Super creamy and fluffy, not too sweet — this is quite possibly the best buttercream frosting recipe ever… A must try!
Best Buttercream Frosting
Call me crazy, but I’ve never been much of a fan of frosting. More often than not, I scrape as much of it off my slice of cake as possible — kids LOVE to sit next to me at parties!
But this buttercream frosting? Oh, this buttercream frosting… I personally think it is THE best buttercream frosting recipe. EVER. And I don’t take calling a recipe “the best” lightly.
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting Ingredients
Now I realize that there are really only so many ways to make buttercream frosting, but a truly delicious buttercream frosting is as much about the technique as it is about the ingredients.
We’ll talk technique in just a moment, but let’s start with the ingredients (and there’s just 4 of them!)… Start with fresh, high-quality ingredients: softened salted butter, heavy whipping cream, pure vanilla extract, and confectioner’s sugar.
Yes, I did specify salted butter — I prefer to use salted butter in my buttercream. However, note that the salt content can vary by brand of butter. My all-time fave is the Horizon Organic brand, but the Kirkland organic butter from Costco. In fact, I strongly suspect that it may actually be the Horizon brand repackaged for bulk sale. Feel free to experiment to find your favorite, though!
Don’t have salted butter on hand? As an alternative, you can also use unsalted butter and add about 1/8 teaspoon of table salt to the recipe.
Also, I stay away from adding shortening. Sure, it’s useful for helping the buttercream frosting hold its shape better in warm weather, but I find it creates an oily textures and dilutes the flavor. NOT what we want in a dreamy, fluffy buttercream!
How To Make Buttercream Frosting
Now we get to the technique… Whipped buttercream is the name of the game — super creamy & fluffy and not too sweet!
The key to what I consider the best buttercream frosting recipe ever starts with perfectly softened butter. We’re not talking room temperature, but you should be able to leave an impression in it fairly easily. Allow plenty of time for it to reach this consistency, especially in cooler weather. And whatever you do, please do not use the microwave to soften it — 99.9% of the time it will get too soft, and it’s impossible to recover it at that point.
Easy Buttercream Frosting In 4 Steps
Follow these four simple steps to produce a delicious buttercream:
1| Add your softened butter to a stand mixer and beat it with a flat paddle for about three minutes on medium.
2| Turn the mixer off and add the confectioner’s sugar. Mix on low until thoroughly incorporated.
3| When the butter and confectioner’s sugar start to create a dough-like ball, you can add the vanilla extract and 3 tablespoons of heavy cream. Whip on medium-high for about three minutes.
4| Continue to add more heavy cream by the tablespoon until the frosting reaches your desired consistency. Less cream equals thicker frosting and more cream creates a thinner frosting.
Voila! Is this an easy buttercream frosting recipe, or what?!
For a batch of frosting that’s the consistency of what’s shown in these photos, I used a total of 4 tablespoons of cream. It was super creamy and fluffy, the perfect consistency for piping with a large tip onto my cupcakes.
Super creamy and fluffy, not too sweet, and just 4 ingredients — this is quite possibly the best buttercream frosting recipe ever… A must try!
- 1 cup salted butter (2 sticks), softened
- 4 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 3-5 tablespoons heavy cream
- Using a paddle beater, beat softened butter on medium speed for about 3 minutes.
- Add sifted confectioner’s sugar and stir on low until incorporated.
- Add vanilla extract and 3 tablespoons of heavy cream. Beat on medium-high for 3 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides once or twice.
- If a thinner frosting is desired, add additional heavy cream 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.
Buttercream Icing Recipe Variations
I’ve had a number of requests for variations on this recipe, so I thought I’d start listing them here for easy access as I publish them. If you have a request, please contact me or leave a comment below!
- Caramel Buttercream Frosting
- Fresh Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
- Chocolate Buttercream Frosting — coming soon!
- Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting — coming soon!
- Peanut Butter Buttercream Frosting — coming soon!
- Lemon Buttercream Frosting — coming soon!
Ridiculously Simple Royal Icing Recipe
Looking for a stiffer icing for your sugar cookies? Try this ridiculously simple royal icing recipe! No egg whites, no meringue powder, just four ingredients whipped up with a hand or stand mixer, means you can get down to decorating cookies with your kids with less mess and fuss…385