posted in Desserts

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream

This Wedding Cupcake Buttercream recipe has been featured in an extensive how-to post on The Recipe Girl blog: How to Make Wedding Cupcakes.

Scroll to the bottom of this post to watch a quick video showing you how to make this buttercream, and then showing you how to frost the cupcakes.

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream recipe from #cakes #frosting #recipe #wedding #cupcakes

The recipe was first featured here on RecipeGirl many years ago when I baked cupcakes for my son’s kindergarten teacher’s wedding.  She wanted cupcakes and had heard that I might be able to do them for her.

I ended up taking on the project, and it was so much fun.  My kitchen was covered in cupcakes.  They were a huge hit at her wedding, and everyone specifically noted how much they loved the frosting.  This is the frosting recipe!  It’s so delicious, and it’s now a big-time favorite.

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream recipe from #cakes #frosting #recipe #wedding #cupcakes

If you have questions about this icing and wedding cupcakes… it may be helpful to read through the comments/questions/answers below the recipe- many of your questions may be answered there!  Also visit this post:  How to Make Wedding Cupcakes for all of the details on when to make the cupcakes and how to store and transport them to the wedding.

This Wedding Cupcake Buttercream is my go-to recipe for icing basic cupcakes and wedding cake. It’s so easy to make, and it works through a piping bag well.  The recipe will frost 12 cupcakes with a generous swirl.  Double, triple, quadruple the recipe to frost more cupcakes!

Note that this recipe also works wonderfully for layer cakes.  It spreads on smoothly, and you can pipe on decorations too.  I use it for everything.  It has been my go-to frosting recipe for so many years!

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream recipe from #cakes #frosting #recipe #wedding #cupcakes

A simple swirl on cupcakes creates a beautiful dessert for weddings with little candy pearls sprinkled on top.

This Wedding Cupcake Buttercream is a very popular buttercream recipe- made by thousands who sing this recipe’s praises.  I have used this very recipe for all of my cupcakes for so many years now.  It’s a keeper recipe!

So many people over the years have emailed me to let me know that this is now their go-to frosting recipe too.  It turns out perfect every time.

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream recipe from #cakes #frosting #recipe #wedding #cupcakes

Click below to watch a short video showing you how to make this Wedding Cupcake Buttercream and how to frost the cupcakes!  Then scroll to the bottom and print out the recipe so you can make it at home.

Yield: Frosting for 12 cupcakes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Wedding Cupcake Buttercream


  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream (heavy or regular)


  1. In a large bowl, with a hand or stand mixer, cream together sugar and butter on low speed. Mix until well blended. Increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.
  2. Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for desired spreading/piping consistency.
  3. Scoop into a piping bag and pipe decoratively onto cupcakes, or spread onto cupcakes as desired.


  • This recipe doubles or triples well.
  • There is no need to sift the powdered sugar, unless you're worried that your sugar is quite lumpy.
  • Do not try to replace the butter with margarine or shortening- it won't work out well.
  • Add in color, if desired. I like to use colored gel paste instead of liquid food coloring- then you're not messing with adding additional liquid to the perfect consistency of the frosting. Gel paste is sold at craft stores and baking supply shops.
  • For the cupcakes in the photograph above, I used a 1G Tip by Bakery Crafts to pipe the frosting. The Wilton 1M tip works perfectly for these too.

Here are a few more frosting recipes you might enjoy:

394 Responses to “Wedding Cupcake Buttercream”

  1. postedApr 5, 2009 9:17 AM

    silly question…since there is cream in this recipe do you need to refrigerate the cupcakes after they are frosted? Thanks.

    • postedApr 5, 2009 10:06 AM

      I refrigerated them, but I left a few out for a couple of days and ate those too- they were just fine 🙂

    • postedFeb 13, 2011 3:04 PM

      @RecipeGirl, horrible recipe. It separated. Was a total mess.

    • postedFeb 13, 2011 3:17 PM

      @karenyanda@comcast.n, Hmmmm- wish I knew what happened… did it separate as you mixed it? If so, that means that you likely let it mix too long. So sorry the recipe didn’t work for you…

  2. postedMay 25, 2009 9:31 AM

    I’ve been using this recipe for years. It makes the best buttercream ever! And I rarely refrigerate them…although they don’t last for more than two days. 🙂

  3. postedJun 29, 2009 5:13 AM

    Wow, they look great – will give the recipe a go soon!

  4. postedAug 8, 2009 6:41 PM

    Was wondering is the butter salted or unsalted? Thanks.

    • postedAug 9, 2009 11:33 AM

      Debbie- on all of the recipes on this site… if it just indicates “butter,” then use salted. If unsalted is needed, I’ll typically indicate so. Enjoy!

    • postedApr 8, 2011 2:41 PM


      You really use salted butter for American Buttercream? The rule of thumb for all baked goods is unsalted unless called for, and for cooking it is the opposite. Otherwise the chemical reactions are different in baking (salt is a chemical catalyst for the gluten) if there is too much or not enough salt, or the flavor is off (in candy and creams).

    • postedApr 9, 2011 10:54 AM

      @Jenna, Yes, I really use salted. It’s what I prefer.

  5. postedAug 20, 2009 11:35 AM

    These look stunning! I’m planning to make some wedding cupcakes for a friend before the end of the month. Would you say this one holds up well enough in the heat? I just don’t want it to melt if it’s a light and fluffy frosting. Thanks!

