Gritty Buttercream Icing

Decorating By snoopy3 Updated 16 Aug 2009 , 5:59pm by all4cake

snoopy3 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:34am
post #1 of 13

I got a complaint that my icing was a little gritty. The recipe I use is 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup shortening, 4 cups icing sugar, pinch salt, 1 tsp vanilla and 2-3 tbsp milk. I am in Canada and I use Roger's Icing sugar.

Any suggestions??

12 replies
MacsMom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:46am
post #2 of 13

Is icing sugar the same as powdered sugar? I use popcorn salt to reduce grit from salt crystals, and I beat my buttercream for a very long time to give it a nicely whipped texture. I also add meringue powder to help it along (2 T per 2 lbs of powdered sugar).

snoopy3 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:48am
post #3 of 13

sorry, yes it is powder sugar. I can't find popcorn salt anywhere here, I just use regular table salt. Doesn't mixing it for a long time make a lot air bubbles??

gerripje Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:50am
post #4 of 13

Hi, I'm in Canada and use Roger's also! Do you live near a Walmart? They have icing sugar that is 100% cane sugar as opposed to the beet sugar. I've asked if there is a difference and everyone didn't think so. I can't say that I've made a whole lot of batches of icing and use a similar recipe to you, but sometimes I notice a difference in the sugars. Maybe it has to with the weather?? I don't know for sure, I have read that sometimes you just get a bag of sugar that's 'off' somehow. Where abouts are you? Here in southern Alberta the humidity can change so much from day to day, but usually it's dry. I guess I really didn't have any good answer for ya!!

snoopy3 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:52am
post #5 of 13

Thanks! I am in Edmonton, so yes, I can definetly find a Walmart icon_wink.gif
It is not really gritty, just a little and it is almost always like that... and I have made a lot of batches of icing. I don't know!

newnancy Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:55am
post #6 of 13

A few weeks back there was another thread on CC about this topic & discussing cane sugar vs. beet sugar, maybe you can find it. I believe Dominos is cane sugar & that is better. HTH

gerripje Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:58am
post #7 of 13

I know what you're talking about, actually. Sometimes when I'm kneading the icing sugar into fondant or gum paste it has such a weird feeling to it that gives me the creeps!! I know that sounds strange!! It seems like it's always hit and miss with me, some icing is good and some isn't.

gerripje Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:59am
post #8 of 13

I guess it's kinda hard not being close to a Walmart any more. icon_redface.gif

gerripje Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:01am
post #9 of 13

By the way, where do you find cake decorating stuff in Edmonton? Is there a big store or do you have to rely on online ordering and whatever Michael's has?

bcake1960 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:08am
post #10 of 13

I have a batch everynow and then that has a gritty texture.. I just assumed it was the weather.. humidity or what ever.. In the summer time we cool our house with an evaporative cooler.. (water cooler) I really have to keep my powdered sugar in a tightly sealed container or I find it does make my frosting gritty.. I really think it is the weather or what ever the powdered sugar has been exposed to on the way to you... your not alone...

stephanie214 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:31am
post #11 of 13

Try mixing the salt in with your sugar instead of adding it straight to your cream mixture.

HTH thumbs_up.gif

MacsMom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 3:40pm
post #12 of 13
Originally Posted by snoopy3

sorry, yes it is powder sugar. I can't find popcorn salt anywhere here, I just use regular table salt. Doesn't mixing it for a long time make a lot air bubbles??

Funny, I can't find it either! So I grind my salt in a coffee grinder. A brand new grinder would be best so you don't have to fight hidden coffee particles. It's much, much cheaper than buying popcorn salt, too icon_wink.gif

And no, air bubbles don't form. It just gets whipped - lighter and fluffier.
Here is my recipe - I use all the extra stuff to help reduce the sweetness (I know, it's frosting!). This recipe crusts.

1-2/3 c hi-ratio shortening (if using Crisco, use 2 cups)
2 lbs PS
1/4 c flour  
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons meringue powder
1 teaspoon popcorn salt
2 T corn syrup
3/4 cup vanilla coffee creamer
1 oz Wilton butter flavor (any butter flavor)

all4cake Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 5:59pm
post #13 of 13

A couple of months ago, I ordered flavoring. My regular brand (alcohol based) was out so I ordered a different (reliable) brand. I didn't realize until I went to use it that it was oil based. Still, I thought it'd work. So, I used it. OMG!!!!!!!!!!! It was grainy to the point of being pebbly! I could not figure out wth caused this freakish result.

Fast forward a bit...I finally got to order my flavorings. Made icing again...perfect.

Fast forward a bit more...out of regular so I retrieved the now "back up" flavorings. Crap! It's pebbly again! I just dumped 30 bucks+ of freakin' buttercream! So, if ya'll happen to use oil based flavorings, that may be wreaking havoc on your icing....

this has not had full experimental measures taken to determine the validity of my claim....

Just a thought for everyone to check out....

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