Fool-proof Decorator Buttercream Icing Recipe

Home / Blog / Fool-proof Decorator Buttercream Icing Recipe

Buttercream Icing Recipe

decorator buttercream icing

When I started out cake decorating, I have tried so many buttercream recipes.  I am always on a lookout for recipes that can withstand the Singapore hot and humid weather and my hot-hot hands.  Imagine my frustration every time I pipe ever so slowly and get sad-looking, soggy swirls.

After attending a few workshops, I have figured out a way to make buttercream without making it too sweet like American buttercream but stable enough to hold delicate details like buttercream flowers.

This recipe can be a crusting buttercream if you put an additional 1T of meringue powder.  You can leave the frosted cake to crust in an air-conditioned room for an hour or so.  Crusting buttercream works great for stenciling.

I have to warn you that this recipe uses a substantial amount of shortening.  This is because shortening hold a very high melting point that prevents the buttercream from melting at room temp.  If you are not a fan of shortening, feel free to replace it with butter but I cannot promise that it will be as stable as the original recipe.   You have been warned.


250g shortening
113g room temp butter (the less yellow the butter, the better)
1t lemon extract
1/2t vanilla extract
450g icing sugar, sifted
pinch of salt


  1. In a mixer with paddle attachment, mix shortening for 1 minute until softened.
  2. Add in the butter and beat for 30 secs.
  3. Combine lemon extract, vanilla extract and salt.   Add in the mixture and mix for 30 seconds.  You may also add your desired color at this stage.
  4. Add your icing sugar all in the mixer. Cover mixer with wet towel (to prevent white cloud from mixing the icing sugar). Mix on lowest setting for 30 seconds. Repeat until buttercream has come together in all its glory.


  • Do not over-mix.  Over-mixing introduces air into your buttercream.  Since this buttercream crusts so well over time, the air pockets inside the cream will create crust which results to gritty texture.
  • When adding colors, mix like you are spreading peanut butter on a loaf except that you are doing that on the side of the bowl.  I call this the fold-and-spread method.  This ensures no air is coming into your cream.
  • This recipe can keep 3 days in a hot kitchen, two weeks in the fridge and 3 months in the freezer.
  • You may swap shortening with butter or switch the shortening/butter portions in the recipe.  However, this will melt faster than what is promised in the original recipe.
  • If buttercream is too stiff to pipe, add and fold droplets of water in a small batch of cream and fold until you get desired consistency.


Related Posts
  • Czar

    Hi! Can you use this to crumb coat the cake before covering with fondant? Thanks!

Leave a Comment