Marzipan is essentially ground almonds and sugar, so there is no reason why marzipan would contain gluten, and I have never seen commercially produced blocks of baking marzipan that has gluten in it. As we know, though, manufacturers put wheat flour into all sorts of unlikely things, so it is best to check if you are at all worried.

My gluten free daughter loves marzipan (as I do), and enjoys modelling tiny creatures out of it to decorate cakes … no, what am I saying … the marzipan models are always eaten before they make it to the top of any cake. They might not be the most beautiful marzipan shapes, but they do taste good!

In case you want to make your own marzipan to cover a cake, here are some variants on the recipe:


8 oz ground almonds
8 oz caster sugar (= superfine sugar)
8 oz icing sugar (= confectioners sugar)
2 eggs
few drops almond essence


8 oz ground almonds
4 oz caster sugar
4 oz icing sugar
3-4 tablespoons amaretto liqueur


8 oz ground almonds
8 oz caster sugar
4 oz icing sugar
1 egg
juice of 1/2 lemon

You get the idea – ground almonds, sugar and liquid of some kind. Mix it up to a paste and put in the fridge until you’re ready to roll it out.

Remember you will also need:

  • more icing/confectioners sugar to stop the marzipan sticking to the table and to your rolling pin
  • and then something to stick the marzipan to the cake – usually warmed apricot jam is used for this, and you could sieve it if you felt professional
  • and something to stick the icing to the marzipan – cooled boiled water is commonly used for this.

If you’re just modelling with the marzipan, then you could think about adding different food colourings to it, adding sprinkles, coating it in chocolate – whatever seems good.