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The Best Fluffy Buttercream Frosting, light as air and not too sweet. Perfect topping for cupcakes, cakes, and cookies, an all-purpose frosting for your baking needs!

Fluffy Buttercream Frosting overhead image on cupcakes

If you haven’t tried my Buttercream Frosting, now is the time. This is one of the best and most all-purpose frostings that you will come across.

I read a lot before coming up with this recipe about people and their love for buttercream frosting and also bad things about it not working out properly.

I’ve seen the same complaints about these points on different occasions; sometimes it just comes out overly sweet. Other times it is too thick or even too runny.

BUT, I finally put together the best (to me and quite a few in the comments below, thanks guys!) recipe for the Best Fluffy Buttercream Frosting.

We have been making this frosting for many years now and it has yet to fail us, it is our go-to frosting for pretty much anything and we rarely stray from it unless it’s a different type.

This Buttercream Frosting is just light, fluffy, airy, and absolutely delicious, it has the perfect balance of flavors that you will absolutely come to love.

Some of my other favorite frostings that we have on our site include Chocolate Malt Buttercream Frosting, Brown Sugar Frosting and Cream Cheese Frosting

WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS:

  • With only 5 staple ingredients it is super easy to put together.
  • You can halve or double this batch depending on your frostings needs.
  • This works on all different types of desserts and is very stable and perfect for piping, frosting, or filling.

Buttercream Frosting piped onto a cake on white cake stand.

INGREDIENTS NEEDED (FULL RECIPE BELOW):

Unsalted butter
Powdered sugar
Salt
Vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
Milk

HOW TO MAKE FLUFFY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:

  1. Place butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until smooth and fluffy, about a minute.
  2. Add the sifted powdered sugar a spoonful at a time over medium-low speed. Keep doing this until all of the sugar is added, scraping down the sides as necessary.
  3. Add the salt and stir to combine,
  4. Next add in the vanilla and again stir to combine.
  5. Lastly add the milk and whip the frosting for 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy.

Overhead of Fluffy Buttercream frosting on cupcakes and cake with wooden spatula.

It reminds me a lot of that whipped frosting you can get on cakes at the grocery store. Those are normally made with whipping cream but not this one.

This has traditional Buttercream ingredients but I think what really sets it apart is the way you add everything into the mixing bowl.

Butter. Powdered Sugar. Vanilla. Milk and a pinch of salt… that’s it! Easy. I really took my time to perfect this buttercream frosting recipe and I hope you enjoy it too!

HOW TO MAKE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING LESS SWEET?

When baking it is very important to always use unsalted butter unless otherwise stated in a recipe. But, the addition of salt to recipes is what helps to counteract the sweetness.

So, use that unsalted butter for this recipe BUT, make sure to add in just a pinch of kosher salt. Not too sweet, not salty at all, just the perfect Buttercream Frosting!

Hand holding up cake stand with a frosted cake.

TOOLS USED TO MAKE FLUFFY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:

Now while we like to use a stand mixer, this can be made with a hand-mixer as well if you do not own a stand mixer. We have made it several times with a hand mixer.

While the paddle attachment is nice, we realize that not everyone has the luxury of owning a stand mixer, so do not fret! You can use a hand-mixer for this recipe, it will just take a little longer.

WHY DO YOU SIFT THE POWDERED SUGAR?

Powdered sugar absorbs moisture from the air, forming hardened lumps so you will usually see those lumps in the bag or in a storage container. That can affect the texture of your frosting. Sifting removes the lumps and makes the powdered sugar fluffier by adding air into the sugar itself.

Overhead of cupcakes topped with Buttercream Frosting

HOW TO STORE:

There are many ways to store this Fluffy Buttercream frosting:

Refrigerator:

If you are not going to frost your cake, cupcakes, or cookies right away, place the Buttercream in an air-tight container. Place the container in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Warning though, since there is butter in the recipe, the frosting will harden up. Let the frosting warm up a little and place it back into the stand mixer and whip until light and fluffy again. This will only take a minute or two.

You can store your Buttercream Frosting in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Room Temperature:

This is a great debate. Once you make and decorate with buttercream frosting for cupcakes or cakes, what do you do with them?

Do they need to be refrigerated or can they stay on the counter? That is a question that we get a lot from people!

Even though buttercream icing has both butter and milk in it, it can stay at room temperature for two to three days according to the U.S. Food Safety and Inspection Services. It can stay out because of the high amount of sugar in the frosting.

Freezer:

Buttercream Frosting store perfectly well in the freezer, if you are making ahead of time for later use or if you have some leftover just place it in an airtight container and it should keep for up to 3 months.

To defrost you can remove it to the refrigerator or to the countertop depending on when you are going to be using it!

