Vanilla Buttercream Frosting Recipe

This Vanilla Buttercream Frosting is the best creamy thick frosting for decorating cakes, cookies, or anything in between. And even better, it’s only 5 ingredients! Get the recipe here. 

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

I’ve tried a million different frosting recipes, but I keep coming back to this classic vanilla buttercream frosting. It’s sweet, simple, reliable, and always gets the approval of whoever tastes it!

cupcakes decorated with vanilla buttercream frosting and sprinkles

Whether it’s for a birthday cake, sandwiched between cookies, or on top of cupcakes, this vanilla buttercream frosting is a winner.

I love how easy it is to make. I could easily have this done in 10 minutes or less, and most of that time is just letting it mix on its own!

The shortening makes it sturdy enough for a sugar cookie frosting, but the butter makes it creamy enough for beautifully frosting a cake.

If you like this frosting recipe, you’ll love my chocolate frosting too!

cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting and sprinkles

More recipes you’ll love 

Vanilla Buttercream Recipe

This is my very favorite vanilla buttercream frosting recipe because it’s quick and easy but tastes so great! You won’t believe it only has 5 ingredients!

Ingredients

ingredients for vanilla buttercream frosting
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup butter
  • 6 cups powdered sugar, scooped and leveled
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tbsp milk

Some additional tools you may need: 

How to Make Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

piping bag with vanilla buttercream frosting frosting cupcakes

Don’t forget to download the full printable recipe below so you can print it out and use it whenever you feel like making this delicious recipe!

  • To make your vanilla buttercream, start by adding the shortening and butter to a large mixing bowl or to the bowl of your stand mixer.
  • Next, add your powdered sugar a little at a time, mixing as you add it in.
  • When the powdered sugar is all added, add the vanilla extract and mix again.
  • Pour in 3 tablespoons of milk and whip on high. If needed, add another tablespoon of milk if it’s too thick.
  • Whip again on high for 4-5 minutes or until the buttercream doubles in volume.
piping bag full of vanilla buttercream frosting with cupcakes

Tips Tricks and FAQs 

  • If you have a stand mixer, I highly recommend using it instead of a hand mixer! Frosting takes a lot of mixing so the stand mixer makes it way easier. It also tends to whip up the frosting way better which means a creamy, thick, and smooth buttercream.
  • Especially if you are planning to frost a cake with this vanilla buttercream frosting, you’ll want to make sure that you sift your powdered sugar before adding it. Powdered sugar tends to have plenty of little clumps, and you don’t want a lumpy buttercream! Sifting it will help ditch the clumps and make a perfectly smooth and creamy buttercream.
  • Make sure that you turn the mixer on low when you start adding the powdered sugar in unless you want to end up with a counter full of powdered sugar! I do a quick mix on low to incorporate the sugar, then turn the mixer up to high to really beat it in. If you are using a hand mixer, you can also poke a little hole in the middle of a paper plate and put it between the beater and the mixer to cover the bowl as you mix and prevent any spills.

Storage

To store your vanilla buttercream recipe, place it in an airtight bag or container in the fridge for up to 1 week. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months!

Can I substitute anything for the milk?

You can make this buttercream with milk, heavy cream, half and half, or even coffee creamer.

Any of these options will make a delicious buttercream, but the more fat in the liquid, the creamier the buttercream will be.

I love using a flavored coffee creamer to add a little pop of flavor to my frostings!

More Easy Recipes

Did you make this? Let us know how it went in the comments!

Yield: 24

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

overhead shot of vanilla buttercream frosting on cupcakes with sprinkles

This Vanilla Buttercream Frosting is the best creamy thick frosting for decorating cakes, cookies, or anything in between. And even better, it’s only 5 ingredients! Get the recipe here. 

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup butter
  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tbsp milk

Instructions

  1. To make your vanilla buttercream, start by adding the shortening and butter to a large mixing bowl or to the bowl of your stand mixer.
  2. Next, add your powdered sugar a little at a time, mixing as you add it in.
  3. When the powdered sugar is all added, add the vanilla extract and mix again.
  4. Pour in 3 tablespoons of milk and whip on high. If needed, add another tablespoon of milk if it’s too thick.
  5. Whip again on high for 4-5 minutes or until the buttercream doubles in volume.

Leave a Reply

Skip to Recipe
%d bloggers like this: