This has truly become my go-to recipe for frosting basic cakes and cupcakes when traditional American buttercream is requested – it has such a wonderful flavor and consistency and pipes like a dream for cupcakes! I’ve modified the flavor by adding melted white chocolate for white chocolate buttercream and strawberry puree for a lovely fresh strawberry buttercream – the possibilities are truly endless! Hope you all enjoy as much as I do! :)



Amount Ingredient 4 Sticks unsalted butter, room temp 1 – 2lb Bag powdered sugar, sifted 1/4 tsp salt 1 & 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 1/4 cup buttermilk


Cream your softened butter in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until light in color and smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar until all has been used (I usually scrape down the side of the bowl to make sure all has been incorporated). Add salt and vanilla flavoring – mix well. Slowly add the buttermilk to achieve desired consistency – I find that adding the full 1/4 cup is usually a good piping consistency for my cupcakes, but you may prefer more or less – completely up to you! Scrape your bowl once more and mix on a slightly higher speed to fluff up your buttercream. Fill your piping bag or frost away! (Also, I will say that when you can find the full-fat buttermilk, you’ll get an even better flavor out of your buttercream!)


GarciaGM Says... 2012-05-29 17:35:47

I'm all about some buttermilk when I cook. But you know the top two questions on everybody's mind, so I'll throw them out there. How does this hold up to heat? How long would you recommend this can stay at room temperature? I've been looking for an all-butter American BC, so maybe you've just given it to me! Thanks!

ButRCream Says... 2012-05-29 19:37:09

GarciaGM - I'm sure! :) Okay, as far as the heat - I'll be honest, I've not had a whole lot of experience with that just yet - it actually does develop a slight crust to it, but I definitely wouldn't recommend letting it sit outside during 90+ degree heat! It has done well as long as it's in air conditioning for me. I just wouldn't have a whole lot of faith in putting it outside and testing it - I've considered trying a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of shortening and butter and seeing how it holds up - if anyone decides to give it a go, please feel free to let me know how it does! As far as the room temp question - I don't know the official rules on this, but I do not let it sit out longer than a day. I just don't feel comfortable with any more than that - maybe it would be fine, but nah - not for me! ;)

CalhounsCakery Says... 2012-05-29 19:38:16

I use an all butter buttercream, pretty much the same as this one. It holds up fine. I have my cakes on the counter for 3-4 days before it's all eaten. Not the greatest in heat. I will sub in some shortning if it's really hot out.

cyndyMay Says... 2012-05-30 04:09:46

How much white chocolate did you add and in what stage did you add it i would like to try this recipe for this sat. 6/02/2012..... need to make Elmo cupcakes and do not want to use the swiss meringue frosting for children TY Cynthia

GarciaGM Says... 2012-05-30 05:29:47

Thanks for sharing ButRCream, I look forward to the opportunity to try this out!!

kathmaud1251 Says... 2012-05-30 12:48:55

could someone please tell me what shortening is.what would i ask for in england

icer101 Says... 2012-05-30 18:33:45

Mirjana0527 Says... 2012-05-30 19:45:37

I would love to know how to add the white chocolate too. Please tell : )

ButRCream Says... 2012-05-31 06:19:41

Okay, for those who are asking about the white chocolate version, I have to apologize - I never really measured mine out - just added until I was happy with the flavor! (sorry!) But, this is how I did it - I used a bag of Ghiradelli white chocolate morsels and melted them down in a double boiler before I started my buttercream, then set them aside to let the melted chocolate cool slightly while I was preparing my buttercream. I didn't add the white chocolate until I'd completed the buttercream as directed in the steps above. For myself and my tastes, I almost added the full melted bag - think it was closer to 3/4 of the bag of melted chips to get a nice, white chocolate taste to my buttercream. I just slowly poured the cooled, melted chocolate into my buttercream while the mixer was on low and after I'd added all that I wanted, I scraped the sides of my bowl and turned up the speed to whip the buttercream to a nice, fluffy consistency. Hope this made sense and was helpful! :)

amwoods Says... 2012-05-31 08:05:37

Kathmaud1250, I found this info on the internet, "vegetable shortening is called white vegetable fat and is usually sold under the brand names of 'trex' and 'white flora'." Hope this helps.

Stepahnie_Gadsby Says... 2012-05-31 09:08:36

You can buy Trex from Waitrose. Last time I bought some it was around £1.30 for a tub. Not sure of the weight though, probably 500g

kathmaud1251 Says... 2012-06-02 08:57:01

thanks everyone,its made it a lot clearer, i nearly bought a packet of lard.

karukaru Says... 2012-06-04 11:31:33

WIll it hold fine in cupcakes with fondant toppers?

The4manxies Says... 2012-06-04 14:39:59

Kathmaud1251 - wouldn't recommend you use Trex in your buttercream, not in the UK anyway... just the thought of it makes me feel sick! I don't think any British cake makers worth their salt would use anything other than butter in their buttercream... after all, shouldn't buttercream taste of butter???

Seashell48 Says... 2012-06-05 19:36:11

The reason why we use shortening in this country, is because the weather in some states get so hot and humid and butter alone will melt. What I usualy do is to put more butter and couple tablespoons of high ratio shortenning and a tablespoon of merengue powder, that will keep the icing from melting

cakes-more Says... 2012-06-06 13:04:34

Another suggestion is when you use all shortening...add butter flavoring. I always use all shortening and everyone raves over my buttercream icing.

cakelady1958 Says... 2012-06-07 11:40:21

Can't wait to try it. Thanks for sharing...all comments and tips are very useful..

lollie123 Says... 2012-06-09 06:50:34

does anybody know anything about poured BUTTERCREAM? I am having a real disaster trying to frost 2 in mini cakes.... PLEASE HELP ME!!!

ButRCream Says... 2012-06-12 03:33:37

karukaru - I use this buttercream with my fondant toppers all the time and it holds up quite nicely - no problems! :)

katiegc Says... 2012-06-20 12:07:26

Making "american style" vanilla butter creams for clients has always driven me crazy. I find them too cloyingly sweet. I tried adding some lemon juice, using whipping cream instead of milk and, while my clients still enjoyed them, I didn't. I wanted PERFECTION!! Well, I found it in this recipe. The higher butter to powdered sugar ratio was genius and using buttermilk to temper the sweetness - divine! I recently did a 4-tier wedding cake (red velvet, vanilla and chocolate tiers) and this icing was wonderful. It piped beautifully, was incredibly smooth, and held up on a 75 degree Colorado afternoon for over 3 hours. Also held up with gum paste decorations. I've already tried white chocolate and strawberry variations. I've officially thrown out my other vanilla icing recipes. Thanks very much! Katie's Cakes

julz210 Says... 2012-06-26 10:11:06

Do you know by chance how many cups of icing this recipe makes?

ButRCream Says... 2012-06-27 07:09:59

katiegc - So glad to hear you're enjoying this buttercream as much as I do!! julz210 - My guess is you get appx 4 cups total? I know I can easily frost four dozen cupcakes with one full recipe. Hope this helps!!

aleyah Says... 2012-07-19 13:50:27

How well does this icing work to make in advance? I need to send a batch with the cupcakes for a destination wedding, to be frosted on site, a day or two before. Would it work to just make, refridgerate and then bring to room temp and beat again?

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