Vanilla Buttercream

Remember those white cupcakes I posted the other day? Did you notice the fluffy vanilla buttercream on top of them? Yea, it’s pretty awesome. It was kind of mean of me not to include the frosting recipe with the cupcake recipe. But I thought this frosting deserved it’s own post.

I once again turned to Bridget’s blog to see what her thoughts were on frosting. I’ve tried PLENTY of vanilla frostings in my days. I am definitely partial to Swiss meringue buttercream. I love the texture. But this recipe I got from Bridget – I’m proud to say it’s my new go-to vanilla buttercream. Hubby absolutely LOVES it! I’ve already made it twice since these cupcakes. Be sure to beat the heck out of it at the end so get that great smooth texture.

Since I’ve had Go-To Recipes on my brain recently, I’ve updated my sidebar to reflect some of my Go-To recipes and added a tag for them. Be sure to check it out! This recipe makes enough for 24 cupcakes. Be sure to double it to frost a layer cake. It can be stored in the fridge, but be sure to bring it to room temperature before using it.

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Easy Vanilla Buttercream

Yield: 3 cups


20 tablespoons (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 1/2 cups Confectioners’ sugar (10 ounces)
1/8 tablespoons table salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream


In standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat butter at medium-high speed until smooth, about 20 seconds.

Add confectioners’ sugar and salt; beat at medium-low speed until most of the sugar is moistened, about 45 seconds. Scrape down bowl and beat at medium speed until mixture is fully combined, about 15 seconds.

Scrape bowl, add vanilla and heavy cream, and beat at medium speed until incorporated, about 10 seconds, then increase speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scraping down bowl once or twice.

Recipe from The Way the Cookie Crumbles, originally from Cooks Illustrated April 2007

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6 Responses to “Vanilla Buttercream”

  1. #
    Julie — April 12, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Just beautiful! Buttercream sings to my soul. Or possibly my thighs, but either way, yum!

  2. #
    Heidi — April 12, 2010 at 9:21 pm

    I love a good vanilla frosting. What I find odd though, there is only 2.5 cups powdered sugar along with 2.5 sticks of butter. Wow, that is not much powdered sugar. I would be adding like 5 or 6 cups sugar with enough milk or cream to moisten. But hey, you said this was a terrific icing and it looks damn good so I shall try it. Thanks for the white cake recipe too! Good combo: white cake/white icing.

  3. #
    Kelly — April 13, 2010 at 12:50 am

    Frosting is the best part of cupcakes and cake so I definitely think it deserves its own post 🙂

  4. #
    Memória — April 13, 2010 at 3:23 am

    This frosting looks yummy. I don’t know how I miss this.

  5. #
    Jen — April 13, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    I agree Heidi, it does seem like a small amount of sugar to butter. But it’s quite tasty. Let me know if you try it.

  6. #
    Sarah — April 14, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    Thanks for all of the go-to recipes! I can’t tell you how many variations of these things I must have bookmarked because I don’t know which is best, but now I can delete all of those! These allow those of us who aren’t really good at testing things to know that we have a good homemade basic. So much less stress!

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