For now let's talk about Buttercream Icing! The icing is always the best part of any cake or cupcake! It is honestly so easy to make a great homemade buttercream icing that I am not sure why anyone would buy icing in a can. Now to clarify, I don't think there is anything wrong with grocery store short cuts! In fact, I have a whole page dedicated to Cake Mix Recipes. I love using cake mix because it is a quick and easy short cut! And you know what?!? I think that whipping up a box of chocolate or yellow or strawberry cake mix tastes almost as good as cake from scratch. But do you know what does not come even close to tasting as good...that's right...that canned icing! So I always, always, always make Buttercream Icing from scratch!
And I PROMISE that once you make my homemade buttercream icing, you won't go back! It is so easy and it tastes 100 times better!
Yes, this is all you need!
Here's What You Need to Make Homemade Buttercream Icing:
- 2 sticks of butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1 box of powdered sugar (1 box equals 4 cups or 1 pound or half of a 2 pound bag)
- milk or half and half (if needed to thin out icing)
- food coloring (optional) if you want to color your icing
Now Let's Make the Homemade Buttercream Icing
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the butter until it is soft and creamy
- Add in 1 tsp of vanilla extract and mix until it is fully incorporated
- Add half of the powdered sugar and beat on the lowest speed until it is combined well with the butter
- Add the other half of the powdered sugar and beat on the lowest speed until combined
- Now turn you stand mixer up to medium high and beat for 2 - 4 minutes until your buttercream frosting is whipped and fluffy and thick
- If you need your frosting a bit thinner, mix in a bit of milk or half and half *one tablespoon at a time* until you have reached the desired consistency
An Example of When I Wanted Thinner Icing:
This was part of Lacie's Pinkalicious Half Birthday Cake. For this icing I added two tablespoons of half and half (I always use half and half over milk - we are coffee drinkers so we have it in our house at all times - but if you do not have half and half on hand use whatever milk you have) to thin the icing so that it would spread easily on the cake. I also added a few drops of pink food coloring!
The completed Cake!
And a slice of the cake! Thinning out the icing a bit with half and half allowed me to spread this buttercream icing much easier over the surface of the cake! And yes, the cake is from a box! And it was delicious! But the icing is never ever from a can!
An Example of When I Wanted Thicker Icing:
For Blakely's First Birthday Cupcakes with Buttercream Icing I did not add any milk or half and half because I wanted the icing to be thicker so that I could make these thick swirls of icing on top of the cake!
If the weather is hot, I would recommend refrigerating your cake/cupcakes once they are iced! If you do want to leave them out at room temperature that is fine, but by the second day I would put any leftovers in the refrigerator. I always keep mine in the fridge because I like them cold...but of course this is totally your preference!