperature of 100 and 120 F it is firm enough to be solid but soft enough to be whipped with a mixer. At this temperature, Place the candle wax in a piping bag with a tip and squeeze out like you would with frosting.

This technique takes practice to get a feel for. There is a short time to work with the wax as it cools and begins to harden and will no longer pipe through as frosting. It helps to work in small batches until you develop your technique.

I have also found that adding 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to 1 pound of soy candle wax while mixing with an electric mixer at 110 F is a good combination for me.

Because soy wax is sensitive to temperature, certain conditions can change the outcome of your candle wax frosting. These factors are the temperature of your mixing bowls, your room temperature, and how fast you work.

Tip: If you struggle with frosting using candle wax, you can buy silicone molds made from royal icing frosting. They will be pricy but worth it.

You can also make your molds from foods. This is a cheaper option and you can customize them to your personal needs.

This comes in handy making cupcake candles.

Cupcake Candles

dessert candles shea shea bakery sugar cookie

Easy Cupcake Candle Recipe

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces soy wax
  • 1.5 ounces Fragrance oil
  • ½ pint Jelly Canning Jar
  • HTP 105 Wick and Sticker
  • Piping Bag and Star tip
  • Small heat-safe microwavable bowl
  • Liquid Candle Dye
  1. Attach the wick to the center of the canning jar.
  2. Melt the soy wax in your double boiler until 185 F. Remove from heat.
  3. Stir in the fragrance oil.
  4. Pour about 1/3 of the mixture into the small bowl. This is the frosting.
  5. Add ½ drop (tip of a toothpick) candle dye to the remaining 2/3 candle wax and stir. This will be the cake portion.
  6. Let the candle wax cool to about 135 F and pour into the canning jar.
  7. Center the wick to the top of the jar. Let cool and solidify.
  8. Take the 1/3 white candle wax that you poured in the bowl and whisk until the consistency of mashed potatoes. You may have to re-heat the mixture in 30-second intervals in the microwave if it has solidified.
  9. Spoon the candle wax frosting in the piping bag and pipe on top of the candle.
  10. Keep the wick centered. Let the candle cure.

If you are making many of these, you can make the cake part of the candle in one session and the frosting part of the cupcake in another session.

Cupcake Candle Recipe

These require a candle wax that is designed as a pillar wax. Container waxes are too soft and may not hold their shape.

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces soy/paraffin blend
  • ¾ ounce Fragrance Oil
  • HTP 83 Wick (wick test for your size cupcake)
  • Piping Bag and Star Tip
  • Small heat-safe microwavable bowl
  • Liquid Candle Dye
  • Long 3 mm Diameter Drill Bit
  • Silicone Cupcake Liner (form)
  1. Melt the soy wax in your double boiler until 185 F. Remove from heat.
  2. Stir in the fragrance oil.
  3. Pour about 1/3 of the mixture into the small bowl. This is the frosting.
  4. Add ½ drop (tip of a toothpick) candle dye to the remaining 2/3 candle wax and stir. This will be the cake portion.
  5. Let the candle wax cool to about 165 F and pour into the cupcake liner.
  6. Let cool and solidify.
  7. Take the 1/3 white candle wax that you poured in the bowl and whisk until the consistency of mashed potatoes. You may have to re-heat the mixture in 30-second intervals in the microwave if it has solidified.
  8. Spoon the candle wax frosting in the piping bag and pipe on top of the candle. Cover Completely.
  9. After the candle has completely cooled for about 4 hours, gently drill through the center of the cupcake to make room for the wick. Thread the wick through and gently push the wick tab into the bottom of the candle.
  10. Let the candle cure.

If you are making many of these, you can make the cake part of the candle in one session and the frosting part of the cupcake in another session.

Candle Wax Syrup

Topping off your cupcake with syrup makes it look more real. The syrup can be made in any “flavor” by choosing the color appropriate to the flavor.

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces Gel Wax
  • ¼  Ounce Paraffin Wax (or soy)
  • Fragrance Oil (optional)- must be made for gel wax
  • Candle Wax Dye
  • Melt the gel wax in a pouring pitcher over low to medium heat. USE CAUTION. Gel wax must be heated directly on the heat source. Take the pouring pitcher off and on if it solidifies to re-melt. Do not leave it on the heat source. Heat until liquid.
  • Add a slight amount of candle wax dye until you have reached your desired color.
  • Add paraffin wax (or soy) a little at a time, stirring until the gel wax becomes opaque. Some syrup is more clear than others. Adding paraffin will make the gel wax cloudy to simulate syrup. It does not take much.
  • Spoon the mixture over your creation.
  • Reheat as needed. Gel wax solidifies quickly.

Candle Wax Ice Cubes in Soda Recipe

Gel wax poured in ice cube silicone ice cube trays or cut into cubes looks like ice.

  1. Place cubes of scented gel wax in a wicked candle jar.
  2. Prepare Gel wax as described in the Candle wax syrup method omitting the paraffin (or soy). Use less colorant to make the liquid part of the soda more transparent and believable.
  3. Pour the colored gel wax into the candle jar with the cubed gel. The bubbles will stay in the gel just like soda.

Champaign Candle Recipe

This is an easy candle recipe that looks just like a drink.

Ingredients

  • 6 Ounces Gel Wax
  • Cotton Wick (no wick tab)
  • Metal Skewer
  • Standard Champagne Glass
  1. Melt the gel wax in a pouring pitcher over low to medium heat. USE CAUTION. Gel wax must be heated directly on the heat source. Take the pouring pitcher off and on if it solidifies to re-melt. Do not leave it on the heat source. Heat until liquid.
  2. Add a slight amount of candle wax dye until you have reached your desired color.
  3. Place the skewer in the center of the glass as a place holder for the wick.
  4. Pour the gel wax into the champagne glass.
  5. Remove the skewer and replace it with a wick.