Can china grass (agar-agar) be used as a substitute to gelatin in fondant cake icing?

  • Hello Poonam, and welcome to the site. I deleted your second question because I thought it was quite unrelated. Feel free to ask it again in a new question though.
    – Mien
    Sep 8, 2012 at 6:20
  • I'd prefer if the OP didn't ask that (now deleted) question again, as the answer is trivial to look up...
    – Aaronut
    Sep 8, 2012 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


Yes, there are several vegetarian fondant recipes using agar. Most tend to substitute it for gelatin in equal amounts.

Keep in mind two things:

  • Agar has a much higher melting point and sets firmer than gelatin, so the resulting icing will be less "melty".

  • The hydration process is completely different from gelatin. It doesn't bloom; it needs to be dispersed in cold/warm water and then heated all the way up to 90° C with constant agitation.

I'd recommend that you include the glycerin in any agar-based fondant recipes - they'll make it a lot easier to work with. Some gelatin recipes leave it out but IME you need it more for agar.

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