Whipped Frosting

Whipped Frosting recipe

Look, I know it’s not cool to talk about eating grocery store bakery cakes on a food blog, but the truth is that sometimes I eat grocery store bakery cakes. Sometimes I buy the little mini cupcakes with the big swirl of buttercream frosting and I scrape the frosting off them all and eat it with a fork. Sometimes, when other people are around, I am all ladylike and take dainty bites. Either way, I eat grocery store baked goods.

My immediate family, thankfully, all prefer the buttercream frosting. It’s so rich, sweet, and delicious. What’s not to love about it?

Whipped Frosting recipe

Some of my extended family do like the whipped frosting from the grocery store best, though. It’s…okay. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’ll certainly eat it. I would never turn down cake, after all.

The thing is, and brace yourselves because this is shocking, lots of people don’t like buttercream. Lots of strange people. In fact, I think that this is probably proof that aliens do exist. Buttercream hating aliens. Protect your children!

If you are one of those freaks silly people who prefer the less sweet whipped frosting to the diabetic coma inducing buttercream then I have the recipe for you. It looks and feels like whipped cream with just a hint of sugar and butter. I think you’ll love it.

Warning! I’ve gotten lots of emails of success stories as well as many sob stories with this recipe! Be very, very careful not to add your butter in before the mixture has gotten back down to room temperature and DEFINITELY give this recipe a trial run before you plan on serving it to guests. It’s a finicky one and I’d hate for y’all to be disappointed. Whipped Frosting recipe

Whipped Frosting

Whipped Frosting recipe

This Whipped Frosting tastes just like the lightly sweetened version you'll find in most grocery store bakeries. This recipe makes 4 cups of frosting - plenty for a two layer cake!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 24 tablespoons (3 sticks) butter, cut into 24 pieces, softened

Instructions

  1. Combine the sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in the milk and pour through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium sized pot. Cook the strained mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it boils and becomes thick. This should take between 5 and 10 minutes and should thicken to the point that it becomes difficult to stir, like a very stiff gravy.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a clean bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. Place the bowl in the fridge to cool it down faster if you are in a hurry, but be sure that the mixture is at room temperature (not too warm or too cool!) before adding the butter.
  3. Beat the mixture on medium speed and add the vanilla extract. Beat in the butter one piece at a time until all 24 pieces are fully incorporated, about 3 minutes. Increase the speed of the mixer to medium high and beat the frosting for 5 minutes.
  4. Place the frosting in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes to thicken a bit before frosting your cake.
http://www.bunsinmyoven.com/2011/09/21/whipped-frosting/

lightly adapted from Cook’s Country

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54 Responses to “Whipped Frosting”

  1. Deborah September 21, 2011 @ 8:57 am (#
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    My husband is one of those that doesn’t like buttercream. Bookmarking this one for him!!

    Reply

  2. shelly (cookies and cups) September 21, 2011 @ 9:09 am (#
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    I am a buttercream girl too, but this sounds really good!!

    Reply

  3. Amy @ A Little Nosh September 21, 2011 @ 9:45 am (#
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    3 sticks of butter…fantastic!

    Reply

  4. Wendy September 21, 2011 @ 9:46 am (#
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    Hey! I’m one of those freaks! :o) This recipe looks great, I can’t wait to try it. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

  5. d.liff @ yelleBELLYboo September 21, 2011 @ 1:07 pm (#
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    Frosting is the one thing I just cannot make! I have only succeeded once (my caramel frosting – http://yellebellyboo.blogspot.com/2011/01/easy-caramel-cake.html – which is amazing!) but almost every other time it breaks (like looks thin with little lumps all through it and doesn’t spread right. It’s my Achilles heel!

    Reply

  6. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel September 21, 2011 @ 1:31 pm (#
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    On a rare occasion I don’t mind the whipped frosting BUT I’m definitely more of the coma inducing sugar overload kind of frosting. And I’m totally with you that I love store bought or even jar frosting. There’s just something special and totally tasty about it even if it is cheating and probably seriously bad for you. :)

    Reply

  7. Ashlyn September 21, 2011 @ 2:03 pm (#
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    Ok. I just came across your blog – and I am beyond excited that I did. I am dying over the pictures and wonderful recipes!! Can’t wait to make a mess in the kitchen. My husband will be thrilled, I’m sure:)

    Reply

  8. Joanne September 21, 2011 @ 6:27 pm (#
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    Well, I’m totally a buttercream girl. but if we’re being honest…I’ll eat frosting in just about any form. WIth a spoon. This looks so light and fluffy and perfect!

    Reply

  9. Jessica September 21, 2011 @ 6:37 pm (#
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    Man, those haters might be related to those people that don’t like chocolate
    This frosting looks delish!

