Gingerbread Buttercream

Makes 14 1/2 cups

Make sure the butter is at room temperature; cold butter will cause the buttercream to have a curdled appearance. Use this to make our Gingerbread Town-Square Cake.


  • 13 large egg whites

  • 3 ⅓ cups packed light-brown sugar

  • 10 sticks plus 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger

  • 1 ¾ teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves


  1. Whisk together egg whites and sugar in a large heatproof bowl. Clip a candy thermometer to side of bowl. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water, and whisk until mixture reaches 160 degrees and sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes.

  2. With a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg white mixture on high speed until cooled and thick, about 12 minutes. Reduce speed to medium, and add butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until incorporated after each addition. Beat in vanilla and spices. Buttercream can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 1 month; bring to room temperature before using, and beat on low speed until smooth.

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