    • postedAug 21, 2009 9:43 AM

      Caileigh- I’m not entirely sure. I refrigerated all of them until I handed them off to the bride I made them for. It was a very warm day and I know they did not refrigerate them for several hours after they took them from me (and all worked out fine). I think it would be ok as long as you didn’t keep them in a warm place. You may want to do a little testing beforehand. Good luck!

  6. postedSep 11, 2009 7:21 AM

    Your cakes look fantastic!!
    does it matter it matter if you use salted or unsalted butter? does it alter the taste in any way?

  7. postedSep 11, 2009 6:11 PM

    Hajra- if you use unsalted butter, it will have a little bit different flavor. I’d throw a pinch of salt in there if you do.

  8. postedSep 21, 2009 3:51 AM

    could you tell me which decorating tip you used to achieve the gorgeous swirls of icing? And I love the colors you chose. Very classy and elegant. Thanks!

  9. postedMar 4, 2010 3:36 PM

    Will using butter alter the white colour of the frosting? Or do you recommend using shortening for a true white colour?

    • postedMar 5, 2010 6:19 AM

      Jessica- The color you see is the color I got… kind of an off-white. I did you clear vanilla extract, but the color of butter definitely affects the end result. Using shortening will create an entirely different flavor to the icing (it won’t really be buttercream). I found this link and it looks like they used shortening and then butter “flavor” to try and achieve the same result. Hope this helps!

  10. postedApr 11, 2010 5:42 AM

    love these.
    I just got my first order to make cupcakes for a wedding. they want 100 cupcakes.
    I don’t have a big fridge to put them all in.
    How long would it be before the frosting goes bad.
    I am going to try and get them all frosted in one day then deliver them the next day.
    thanks for any tips

    • postedApr 11, 2010 5:59 AM

      I iced mine the same day that I delivered them. For the best quality for selling them, I’d say that’s the way to go. That being said though, I did keep a whole bunch at room temperature for a few days, in a covered tupperware, which we munched on and I thought they were still good. If I were you I’d make a batch, or a partial batch and test it out. See if leaving them overnight at room temperature meets your expectations for how they still taste the next day.

  11. postedApr 11, 2010 5:50 AM

    is there a difference
    in using whipping cream then milk??

    • postedApr 11, 2010 6:00 AM

      Since I haven’t tried milk, I can’t compare them. Whipping cream is much creamier & has a higher fat content than milk. I can only think that those factor into how the frosting turns out.

  12. postedMay 2, 2010 10:15 AM

    I am hosting a bridal shower today and priced cupcakes for the event. I just couldn’t afford $3.50 per cupcake! After looking at your recipes, I felt like I could do it. My cupcakes are finished and look gorgeous and taste even better…look like the $3.50 cupcakes I would have gotten at a high end bakery. I made the chocolate cupcakes with the ganache for a variety and the white cake and wedding buttercream cupcakes. Thanks for your excellent direction.

  13. postedMay 17, 2010 12:11 PM

    Where did you find the little “pearl-like” beads that you have on your cupcakes? Are they edible?

    • postedMay 17, 2010 12:48 PM

      @Ashley, They carry them at craft stores (like Michael’s) & cake decorating stores. Yep, they’re edible!

  14. postedMay 24, 2010 5:49 PM
    Kathy Brady

    Your cupcakes are lovely and have inspired me to make my own. I had a question about the frosting: are there any issues with the weather/humidity? Have you seen it separate if not kept at a proper temperature? I guess I should just go ahead and try it but I’ve thrown out too many batches to still appear sane at this point.

    • postedMay 24, 2010 7:02 PM

      @Kathy Brady, When I made them for the wedding that I did, I sent them along with the bride on a warm day. She served them inside & didn’t have any problems. I kept several at room temperature for a few days and no problems there either.

  15. postedJun 6, 2010 5:24 AM

    These cupcakes look lovely! Is it possible to freeze these and, if so, how long before they start to look or taste less than fresh?

    • postedJun 6, 2010 3:04 PM

      @Amanda, I wish I could answer that question, but I’ve never frozen these. I’d say that it would be best to experiment yourself with freezing them to see if they’ll work out for you.

  16. postedJun 10, 2010 12:17 PM

    Were you able to sprinkle the pearls on? Did they stay? I am making cupcakes for my brother’s wedding and your cupcakes are my inspiration right now! I was afraid of having to place each pearl on the cupcakes as I have read that others have done.

    • postedJun 10, 2010 9:20 PM

      @Kristin, Yes, I just sprinkled them on… soon after I swirled the icing on so that it didn’t set really well before the pearls were sprinkled on. I didn’t have any problems with them falling off.

  17. postedAug 14, 2010 5:36 AM

    I loved the look of your cupcakes. Did the cups get greasy or did you use a specific type?

    • postedAug 16, 2010 11:06 AM

      @cathi, I don’t recall the liners getting greasy. I just used regular white liners.

  18. postedAug 14, 2010 5:42 AM

    Can you use margarine instead of butter?

    • postedAug 16, 2010 11:05 AM

      @Cathi, not recommended… you won’t get that wonderful, buttery flavor at all!

  19. postedAug 21, 2010 12:21 PM
    Danielle S.

    Stupid question, I’m sure, but do you melt the butter prior to mixing with the other ingredients, or do you cut up into tabs?

