Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Buttercream

Decorating By Jackie Updated 26 May 2016 , 8:00pm by gfbaby

dolcesunshine20 Posted 24 Mar 2006 , 12:40pm
post #121 of 708
Originally Posted by manatee19

I just found this awesome thread, and got a little confused....

I like the idea to mix the two buttercreams but which 2 am I mixing? Regualr buttercream and ?????

I don't know what IMBC. I would love to try this.


Hi manatee19,
IMBC is Italian Meringue Buttercream. It's a meringue based buttercream that isn't as sweet as the powdered sugar version. Personally, I prefer the powdered sugar version, but lots of people think it's too sweet. Today I'm going to try mixing the two together like some of the others have done.

manatee19 Posted 24 Mar 2006 , 5:23pm
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Thanks dolcesunshine20!

That sounds good. I've never heard or tried IMBC. Do you have a good recipe or one to recommend? Maybe that will help my taste buds. I love BC by itself, but once it's with cake, it's too much for me. I'm excited to try it.

Thanks again.

patton78 Posted 24 Mar 2006 , 5:37pm
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A few tricks I have learned...

Always make chocolate buttecream icing as a base for black, you will use much less color and it will not taste bitter. Using a chocolate buttercream as a base for any dark color is a good idea because it requires less color to be added.

I always thought it was best to beat buttercream for a long time to make it fluffy and smooth but the exact opposite is true. Just beat for as long as you have to in order to incorporate all ingrediants well, usually only 1 to 2 minutes

Also, I have learned that when making chocolate buttercream with melted chocolate, it is best to use the bar baking chocolate, not chocolate chips. Chocolate chips are made to withstand heat, therefore do not melt as well or as smoothly as bar chocolate. Using the bar will result in a fluffier icing

dolcesunshine20 Posted 24 Mar 2006 , 9:55pm
post #124 of 708
Originally Posted by manatee19

Thanks dolcesunshine20!

That sounds good. I've never heard or tried IMBC. Do you have a good recipe or one to recommend? Maybe that will help my taste buds. I love BC by itself, but once it's with cake, it's too much for me. I'm excited to try it.

Thanks again.

Hi Stephanie,
I personally have never made the IMBC recipe listed on this site in the recipe files, but I think there are rave reviews about it. The reason I have never made it is that almost all the time my customers will ask me whether or not there is shortening in the icing recipe. I have made icing with shortening that tasted so good you couldn't tell it, but most people will freak out if they hear that my recipe has shortening. I tried a recipe yesterday for Swiss Meringue buttercream, but I wasn't crazy about how it turned out. However, I have used Sylvia Weinstock's Swiss Meringue recipe and was pleased with it. I'll try to email it to you if you're interested.

Have fun with all this new info!!

meems Posted 24 Mar 2006 , 11:38pm
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Thanks to all who have given the idea of mixing powdered sugar buttercream and Italian buttercream some thought.

For my purposes, the combined icing pipes well and works well with roses. Most importantly, it's lighter and not so sweet as either recipe seems to be separately.

People practically swoon over the stuff. Go figure.

janabear Posted 3 Apr 2006 , 6:37am
post #126 of 708
Originally Posted by andrealinn

Great ideas everyone!

I recently made a cake (frosted in white buttercream) that had black icing writing on it. I used the wilton white buttercream and tinted it black. Took a whole lot of gel color to get the black I wanted. So, I did the cake, it looked great, and a few hours later, it was like the black had bled onto the white, creating a 'purple-ish shadow' on the white buttercream underneath. What is the best way to avoid this? Start with chocolate buttercream?

My friends have told me they've had similar problems with red writing on white buttercream. Suggestions?

not sure if anyone has replied to this, but i start with chocolate icing if making black icing. also, adding a tbsp of wilton meringue powder to the icing will help to stabilize it and prevent bleeding.

doitallmom Posted 12 Apr 2006 , 5:27am
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t's a little late and I don't quite hav ethe time to read all of the great tips to make sure that I don't repeat them, but I think this is a magnificent idea ad I'll be sure to save this one!!! Thanks in advance Jackie.

Right_in_the_muffins Posted 15 Apr 2006 , 11:22pm
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To smooth my butter cream really well I learned from a dear brilliant friend of mine to use a bench scraper to smooth out the frosting first it is level square SHARP and doesn't nick or chip easily and is more comfortable in my hand than a spatula.

once the icing is spread out evenly and as smooth as you can get it use a fine spray mister with water held far away from the cake, then smooth with your bench scraper tool.

