A swirl of this creamy Vanilla Buttercream Frosting adds the perfect decoration to cupcakes, cakes, and cookies. This frosting recipe is easy to mix up, spreads and pipes great, and tastes absolutely delicious.
Have you been searching for the perfect vanilla frosting recipe? If so, we have a great recipe for you. Our vanilla buttercream frosting is a creamy and delicious addition to any baked good.
It's easy to make and will add a great flavor to all your desserts. You can even use it as a filling in between cake layers or spread it on cookies or chocolate chip brownies!
Why This Recipe Works
This vanilla buttercream frosting was the very first frosting recipe that I learned to make. Years ago I took a Wilton cake decorating class where we learned different frosting techniques. This frosting has been my go to recipe for sheet cakes and cupcakes ever since then.
Our frosting tastes so much better than those store-bought canned frostings. Plus, there are no unnecessary ingredients or preservatives in this homemade buttercream frosting.
You will be able to make your desserts taste and look like they came straight out of a bakery with our easy instructions and simple ingredients. And it takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. How awesome is that?
We promise that once you try our vanilla frosting it will become your secret weapon for making mouthwatering desserts for friends and family.
This delicious, creamy vanilla frosting is great for all your baking needs. Use it for cupcakes, cakes, and cookies! You can make it in just a few minutes with ingredients that are probably already in your kitchen.
- Butter - Unsalted and softened to room temperature before using. If you used salted butter, adjust the amount of salt in the recipe.
- Salt - Used to balance out the sweetness from the confectioners sugar.
- Vanilla Extract - Adds a great vanilla flavor.
- Heavy Whipping Cream - Adds flavor and fat and give the buttercream a light and fluffy texture. You can also use milk or water.
- Powdered Sugar - Sweetens and thickens the buttercream frosting.
How to make Vanilla Buttercream
Our easy-to-follow recipe will have you whipping up a batch of frosting any time you need a topping. Once you taste how good it is, you will use this homemade vanilla buttercream frosting recipe for all your baked goods.
- Use a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment to beat the softened butter, vanilla, and salt in a large bowl until creamy.
- Slowly add the heavy cream and powdered sugar until mixed in.
- Continue to beat the mixture on high for 1-2 minutes or until it is light and fluffy.
- Spread the vanilla frosting on a cake or spoon it into a piping bag fitted with icing tips to decorate cupcakes.
If you are not using your buttercream frosting right away, keep it in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Let it come to room temperature before using. You may need to whip it again to get it back to a light and creamy texture.
You can also freeze this easy vanilla buttercream frosting in an airtight container for several weeks. When you are ready to use it, remove the frosting from the freezer the night before. Defrost it in the refrigerator overnight.
Recipe Tips & Variations
- Looking for a pure white vanilla frosting? Use vegetable shortening in place of the butter and a clear butter and vanilla extract.
- Make a stabilized frosting by using half butter and half shortening. This will create a frosting that will hold up better to heat and humidity.
- Cover the bowl of frosting with saran wrap when you are not using it. This will help to avoid getting a crust on the frosting.
- If you are adding sprinkles to your cake or cupcakes, do it as soon as you are done frosting them. This way the sprinkles will stick to the frosting before it develops a "crust".
- Change the flavor by using different extracts like lemon or almond.
- Use gel icing colors to tint the frosting to your desired color without changing the frosting consistency.
- If your frosting is too thin, add a little more powdered sugar. If the frosting is too thick, add a little more liquid.
- Use a thin consistency frosting for frosting cakes and writing words. Use a medium consistency for piping stars, shells, or swirls on cupcakes.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does buttercream last?
If properly stored, the frosting will last 3-4 weeks in the fridge and 2-3 months in the freezer.
Can you leave cupcakes frosted with vanilla buttercream out on the counter?
Yes, you can leave frosted cupcakes or cakes in a sealed container for 1-2 days. If they last longer than that, place them in the refrigerator.
Why is my frosting too thin? Or too stiff?
It all depends on the amount of confectioners sugar and liquids that you used when making the frosting. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar at a time to the frosting if it is too thin. Add liquid 1 tablespoon at a time to the frosting if it is too stiff.
Different regions will also affect the texture of the frosting. If you live in a hot or humid climate, turn on the air conditioning before making frosting.
How much frosting does this make?
You can frost 24 cupcakes, a 9x13 cake, or 2 - 8 inch round cakes with this frosting recipe.
Uses for Vanilla Frosting
- Dark Chocolate Layer Cake
- Fourth of July Cupcakes
- Pumpkin Filled Cupcakes
- Oatmeal Creme Pie Cupcakes
- Chocolate Cupcakes with Raspberry Filling
More Frosting Recipes
- Salted Caramel Frosting
- Easy Whipped Cream Recipe
- Marshmallow Buttercream
- Easy Peanut Butter Frosting
- Dark Chocolate Frosting
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- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2-4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream (see note below)
- 4-5 cups powdered sugar
- Beat the butter, salt, and vanilla until creamy.
- Slowly mix in heavy cream and 4 cups powdered sugar until completely mixed in. Beat on high speed for 1-2 minutes or until light and fluffy.
- Spread or pipe on cupcakes, cake, or cookies.
- Use 2 tablespoons heavy cream for medium consistency to pipe dots, make swirls, or create flowers. Use 4 tablespoons heavy cream for thin consistency to frost cakes, make borders, and write words.
- If the frosting is too soft, beat in the additional cup of sugar until you get the consistency you want or like.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 32 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 326Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 17mgSodium: 36mgCarbohydrates: 69gFiber: 0gSugar: 67gProtein: 0g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and are not guaranteed to be accurate. If you need special diet advice, please see a registered dietician.