Close-up of buttercream frosting swirlTipHero

Buttercream Frosting

When it comes to topping cakes, cupcakes, and other iced treats, we home bakers have a bounty of options: cream cheese frosting, fondant, marshmallows. But when it comes to truly beautiful decoration that also tastes like the stuff of dreams, there’s only one kind of frosting we want: buttercream, buttercream, and more buttercream!

Finding the perfect recipe has long been a vital goal of ours, and now, we’ve got it! Check out how we make the ultimate buttercream frosting for all your cake dreams.

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Now, we’re sure you noticed there’s an additional ingredient in our buttercream that you don’t always see: shortening! While we understand why some might prefer a buttercream made with only butter, sugar, milk and vanilla, we like the addition of shortening for how lovely it makes the frosting look as well as taste. Using shortening gets you a nice, bright white color that’s also easy to dye with food coloring, if you like. Plus, it holds its shape while also remaining light and fluffy, and it stands up to heat a little better, too.

Want to see for yourself? Of course you do! Here’s our full recipe so you can whip some up at home.

Buttercream Frosting

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 2 pounds powdered confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-½ tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. In bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and shortening on medium speed until light and fluffy.
    Cream together the butter and shortening until light and fluffyTipHero
  2. Reduce the speed of the mixer to low, and slowly and incrementally incorporate the powdered confectioners’ sugar.
  3. Add the milk and the pure vanilla extract. Mix on medium-high speed for about 10 minutes, until light and fluffy.
    Mix buttercream frosting until light and fluffyTipHero
  4. Add food coloring, as and if desired, and pipe or spread onto your dessert.
    Piping swirl of buttercream frosting on chocolate cupcakeTipHero
  5. Buttercream frosting can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks. When it is time to use it, allow the frosting to come to room temperature for 2 hours, then whip the frosting for 10 minutes before using.
Swirl of buttercream frosting on chocolate cupcakeTipHero

Simple enough, right?! This buttercream is absolutely dreamy, delicious and beautiful to behold all at once. This recipe is absolutely going to be our go-to for our baked treats in the future.

Now you tell us what you think! Do you like to use shortening in your buttercream frosting, or do you prefer to go the butter-only route? How does your usual recipe compare to this one? Do you have any tips or tricks of your own to share? Let us know if you give this one a try, and of course, come back to let us know how it turns out for you.