Susecita Posted 16 Apr 2006 , 11:23pm
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I just started working at a bakery and the number one rule for keeping the writing from bleeding (this happens when using red or black bc) is to pipe either piping gel OR chocolate buttercream and then trace over with the red/black color. This will keep the colors from bleeding. It works great although you do need some precision. Now Im thinking that maybe you can just put a layer of pipping gel on the are where you are writing to serve as your canvas.


dolcesunshine20 Posted 17 Apr 2006 , 12:09pm
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I just found a combination that I was really happy with. I used my normal buttercream recipe except for in place of the unsalted butter I normally use, I used Land O' Lakes salted butter. The icing turned out almost a pure white and I was totally thrilled with the taste!!! Here's the recipe:
8 c. powdered sugar
1 c. butter
1/2 c. milk
2 t. clear vanilla
1 t. almond

ajoycake Posted 23 Apr 2006 , 11:14pm
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My tip is the paper towel method of smothing the frosting, try viva for flat or patterened toweling for cool designs

FunnyCakes Posted 30 Apr 2006 , 10:56am
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In my experience making a ganache first, and cooling it, before mixing the chocolate into the buttercream is the best way to achieve a very tasty and smoothable icing.

I've never had luck just mixing melted chocolate into the buttercream.

Try making the butter cream then adding the ganache and beating it. Fluffy and wonderful.

yycr111 Posted 3 May 2006 , 9:00am
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This is a nice topic for me....and also everybody. I have been trying to make roses from buttercream however it turned out to be something else. It melted once I started piping it....I was so frustrated. In my country, the hot weather seems to be a big factor. I am still searching for the right frostings that will hold still during the practices. I have seen many recipes that used meringue powder (which is difficult to find in my country), any ideas how I can actually changed the recipes or substitute the powder into something else?

dolcesunshine20 Posted 3 May 2006 , 12:29pm
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yycr111, what kind of buttercream do you use?? I think that one of the best ways to achieve a durable buttercream is using an all shortening/powdered sugar recipe. I'm not sure though about substituting the meringue powder. Maybe others will have some good ideas.=)

SimplyDenyse Posted 3 May 2006 , 8:32pm
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kaecakes thanks for the consistancy info. I just completed course 1 and at every class I never seemed to get the correct concistancies.

yycr111 Posted 4 May 2006 , 12:43am
post #136 of 708
Originally Posted by dolcesunshine20

yycr111, what kind of buttercream do you use?? I think that one of the best ways to achieve a durable buttercream is using an all shortening/powdered sugar recipe. I'm not sure though about substituting the meringue powder. Maybe others will have some good ideas.=)


I used Pillsbury buttercream icing given by a friend. She said she used it to make roses and it turned out so well. I have seen her flowers. They are so beautiful. However my flower seems to melt and cannot stand as beautiful as hers. What amaze me was she used no cone to make the roses, but mine cannot last long as hers although I used cone. My flowers dropped and melt the moment I transfer it to my cake.

1 cup of shortening
1 cup of creamwell
1 teaspoon of almond essence
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
8 cups of icing sugar
6 tbs of UHT Milk (fresh milk)

"I attach my cake, u can see the flowers (it doesn't look like one)....


dolcesunshine20 Posted 4 May 2006 , 12:26pm
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Hmmm, I've never heard of creamwell, but if it's a butter/shortening consistency type thing, you may want to up your powdered sugar a little. When I make chocolate buttercream roses, the same thing happens to me. I usually have multiple flower nails. I'll pipe one step of the rose and put it in the freezer for a few minutes. After each step, I freeze and then freeze again when it's totally done until I'm ready to transfer them to the cake. This seems to help a little. Hope you can get them figured out! I know it's frustrating when things aren't cooperating.


yycr111 Posted 5 May 2006 , 2:30am
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TQ very much dolcesunshine20 for you tips - i really think i need to spare more flower nails, so that my roses won't melt that quick in this hot weather nowadays

CrystalsCakes5 Posted 9 May 2006 , 3:37pm
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Hello! I just wanted to ask Jackie,

When will you be posting your article on this topic?
I did not want to miss it.
Will it be a whole new post?
Thank you so much!!!!!

