Difference Between Icing Sugar and Powdered Sugar

The sweet is said to be the most magical discovery of humans. The sweets have the potential to uplift someone’s mood. The sweets are even found useful for treating patients with stress and anxiety. Yet, they only have minor effects by helping in the release of dopamine.

Sugar is an important part of sweets. When it comes to baking cakes, cookies, and bread we need to decide the type of sugar we will choose. The sugar choice makes the difference in the taste and the fluffiness of the product. The bakers always know the difference between the sugars.

Icing Sugar vs Powdered Sugar

The main difference between Icing Sugar and Powdered Sugar is that these sugars have different crystals sizes. Both these sugars have different crystals sizes and the rest all the properties are the same. Icing Sugar is the sugars that help in making the Icing Pastry and other sweets. The Powered Sugars are the sugar that is used for decorating cakes and pastry.

Icing Sugar and Powdered Sugar

Icing Sugar is the crystals of sugar that are added to the sweets for sweetness and flavoring. The Crystals are even added to the tea. They have the most used sugar form in the family life also. Icing Sugar has maximum usees in the bakery during the making of sweets, cakes, and bread.

The Powdered Sugar has finely sugar crystals. They are small size crystals that are like power and they are spread over the sweets for decorating. The Powered sugar has more “X” in their description. These X stands for the size of the crystals. More the X in the description means the more finely particle sizes of the sugar.

Comparison Table Between Icing Sugar and Powered Sugar

Parameters of ComparisonIcing SugarPowdered Sugar
DefinitionThe Icing sugars are the crystals of the sugar that are even visible by the naked eyes.Powdered sugar is a small particle that is not visible by the naked eyes.
Found in yearThe Elizabeth was used in the year 1769.They can be said found in 1769 as the Powdered sugar can be formed by grinding Icing Sugar.
Particles SizeThe Crystal’s size is small but yet visible by the naked eyes. The Crystal’s size is small and not visible by the naked eyes.
Other namesThe other name of the Icing Sugar is Confectioner Sugar.Powdered sugar is also sometimes called Icing Sugar.
UsesIcing sugar is mainly used in the baking of bread, pastry, and cake.The Powered sugar is used for the decorating of the bread, cakes, and pastry.

What is Icing Sugar?

Icing sugar is the sugar that has fine crystals which are even visible by the naked eyes. They have maximum uses in the bakeries. The first time when Icing Sugar was used was in 1769 by Elizabeth. The other names of Icing sugar are Confectioner sugar.

The Icing sugars are the crystals, and the size of the crystals varies. The variation of the sugar crystals differs according to the description. The “X” is mentioned in the Icing Sugar means the size of the crystals. Thus, the more “X” in the description means the more fine crystals.

Icing Sugar is the crystals sugar which is mostly sed in bakeries. Icing sugar is found useful in making bakery products that are frozen. The frostings, fillings, and Icing are the products where they have been used. They are suited for them.

What is Powdered Sugar?

The Powdered Sugar has fine crystals size they resemble totally to the powder. The powder form; thus, the crystal’s size and particles are not seen by the naked eyes. Powdered sugar is said to be made by the grinding of the Icing sugars. The grinding was done manually earlier. At present, the machines do the work of grinding.

The Powered sugar is the fine crystals which the maximum number of the “X” in the description for the size of its fine crystals. The Powered Sugars have not been significantly different from the Icing sugar. They share all the properties similar to Icing Sugar and are also known as Confectionary Sugar.

The Powered sugar-fine particle size of the sugar makes it best for the decorating of cakes, pastry, and other bakery products. The sugar balls in small size or the chocolate small spreading are the most probable components where the powdered sugar is used.

Main Differences Between Icing Sugar and Powered Sugar

  1. The Icing Sugar has larger crystals of sugar comparable to the Powered sugar. 
  2. The Icing sugar crystals are visible by the naked eyes, but in the Powdered sugar, the size of the crystals is so fine that they are visible by the naked eyes.
  3.  The Powered sugar has more number of “X” in their description as compared to the Icing sugar. 
  4. The Powered sugar is formed by grinding the Icing Sugar, but this does not happen with the Icing Sugar. 
  5. Icing sugar is used in the bakery for the cold product, while Powdered Sugar is used in the decorating of cakes, pastry, and bread.


The Icing Sugar and the Powered sugar are the two different names, yet the sugar is the same. The U.S. native tongue uses the name of sugar. Icing and Powdered Sugar only differ in the crystal size of the sugar. The Powered sugar has the finest sugar crystals size, which resembles the Powder. The description of the powdered sugar has more “X” in it because of its fine size.

Yet, the two sugars do not differ in their properties and characteristics. The Powered sugar can even be prepared by grinding the Icing Sugar manually. On a large scale, the process is done with the help of machines. The first time when Icing sugar was used was in 1769. The small sugar crystal needs originated the idea of grinding, therefore, bringing the Powdered Sugar.


  1. https://academic.oup.com/glycob/article-abstract/26/6/571/2363201
  2. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00218839.2001.11101058
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