Basic Vanilla Buttercream Icing
The following ingredients makes:
- 250g unsalted butter softened
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 600g icing sugar
- 2tbsp double cream or milk, plus extra for thinning
colouring paste [optional]
Cream the butter and vanilla together with an electric whisk.
Add the icing sugar, beating well.
Beat in the cream and continue mixing until the icing is light and fluffy.
Transfer to a bowl and add colouring paste a little at a time until you achieve the
The icing should be firm enough to hold a knife upright but soft enough to be piped.
Follow the steps above but after betting in the milk [instead of cream], add 8tbsp of
cocoa powder and beat until fluffy.
Lemon or Orange Buttercream
Cream the butter with the icing sugar and leave out the vanilla extract. Instead of
using cream, use lemon or orange juice of one lemon. Add the lemon or orange
zest of one fruit when the icing is smooth
The icing has a light coffee flavour but it can be strengthened by using stronger
coffee. Beat together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract. Use only 1tbsp of cream
and then 2tbsp of strong coffee such as expresso which has been cooled. For a
slightly marbled appearance, lightly whisk in 2tbsp of coffee powder instead.
Cream Cheese Buttercream
Mix the butter, sugar and vanilla extract together. Omit the cream and add 7ozs of
full-fat cream cheese which has been drained in a sieve. Keep 300g of icing sugar
of additional icing sugar to hand and add more to achieve the desired consistency.
For flavoured buttercreams replace the vanilla with another natural extract such as
a nut or fruit extract. Try flavour pairings such as mint and chocolate. You could
even use pure oils such as lemon, orange, or lavender. Start with one drop and
taste before adding more.