Rodneyck Posted 11 May 2006 , 6:31am
post #140 of 708
Originally Posted by finally928

Originally Posted by sheilaattaway

Has anyone tried the upside down trick in the articles. It is the best ever. I have a hard time spreading butter cream evenly, i hate not having a perfect, smooth cake. This is the best trick ever. Everyone should try it.

icon_confused.gif Upside down trick??? what is this?

Seeing as I need all the help i can get w/ my frostings, I would love to hear what this is!!


I love this technique. I was amazed at how easy it was and how professional my cakes turned out. There is a step-by-step guide with photos in the "articles" section.

Cristacake Posted 12 May 2006 , 10:03pm
post #141 of 708

I am excited to read the finished product.

I tryed using coffee creamer in my buttercream, It was great !!!
There is so many coffee creamer flavors that you can easly and quickly add so many exctiing flavors to you buttercream.

God Bless

mrskennyprice Posted 13 May 2006 , 12:59am
post #142 of 708

In my opinion, a meringue buttercream tastes the best, crusting buttercream is the easiest to get a smooth finish on, and a shortening buttercream is the easiest and best for piping designs (the shortening doesn't 'break down' like butter does when heated by your hands).

bfisher11 Posted 18 May 2006 , 5:44pm
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Is there a good way to color buttercream icing black WITHOUT the awful taste??? I am doing a batman cake this weekend, and I dont want to have to use the MMF thumbsdown.gif . I personally think that is the worst tasting stuff to put on cakes. An suggestions would be great! Thank You in advance!

puzzlegut Posted 18 May 2006 , 9:43pm
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Hi. This is my first time posting here and I will have to agree, this site IS very addictive icon_biggrin.gif

Anyway, I've been decorating cakes as a hobby for a few years now. I've been using an icing recipe that I got from my cake decorating class:

1 cup Crisco
1 (2 LB.) bag powdered sugar
1 tsp. almond extract
2/3 cup milk (approx)

For the most part, I've been pretty happy with how the frosting works and tastes. However, one of my main problems comes from trying to smooth it out. I'll try to let it set for a few minutes after giving it the final coat of frosting (I've even tried putting it in the freezer for a few minutes) but when I try to smooth it out (putting my spatchula under hot water and drying it off), it doesn't make my cake as smooth as I like (I'm a perfectionist).

I guess what I'm wondering is if the buttercream recipe that I'm using isn't the kind that crusts in order for me to be able to smooth it out. Any ideas or suggestions? Thanks.

Ishynooshy Posted 25 May 2006 , 9:17am
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I live in Sydney, Austraila and have absolutely no idea where to find "Criso". I've looked everywhere in the supermarkets and they just don't have it.

Can anyone tell me if there is some subtitute to it or if it comes under another brand?


DeniseMarlaine Posted 30 May 2006 , 2:40am
post #146 of 708

Ishynooshy, Crisco is partially hydrogenated vegetable shortening. Here in the U.S., we buy it in 1 cup sticks so it's perfect for a single recipe BC. I looked for a place to order online and it looks like www.smuckers.com would be the place to start. You might have to call them though--I wasn't able to figure out their order process. Good luck!

skylightsky Posted 31 May 2006 , 4:51am
post #147 of 708

PLEASE provide depth.

I have tried Swiss Buttercream, Italian Buttercream, CreamCheese frosting and such...

General information, or things like "keep hot sugar mixture away from the sides and beater" are just not enough. I WANT DEPTH of information. I realize some readers will be new to the idea of making buttercream, but still. Some of us want some "meat" to the article rather than just "milk."

Just all I'm askin' so take my comment with a grain of salt.

ps: The french buttercream recipe in response to one of my posts was VERY much appreciated. Perhaps you could take a look...

luvbakin Posted 2 Jun 2006 , 9:42pm
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Hi, newbie here. I have a trick for making the BC not so sweet. I mix the BC in my stand mixer on medium for an additional 2-3 minutes. This really works. Taste it when you think you are done, then again after an additional 2-3 minutes. If you do this on medium you won't get extra air bubbles either.

rachpizano Posted 9 Jun 2006 , 4:06am
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Does vivo work better then parchment paper?? I always smooth my burtter cream with parchment paper after it crusts.

winter Posted 9 Jun 2006 , 4:15pm
post #150 of 708

Hi, I always add 1-2 teaspoons of flour to my buttercream so that it's not so sweet.

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