Slowly but surely, I’m trying to bulk up the new frosting section on my website. Which means I’ll be posting lots of frosting recipes this year. UGH sounds horrible doesn’t it??
I decided to start a frosting section after taking many suggestions from Y-O-U, so thank you for always helping to improved my content. Speaking of improvements, have you tested the new search function yet? In the past, if you searched for “vanilla cake” in the search bar in my sidebar, you’d get every single post where I mention “vanilla” or “cake.” So, like, every post. But it’s been updated! Test it out. Try searching for “salted caramel” using the search bar in the sidebar. First results are all recipes with salted caramel in the title, not posts where I simply mention “salted” or “caramel.” YAY for streamlined searching!
Let’s get back to this frosting business. I actually posted a salted caramel frosting recipe on my blog 4 years ago. It’s awesomely delicious, BUT I’ve had readers report back with some issues. The frosting is too thick! More like a nougat confection than a silky smooth frosting. I’ve been working at improving it because it’s taste is spot on and I don’t want you to miss out on this luscious decadence.
So, using the same exact ingredients, I changed the timing of when to add the heavy cream. First, we’ll add some when we make the brown sugar caramel sauce. That’s step 1. Then we’ll add a little more when we’re whipping the confectioners’ sugar into the cooled brown sugar caramel sauce. That’s step 2. The addition of liquid in step 2 changes the texture completely, but doesn’t alter the taste at all. With this one minor change, this salted caramel frosting is completely revamped. How’s that for a makeover?
Let’s watch this video to really see what’s happening:
You only need 5 ingredients: butter, brown sugar, heavy cream, salt, confectioners’ sugar. No candy thermometer for the caramel; just a couple minutes of whisking and bubbling. Let it cool for 30 minutes, then beat in confectioners’ sugar and more heavy cream. And you’ll get this smooth-as-silk magic:
The best piping tip for this frosting is the Wilton #12 round tip. If you pipe this salted caramel frosting with star tips, it will not hold its shape as nicely since the frosting is sooo creamy. So I suggest a simple round tip.
Two Ways to Pipe with Wilton #12
- Like in the video above.
- Or what you see in today’s photos (and what I posted on Instagram story on Wednesday if you caught it). All I did was start in the center of the cupcake, apply pressure to squeeze the frosting out, and slowly lift straight up. No swirling around the cupcake– just start on the center and squeeze frosting out while lifting the tip off the cupcake. Takes 3 seconds per cupcake.
I promise you will never run out of excuses to make this new & improved salted caramel frosting. Here are plenty of ideas for you. And yes, my stomach is growling at EVERY SINGLE ONE.
- Apple cinnamon oatmeal cookies
- Simply perfect vanilla cupcakes (pictured in this post)
- Mocha cupcakes
- Best ever banana cake
- Big giant cinnamon rolls (OMG!)
- Spiced pumpkin cupcakes
- Chocolate cupcakes
- Cream cheese sugar cookies
- Chocolate chip cookie cake
- Sandwiched between 2 butter pecan cookies (!!!)
Salted Caramel Frosting
- 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115g) unsalted butter
- 1 cup (200g) packed light or dark brown sugar (I prefer dark)
- 5 - 6 Tablespoons heavy cream, divided1
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 and 1/2 cups (240-300g) confectioners' sugar, sifted
- optional garnish: salted caramel sauce
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, add brown sugar and 2 Tablespoons of heavy cream. Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved. Add salt. Allow to bubble for about 2 minutes, whisking every 30 seconds or so. Remove from heat, pour into a heat-proof mixing bowl, and allow to cool for about 30 minutes.
- With a hand or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat in 2 cups confectioners' sugar and 3 more Tablespoons of heavy cream. Slowly add 1/2 cup more confectioners' sugar until you reach the desired consistency. Add 1 more Tablespoon heavy cream if you find the frosting too thick.
- Frost cake or cupcakes and garnish with salted caramel sauce, if desired.
- Heavy cream is required for the caramel! There are no subs that will achieve the same texture and taste in this frosting. Here are all my recipes using heavy cream if you have leftover.
This recipe is enough to frost 12-16 cupcakes or one 9x13 quarter sheet cake. 1.5x the recipe for more cupcakes or a double layer cake. (Doubling the recipe would be far too much.)
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Here are some items I used to make today’s recipe.
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