    Reply

  10. Dee September 21, 2011 @ 9:44 pm (#
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    I used to work at a grocery store bakery, and many many people chose whipped over buttercream. Crazy right! haha

    Reply

  11. Cookbook Queen September 22, 2011 @ 3:21 pm (#
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    Can I say how excited I am about you posting this frosting? My son HATES frosting and honestly, sometimes I make buttercream so much that I just want something lighter.

    I think the kid and I will love this. And I will make huge bowls of it and eat it with a spoon while I watch Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix and cry like those people are real.

    That’s normal.

    Reply

  12. Jenny September 22, 2011 @ 8:15 pm (#
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    i seriously don’t think i ever read your blog without laughing out loud…my husband thinks i’m insane. true story.

    Reply

  13. Barbara September 23, 2011 @ 10:32 am (#
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    I confess, we have a market here that makes THE best cakes and I love the frosting they use too. Of course, it’s buttercream. But I’m willing to try your recipe!

    Reply

  14. grace September 25, 2011 @ 2:25 am (#
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    i have to confess my undying love for a rich, fatty-fat buttercream, but whipped frosting is okay occasionally. especially if there are sprinkles involved. :)

    Reply

  15. gloria September 25, 2011 @ 5:46 pm (#
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    This look delicious! gloria

    Reply

  16. musou September 28, 2011 @ 11:29 am (#
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    I think buttercream is very greasy.But my girlfriend very likes this.

    Reply

  17. LISA September 28, 2011 @ 11:05 pm (#
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    I JUST TOOK A CAKE DECORATING CLASS BUT COWORKERS WANT WHIPPED FROSTING INSTEAD OF BUTTERCREAM AND WAS ONLY SHOWN BUTTERCREAM WILL TRY THIS ONE NEXT THANKS FOR POSTING.

    Reply

  18. Christi's Chirps October 2, 2011 @ 8:07 pm (#
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    I am not a thick, sugary frosting lover, so this recipe looks PERFECT. I will definitely be frosting my next chocolate cake with this recipe!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Cheers!
    Christi
    christischirps.blogspot.com

    Reply

  19. Becky October 14, 2011 @ 1:21 pm (#
    19
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    Dissapointed! I attempted this recipe….it was a huge failure! Maybe your recipe needs to be more detailed. How long should it boil? More exact time/temp to add the butter. It tasted like flour and butter and never set up! Also, it did not have the nice white appearance of your picture. Sad….

    Reply

  20. Karly October 14, 2011 @ 1:34 pm (#
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    Becky,

    I’m sorry you had problems with the recipe. I’m not sure how much more detailed I can get with the instructions, but I’ll try: The mixture should be boiled between 5 and 10 minutes…I can’t give an exact time because it just depends on how long it takes for the mixture to thicken up. It will be quicker if you’re using a higher heat than I did. There are too many variations for me to say “boil for exactly 6 minutes.” The mixture should be very thick and become difficult to stir. At the point, remove it from the heat. You should add the butter when the mixture is room temperature. That’d be about 72 degrees.

    Better luck next time!
    Karly

    Reply

  21. Jenn@eatcakefordinner October 15, 2011 @ 10:55 pm (#
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    I am the person that everyone scrapes their frosting onto MY plate and I eat it all with a fork! I love super rich bakery frosting! This frosting looks pretty good too, especially on a chocolate cake.

    Reply

  22. Nicole October 26, 2011 @ 9:18 pm (#
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    Will the cake have to be stored in the fridge after it is frosted?

    Reply

  23. Kellsey November 15, 2011 @ 11:07 pm (#
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    I followed your recipe exactly how you said to do it and it turned out a sticky globby mess…
    Very disappointed because me and my husband both hate buttercream and have been looking for a recipe like this or a long time… I don’t know how it turnes out like the picture, I am a very experienced baker and couldn’t make this work…
    :(

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — November 16th, 2011 @ 8:06 am

      Hi Kellsey!

      I’m sorry you had problems with the recipe! I’m not sure what could have happened. I wonder if the mixture was too hold or too cold before you added in the butter?

      Thanks!
      Karly

      Reply

  24. Sheila December 6, 2011 @ 10:28 am (#
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    Just wondering if you can make this into a chocolate frosting? If not, do you have/know of a good whipped chocolate frosting.

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — December 6th, 2011 @ 7:54 pm

      Yep! Just add 1/4 cup of cocoa powder to the first step!

      Reply

  25. Sheila December 7, 2011 @ 4:18 pm (#
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    Thanks, I made the frosting and really like it, But it melts very quickly which I knew it would. I still love my buttercream, but will use this again for any whipped requests.

    Reply

  26. acf7575 January 29, 2012 @ 9:54 am (#
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    Is a sugar free version of this possible? Maybe with Splenda? I am recently type two diabetic (three weeks) and am looking for semi health alternatives as I do have three small children at home and still need some “treats” for them for birthdays and special occasions.

