Buttercream Cake Frosting Recipes

When faced with the challenge of frosting a classic wedding or special occasion cake with buttercream, the goal is to make it look crisp and symmetrical. This is entirely possible with the right technique and some practice!

How to Frost Wedding Cakes with Buttercream Frosting

Beautiful handcrafted cake stands made by Shannon of Batter Up Cake Co.

3 Keys to Smooth Cake Frosting

All my professional tips and tricks are now available in the book, Smooth Buttercream Cake Frosting. Note that the course involves American style buttercream (ingredients: butter, powdered sugar, milk & vanilla) but these methods may also be applied to chocolate ganache, Swiss meringue buttercream, or Italian buttercream as well.

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Smooth Buttercream Cake Frosting
Smooth Buttercream Cake Frosting

Cake Decorating with Modeling Chocolate
Cake Decorating with Modeling Chocolate


Buttercream Cake Frosting Recipes — 27 Comments

  1. Hello!!! I am making a chocolate marble cake. Can I use SMBC and chocolate pieces as a filling? Thank you!!!

  2. Hi there! Just came across your sight and find your tips extremely useful. I definitely want to try out your stacked freezing method. I’m currently making a pretty simple three layered cake (8in) and want to fill with a Bavarian cream and fresh strawberries. Will the cream withstand a good freeze? Thanks!

  3. Hi Kristen,
    I’m very interested in your “stack-and-freeze” method for cake layers and fillings but I’m wondering if a salted caramel filling that I like (cooked caramel folded into whipped cream) will survive the defrosting process or should I choose a buttercream-based filling? I’m going to finish this cake with chocolate ganache. Thanks for your help!

    • In general, buttercream is more stable as a filling. I have built hundreds of cakes with the freezing method using a caramel-buttercream filling so I am very confident that will work. However I have also used vanilla whipped cream filling and not had any issues.

      Keep in mind that a natural whipped cream filling must be stabilized so that it does not separate or weep. There are several ways to do this so you can pick which way you prefer.

      If you are using a commercial non-dairy whipped cream filling/frosting or the kind of whipped cream that comes already-made-in-a-tub, you do not need to stabilize it because those kinds of products already have additives that prevent them from separating and weeping.

  4. Hi Kristen, thank you so much for your great video on freezing cakes. I’ve never tried filling a cake and freezing it before. I have a lot of cake orders for next week. One of them is a carved cake that I wanted to fill and ganache and then freeze. Also the client wants Swiss meringue buttercream for the filling. Will be the ganache and SMBC still be ok once thawed? I plan on refrigerating it first to set the ganache before wrapping it in cling film and freezing.

      • Wow thank you for responding so fast. The The ganache will be used as a crumb coat and the filling will be SMBC. Sorry I wasn’t very clear.

  5. Found you on YouTube while researching frozen cake methods and could not stop watching your other videos!
    Here’s my question: the bride to be wants cream cheese frosting what would be a good recipe?

  6. Hi Kristen,
    Do you have any peanut butter chocolate recipes? Preferably a buttercream? I should have used pb for the filling but didn’t have the time to find a recipe then. It’s layered and in the freezer and I’d like to add some pb flavor somehow ….thoughts? (Overview: 6″ round, 3 layered chocolate sponge with chocolate pudding filling)
    Thanks in advance! 🙂

    • Ellen,
      Perhaps you can try a peanut butter ganache. I’ve attached a scan straight out of my old recipe book of a fantastic recipe for peanut butter ganache that uses both dark and milk chocolates. It’s not very clear in terms of directions but the steps were to heat the cream, sugar & butter, bring them to a boil, pour them over the chocolate and peanut butter, allow it all to sit. Stir occasionally with a whisk until the mixture comes together. You may be able to find something similar online that’s more adequate than my chicken scratch. I’m quite sure Pinterest could do better.

      This recipe was a staple for me early on in my career as a pastry chef. Only the best of my recipes have YUM written on them. Now I don’t have anything else peanut butter related as peanuts grew to become a severe allergen so after the year 2008, I was advised to avoid it entirely.

      • Awesome! Thank you, this will do perfectly for a bday cake for 2, 2 who love pb and don’t have allergies! Love the “yum” comment!
        Thanks again for your help, my last cake turned out great, last week, with your help on timings for thawing/etc, that one’s bookmarked for sure!

        • I’m no pro, just a mom making bday cakes, but I was pleased with my results, and it tasted so good! Thank you!

          • Oh how cool! Thank you for sharing a picture! You did such a great job! And I’m so glad that method and timing worked out for you. I’m sitting here at my desk smiling from ear to ear.

            • Hi Kristen! You did it again, you helped me make abother cool cake 🙂 Thanks for your suggestion with the PB ganache, it was super easy and so good! He was shocked and very touched, esp bc I assembled this at our cottage rental up north that was a water access only cabin! Haha I was so happy I pulled it off, thanks again for your help 🙂 again, no where near at a pro level, but it was fun to make!

  7. Hi Kristen.I purchased your book and its very useful especially for a beginner like me.Great work!I just want to ask if how long can I defrost a filled cake if I want to cover it with ganache? Thank you

    • Sheryl,
      I’m glad to hear you’re getting good use out of the material. Anything that you do to your cake will hinge on the size of it, so I can’t offer any estimates in terms of time it will take to defrost. What I can do is point you in the direction of this video series on Building Layer Cakes in the Pan, in particular Part 3 on Cake Condensation, which gets into the defrosting stage. I also recommend this Freezing Cakes article. In this case, ganache may be considered the same as buttercream in terms of how it should be handled as a finishing medium. I hope this helps answer your question.

      • Thank u kristen.another q pls.i covered my cake with ganache with your cream cheese filling and later i will cover with fondant. Should i keep it in the fridge after covering with fondant or should i just keep in room temperature? It will be eaten the following day.thanks

  8. Hello!
    I want to purchase the buttercream book. But, all I have is a computer. No kindle or anything. Will I still be able to see it?

    Thank You!

  9. Watched your icing segment on how to make icing, but I live in VA swamp area (lol) do you have a recipe for icing that will hold up in all our humidity… My customers like buttercream frosting

    Thanks kathy