    • postedAug 21, 2010 1:24 PM

      @Danielle S., No melting, just mix room temp butter w/ the other ingredients.

  20. postedAug 21, 2010 1:54 PM
    Danielle S.

    Okay thanks! one more question- does it make a difference using stick vs. tub (soft) butter? Or is this irrelevant as long as it’s room temp?

    • postedAug 22, 2010 10:06 PM

      @Danielle S., Yes, it makes a difference- do not use tub butter! Use regular stick butter- the real stuff!

  21. postedAug 27, 2010 9:17 AM

    I am making 250 cupcakes for son’s wedding. What is the sequence for frosting and freezing? Should I freeze plain cupcakes, and then frost when they thaw? Can I freeze after frosting them? Can I refrigerate for 2 days with frosting on? I will be transporting them 1 hr away,but can keep them very cool during the drive.

    • postedAug 27, 2010 10:20 AM

      @Margene, Freeze the plain cupcakes and then frost them later. Don’t freeze after frosting. I’d refrigerate them 1 day w/ frosting on, but two days might be fine too. Good luck!

  22. postedOct 13, 2010 2:25 PM

    Hi Lori!

    Does it matter what kind of coloring you use for this? Gel vs drops?

    • postedOct 14, 2010 2:07 PM

      @Becky, Depends how much color you use… if you use the liquid and you just want to add a few drops then that should be ok. If you’re talking about adding lots and lots of drops, then that will change the texture of the icing. I love the gel!

  23. postedNov 5, 2010 9:11 PM
    Cris Lopez

    wow, this frosting was so easy, looked good, easy to use and make but most of all it was delicious. thank you for the recipe.

  24. postedDec 14, 2010 5:05 PM

    I would like to know if there is any variation on the whipping cream, for instance whipped cream? I live in Mexico and whipping creamis very hard to find. Is it sweetened or just plain cream?? thanks

    • postedDec 15, 2010 10:48 PM

      @Melissa, Not sure- in US we use cream to whip to create whipped cream. If you have cream, that should suffice.

  25. postedDec 25, 2010 8:17 PM

    Beautiful!! I am making cupcakes for my brother’s baby shower and will be using your recipe for frosting. My cupcakes are baking right now! I have a couple of questions for you. When you make these for an event, how do you transport them? Do you get the white boxes from a craft store? Do you always use plain white liners? Do you think Wilton liners are any better? Thanks so much for sharing your recipes and photos!

    • postedDec 26, 2010 7:50 PM

      @Michele, I bought cupcake boxes at a baking supply store for transporting. I think plain white liners are best for weddings- don’t know about Wilton.

  26. postedDec 28, 2010 10:41 AM

    Would you find the jell color at a baking store? I’m making 150ish cupcakes for my wedding in August and i want to do some pink ones and some white ones but i wasnt sure how much pink to put in. Thanks so much, these are amazing, you truley have a gift!

    • postedDec 30, 2010 1:54 PM

      @Jamie, Yes, you can find the gel color at a baking supply store. Try craft stores like Michael’s too.

  27. postedDec 28, 2010 5:19 PM
    Unrulie Julie

    You can get large, whole sheet cake, boxes at your grocery store for less than purchasing at the baking supply store. They come with the hard card board bottom too. It costs me less than $3. I have priced them, and it’s cheaper. Some may even donate if it’s a one time deal. Doing cupcakes for my daughter’s wedding Jan. 6th. Thanks for the help on recipes!

  28. postedJan 6, 2011 6:58 PM

    ok i tried to make butter cream, i added cream cheese because the last time i made it how it says on here it was too runny, ugh things cant be simple lol. But anyways, it was a better consistancy this time but still not thick enough it didnt swirl like i wanted and kind of slid to the sides of the cupcakes. Does that mean i need to add more powderd sugar to it? if like it pretty stiff to pipe on, these look like they are pretty stiff (not hard) but just the right consistance. I dont understand what im doing wrong.

    • postedJan 7, 2011 6:18 AM

      @Jamie, not too sure. How can it be runny? Are you using regular butter? Not using margarine or tub butter or melted butter, right? There’s nothing in the recipe that would make this runny unless you’re adding too much whipping cream- only a Tablespoon at a time until you get the right consistency.

  29. postedJan 25, 2011 12:48 PM
    Lori Brown

    How long does it take to make 100 cupcakes?? Do you bake one night frost the next?? If so how long to bake 100 c.c’s and how long does it take to frost c.c’s?? Trying to figure out times… the wedding is on Sat at 6:30 but I have so much to do prior.. so trying to see when to squeeze them in but still look and taste fresh. I am also the bride. If I ask my mother to do it… she will just run off to Kroger!!

    • postedJan 25, 2011 2:18 PM

      @Lori Brown, I wasn’t the bride, but I baked the cupcakes the night before… timing depends on how many pans you have and how many you are baking at once. I frosted the day of, but you certainly wouldn’t want to do that on your wedding day. I’d bake the cupcakes 2 days before, wrap them well, then frost the day before the event so you’re not so frantic. If you are able to store them in the fridge in cupcake boxes, they should be fine the day of the wedding. Better than Kroger! Timing all depends on how quick you are with that sort of thing…

  30. postedFeb 27, 2011 12:17 PM

    can you make this in a chocolate version?????

    • postedFeb 28, 2011 8:08 PM

      @Carl, Would probably be best to look for a chocolate buttercream recipe specifically.

