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Buttercream: The Delicious and Versatile Frosting

If you’re a fan of baked goods, you’re probably familiar with buttercream frosting. Made from butter, powdered sugar, and a few other ingredients, buttercream is a versatile frosting that can be used in a variety of ways. In fact, it’s so delicious and easy to make that many bakers, like myself, use it for all of our baking recipes.

One of the reasons I love buttercream is because of its taste. Unlike the frosting on store-bought cakes, which often taste artificial or overly sweet, buttercream has a rich, buttery flavor that complements a wide range of baked goods. Whether you’re making cupcakes, layer cakes, or cookies, buttercream adds a delicious touch of sweetness that takes your treats to the next level.

Buttercream is Super Easy to Make

Buttercream is also incredibly easy to make. All you need is some butter, powdered sugar, a little milk, and a bit of vanilla extract, and you’re good to go. My recipe calls for milk or heavy cream to help thin out the frosting and achieve a smoother texture, but these ingredients are optional. The best part is that you can customize your buttercream to your liking by adding different flavors or colors. For example, you can add cocoa powder for a chocolate buttercream, or food coloring for a rainbow of colors. I do recommend using gel food coloring instead of liquid when coloring any type of frosting. Since the gel coloring is not liquid, it will not impact the texture of your frosting as you add more to reach the desired color.

One of the things that sets buttercream apart from other frostings is its versatility. Not only can you use it as a frosting for cakes and cupcakes, but you can also use it as a filling between cake layers or as a glaze for cookies. It’s also great for decorating cakes, as it can be piped into all sorts of shapes and designs. For example, you can use a star tip to create a beautiful swirl design, or a petal tip to make delicate flowers.

Tastes Better Than Fondant and Store Bought Frosting

When it comes to cake decorating, buttercream is a popular choice because it’s much more delicious than fondant, which is often used to create elaborate cake designs. While fondant may look impressive, it has a reputation for being bland and overly sweet, and many people prefer the taste of buttercream. Plus, buttercream is more forgiving than fondant, as it can be smoothed out easily with a spatula or piping bag.

At the end of the day, buttercream is a versatile and delicious frosting that can elevate any baked good. Whether you’re making a simple vanilla cake or an elaborate layer cake, buttercream adds a touch of sweetness and richness that can’t be beat. So next time you’re in the mood for some baking, try using buttercream instead of store-bought frosting or fondant and see for yourself why so many bakers love this versatile frosting.

Here are some pictures and helpful tips for making the perfect buttercream:

Ingredients: Powdered sugar, whole milk, butter, and clear vanilla extract.

Notes: You can use regular vanilla extract, but if you are going to be making a white buttercream then I recommend using clear vanilla extract so you do not lose the bright white color of your frosting. Also, I always use whole milk as it helps smooth the texture of the frosting. You can substitute for other types of milk, but it really helps to have the fats in there. So if you have to substitute, swap it out for 2% or heavy whipping cream. You will also want to have a little extra powdered sugar on hand than what you need just in case you need to thicken up your frosting.

Add all of the ingredients to your mixer bowl. For measurements, view or print the recipe below. Whether you are using a stand mixer or a handheld, it is best to use a whisk style attachment.

Mix on low until combined. The lower speed will help prevent your kitchen from being covered in powdered sugar. Once combined, scrape all the way to the bottom of the bowl with a silicone spatula to make sure all of the powdered sugar is mixed in.

Now turn your mixer to high speed and mix for about 1-2 minutes. This will make the frosting fluffier and make it smoother. If you want to change the color of your frosting, now is the time. Add some of your gel food colorings. Remember, a little goes a long way, and if you add too much then the only way to make it lighter is by making more buttercream and mixing it all together. So, don’t go too crazy with the food coloring.

You are all done! Time to scrape it out of the bowl and use it on your cake, cupcakes, cookies, or whatever you’d like! Now is also a great time to give your scraped-down bowl to any kiddos or husband/wife who has been waiting around as I’m sure they would love to lick it clean 😉

Print Recipe

Vanilla Buttercream

The only buttercream recipe you need. Can easily be adjusted for different colors or flavors. You will never buy premade frosting or cakes from the grocery store ever again.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 25
Calories 152 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Electric Mixer

Ingredients
  

  • 4.5 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 3 tbsp whole milk can substitute 2% or heavy whipping cream
  • 1.5 tbsp vanilla extract clear vanilla extract is preferred

Instructions
 

  • Add powdered sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla extract to the bowl of your mixer
  • Mix on low until combined, about 1 minute
  • Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a silicone spatula to ensure that all of the powdered sugar has mixed in. If you are going to add gel food coloring do that now.
  • Mix on high for about 2 minutes. This will make your buttercream fluffier and smooth.
  • Test the buttercream. If it is too dry add a tbsp of milk. If it is too wet, add a 1/4 cup of powdered sugar.

Notes

One serving is approximately 2 tablespoons.
I discovered that there are approximately 7 cups of powdered sugar in a 32 oz bag.
If changing the color of the buttercream, I recommend using gel food coloring as it is less liquid and will not ruin the consistency of your frosting.
Substitutions:
Whole Milk: You can substitute 2% milk or heavy whipping cream. The milk is used to make the frosting smoother. If you are making buttercream for cupcakes or as a filler, it will not be the end of the world if you do not use milk as the texture will not matter as much.
White buttercream: Use clear vanilla extract
Colored buttercream: It is okay to use clear or regular vanilla extract
Pro Tip: I always freeze my cake layers before putting buttercream on. This makes it much easier to do a crumb coat, and it is easier to get the frosting to work with you.

Nutrition

Serving: 32gCalories: 152kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 0.1gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.3gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 2mgPotassium: 6mgSugar: 21gVitamin A: 230IUCalcium: 5mgIron: 0.02mg
Keyword 4 ingredient, buttercream, easy
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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