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To Die For Caramel Buttercream Frosting

One of the most popular recipes on my site is my favorite whipped buttercream frosting recipe, and I often get emails asking whether it can be turned into a chocolate buttercream, caramel buttercream, cream cheese buttercream, etc. So I figured it’s time to start sharing some variations with you all, starting with this to die for caramel frosting recipe!

This delicious caramel frosting is very similar to the basic buttercream recipe, only it uses less butter and replaces it with the easy homemade caramel sauce I shared recently. The end result is a sinfully decadent caramel frosting that’s minus the numerous artificial flavorings and preservatives found in store bought frostings.

It’s the perfect way to top off your favorite cake or cupcakes!

Caramel Frosting

Caramel Frosting

Yield: 3 cups
Prep Time: 7 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes


  • 1/2 cup salted butter (1 stick), softened
  • 1/2 cup homemade caramel sauce
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3-5 tablespoons heavy cream


  1. Using a paddle beater, beat softened butter and caramel sauce on medium speed for about 3 minutes.
  2. Add sifted confectioners' sugar and stir on low until incorporated.
  3. Add vanilla extract and 3 tablespoons of heavy cream. Beat on medium-high for 3 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides once or twice.
  4. If a thinner frosting is desired, add additional heavy cream 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached.

Have you tried this recipe?

Leave a comment below and share a photo on Instagram. Tag it @unsophisticook and hashtag it #unsophisticook!

The image above pairs this caramel frosting with my Fresh Honeycrisp Apple Cake, for a seasonal treat that’s worth waiting for!


Friday 8th of September 2017

I tried making this caramel frosting tonight and unfortunately it did not go well :( I followed the directions but it was so sticky and it never turned into a creamy, spreadable frosting. I kept beating it thinking eventually it would come together, but it never did. i also only used about 1/2 the sugar and it was sickeningly sweet. Very disappointed and not sure what went wrong.

Tara @ Unsophisticook

Saturday 9th of September 2017

Hi Tovah -- I'm sorry to hear that it didn't work out for you. Did you make your own caramel or use a store-bought version? Also, you definitely need to add all of the confectioners' sugar to get the proper consistency.


Thursday 29th of January 2015

Today I ran across your buttercream frosting recipe. It really was fabulous. The best I've ever made!!! And my granddaughter thought it was great too (I used it to frost her #10 Bday cupcakes)!

I've always used the same ingredients, yet the result was much less rewarding. I think your 3 minute technique of beating the butter first and then the frosting at the end does something great!!! Also, sifting the powdered sugar surly adds to the success. So thanks so much!!! I will definitely be making this and the variations in the future!!!

Tara @ Unsophisticook

Sunday 1st of February 2015

So happy to hear that, Cheri!


Saturday 20th of September 2014

Hi, I am thinking of using this for my baby girls birthday party cake. Is the frosting really yellow though?

Tara @ Unsophisticook

Sunday 21st of September 2014

Thais, it won't be a pure, bright white frosting, but it won't be bright yellow either -- just a pale off white.


Friday 12th of September 2014

Hello! This recipe sounds really yummy, I'm actually going to prep the caramel sauce tomorow. Was wondering if there's any way I could cut down the amount of confectioners sugar though? That usually makes frosting a little too sweet for my taste.


Saturday 29th of March 2014

This sounds/looks delicious! I plan on using this recipe to frost banana cupcakes for my son's birthday party. (And, also, your original buttercream recipe for the cake!!) I see in the original caramel sauce recipe you've made 5 jars. Do you think I would be able to make only one jar of your sauce, using the same method?

Your reply will be completely appreciated!! Thanks:)

Tara @ Unsophisticook

Sunday 30th of March 2014

Hi Natalie! This would be amazing on banana cupcakes. I don't see any reason why you couldn't just make a single jar. You'll probably just want to keep a close eye on it, as it may cook faster with only one. Enjoy!

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