  31. postedMar 1, 2011 8:35 AM
    A. G.

    These are lovely!!! Such an inspiration and help for some we need to make! Thank your for sharing ALL your information!!

  32. postedMar 4, 2011 3:19 PM
    Jessica Oliveros

    Hellooooo sorry one question … U recommend salt or unsalt butter? Thanks =)

  33. postedMar 17, 2011 6:11 PM

    Made this frosting today, It looked good and had great flavor, but it tasted grainy, like the confectioners sugar wasn’t totally incorporated. What did I do wrong. I used a kitchen aid mixer and beat it according to directions. I am looking for a buttercream recipe like the ones the fancy cupcake bakeries make it feels like you are biting into a cloud of frosting. Suggestions?

    • postedMar 19, 2011 8:29 AM

      @lynda, Grainy? I’m not sure! I’ve never had it turn out anything but smooth and creamy. Wish I could think of what might have gone wrong for you…

  34. postedMar 24, 2011 7:51 AM

    Should you sift the powdered sugar before you mix it in with the butter?

    • postedMar 25, 2011 9:09 AM

      @Alicia, no need to sift, unless your powdered sugar is looking rather lumpy.

  35. postedMar 24, 2011 8:11 AM

    any idea how far in advance these can be made for a wedding? any tips for making 150 of these? freezing, frosting before freezing etc… thanks for your help.

  36. postedApr 7, 2011 10:59 AM

    what measurement is a cup when converted into grams?

    • postedApr 7, 2011 3:13 PM

      @laura, Googled the answer… 1 cup = 229.92 grams

  37. postedMay 1, 2011 7:13 AM

    I just made your wedding cupcakes with this frosting and it was so easy! I’ve never made buttercream before, nor have I used my new piping kit, so I was a little nervous to make cupcakes for a bridal shower today. Thank you for a recipe that was easy to work with!

    • postedMay 1, 2011 5:50 PM

      Excellent news- thanks so much for letting me know of your success!

  38. postedMay 13, 2011 9:07 PM

    Awesome recipe!! Not only was it super easy & quick to make, but also had some tough critics say it was excellent, so I knew it had to be good! Thanks for sharing! Any recommendations, though, for a good piping kit? I used Wilton’s Cookie Master Plus (Cordless Cookie Press) that had a frosting tool with it…but I hated it!

    • postedMay 14, 2011 7:21 AM

      Ami- glad it was a great success! I just use tips that I purchase individually and plastic piping bags. That seems to work well for me.

  39. postedJul 7, 2011 8:58 AM

    Hi, Lori,

    Will this buttercream recipe hold up if I make roses with it? Thank you for an awsome website!

    • postedJul 7, 2011 3:33 PM

      I’m not sure- I’ve not ever made roses period! I suppose you’d have to test it out…

  40. postedJul 9, 2011 2:46 PM
    Jennifer Schwendiman

    I used this recipe and it’s the first time for me that frosting hasn’t melted and fallen off cupcakes. =) Thanks for sharing it!

  41. postedJul 12, 2011 10:36 AM

    May I know what brand of powdered sugar you use for making the frosting. I wonder why my buttercream taste “soapy” or there’s a certain taste I didn’t like. I used Land O Lake butter and a bag of powdered sugar from our grocery.

    • postedJul 13, 2011 11:43 PM

      Hi Lala- I don’t think I use anything special. Usually just the store brand. Maybe you just don’t care for it?

  42. postedJul 28, 2011 7:17 AM
    Jenny Craft

    I made the wedding cake cupcake recipe and the buttercream icing.
    Both turned out PERFECT! Thank you so much. I had been looking for a recipe to mimmic wedding cake and this worked out great.
    I used all almond extract and added another tablespoon of extract to both the cake and icing. 🙂 Thanks much!

  43. postedAug 4, 2011 4:29 PM

    I love the look of the cupcakes. I am doing my sisters’ wedding cake and cupcakes and am going by your instructions. I’m wanting to use Dulce De Leche frosting. My recipe called for 1 can of vanilla frosting, 1 can of Dulce De Leche and adding powdered sugar for thickness. However, it is still a bit too creamy and won’t hold up very well after piping in the tip you recommended. Got any suggestions to make it a bit more stiff without making it over the top sweet with extra powdered sugar?

    • postedAug 5, 2011 6:31 AM

      Hi Deborah, some frostings just aren’t good for piping- sounds like that’s probably one that doesn’t have a good consistency for that. I’m not sure how to turn it into the right consistency- I’d probably look around for another recipe that is better for piping.

  44. postedAug 9, 2011 11:55 AM

    How much frosting will I need to make to frost 2oo cupcakes?

    • postedAug 9, 2011 10:18 PM

      This recipe will frost 12 cupcakes if you’re using a piping bag and want to do the swirl as shown.

  45. postedAug 29, 2011 8:59 AM

    Made this buttercream over the weekend and everyone loved it. I doubled the recipe and had a big spoonful left over and ate it by itself LOL

  46. postedAug 31, 2011 8:20 PM

    All time favorite frosting! Best cupcakes. I have used them for so many things so far since making them two weeks ago. And they make awesome baby cupcakes! I recommend this blog to everyone now!

