Duff Goldman Buttercream Recipe

Smooth, delicious buttercream frosting. Perfect for decorating cakes, cupcakes or piping buttercream flowers.

Ingredients For Duff Goldman's Buttercream

  • 10 egg whites
  • 15 ounces sugar
  • 2 1/2 pounds unsalted butter, at room temperature
Special Equipment: 5-quart mixer with bowl and whip attachment, rubber spatula

Buttercream Recipe Instructions

*Cook’s Note: Make sure to have a completely clean and dry mixing bowl when you start your process. Any fat or liquid at all in the bowl will stunt the protein development of the albumen (egg white protein) and you will not have a proper meringue at the end. The results could be disastrous.

  1. Start whipping egg whites slowly in the mixer until foamy. Increase the speed of the mixer and slowly start adding the sugar until all the sugar is incorporated. Once all the sugar is in, increase the speed of the mixer even more and whip until the mixture is shiny and stiff. You now have a meringue. You know when your meringue is done when you pull out the whip, hold it horizontally, and if you have what looks a “sparrow’s beak” on the end of the whip.
  2. Replace the whip, turn the mixer on medium and start adding the butter a bit at a time. Once all the butter is incorporated, turn the mixer on high and let mix; depending on the weather, the buttercream could take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes to form. You will know when it has formed when you hear the motor of the mixer start to slow down and whine a little bit; also, when you first add the butter, your meringue will break down and look weird and this is what you want. When the buttercream is done, the mixture will be homogeneous, consistent, and tasty.
  3. Remove the buttercream from the bowl and transfer to an airtight container. 
Buttercream can be kept at room temperature for a few days or in the refrigerator for a 1 to 2 weeks, but always use warm buttercream when icing a cake. 

To warm up the buttercream, put it back in the mixer using the whip or the paddle, and apply direct heat with a propane torch you can find at any hardware store.

Comments (16)


Thank you very much for posting this recipe. I lost it and is very hard to find, since Duff now sells his own buttercream in tubs. I am new at decorating, I really like this butter cream frosting recipe.


Is this a heat resistant recipe. All the wedding cakes I've done so far, I've had problems with the buttercream sliding off the sides due to heat.


I had the same comment, if these are fresh eggwhites, they need to be heated? And if not then your recipe should state that... local food safety laws likely prohibit the use of raw eggwhites if not heated. Even if they are heated some local cottage laws will prohibit.  But i see none of the previous questions have been answered so... 


Yes, I also would like to know how this can be safe to eat with raw egg whites. How come he does not use the usual method of making a buttercream, i.e., pouring a hot sugar syrup into beating egg whites (or yolks)? I know you can buy pasteurized egg whites but I have never had them whip up as nice as fresh whites. Please let us in on the secret!


I would agree with others regarding the risk with the raw egg whites.  I usually avoid making Swiss buttercream because I have not found a way to get the egg whites over 135' (which is what the health dept. requires).  My IBC gets to 160' giving me confidence that the eggs are safe - no matter who is eating them.


To the best of my knowledge a Health Department would shut you down if they found you were using anything but pasteurized egg whites if they had not been to a high temperature.

Cream of Tartar can also be added to your egg whites to keep them from becoming dry. I find they beat up very well with this addition of about 1/8 teaspoon for each egg white (about 100 - 110 grams).


Wow!  I would never use this recipe and am shocked Duff suggests using this.  Duff, did you forget the part where you cook the whites??  I hope he doesn't use this in his shop!!   I love my SMBC recipe and use a digital thermometer and constant whipping of the egg whites and sugar until it reaches 135 degrees.  So silky smooth.  I prefer the SMBC over the IMBC.