    Reply

  27. Dave January 29, 2012 @ 2:12 pm (#
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    This is a nice recipe, if you can keep your kitchen at 10 degrees. The icing breaks very easily

    Reply

  28. heidi thomas March 29, 2012 @ 10:34 am (#
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    freakn halarious!!!! my mother is one of those freaks…i mean silly peps i am in school and trying to start my own business and im pretty damn good and i make the best BC and my mom said ….:::whin:::: its too sweeeetttt blah blah blah~!!! so i am gonna shut her up and make this icing even though i feel like im doing something bad by making it!! let ya know how it goes!!!! :)

    Reply

  29. denise April 6, 2012 @ 7:25 pm (#
    29
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    i’ve made this several times now and each time it seems to get softer and softer. just wondering, do you use the paddle attachment or the beater attachment? wondering if that would make a difference. also, do you do your butter completely room temp, or softened a little, but still cool? LOVE the flavor of this just need it like it was the first time ~ HELP!!

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — April 8th, 2012 @ 10:02 am

      @denise,

      I use the beater. I wonder if your frosting mixture is too warm when you’re putting the butter in? Maybe let it cool a bit longer next time (and even get it cooler than room temp, if you’re sure that you’re already doing that) and then add the butter. The butter should be softened, but not so much that you can’t cut it. Sounds like it may be too warm.

      Good luck! :)

      Reply

  30. Jennifer June 13, 2012 @ 8:39 pm (#
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    I was soooo excited when i found this. Because iv’e been wanting a whipped frosting recipe the taste just like store bought…But sadly to say i have tried it today and it came out BAD! i was runny and tasted nothing like it. I followed the instructions to a T. Im so sad!!! :-(

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — June 13th, 2012 @ 8:50 pm

      @Jennifer,

      This is definitely a finicky recipe. I’ve had lots of success stories and lots of sob stories with this one. I think you just have to be very careful that you don’t add the butter too soon. I’m sorry you had troubles with it!

      Reply

  31. Kasey August 7, 2012 @ 11:33 am (#
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    This looks awesome! I am one of those weirdos…but in my defense, my Dad is a baker and he used to make cakes when i was little out of our home. I used to eat buttercream frosting for breakfast lunch and dinner! He would make 5 gallon buckets of it and when he didn’t need anymore he would give it to my brother and sister and I and we would go crazy! Needless to say….I got sick of it. Now, don’t get my wrong, I still like some well made buttercream on a sugar cookie…..but not on cake and not by itself. So….I am REALLY excited to try this frosting! I am going to try to make it myself and say “see Dad? I can make frosting too!” :P I will make sure to follow the directions too….since I am not usually good at that when baking…..

    Reply

  32. alina September 10, 2012 @ 2:18 pm (#
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    is the mixture thats supposed to boil in the pot really stiff or just kind of? cause it stuck to the sides and turned brown so i just took it out.

    Reply

  33. Melody September 24, 2012 @ 9:19 am (#
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    Seems my husbands extended side of the family prefers store/bakery cakes to homemade. So since they don’t much appreciate real buttercream I needed a new recipe. This recipe was wonderful. Having the first taste test, I think it tasted a bit like tapioca, except perfectly smooth and velvety. At the baby shower that I made it for, one person excitedly exclaimed it tasted like whipped cream. Either way, it is delicious. I even colored a portion hot pink and piped it for a border and it worked out very well. Definetly recommend this recipe! It whipped up easily, no issues.

    Reply

  34. Melody September 24, 2012 @ 9:26 am (#
    34
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    To those who said the frosting breaks easily: I made the frosting just about 24 hours ago, transported by car to the event facility, transported the leftovers back home and stored in container on my countertop and took to work this morning, and the cupcakes still look just fine right now. They were piped with a large star tip and are keeping their shape perfectly. I never let them get too warm though, only room temperature or outside temp of 65ish degrees. That might be the issue for some.

    Reply

  35. Jeanne October 26, 2012 @ 11:43 pm (#
    35
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    I’m going to make the assumption that if it ain’t white after it boils, it ain’t right. Save yourself three sticks of butter and start over, or just use the canned stuff like I did. I tried twice. After it boiled, not only did it thicken like gravy, it looked like gravy, but it tasted nothing like gravy or frosting. The frosting in the picture looks like Cool Whip. It’s a mystery to me as to how it got that way.

