Buttercream is the delightful combination of powdered sugar, unsalted butter, and salt.
It is quick and easy.
It is a great base to create your favorite frosting flavors. It’s quite a sweet frosting, so best to choose your flavor and regulate your recipe.
So what is the difference between buttercream, frosting, and icing?
It is fluffy like frosting but lighter. It is made with butter and often has a yellowish tint.
Typically, frosting is made of shortening or cream. It’s best for bright white cakes. Its texture is thick and fluffy, it’s best for pipping into high swirls on your cupcakes or coating outside of cakes.
Its texture is thinner, glossier than frosting. It also tends to be sweeter. It’s generally used to glaze cakes and pastries. But it is also great for spreading on a flat on cupcakes. It does not dry out as fast.
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Basic Buttercream Recipe
Wields: 2 and 1/2 cups
1 cup of unsalted butter, softened
3 ½ to 4 cups of sifted powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoon of milk or cream
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Beat the butter – for at least 3 minutes
Mix the salt with the powdered sugar.
Gradually add in the sugar – first 3 cups
Add the vanilla and cream – Until desired thickness is achieved
Whip until smooth and creamy.
Add the remaining sugar: – Decrease the speed of the mixer before adding
Adjust your ingredients based on sweetness and consistency. If it becomes too soft, add less than a teaspoon of sifted corn starch.
Flavor Ideas How to make your frosting, buttercream, and icing UNIQUE! Start with your base then bring in your own flare.
Here are some suggestions to help you create your fun-filled tasty treat:
- Strawberry: no-seed strawberry jam or better yet, strained strawberry puree – pairs great with vanilla or strawberry cupcakes. Top your frosting with fresh strawberries.
- Lavender: just a little lavender extract – Gives a whole new level of to your vanilla cupcakes! Top it off by decorating it with little lavender flower pieces. Ouh la la!
- Cookie Dough: add some raw safe-to-eat cookie dough in your basic frosting. Make sure you soften it well with milk before incorporating it into your frosting. So Yummy!
- Banana: add the banana puree and little bit of lemon juice into your soften butter mix before adding confectioner’s sugar.
- Irish Cream: spice things up by replacing the milk with Irish cream!
- Salted Caramel: sticky gooey salted caramel – Pairs up beautifully with vanilla cupcakes, or even better with cupcakes filled with salted caramel. Make sure to cut some powdered sugar and milk. Oh, My Caramel!
- Almond: can you either go for artificial or real almond extract – Almond has a delicate yet flavorful taste. You can also pair it up with a touch of vanilla extract.
- Pumpkin Spice: use store-bought pumpkin spice or make your own by mixing ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and the allspice mix. You can also add pumpkin puree for Pumpkin Spice Pie frosting!
- Chocolate Peanut Butter: mix smooth peanut butter with melted semi-sweet chocolate, let it cool down. Add some small pieces of Reese’s peanut butter cups for an explosion of flavors! It will be sweet! A little trick is to add not more than a teaspoon of sifted corn starch for your powdered sugar.
- Orange: orange zest – delightful with chocolate cupcakes and quarter-pound cakes. A favorite amongst Terry’s Chocolate Orange fans!
- Lemon: lemon zest – Gives for a tangy fresh flavor. Goes wonderfully with poppy seed cupcakes! And try using an icing recipe if you plan on using it for a quarter-pound.
- Sour cream: add some sour cream – It will add some tanginess; lessen the sweetness while making it a little creamier. A thin layer compliments a pound cake nicely!
- Mint Chocolate Chips: simply add mint extract and minis chocolate chips. And you just got yourself a popular ice cream flavor! Frost a rich chocolate cake, and you have got yourself a perfect match!
- Cinnamon: add about a teaspoon of cinnamon powder -Joins nicely with apple pie cupcakes! Fall season special year-round!
- Mocha: coffee extract or strong coffee and cocoa powder – sometimes the best way to start the day is with a sweet mocha cupcake! Oh, sweet morning of mine!
- Nutella: adding about ¾ cup of Nutella on a normal size recipe will provide a light chocolate taste with a rich hazelnut taste. You will need to increase the liquids to about 1/3 cup. Keeping a teaspoon of vanilla extract will give an irresistible result.
- Maple Pecan: you can use pecan extract and add a drizzle of maple syrup – for a stronger consistency, use maple butter. Reduce the powdered sugar and use half the cream. Simply perfect with butter pecan cakes. Top with lightly toasted pecans. Oh boy!
Enjoy tasting your creation!