Amy’s Buttercream

Amy’s Buttercream Frosting in various colors on cupcakesIt’s Like Buttah
It is not uncommon for me to come home from a day of work to find my daughter in the kitchen whipping something up to take to school for a friend who is having a birthday the next day. Or, sometimes it’s because there was a conversation in class about baked goods and she has a bit of a reputation as a baker. Either way, more often than not I am out of the ingredients I thought I had.

Cupcakes are her go-to for occasions like these Though, it depends on who she is baking for. (One of her good friends is addicted to her macarons and lemon bars). Cupcakes are relatively easy to make. And, if you prefer to use cake mix from a box, there are ways to make it better. The one place you absolutely must not cheat is the buttercream frosting.

To me, cupcakes are basically just a vessel to deliver good frosting into my mouth. Would I prefer a very tasty devil’s food or Red Velvet? Sure. But frosting is key. I want it full-fat and full-flavor. And, for me that means good old-fashioned butter cream.

Full disclosure, I like more salt than most in my frosting because I like that rich butter flavor that salt can bring to the table. Therefore, I use salted butter in my frosting. And I am not afraid to add a pinch or two more if needed. You just need to taste it along the way to get it how you like it.

This is not the frosting to use if you are bringing cupcakes to a picnic. There is a lot of butter. Butter will melt. If you need something to hold up to decoration and weather, try one of these options. But, if you need a quick hit of cake and frosting, try my Amy’s Buttercream recipe below. It’s perfect for a late afternoon or evening craving…assuming someone didn’t use up all of your ingredients.

Amy’s Buttercream Recipe
Yields about 2-1/2 cups

1/2 cup salted butter, at room temperature
2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream (you can also use milk but it won’t be as rich)
Salt, to taste
food coloring, as needed (Optional)

Cream the butter
Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until creamy smooth and fluffy.

Add the flavoring
Gradually beat in confectioners’ sugar until fully incorporated. Beat in vanilla.

Soften with cream
Add the cream and beat for an additional 3 to 4 minutes.

Add the coloring
Add food coloring (if using) and beat for thirty seconds until smooth and the desired color is reached.

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