Monday, July 7, 2014

Food Color Cross Reference

Over the past few months, I have mixed MANY colors using Americolor food gels.  I want to share my mixing knowledge with ALL bakers, not just the ones who use Americolor as their brand of choice.  So...I have made cross reference charts for each popular brand of food colors.  This way, you will know your brand's equivalent to Americolor and you can mix the same colors shown on my blog...the correct way.   

The Americolor Color Bias Charts (Below) are a reminder as to which color belongs to which color bias group.  This is important information to know folks!!!  If you know what groups your colors belong to, you will mix the right colors all the time.

Each chart (below) has the brand of color you are using to the left and the Americolor equivalent to the right.  Some brands have more colors than others.  If your brand doesn't have a color you need, you will need to create it in order for the final color to be accurate.  For example:  If you need Egg Yellow, but you only have Lemon Yellow, you will have to mix some Orange into the Lemon Yellow to create Egg Yellow.  (Color Tip: Electric Blue is a mix of Royal Blue and Sky Blue...both are blue-green bias)  **Click on the chart for a larger view.  Please feel free to save it and print it out for a handy cheat sheet**

Now here comes the fun part!!!  My good friend Rebecca from The Cookie Architect, has asked me to be part of her "Practice Bakes Perfect" challenge over at Cookie Connection. The theme is Summer and I am thinking "vintage"!!!  

So here it is...your color palette!!!  You must use at least 4 of these colors, but feel free to use all five of them.  Use your cross reference charts (above) to help you mix these colors if you are using a brand other than Americolor.  If you don't have the color in the formula, use what you have learned in my previous post on Color Bias to mix your colors the proper way by using my Americolor Color Bias charts (above).  Please note, there is no ratio listed for these formulas because there is no way to accurately measure food gels.  One drop from my bottle may be a different drop from your bottle and some don't even use squeeze bottle food colors.  Painters use their eyes to measure ratios and blend until they see the desired color.  This might be challenging for some of you, but it is the most accurate way of mixing colors. Just give yourself time and patience . . . and you will get it, I promise.  The best way to mix icing, is to start with your lightest color and add the darker color a little at a time until you reach the desired color (Mixing Tip: I use a knife to dab color into my icing...never drops.  This prevents over coloring your icing and going too dark).  Please note that saturated colors will deepen over time (a few hours to overnight), so try and be patient before adding more dark colors to your mix.    

My color inspiration came from these beautiful vintage beach posters (below).  

Just remember the most important thing about mixing is to have fun with it.  I can't wait to see these colors come to life, so get baking and mixing...and good luck!!! 

Have a wonderful and colorful week:-)


  1. This should prove interesting. My my husband started talking colors 30 years ago in photography it was like Chinese to me. I learned Greek, still never understood color. And when I see allot of info I go blank. I think it's a bit of diagnosed ADS.I have 9 colors. Brown, Blue, Red, Yellow, White, Pink ,Black,Green and Flesh. The avocado and teal will be tricky. So If I mix blue with green I should get teal and yellow and green I should get avocado? Please do not laugh if my questions are lame. Thanks :) <3

  2. Tina...not laughing at all!!! You are right...Teal is a mix of blue and green and Avocado is a mix of yellow and green. Teal will have a little more green in it than blue. Avocado is a little muted, so I would add the tiniest amount of brown to the yellow and green. I can't wait to see your set...good luck!!!

  3. I think I killed it before I read the post - am so excited. I learned so much from this!!!!!! Thanks a million for all of your help.

  4. Rebekah you made my day with this cross reference charts!!!! IT's difficult to find in Italy Americolor ... So I have just few of them... But have a lots of the other brands!!! And it's frustrating sometimes reading blog post from Us where everyone use them and get wonderful colors, and then I try them and get everything wrong!!! Congrats... It's something super useful!!! Thanks