Buttercream Icing Recipe

Quick and Almost-Professional Buttercream Icing

10 mins
Vadim Rachok
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2 / 10
Health score
Egg free dishGluten free dishNut Free DishVegetarian Dish

Your cakes, cupcakes, and cookies deserve the very best buttercream. That’s why it’s better to make your own buttercream at home instead of buying it from the store.  Here’s everything you need to know about making, storing, freezing, and perfecting the best buttercream of your life:

Creating the perfect buttercream is an essential skill for any baker, and this recipe breaks it down beautifully. The balance of sugar and butter is crucial, and the tips on storing and freezing make it versatile for any baking project. Remember, a velvety buttercream elevates your treats, so take the time to get it just right!

What Is Buttercream?

Buttercream is a delicious frosting that is fluffy and sweet. It is made by blending sugar and butter until creamy. Other common ingredients include:

  1. milk (to create the perfect texture)
  2. vanilla (for simple, crowd-pleasing flavor)

Although vanilla is the most popular flavor, it’s also used with chocolate or fruit flavors and food coloring for aesthetics.

Use buttercream as a frosting, decoration, or filling. Spread buttercream on cake layers or cupcakes, or use a piping bag to create decorative patterns.

What is the difference between frosting and icing?

Buttercream Icing step by step recipe

Does Buttercream Need to Be Refrigerated?

You can leave buttercream frosting on the counter for up to three days, thanks to its high sugar content. However, if you want it to last longer, you should refrigerate it after 72 hours as it contains perishable ingredients.

How to Store Buttercream

To store buttercream, store it in an airtight container in a cool, dark place at room temperature. This will keep it fresh for up to three days. If you don’t plan to use the buttercream within three days, store it in the fridge. If you store it in the refrigerator, it will stay fresh for approximately one week.

how to make Buttercream Icing

The buttercream may harden in the fridge, but you can easily restore its fluffiness by whipping it with a whisk or hand mixer.

Can You Freeze Buttercream?

It is possible to freeze buttercream frosting by storing it in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to three months before thawing it overnight in the fridge before use.

Quick and Almost-Professional Buttercream Icing

Why Is My Buttercream Grainy?

If you notice that your buttercream frosting is turning out grainy, it could be due to the type of confectioners’ sugar you’re using. It’s important to choose a variety made from cane sugar, as it tends to melt faster than beet sugar. Additionally, it’s possible that you forgot to sift the sugar before mixing it with the butter.

How to Fix Grainy Buttercream

If you’re struggling with grainy buttercream, try mixing it for a longer time to achieve a smoother texture. If that doesn’t work, you can add a small amount of liquid or let the buttercream sit overnight, if possible. This gives the sugar crystals time to dissolve and melt, which should help resolve the issue.


A classic combination of animal fats and simple carbohydrates (the most harmful and dangerous nutrient combination for health). I cannot recommend this recipe for a healthy diet, even in small quantities, and even if your goal is weight gain. The danger of such a combination of ingredients is that it has a negative impact on the entire cardiovascular system, contributes to the increase in bad cholesterol levels, accumulation of visceral fat in liver cells, and overall aging of the body. However, if you simply replace sugar with a non-caloric substitute (such as stevia/erythritol or any other non-caloric sweetener), you will have a recipe that is suitable for any healthy diet, including the keto diet.

Jenny Dobrynina
Jenny Dobrynina
Nutrition Editor
Health score:
2 / 10
Quick and Almost-Professional Buttercream Icing
Author:Vadim Rachok
After failing to find the perfect buttercream frosting recipe, I modified one to my liking.
Buttercream Icing Recipe
Prep Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
10 mins
2 1/2 cups
Ingredients you will need:
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons milk
3 drops food coloring, or as needed (Optional)
Let’s start !

1 Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until it becomes smooth and fluffy.


2 Beat the confectioners’ sugar into the mixture gradually until it is fully incorporated.


3 Add the vanilla extract to the mixture and beat until well combined.


4 Add the milk to the mixture and continue to beat for an additional 3 to 4 minutes.


5 Add food coloring and beat until smooth or until desired color is reached for about thirty seconds.


6 Store buttercream in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days or use immediately.

Nutrition Information
Servings Per Recipe: 8
Calories: 228
% Daily Value *
 % Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g15%
Saturated Fat 7g37%
Cholesterol 31mg10%
Sodium 4mg0%
Total Carbohydrate 32g11%
Protein 0g 
Calcium 8mg1%
Potassium 11mg0%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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Watch How To Make It

For an extra-smooth buttercream, sift your confectioners' sugar before blending it with butter. This helps to eliminate any graininess and ensures a silky texture. Additionally, let your buttercream sit overnight or add a touch of liquid if you encounter graininess, allowing those sugar crystals to dissolve for a flawless finish. Happy baking!

Vadim Rachok
Vadim Rachok
Pro tip from chef
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