  47. postedSep 17, 2011 5:33 PM

    I can’t wait to try this recipe! One quick question, though: If I wanted to make the frosting ahead of time, would it keep in an airtight container? Should I refrigerate it? If you’ve already answered this on another post, I’m sorry! I can’t find it! 🙂

    • postedSep 18, 2011 6:30 AM

      I have not tried to make it ahead of time, but if I were to experiment…I’d put it in an airtight container but then place a piece of plastic wrap right up against the frosting in the container. Keep it refrigerated, but then bring to room temp before icing. Please test it out to make sure this method works before your big day!

  48. postedSep 23, 2011 6:55 AM

    About how long should I expect to spend icing 250 cupcakes?

    • postedSep 24, 2011 2:33 PM

      That’s tough to say. I’d definitely recommend making one batch, making note of the timing and then estimate from there.

  49. postedSep 25, 2011 10:25 AM

    I made these wedding cup cakes with the buttercream frosting, for a baby shower and they were to die for, everyone love them, there none left had to make more the next day for family, thank you

    • postedSep 25, 2011 11:33 AM

      You’re welcome! Glad they turned out for ya!

  50. postedNov 21, 2011 4:06 AM

    Once you make the buttercream frosting does it have to be used right away or can I use some the next day as well?

    • postedNov 21, 2011 8:11 AM

      You can refrigerate it (covered) and then let it come to room temperature again the next day to use.

  51. postedNov 26, 2011 7:48 AM
    Amber R

    Will Blue Bonnet work for the butter? It doesnt state on the box if it is salted or not so im guessing it is.

    • postedNov 26, 2011 7:49 AM

      No! Blue Bonnet is margarine. You need to use actual “butter” for this recipe.

  52. postedNov 29, 2011 2:40 PM
    Linda Rhodes

    I made the Wedding cupcakes and took them to my son in-laws I made different flavors and they were a hit the adults loved them more than the children. So for Christmas I will have a bake party with my granddaughters and I will let them pick the flavors.

  53. postedDec 1, 2011 4:23 AM
    Kelly baker

    I’ve looked everywhere for the regular whipping cream but the stores only seem to have heavy and since I’m not really a baker and just trying these on my own I have no idea how to substitute whipping cream in the frosting… please!

    • postedDec 1, 2011 6:37 AM

      Kelly- where do you live? All regular grocery stores should sell “Whipping Cream” and “Heavy Whipping Cream.” If you are unable to find it, ask the manager. They should all have it!

  54. postedDec 1, 2011 6:50 PM
    Kim Cummings

    Can you make the frosting into a chocolate frosting? And if so, how?

  55. postedJan 26, 2012 6:42 AM

    Hi there

    This is an interesting recipe to try out. Juts a question, did you use the same whip cream that we use for cake decoration? Which is the non dairy for topping?


    • postedJan 26, 2012 3:54 PM

      use “whipping cream” or just “cream,” as it’s sometimes referred to. It’s in the dairy section next to the milk.

  56. postedJan 26, 2012 6:31 PM

    I am the worst at cooking & baking. I did a practice round today ~ Not gonna lie ~ this recipe is PERFECT!!!!!! I screw everything up … not this. Amazing! my kids tested it and loved it!!! Thanks. I am going to try the cupcake recipe tomorrow!
    A million thanks!!!

  57. postedJan 26, 2012 6:35 PM


    do you have any amazing recipes for Fondant? I need that too for part of my daughter’s birthday cupcakes. she is having a “Lalaloopsy party” so I am making buttons on the cupcakes. Any help is appreciated!!!

    • postedJan 27, 2012 7:04 AM

      I have never, ever made fondant. Can’t help you there- sorry!!

  58. postedFeb 1, 2012 8:49 AM

    We used the butter cream frosting recipe for my wedding in October. The frosting yield was WAY off. We figured the recipe was good for 12 cupcakes so figured out how much we’d need to make for 400 cupcakes…we were left over with GALLONS of frosting… We put a pretty good amount on each cupcake as-well soo be careful when using this recipe. I would say the recipe will frost between 36-48 cupcakes NOT 12.

    On a positive note – the frosting tasted amazing!! Everyone LOVED them!

    • postedFeb 1, 2012 10:23 AM

      I suppose it depends on how you apply the frosting for the cupcakes. If you pipe it on generously with a piping bag (as pictured), it will only frost 12 cupcakes. If you spread a thinner layer, you’ll be able to extend the recipe to more cupcakes. Glad you liked the frosting!

  59. postedFeb 1, 2012 5:42 PM

    Someone mentioned their frosting was grainy. I have found using cheaper powdered sugar makes grainy frosting. So, if I’m doing somethiing special, I splurge and get the good stuff.

    • postedFeb 2, 2012 11:30 AM

      Interesting- I haven’t had that problem, but it’s definitely something to consider!

  60. postedFeb 3, 2012 5:42 PM

    I am planning on making my friend’s wedding cupcakes in May. I am looking forward to trying your white cake recipe. I was reading other’s comments on your buttercream frosting and have a couple things. Whipping cream tastes way better than milk in this recipe. I can’t describe how creamy and yummy it is with whipping cream. Second, Wilton sells white dye to make the frosting whiter ( It really made a difference.

    • postedFeb 4, 2012 6:12 AM

      Great tip, thanks!

  61. postedFeb 5, 2012 3:28 AM

    I just made this frosting to frost cupcakes for my daughter’s baby shower. They were a huge hit! So many people commented on the delicious frosting – I noticed many guests gobbling down 2 and 3 cupcakes each! It was my first attempt making cupcakes, and I was really nervous about serving so many people. But they turned out perfect! Thanks so much for the great recipe.


