Favorite Vanilla Buttercream

Deliciously soft, creamy, and easy PERFECT vanilla buttercream recipe! sallysbakingaddiction.com

Finally! A completely separate post for the most common recipe in any baker’s repertoire: vanilla buttercream. This is my favorite vanilla buttercream recipe. There’s nothing fancy, crazy, or complicated about it– but the flavor and texture will certainly taste like you added something special.

But guess what? You didn’t. It’s our little secret.

Deliciously soft, creamy, and easy PERFECT vanilla buttercream recipe! sallysbakingaddiction.com

The word “creamy” doesn’t even do this stuff justice. But even though it’s supremely creamy, this vanilla buttercream holds its shape beautifully. So it’s perfect for piping even the most complicated and intricate designs.

I’ve used this vanilla buttercream more times than I can even fathom, but I love it most paired with chocolate or vanilla cupcakes. If you scale it up (slightly) you can use it to frost a layered cake, like I do with my white layer cake recipe.

Want to see how I use it to decorate cupcakes? That video is right here!

 

Deliciously soft, creamy, and easy PERFECT vanilla buttercream recipe! sallysbakingaddiction.com

Favorite Vanilla Buttercream

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 - 5 cups (480-600g) confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • salt, to taste

Directions:

  1. With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy - about 2 minutes. Add 4 and 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar, the heavy cream, and vanilla extract with the mixer running on low. Increase to high speed and beat for 3 full minutes. Add up to 1/2 cup more confectioners' sugar if frosting is too thin or another Tablespoon of cream if frosting is too thick. Add a pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet. (I like 1/8 tsp salt.)
  2. Cover tightly and store for up to 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer. After freezing, thaw in the refrigerator then beat the frosting for a few seconds so it's creamy again.

Recipe Notes:

This recipe is enough to frost 12-16 cupcakes or one 9x13 quarter sheet cake. Follow these ratios for a 2 layer cake and these ratios for a 3 layer cake.

Did you make a recipe?

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

And here is my favorite chocolate buttercream recipe!

Deliciously soft, creamy, silky, and easy PERFECT chocolate buttercream recipe! sallysbakingaddiction.com

Deliciously soft, creamy, and easy PERFECT vanilla buttercream recipe! sallysbakingaddiction.com
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74 Comments

Comments

  1. Jennyfer on December 20, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    CAN this  frosting  be left out of the fridge for a day? Or does it have to be kept refrigerated? I’m trying to frost some cupcakes but they will have to spend the night out of the fridge but I notice it have heavy cream and I worry, they will be ruined tomorrow. Thanks

    • Sally on December 20, 2017 at 5:18 pm

      They can be left out on the counter overnight.

  2. Devorah on December 26, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    I made a double batch last week and its the best cupcakes I ever made. I just made a quadruple batch yesterday!! Can I use milk instead of cream in the vanilla buttercream recipe?

    • Sally on December 27, 2017 at 6:35 am

      Hi Devorah! You can, yes, but the frosting won’t be as rich and creamy 🙂

  3. Cynthia on December 31, 2017 at 6:40 pm

    Simply the best vanilla butter cream frosting! Your instructions were spot on. Beating it on high for three minutes and the additional salt made this recipie unique. It’s  A keeper. Thank you!  Cynthia 

  4. Bixie on April 30, 2018 at 11:58 am

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe. I made 422 cupcakes last term for a 10th anniversary celebration of a group that I run, and piped your buttercream into roses on top of each. There was not a single one left, and I saw many return-eaters! I make this all the time and have to run many kilometres to not look like a cupcake myself! But it’s soooooo worth it!

  5. Natasha on May 8, 2018 at 8:04 pm

    Can this butter cream be made in advance and frozen?

    • Sally on May 9, 2018 at 9:44 pm

      Yep! Freeze for up to 2-3 months and thaw in the refrigerator. Before using, beat it for a few seconds so it’s creamy again.

  6. Fi on May 14, 2018 at 12:45 am

    Hi Sally if I make this 2 days in advance and leave it in the fridge do I need to beat it again before I use it? Tks

    • Sally on May 14, 2018 at 5:46 am

      Just so it’s smooth and creamy again, I would beat it for a few seconds.

  7. Nicki on May 17, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    Is it okay to add food coloring to this frosting?

    • Sally on May 18, 2018 at 9:50 am

      Yep! I recommend gel food coloring. Liquid food coloring is less concentrated; you usually need more of it to reach a desired shade. This can alter the texture of the frosting.

  8. Sumita Kapoor on May 17, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    Hi sally. I am one of ur new fans & absolutely love your work My question is even if I am following a recipe correctly, why do I feel little icing sugar crystals in the frosting? It’s not 100% smooth. Am I doing anything wrong or this is how buttercream icing is supposed to taste ?

    • Sally on May 18, 2018 at 9:36 am

      Hi Sumita! Thank you so much for visiting my website. If your frosting is completely smooth, try sifting the confectioners’ sugar a couple times before adding to the butter.

      • Sumita Kapoor on May 18, 2018 at 12:03 pm

        I sift and put. It’s completely without any lumps. I personally find the frosting just fine but have got feedback that it tastes a bit as if sugar hasn’t mixed



Reviews

Questions

  1. Natasha on May 8, 2018 at 8:04 pm

    Can this butter cream be made in advance and frozen?

    • Sally on May 9, 2018 at 9:44 pm

      Yep! Freeze for up to 2-3 months and thaw in the refrigerator. Before using, beat it for a few seconds so it’s creamy again.

  2. Fi on May 14, 2018 at 12:45 am

    Hi Sally if I make this 2 days in advance and leave it in the fridge do I need to beat it again before I use it? Tks

    • Sally on May 14, 2018 at 5:46 am

      Just so it’s smooth and creamy again, I would beat it for a few seconds.

  3. Nicki on May 17, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    Is it okay to add food coloring to this frosting?

    • Sally on May 18, 2018 at 9:50 am

      Yep! I recommend gel food coloring. Liquid food coloring is less concentrated; you usually need more of it to reach a desired shade. This can alter the texture of the frosting.

  4. Sumita Kapoor on May 17, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    Hi sally. I am one of ur new fans & absolutely love your work My question is even if I am following a recipe correctly, why do I feel little icing sugar crystals in the frosting? It’s not 100% smooth. Am I doing anything wrong or this is how buttercream icing is supposed to taste ?

    • Sally on May 18, 2018 at 9:36 am

      Hi Sumita! Thank you so much for visiting my website. If your frosting is completely smooth, try sifting the confectioners’ sugar a couple times before adding to the butter.

      • Sumita Kapoor on May 18, 2018 at 12:03 pm

        I sift and put. It’s completely without any lumps. I personally find the frosting just fine but have got feedback that it tastes a bit as if sugar hasn’t mixed



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