How to Make Glaze From Granulated Sugar

by Susan Lundman ; Updated February 17, 2017

A well-made glaze is literally the icing on the cake for any baked good that calls for a glossy sheen and sweetened crust. Made from equal parts granulated sugar and water, glaze leaves itself open to a host of interpretations. Would a mocha-flavored glaze to complement that coffee cake make your mouth water? Super simple. How about a zesty lemon glaze to go with that moist pound cake? All you need is a lemon peel. Learn the fundamentals of glazing and add a personalized touch to your cakes and confections.

Step 1

Add equal amounts (by volume) granulated sugar and water to a cooking pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.

Step 2

Simmer the sugar and water until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally, about three to five minutes.

Step 3

Cook the glaze until it thickens slightly, stirring occasionally, about two to three minutes longer.

Step 4

Take the glaze off the stove as soon as it thickens and stir in any flavoring ingredients. Cinnamon sticks, citrus zest, a drop or two of peppermint oil or fresh herbs, for example, all work well.

Step 5

Steep the flavoring ingredients in the glaze for 10 minutes. Strain the glaze through a fine-mesh sieve and into a cup or bowl.

Step 6

Allow the glaze to cool to room temperature. Drizzle the glaze over the baked good using a spoon or spouted cup.

Step 7

Store the glaze in an airtight container in the refrigerator if you don't use it immediately.

Items you will need

  • Pot
  • Water
  • Sugar
  • Measuring cups
  • Large spoon
  • Flavoring ingredients, optional
  • Bowl or other container


  • Use the glaze to soak cake pieces in trifles or as an ingredient in dessert soups. Top cookies, muffins and cakes, or spoon the cooled glaze over ice cream.

    As a topping for strawberries, use balsamic vinegar instead of water and use brown sugar instead of white, along with cinnamon, cloves and allspice.


  • Always use a heavy-bottom pan when making glaze to help prevent scorching and overcooking.

    Keep a bowl of ice water nearby to cool your hand quickly if it comes in contact with melting sugar or hot glaze.


Photo Credits

  • Demand Media

About the Author

Susan Lundman began writing about her passions of cooking, gardening, entertaining and recreation after working for a nonprofit agency, writing grants and researching child development issues. She has written professionally for six years since then. Lundman received her M.A. from Stanford University.