  62. postedFeb 6, 2012 9:34 PM

    Question…I have tried recipe before and it was delicious but after refrigerated the icing hardened just like butter would do if chilled. After bringing to room temp it just didn’t taste right and would not remix well. I tend to use a shortening based recipe now but it’s never as yummy as ‘real’ buttercream. Any suggestions?

    • postedFeb 7, 2012 6:34 AM

      Are you talking about preparing it, refrigerating it, and then trying to re-mix and frost at a later time? I’m not sure if I would make ahead like that.

  63. postedFeb 7, 2012 6:33 AM

    Hi Lori!

    I have a question for you. Okay, first, I didn’t realize until now that you had a buttercream icing recipe posted or I would have used yours instead lol. I ended up using the following recipe a few weeks ago and tried not one but two times to get it right, thinking that maybe I did something wrong, but all I did was waste ingredients 🙁 I noticed that you use whipping cream in your recipe. Could that be what is missing here? Mine was all liquidy and sugary, GROSS! The vanilla extract was overpowering as well.

    •1/2 cup butter, softened
    •4-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
    •1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    •5 to 6 tablespoons 2% milk

    That’s the recipe that was so horrible. I found it somewhere on the internet. Any store bought icing was DEFINATELY better than this. I want to try yours. The pics looks great, but I know there had to be something missing from the recipe I used. I have seen other buttercream icing recipes and they at least use shortning as well. This one didn’t call for that OR whipping cream.


    • postedFeb 7, 2012 6:36 AM

      There appears to be far too much liquid in that one. To be safe, I always add the liquid just a little at a time until I get the consistency I’m looking for. Yes, the whipping cream tends to make the frosting nice and creamy.

  64. postedFeb 7, 2012 7:33 AM

    Thank you! I will try your recipe when I make my valentine cupcakes & I’ll let you know how it turns out 🙂

  65. postedFeb 8, 2012 7:51 AM

    I just made this recipe and it is super yummy!! Very buttery and creamy!
    For those who wonder if it makes good decorations.. Yes and no… I was able to successfully make roses with it right after I made it, while it was still cold. However, as I continued to test out decorations my hand warmed it up and it was much too soft and melty to even make good stars! I tried to cool it off in a bowl of ice but it just wasn’t much good after it got too warm.. For decorations, I mean! I’m sure it would make a great base frosting for cakes and cupcakes or even a delicious filling. Very tasty!!

  66. postedFeb 11, 2012 6:03 PM

    Made this today for the strawberry cupcakes on this site and it was fabulous! Parents even asked for the recipe.

  67. postedMar 4, 2012 10:08 AM

    great recipe…tastes very creamy. however, you CAN cut the butter with shortening (1/2 cup each) without it really affecting the taste at all. it simply makes for a stiffer icing that holds flowers & decorations nicely…also works better for higher humidity conditions than using just butter in the recipe.

    can’t wait to try this cupcake recipe today – i have 125 cupcakes to make for a wedding this summer & this seems like the PERFECT recipe to test for it.

  68. postedMar 16, 2012 10:10 AM

    I just have to thank you for posting this recipe. It was a SMASH!

  69. postedMar 16, 2012 10:35 AM

    I made cupcakes for St Patty’s day so I made the wedding cupcake recipe with a box of funfetti and added some mint, then made this buttercream. I didn’t have any whipping cream so I added my Bailey’s Coffee Creamer instead. It worked! Added great flavor and with my green food coloring, it made them the most raved about goodies I’ve brought to a party!

    • postedMar 16, 2012 9:26 PM

      Love this idea!

  70. postedMar 17, 2012 1:41 PM

    Just made these for a Pinterest Party/Brunch tomorrow! My hubby said they are the best cupcakes he has ever tasted! I am storing them in the fridge, uncovered until tomorrow. Should that be ok? So afraid of smooching the pretty icing!

  71. postedMar 19, 2012 6:59 PM

    Great Recipe!!! I used the white cake recipe for a family gathering and they loved them.

  72. postedApr 12, 2012 3:30 PM

    Just an FYI for all you cupcakers — this cupcake goes REALLY WELL with a salted caramel buttercream! OMG!

  73. postedApr 24, 2012 8:30 AM
    Melissa M.

    This frosting is delicious and super easy to make!

  74. postedApr 26, 2012 4:35 PM

    HELP ME!!! I Made this and added to much vanilla, it is very soth, but with the xtra vanilla it has a bitter after taste, is there something I can do? or do I have to toss it out :(. Getting ready for wedding cupcakes on Sunday.


    • postedApr 26, 2012 9:12 PM

      How to counteract the bitter flavor from too much vanilla? More sugar? I’m really not sure!

  75. postedApr 27, 2012 12:55 PM

    HELP!! I made the frosting.. followed recipe but wow super runny.. was it really from using margarine and not real butter? I also used heavy whipping cream. Was excited to get the fluffy look of whipped cream with the buttercream taste… 🙁

    should i try again with real butter?

    • postedApr 27, 2012 2:09 PM

      Yes! This recipe will not yield the same results with margarine! You’ll need to use butter if you’re making buttercream. Real butter 🙂

  76. postedApr 27, 2012 2:02 PM

    It is from adding 2 much vanilla.