    Reply

  36. Lucy December 25, 2012 @ 11:50 pm (#
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    Just made this frosting (it’s in the fridge for the last 20 minute chill) and seems to be good so far (looks good and tastes good) has a nice light buttery taste, should be great on the chocolate cake I made

    Jeanne, it’s not going to be white after the boil, its the whipping the air into it that turns it white, like making meringue. It did kinda look like gravy but after adding the butter and whipping it’s snow white

    Reply

  37. zoe February 10, 2013 @ 2:55 pm (#
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    Is the butter supposed to be salted or unsalted? I want to be sure before I make my first attempt. Thanks!

    Reply

  38. sue February 11, 2013 @ 3:27 pm (#
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    this looks sooooooooo much like the whoopie pie filling recipe my mom used to make..delish

    Reply

  39. Jennifer February 16, 2013 @ 11:33 am (#
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    I might try making this..sounds really good but “really” can’t see how this is going to turn out totally white with the vanilla and butter colorings?? I saw a couple comments saying that it tasted like flour but if you cook it long enough, it won’t. Hope it turns out good….been looking for a GOOD icing recipe that has that bakery taste!

    Reply

  40. Chynna December 15, 2013 @ 7:43 pm (#
    40
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    Tired this recipe tonight for my son’s smash cake/cupcakes. I followed it to the letter (including the temperature, thermometer said 70). It looked like whipped cream in the bowl, but that’s about where everything fell apart. when I put it on his smash cake, it wouldn’t even stick to the sides, slid right off in a big mess. I tried to thicken it up a bit with some confectioner’s sugar, and even that didn’t work. It failed on the smash cake, but luckily I was going to put fondant over it anyway. I will however have to find a different recipe for making big icing swirls on cupcakes :(

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — December 17th, 2013 @ 8:44 am

      @Chynna,

      I’m sorry to hear it didn’t work out for you!

      Reply

  41. Kitara January 25, 2014 @ 6:42 pm (#
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    Does it have to be butter, or will margarine work? Mine didn’t turn out and I wonder if that’s why :/

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — January 26th, 2014 @ 9:50 am

      @Kitara,

      I would definitely use butter vs. margarine in this recipe.

      Reply

  42. Jen January 28, 2014 @ 11:45 am (#
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    Thanks for a great recipe. I made this today & it’s perfect.

    Reply

  43. Maria February 8, 2014 @ 9:24 pm (#
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    Will this work with gluten-free flour?

    Reply

  44. Amanda June 13, 2014 @ 5:33 pm (#
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    I found this recipe today. I was hesitant to try because of the work involved (was looking for something super easy) anyways I must say, this is the awesome. I boiled ingredients until it was thick, put it in a bowl into the fridge and let it sit for about 30 minutes. While it was in the fridge I cut my butter and had it sitting out all ready to go. I removed the mix from the fridge, stirred a little, put in my mixer with the paddle attachment and I started adding 1 chunk of butter at a time until it was gone. Mixed on high for 5 minutes ( it lightened in color not totally white) and then chilled again for a little over 20 minutes and then frosted a banana 2 layer cake with some frosting left over. Don’t knock the recipe because it didn’t turn out for you, just try it again. Oh yeah, I’m totally not a baking kind of girl! If I can do it, anyone should be able to!

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — June 16th, 2014 @ 8:54 am

      @Amanda,

      So glad you were able to make it work! :)

      Reply

  45. Marquetta July 13, 2014 @ 7:46 am (#
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    This is a definite keeper ! It was a little richer than I was expecting, but with 3 sticks of butter, I should have known. After reading all of the comments I really thought hard about what seemed to be the underlying issues several we’re talking about so that I didn’t waste time and ingredients. It has to be a temperature thing. After I made the “gravy”, I put it in the fridge and went to the movies. I came home and took it and the butter out and gave it about thirty minutes to come to room temp. Everyone’s “room temp” varies so I just used the touch test on my butter. As soon as I could make a decent indention in the butter and it still felt cool, I started whipping. After incorporating the butter, I set my timer for 5 minutes. I realized straight away one of the complaints I read about that it wasn’t sticking to the cake. Mixing for 5 minutes causes some serious friction (heat). Even though it may feel cool enough, it’s not. I put it in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes…perfect !! It stuck, it spread, it lifted, it was wonderful. It also came out beautifully white, but then I used the clear vanilla. The other thing I did not do was run the mixture through a mesh sieve. If you mix your dry ingredients well, really well, it should be fine. I use a gravy whisk that I got from pampered chef years ago that does a wonderful job at breaking down clumps if there are any. I think that if you don’t have all of the thickening ingredients in your pot that may have stayed in the sieve (flour & cornstarch) your setting yourself up for failure. This recipe, like many you’ve probably come across in your life, is one that is worth the time and effort !! Just know it’s not something you can just whip up and run out the door with.

    Reply

    • Karly replied: — July 14th, 2014 @ 9:00 am

      Hi @Marquetta,

      So glad the recipe worked out for you! Thanks for sharing your tips, too!

      Reply

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