How to make the perfect Buttercream Frosting Recipe – Tips and Tricks

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I always get asked so many questions about the buttercream that I use for my cakes and cupcakes and looking back at my videos I have realised that my buttercream recipe video was one of the first videos I uploaded to my YouTube channel 7 years ago, so I thought it was definitely about time I created an updated video where I run through my recipe and try to answer some of the questions I get asked. So if you’re new to making buttercream or just can’t get it quite right this video is here to help.

The buttercream that I always use for my cakes is an American buttercream which creates a slight crust making it perfect under fondant or for keeping its shape on the top of your cupcakes.

The Recipe

12oz / 340g – Icing Sugar
6oz/ 170g  – Room Temperature Salted Butter
1.5 tbsp – Milk
1 tbsp – Vanilla Favouring (or favouring of your choice)

To make my buttercream you will see in the video that I add all the ingredients into my stand mixer (you can also use a hand mixer too), starting on a low speed and increasing the speed for around 4 – 5 minutes. The longer you mix the buttercream the smoother and creamier it gets. See below for a more detailed recipe guide. Jump to the bottom of the post for the full printable recipe.

how to make the perfect Buttercream frosting Recipe

Buttercream that is too runny or just won’t set

I always get the most messages asking about buttercream either looks wet or that just won’t set when a cake is popped into the fridge. The main cause of this is using the wrong butter. In the tutorial I look at 2 different types of butter and how using a block of real butter really makes a difference in your buttercream. If you use a butter that comes in a tub even if it is specifically for baking, these work great in your cake mixture but when popped into the fridge always remain soft, so if you’re using these your buttercream is never going to fully firm up. You need a block of real butter (I prefer salted to unsalted, but it is down to personal preference on the taste) that when in the fridge is completely solid. This means when your buttercream covered cake or cupcakes are placed in the fridge the butter in your buttercream will go back to that solid state. Just remember to allow your butter to get to room temperature before making your buttercream.

Air bubbles in your buttercream

If buttercream is left even for a few minutes after it’s been made I find it can create air bubbles in your mixture. Before adding it onto your cakes or popping it into your piping bag use a spatula and spread it around the side of your bowl. This will push out alot of those air bubbles, bringing it back to the perfect creamy consistency.

easy buttercream frosting recipe

In the tutorial I also cover colouring your buttercream, how to lighten your buttercream and how to use the same recipe for chocolate buttercream. I really hope you will find this tutorial useful in your cake making journey and if you have any other questions please leave them below.  Plus if you haven’t already you can subscribe to my YouTube channel for more Free cake decorating video tutorials.

I have put a list below showing all the tools that I used throughout this video or if you would like to see all my favourite cake decorating tools just click here:

AEG Stand Mixer (blue version):
Piping bags I use:
1M piping tip:
Raspberry Colour Splash:

~ Please note that some of links above may be affiliate links. If you click the link and purchase any item through that link, I will receive a small commission from the website but this does NOT add any additional costs to you. Thank you so much for supporting this blog x ~

Buttercream Recipe

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting Recipe

Author: Cakes by Lynz
Smooth buttercream frosting that can be used to fill and cover your cakes or pipe onto cupcakes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Decorating Time5 minutes
Servings 12 Cupcakes
Recipe Type Buttercream
Keyword American Buttercream, Frosting


  • 340 g Icing Sugar (12oz)
  • 170 g Room Temperature Salted Butter (6oz)
  • 1.5 tbsp Milk
  • 1 tbsp Vanilla Favouring or favouring of your choice


  • Sift your icing sugar into your mixing bowl to get out any lumps. Then add your butter, milk and flavouring.
  • Either using a hand mixer or stand mixer set your mixer onto a low speed until the ingredients start to combine. This will stop the icing sugar escaping from the bowl.
  • Once the ingredients have started to combine turn your mixer up to a medium / high speed and let your buttercream mix for at least 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes you should have a smooth, creamy buttercream mixture. Using food gel colours you can now add a colour of your choice, before adding it onto your cakes.


Buttercream naturally has a yellow colour due to the butter. If you are looking to create a white buttercream check out how to lighten your buttercream here!

Plus why not save this tutorial for later and pin it to Pinterest

How to make the perfect easy buttercream recipe

Thank you for reading!

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9 Responses

  1. Thank you so much for the tutorial for buttercream.
    Why does my buttercream often split- still tastes nice but spoils the look. Advice please?

  2. Hi Lynz, quick question on buttercream! Do you use the same recipe to buttercream a cake, as you do for buttercream decorations? I seem to struggle to get smooth lines on my buttercream so add a little milk, but then it’s too soft for decorating (unicorn roses for example)…. I know I can add some more icing sugar, just wondered if you had too different recipes for the cake buttercream and buttercream decs! Thanks! (P.s have made your bunny cake and next month I am making the rocket cake!!)

    1. Hi Emma, It’s great to hear you have made the bunny cake and will be making the rocket cake. In regards to my buttercream I actually use the same buttercream for my cakes and buttercream decorations. With things like flowers you want to make sure you are mixing it until its really creamy, usually I let mine run for 5 minutes at least. Also make sure you butter is at room temperature as this will really help. When it’s mixed you can also go in with a spatula mixing it by hand, pushing it against the bowl to get out any air bubbles which really helps for buttercream flowers. I really hope this helps.

    1. Hi Erika, Yes you can definitely pop it into the fridge to use in 2-3 days. Place the buttercream in an airtight container and then when you want to use it, bring it out to room temperature. I like to then mix it back up in the mixer until it goes back to being light and fluffy again.

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Hi, I’m Lynsey and welcome to Cakes by Lynz. I LOVE everything cake! Here you will find all my latest cake decorating video tutorials from my YouTube channel, reviews and general cake ramblings!

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