Use this recipe as the frosting and/or filling for a decadent chocolate dessert, such as our Chocolate Caramel Layer Cake.



Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Make caramel: Pour 1/4 cup water into a medium heavy-bottom saucepan. Add 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and syrup is clear. Continue to cook, without stirring, until syrup comes to a boil, washing down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush 2 or 3 times to prevent crystals from forming. Let syrup boil, gently swirling pan occasionally, until syrup is dark amber.

  • Immediately remove from heat; carefully pour in cream (caramel will bubble vigorously). Stir caramel until smooth. Transfer to a bowl; let cool.

  • Whisk together remaining 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, the egg whites, and salt in the heatproof bowl of a standing mixer. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water; whisk until sugar is dissolved and mixture registers 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.

  • Return bowl to mixer; fit mixer with whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until stiff. Reduce speed to medium low; add butter, a few tablespoons at a time. Continue whisking until smooth.

  • Switch to paddle attachment. Add caramel and vanilla; beat on lowest speed until combined, 3 to 5 minutes. The buttercream can be made 2 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Before using, bring frosting to room temperature; return to mixer and beat with the paddle attachment until smooth.

Reviews (2)

33 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 3
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 8
  • 2 star values: 15
  • 1 star values: 7
Rating: 3 stars
I got good results with this recipe and this method for making buttercream is my favorite. I did find the caramel flavor and color too subtle so I doubled the amount of caramel.
Rating: Unrated
I've been looking for a good caramel buttercream recipe that I could use to frost some salted caramel cupcakes that I make for a while and I had been avoiding this one as it seemed complicated, but I have yet to find one I really like so today I decided to give it a try. It was a pain. And it's really light in texture - it's definitely not right for cupcakes that's for sure. Will have to keep trying.