New & Improved Salted Caramel Frosting + Video

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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!

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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:

Ab-so-lute perfection.

Salted caramel for salted caramel frosting on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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:

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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

  1. Like in the video above.
  2. 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.

Top with salted caramel because everything is better with salted caramel.

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

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.

Print

Salted Caramel Frosting

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: about 2.5 cups
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

5 ingredients and so easy! This new & improved salted caramel frosting is ultra creamy and downright addicting.


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115g) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup (200g) packed light or dark brown sugar (I prefer dark)
  • 56 Tablespoons heavy cream, divided*
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 and 1/2 cups (240-300g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • optional garnish: salted caramel sauce

Instructions

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Frost cake or cupcakes and garnish with salted caramel sauce, if desired.

Notes

  1. Special Tools: KitchenAid Hand Mixer | Copper SaucepanRainbow Whisk | Glass Mixing BowlsCupcake LinersFrosting BagsRound Decorating Tip
  2. Heavy Cream: 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.
  3. Quantity: This recipe is enough to frost 12-16 cupcakes or one 9×13 quarter sheet cake. 1.5x the recipe for more cupcakes or a double layer cake. (Doubling the recipe would be far too much.)

Keywords: salted caramel frosting, salted caramel

5 ingredients and so easy! This creamy salted caramel frosting is downright addicting! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

107 Comments

  1. Amazing how such a little change in timing for ingredients can change a whole recipe! You’ve given me an idea to try on some of my own failed recipes that I had given up on. Perhaps its all about timing with ingredients?!

    Love the revamped frosting. It looks so creamy and delicious

    1. Honestly, I can’t believe that the timing of heavy cream made such a difference. I’m inspired to go back and revamp older recipes to see if *timing* could make them even better!

  2. What a struggle putting us through with delicious new frosting recipes! Really, how dare you sally I looooved your previous caramel frosting and can’t imagine it any better but can’t wait to try this one out!

    1. I was thinking the same thing… the previous frosting recipe is to die for!! But I can’t wait to try this new version! Thank you Sally!!

  3. This looks amazing, can’t wait to try it on vanilla cupcakes! Better yet, chocolate! Or maybe strawberry? I can’t chose, because this would go great with every one!

    1. I was really excited to try this frosting, but discovered I reaaaaly do not like caramel made with brown sugar. Our brown sugar is very dark, and the final product just tasted like straight brown sugar. Your salted caramel sauce is one of my favorite things in the whole world, so I’m kind of bummed this one didn’t taste more like it! Can you make a frosting recipe that uses white sugar and tastes more like the caramel sauce of heaven??

      1. Hi Lisa, you can certainly try using the caramel sauce you love for the first step and then following the rest of the instructions to turn it into frosting. Let me know if you try it!

  4. This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it. Also, thanks for the link for recipes using heavy cream! I always have leftover and try to figure out what to do with it (I usually make a soup). Now I have a place to go that will give me an abundance of options all in one place!

  5. Another mouthwatering recipe! I was wondering whether you thought the frosting would be stable enough to use on a layer cake, both as a filling and the overall frosting coat? I’m making a sticky date cake next week as this sounds like it would be the perfect frosting combination! Just wanted to make sure it wouldn’t be too soft 🙂 

  6. I’ve never had salted caramel frosting before, but I’m excited to try it! It would be so good over vanilla, chocolate, banana (!), or pumpkin (!) cupcakes. And actually, would be pretty great over banana bread too… Have you ever made honey buttercream or maple buttercream? I made maple buttercream last year for pumpkin cupcakes and it was amazing, and I’ve made honey buttercream to sandwich together vanilla cookies before (like honey-flavoured golden oreos). Pretty incredible… Have a great weekend, Sally 🙂

  7. This looks like a wonderful frosting Sally! I’ve been wanting to try your Best Ever Banana Cake and I think this would be a perfect frosting for it. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

  8. Do you have a video of the second piping method, the one in the main photo? I’m not great with written piping instructions. 😉

  9. Just made your favorite white cake and topped it with this frosting for a book club dinner. Holy yum! It was so delicious! I have a couple questions about the frosting. It was a little gritty, almost like the sugar didn’t dissolve all the way when cooking the caramel. I made sure to whisk it well and cooked it for the whole two minutes, so I am not sure what happened. Also, the frosting didn’t adhere to the cake, so it peeled up when cut. This wasn’t enough of an issue that I wouldn’t make it again, that’s for sure! Just wondering if you have any suggestions. 

  10. I have tried the new search feature, so much better. I came up with a chocolate whipped frosting recipe last week. so good, and it was soft and spreadable straight out of the fridge. Basic hersheys recipe, then pushed the frosting to the edges and poured some heavy cream in the middle. Whipped that until it thickened up, then worked the frosting in.

  11. Hi Sally,

    The new search feature is wonderful and certainly makes things easier to find. Speaking of new frostings…how about a coconut pecan frosting and the German chocolate cake to go with it?!!!!! It’s a family favorite but i haven’t had the best luck with other recipes I’ve tried.

  12. Hi Sally. I made this frosting today and topped it on chocolate mocha cupcakes. I used your triple chocolate cake recipe and added extra coffee and made cupcakes. The frosting is so creamy and smooth. Oh so delicious!…the cupcakes with that frosting was divine. Thanks for another wonderful recipe:)

  13. Cannot wait to try this!! I have another recipe that I use to top pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes – but the caramel flavor just isn’t strong enough for my preference. I think this will do the trick!!

    Also, on carrot cake…mmm…

  14. Oh YUM! Can’t wait to try this frosting!
    I just wanted to say thank you for “nerd alerts,” the always stick in my head and I know have saved me from many a disaster. Just yesterday I was baking a cake recipe, not yours, and realized something seemed off, some of the reviews mentioned rising issues. Then it dawned on me you had a post about baking powder and baking soda. Read it and sure enough the baking powder ratio was off, followed tour recommendations and the cake was perfect!
    Once again you saved me, and I looked like a pretty accomplished baker.

  15. I made this frosting today for my mom’s 70th birthday and it was delicious!! There are many people in the family who are Lactose intolerant so I used 2% Lactaid and it came out great! Just a note, when I finished making it the frosting was slightly runny but it thickened up to the perfect consistency. Not sure if this is because of the heavy cream substitute, but it worked out fine.
    I’ve also tried your first salted caramel frosting recipe and I love it also-a fudgey consistency, but just as delicious in a different way. Thanks for the great recipes!!

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