Basic Buttercream

4 cups

Everyone should have a buttercream recipe up their sleeve -- and a little extra to lick from the mixing bowl.


  • 12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted

  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Beat butter with a mixer on medium-high speed until pale and creamy, about 2 minutes.

  2. Reduce speed to medium. Add sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating after each addition, about 5 minutes. (After every 2 additions, increase speed to high, and beat for 10 seconds, then reduce speed to medium-high). Add vanilla, and beat until buttercream is smooth. Use immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. (Bring to room temperature, and beat on low speed until smooth before using.)

Cook's Notes

This recipe is used with our Mini Chocolate Cupcakes with Multicolored Frosting, Brownie Heart Cupcakes, Edible-Flowers Cupcakes, and Chocolate-Chip Frosting.

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