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5 from 1 vote

Classic Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Classic Vanilla Buttercream Frosting is my go-to frosting recipe for cakes and cupcakes; it’s simple and delicious.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 397kcal
Author Lise Ode


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar (or 16 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • Beat softened butter on medium speed with an electric or stand mixer. Beat for 3 minutes until smooth and creamy.
  • Add powdered sugar, cream, and vanilla extract with the mixer running on low. Increase to high speed and beat for 3 minutes. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
  • Note: If the frosting is too thick, you can add a little more cream. Just add one tablespoon at a time, then mix thoroughly until you get the consistency you like.
  • This recipe makes enough frosting for 12 cupcakes with a tall swirl of frosting or 24 cupcakes with a thinner coating of frosting. OR you could fill and frost a two layer 8-inch round cake.


Note: If you don't have heavy cream, you can use milk or water instead. If using milk or water, I would try 3 tablespoons instead of 1/4 cup. If it's too thick, add another tablespoon.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 397kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 150mg | Potassium: 8mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 585IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 0.2mg