TIPS AND TRICKS:

  • Use only unsalted butter for buttercream and add actual salt in, this balances out the flavor.
  • Sifting your powdered sugar is a must, it helps add the air and fluffiness you want to achieve when making this recipe.
  • This can be frozen, see my tips above on how to do that.
  • This is an all-purpose Buttercream Frosting, it can be used for piping, frosting, filling, etc.

Pinterest image of cupcake with The Best Fluffy Buttercream Frosting

If you’ve been searching high and low for that perfect Fluffy Buttercream Frosting look no further! You have to make this recipe ASAP and you will see why all the reviews are amazing!

If you like this recipe you might also like:

If you’ve tried THE BEST FLUFFY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING let me know in the comments how it turned out! You can follow me over on PINTEREST, INSTAGRAM OR FACEBOOK to find some more of our mouthwatering recipes!

This Silly Girls Kitchen Logo
4.99 from 245 votes

The Best Fluffy Buttercream Frosting

Prep: 20 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
The Best Fluffy Buttercream Frosting, light as air and not too sweet. Perfect topping for cupcakes, cakes, and cookies, an all-purpose frosting for your baking needs!
Servings 24 servings

Ingredients
  

Instructions

  • Place butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until smooth and fluffy, about a minute.
  • Add the sifted powdered sugar a spoonful at a time over medium-low speed. Keep doing this until all of the sugar is added, scraping down the sides as necessary.
  • Add the salt and stir to combine.
  • Next add the vanilla and again, stir to combine.
  • Lastly Add the milk and whip the frosting for 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy.

Video

Notes

  1. Make sure to use clear vanilla if you want a pure white buttercream. Use vanilla bean paste if you love those little black flecks like I do!
  2. Use only unsalted butter for buttercream and add actual salt in, this balances out the flavor.
  3. Sifting your powdered sugar is a must, it helps add the air and fluffiness you want to achieve when making this recipe.
  4. This can be frozen, see my tips above on how to do that.
  5. This is an all-purpose Buttercream Frosting, it can be used for piping, frosting, filling, etc.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 147kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 68mg | Potassium: 3mg | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 235IU | Calcium: 4mg
Nutrition Disclaimer
Course Dessert
Cuisine Traditional

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4.99 from 245 votes (197 ratings without comment)

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178 Comments

  1. what if you have no powdered sugar what can you use instead.

  2. Try almond extract for half or all of the vanilla extract. It’s delicious!

  3. I wanted to make orange flavored frosting. can I use juice from an orange inlieu of vanilla extract and or milk>

  4. Yes, replace the milk and/or vanilla with OJ that will work perfectly.

  5. Debbie Iwasaki says:

    5 stars
    I made this frosting last night and it is AMAZING. It is the SAME INGREDIENTS that I use for buttercream but the way it is combined was amazing. It is soft and fluffy, I did not have unsalted butter and added a pinch of salt and it was not too sweet. I made it for an orange cake and added orange zest. It does take 20 minutes but well worth it.

  6. Kim Wahlstrom says:

    5 stars
    Great recipe! We used half vanilla extract and half almond extract and my daughter filled the mini vanilla cupcakes with raspberry preserves. It worked just as it should, fluffy, light, and good balance of sweetness. I’m one to speed through recipes and do not like messing up unnecessary dishes, but this recipe was so worth it! Thank you!!

  7. Awesome! So glad you like it, those cupcakes sound fantastic!

  8. If you don’t have powdered sugar you can use regular sugar and put it in a food processor until it’s powdered. I’ve tried this and it works great!!

  9. Can you use shortening instead of butter so the frosting is snow white?

  10. 5 stars
    How much and what kind of chocolate would I use to make this recipe fluffy chocolate buttercream

  11. Sonya Wilson says:

    So if you use the icing recipe if I color the icing teal Blue because it has butter in in will it turn Teal Blue or Green. Thank You

  12. I’ve never had an issue, it always comes out the color you want. I suggest using gel food coloring for the most vibrant colors.

  13. If you have no powder sugar on hand, you can blend regular white sugar in a blender on high speed to make powdered sugar.

  14. 3 stars
    Beautiful consistency, pipes like a dream. My only dislike was just how overwhelmingly sweet it is and I even held back on the powdered sugar a little, Otherwise it’s a solid fluffy abc. Thanks for the recipe

  15. The amount of powdered sugar is there to get the right consistency of the frosting. If you add too little it would become runny, it’s buttercream frosting, of course it will be sweet.

  16. 5 stars
    This is a keeper!!! I too added a dash of Almond essence along with vanilla essence.. On a hunch i also added 2Tbls of heavy whipping cream.. Soooo yummie!!!

  17. 5 stars
    Tried this recipe for the 1st time today and it came out amazing! Perfectly fluffy and looked great when I colored it seafoam green for an upcoming ocean theme cake I’m doing!

  18. Hi;
    Can I make this dairy free by using dairy free butter and a dairy free milk? Also, if I added cocoa powder to make it a chocolate frosting would it still work? Thanks

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