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I have wanted for a while to do a post featuring some of my favorite frosting recipes I have tried out over the past few years. I tried out a few new ones as well.

For most of the recipes, the directions are to beat together the butter and sugar, then add other flavoring ingredients, then add milk/cream/half&half or more sugar as needed to get your desired consistency. For example, you may want the frosting stiffer for piping or smoother for spreading by hand. For softer frostings sometimes refrigerating for a while before spreading can help the texture.

I am completely in love with the strawberry mascarpone and peanut butter flavors but these all turned out well!

Most of these would do well with vanilla and chocolate cupcakes but I’ll also suggest some other good pairings for these frostings as well!

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Cinnamon Marshmallow

(good with apple or other spiced cupcakes)


  • 2 cups butter
  • 2 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 13 oz marshmallow crème
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Lemon Blackberry

(good with lemon cupcakes and any other fruity cupcakes)


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup blackberry puree
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest
  • pinch of salt
  • 5-6 cups confectioner’s sugar



  • 2.25 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 0.50 cup brown sugar
  • 8 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 0.13 tsp. salt
  • 0.50 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 tbsp. whole milk

Pumpkin Cream Cheese

(good with pumpkin or other spiced cupcakes)


  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • 12 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup pumpkin purée (not pie filling)

Mix sugar with butter and cream cheese till smooth. Add in spices and pumpkin

Vanilla Chai

(good on chai or vanilla cupcakes and other lightly spiced or lightly flavored cupcakes)


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 Tbsp. cold milk, if needed to thin out the buttercream
  • 1 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  •  tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

Brown Butter

(good on vanilla, pumpkin, brown sugar, hazelnut, almond and many other flavor cupcakes)


  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tbsp milk or cream (see note above)

Brown butter in sauce pan (heat over medium and stir constantly until starts to brown). Remove from heat and immediately mix in sugar and other ingredients.


(chocolate so it pairs well with many flavors, good on banana, pumpkin, walnut spice, to name a few)


  • 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups (240g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/4 cup (222g) Nutella
  • 3-4 tbsp (45-60ml) heavy cream*
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • salt to taste

Strawberry Mascarpone

(best on vanilla, strawberry, or other fruity cupcakes) (for pretty colors, save half the frosting before adding the strawberry and swirl together)


  • 1/4 cup softened butter
  • 1 8-ounce container mascarpone, at room temperature
  • 1 8-ounce brick cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup fresh strawberries, pureed
  • 2 tbsp strawberry jam
  • 4-5 cups powdered sugar

Cookie Dough

(good on basic flavors like chocolate/vanilla)


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temp
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips


You can flavor/color frosting with jello packages! Just mix in a small amount and your frosting will take on that flavor. These are mostly fruity flavors so they’d pair best with vanilla or fruity cupcakes (lime, raspberry, lemon, strawberry, etc.)


  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 cups, powdered sugar (1 pound)
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1-3 tbsp Jello mix


(thick fudgy frosting, goes well with many things, including banana, pumpkin, strawberry, chocolate, etc.)


  • ½ cup butter
  • 4 (1 oz) squares unsweetened chocolate
  • 1 lb powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk

Directions: Melt the chocolate and butter in the microwave or in a double boiler then add in the milk and powdered sugar, stirring till it’s smooth.

 Pink Lemonade

(this has a very strong lemonade flavor! Best paired with vanilla or other fruit flavors like strawberry, raspberry, lemon, lime, etc. cupcakes.)


  • 3 cups confectioners sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 2 tbsp frozen pink lemonade concentrate
  • Pinch of salt
  • yellow food coloring (optional)


(best on chocolate, vanilla, or mint cupcakes)


  • 8 tbsp butter, room temperature
  • 1⁄2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 4 cups powdered sugar (1 lb)
  • 1⁄2 tsp butter flavoring or 1⁄2 teaspoonvanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp Oreo cookies, finely crushed (plus extra as needed for garnish)

White chocolate

(similar to the fudge frosting but for white chocolate instead. Goes well on chocolate/vanilla, nutty, and cookie flavored cupcakes)


  • 1 cup butter, softened (no subs)
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 6 ounces white chocolateor 6 ounces white baking bar, melted and cooled
  • 3 -5 tbsp whipping cream or 3 -5 tablespoons half-and-half

Salted Caramel

(best on basic cupcake flavors)


  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 12 tbsp unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Briefly stir together granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Continue cooking, without stirring, until mixture turns dark amber in color, about 6 to 7 minutes.

Remove from heat and slowly add in cream and vanilla, stirring until completely smooth. Set aside until cool to the touch, about 25 minutes.

Mix butter, sat, and sugar until smooth and fluffy and then stir in the caramel mixture. Top cupcakes with a bit of sea salt.

Mint Chip Frosting

(best on chocolate or vanilla cupcakes)


  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp mint extract
  • 4 tbs milk
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips

Red Wine

(good on chocolate, red velvet, vanilla cupcakes)


  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/4 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Peanut Butter

(good on chocolate, banana, apple, and nutty or spiced cupcakes)


  • 1 cup room temp. butter
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup marshmallow creme
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 3 tbs milk
  • 2/3 tsp vanilla

mix all ingredients together


(this is a good basic chocolate frosting recipe)


  • 1 cups butter (no substitutes), softened
  • 4.5 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups baking cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup milk

One Response to “Frosting”

  1. RCC

    These look delicious, I’ll probably give some of them a try 🙂

    Do you know approximately how many many cupcakes one batch of frosting would cover?


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