(I know I could easily make my own buttercream icing, but when tub icing is on sale for $1, I can't help but be lazy and just buy premade frosting )
What you really need, of course, is to make your own buttercream. The canned stuff may be fine for frosting cakes (if you like it), but it is not a decorator frosting. (Wilton's canned frosting is a decorator frosting.)
I have decorated shaped cakes entirely with canned frosting, just to see if it can be done. It can. I didn't thicken it with anything. It softened quickly in my hands, so I kept a backup bag in the fridge and traded off.
Even at $1, I think making your own is still more economical and definitely better for decorating ... but the cans are sure quick, aren't they?
So are you saying Wilton's canned frosting is not the same as the Duncan Hines/Betty Crocker ones? Do you have a link to the Wilton's canned frosting so I know what it looks like? They aren't as cheap as the DH/BC ones so I'd probably either make my own or just stick with the $1 ones
For cupcakes, the grocery store frosting may be fine, without any thickening. Have you tried it for the kinds of decorating you want to do? For a buck, you can afford to experiment!
M and L Cakes, would corn starch work for what? Preventing color bleed? No. Stiffening canned frosting? I don't know, but why would that be preferable to powdered sugar?
I think the best approach is to use canned frosting as-is. If you need a different consistency, make your own or buy Wilton's ready made. Grocery store canned frosting is just not decorator frosting.
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