  77. postedMay 11, 2012 10:54 AM

    Hey, my name is zach and I am a keen baker. I am making about 130 cupcakes for my friends 10th anniversary party. Have you got a recipe for butter cream to ice that many cupcakes? Thanks so much =) <3

    • postedMay 11, 2012 11:34 AM

      If you are piping the frosting thickly onto the cupcake as pictured, this recipe will frost 12 cupcakes. 10X this recipe and you’ll probably have enough for 130 🙂

  78. postedMay 11, 2012 3:06 PM

    Thank you very much! That’s very helpful! XxX <3

  79. postedMay 15, 2012 11:51 AM

    Made today and taste is good but waaaay grainier than my shortening based recipes. Just a casual cake so I won’t toss it, but too, too grainy.

  80. postedJun 15, 2012 5:53 AM

    I made the frosting last night for cupcakes that I am making for a bake sale. After I made it I noticed it looked grainy. I left it sit for about an hour and a half and still looked like that. The flavor however is amazing! I have left them out overnight and seem to be fine but it still looks a bit grainy. Any idea what went wrong for me?

    • postedJun 15, 2012 7:35 PM

      Not sure… Did you use an off brand of powdered sugar?

  81. postedJun 19, 2012 11:57 AM

    Lori: I was amused at the salted/unsalted butter comments. My daddy’s mother always added a pinch of salt to every baked good she did. Said it enhanced the sweet flavor. I was comparing recipes with some of my aunts one day and said I had Mamma T’s recipe for mincemeat pie in my daddy’s handwriting. They were “disputing my claim” until they read it and saw it called for a pinch of salt. It was then decided that it had to be Mamma T’s recipe 🙂 I am one of the odd ones who LOVES wedding cake so am looking forward to making your recipe! THANKS!

  82. postedJun 21, 2012 7:00 PM

    I made the cupcakes and icing…they were delicious but my icing was ‘grainy’ as well, not smooth and fluffy…well fluffy, but not smooth. Didn’t affect the taste though. Thanks.

    • postedJun 22, 2012 7:33 AM

      I’ve never had any problems with these being grainy- so a few thing to check… Are you using regular whipping cream and not heavy? Be sure to use a good brand of powdered sugar, and be sure to mix the frosting for the full amount of time- maybe even a little longer if you do not have a stand mixer. Hope that helps!

  83. postedJun 21, 2012 11:35 PM

    Mmm… This sounds very yummy!!! My daughter’s birthday party is this Saturday (june 23th)and i will be making the cupcakes and honestly i have never make any kind of frosting… This one looks to be very easy to make and very yummy and now i’m just praying that everything comes out great… My question is if the whipping cream ou used is the one that says Heavy whipping cream or heavy cream??? And how many cupcakes can i frosted with this amount of frosting? I need about 60 cupcakes.. Thank you so much!!!!!!

    • postedJun 22, 2012 7:26 AM

      At the market, you should be able to find “whipping cream” and “heavy whipping cream” (or heavy cream- same thing). You’ll need regular whipping cream for this recipe- not heavy. If you frost them w/ a good swirl of frosting like you see in the photo, this recipe makes enough to frost 12 cupcakes.

  84. postedJul 16, 2012 8:57 AM

    Will heavy whipping cream greatly effect this recipe? I have tried several stores in our part of KS and cannot find regular whipping cream anywhere. Even asked about it and still no luck. 🙁

    • postedJul 16, 2012 9:40 AM

      Carrie- it should be fine. I’ve just learned that regular whipping cream isn’t available everywhere. Who knew!?

  85. postedJul 18, 2012 8:00 PM

    simple perfection!

  86. postedJul 20, 2012 8:01 AM

    This sounds silly, but will this icing work well on a cake? I’m making a little personal cake for a boys birthday tomorrow and don’t want to go through the hassle of swiss meringue butterceam for such a small cake! I wasn’t sure if it would be easy to smooth out on a cake or not

    • postedJul 22, 2012 1:59 PM

      Sorry for the late reply (was on vacation!), but yes… I use this recipe for cakes all the time!

  87. postedJul 20, 2012 9:16 PM
    Alli C

    I wanted to comment as a baker on why this may turn out grainy for some- powdered sugar is not pure sugar in most of our American grocery stores anymore- we purchase powdered sugar which has cornstarch added (ew!), check the ingredients listed. If available, purchase PURE powdered sugar- even brands which CLAIM to be “pure cane sugar” on the front packaging are often not- to my dismay. I have visited the big brand stores in my area (Jewel, Dominick’s, Butera and Target) all ONLY selling powdered sugar WITH cornstarch 🙁 I will be seeking out better options a little further out at Mariano’s, Garden Fresh and Sunset Foods, hoping to find the ingredients list to NOT include cornstarch!!

    • postedJul 22, 2012 1:49 PM

      This is GREAT information! Looks like we have the answer now as to why it turns out grainy for some and not for others. Thank you SO SO much for sharing this information!

  88. postedJul 23, 2012 5:17 AM

    I would like to know how many batches of the buttercream are needed to frost the 6″ 2 layer cake and decorate as shown in the picture? Thank you 🙂

    • postedJul 30, 2012 10:12 AM

      I’m not sure exactly… I made a full recipe of the buttercream, frosted the cake and then used the rest to frost cupcakes.

  89. postedAug 1, 2012 10:08 PM
    Heather T

    It turned out bad because I used the wrong type of butter. I didn’t see the star at the bottom about butter until after I made it. I think the butter requirements should be at the top for newbies like me lol! I plan to remake this again tomorrow with the right type of butter.

