Buttercream icing

(280 ratings)

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  • Makes: 12 cupcakes or 1 cake

  • Total time:

  • Skill level: Easy peasy

  • Costs: Cheap as chips

This classic buttercream icing recipe is the perfect way to top cakes and cupcakes. Once you've mastered this basic recipe you'll be able to experiment with various flavours and colours. This easy to make cupcake or cake topping takes only 5 mins to prepare. This buttercream recipe makes enough to decorate one 20-23cm round cake or 12 cupcakes. Any leftover buttercream can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 days. Make sure you mix thoroughly before re-piping onto cupcakes or cake. Add a few drops of food colouring to dye your buttercream or a few drops of water to loosen when re-using. If you make lots of cakes then you can bulk batch make this and freeze it, ahead of when you need it. Buttercream defrosts well overnight - just remember to let it come to room temperature before you need it so that it's easy to ice with.


  • 110g butter, room temperature
  • 500g icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 60ml milk

For tips on how to ice your cupcakes with buttercream check out our cupcake icing videos


  1. Add butter, icing sugar and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl, then beat for about 5 minutes with an electric whisk until smooth.
  2. Pour the milk gradually if you need to loosen the mixture.

Looking for a basic cupcake recipe? We've got it here!

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