  90. postedAug 2, 2012 7:52 PM
    Deb P

    Great recipe!!! VERY easy, easy to read and follow recipe and tastes wonderful. I made the cupcakes and buttercream! Thanks!

  91. postedAug 7, 2012 5:57 PM

    Just a suggestion–adding a dash of whiskey cuts the sweetness of any buttercream frosting and makes it taste all the more fancy–but no one can isolate the flavor. I add 1/2 Tbsp or just a touch more…I just make icing to taste and if it’s too sweet, I add a touch more whiskey. Sounds odd–but very good trick. I don’t even drink–but have had the same big bottle of Jack Daniels for 10 years to use just for buttercreams! I think this would work for the person who had written in that she added too much vanilla and needed something to counterbalance it. Good luck. Also, for those that say that the icing is too wet–your butter may be too soft from over mixing or the temp of your kitchen. Don’t be afraid to add more powdered sugar to help firm it up–just 1/4 cup or so at a time. And I agree, whipping cream/heavy whipping cream is a standard grocery item….in a tiny milk carton on the milk aisle. I would think you could use half and half (which is half whole milk and half cream) if need be though or even whole milk really–but it’s not cool whip or already whipped cream. I think that may be throwing off some people here. And finally, i always use salted butter. Good Luck!

    • postedAug 8, 2012 8:03 AM

      Thanks for the tips!

  92. postedAug 20, 2012 3:11 PM

    Just made this… turned out fantastic! Tinted beautifully, piped lovely, tasted great. This is definitely a keeper. Thanks so much!

  93. postedAug 23, 2012 3:39 PM

    How does your butter cream frosting stay white with that much butter?
    Thanks, cathy

    • postedAug 24, 2012 7:57 PM

      If you use a better brand of butter, it is usually not so yellow- plus use clear vanilla extract found at a baking supply store.

  94. postedAug 24, 2012 11:19 AM

    I have a frosting recipe that people have loved and requested the most over the years. Never thought I could find one that makes choosing one as the best so difficult. Your recipe is a true knockout. I used your wedding cupcake recipe and this frosting – what a winning combination. Thank you so much for sharing this heavenly recipe.

  95. postedAug 26, 2012 3:50 PM

    Hi how much more ingredients would I need for 40 cupcakes?

    • postedAug 26, 2012 5:01 PM

      Sounds like you’ll need to quadruple the recipe, and then you might have a little frosting left over. Maybe X3 and see if you can stretch it out.

  96. postedAug 29, 2012 9:59 PM
    DeAnna Neville

    I’ve made a lot of cupcakes, usually my own creations or ones you might not see as it’s always disappointing when some one requests a plain white, yellow or brown cupcake..sheesh, no creativity there but…I make cupcakes to make people be happy and if plain white cheers them up, I’ll do it! Was lucky enough to be reading your blog and saw something about the wedding cupcakes and wedding buttercream. the bridal shower is Friday so I made a tester batch today and can only describe them with one word, AWESOME! best cupcake and frosting hands down…I could even use both of the recipes when I tweak my flavor. Read and followed all the directions and had no issue but, will mention none of the white cake mixes are 18.25 oz anymore… BC is 16.25 and pillsbury and DH Are both 15.25 but I just bought two of the pillsbury and determined 3 oz is very close to ONE THIRD CUP (actually 2.6 oz) so guesstimated that last .40 oz and got around that roadblock (: fabulous with the white buttercream you have posted with this…LOVR YOUR BLOG & RECIPES

    • postedAug 30, 2012 1:35 PM

      This is very helpful information for others… just buy an extra cake mix and add roughly 1/3 cup to the one you’re using to create the old 18.25-ounce version again. Thank you!

  97. postedSep 8, 2012 9:03 PM

    I am looking for a new buttercream recipe. I am making a children’s cake and will be putting a design on it. Does this buttercream work well smoothing? Does it “crust”? Should I make any alterations for framing work on the cake? I know most buttercreams you need to thin out with corn syrup for writing and details. Any suggestions will help. I have been using wilton’s buttercream but looking for something different.

    • postedSep 9, 2012 7:04 AM

      Hi Heather, I think you’d have to play with it and find out if it works for what you need. I’ve used it to frost layer cakes before, but I don’t know about using it for writing & details. Test it out!

  98. postedSep 10, 2012 9:15 PM

    these are so cute! my daughter doesn’t want bright white icing but ivory instead what is the best way to achive this…drop of yellow or brown coloring?

    • postedSep 10, 2012 9:51 PM

      Use regular vanilla instead of clear- should turn out ivory instead of bright white.

  99. postedSep 15, 2012 6:40 AM

    Lori, if I use stock butter, how many sticks of butter are equivalent to 1 cup of butter? Thanks!! 🙂

    • postedSep 16, 2012 6:07 AM

      I’m not sure what “stock butter” is, but two 4-ounce sticks = one cup of butter.

  100. postedSep 16, 2012 12:05 PM

    I just made a test batch of this buttercream (testing recipes for my daughter’s birthday here in a few week) and it’s fabulous! I didn’t have whipping cream on hand so I used 1 Tbs of 2% milk and it worked just fine. I will use the whipping cream for her birthday though. Just thought people should know it will turn out with milk!

    Thanks for the recipe!

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