French Vanilla Buttercream

  • Serves: Makes 5 to 6 cups or 2 1/2 to 3 pounds
  • Views: 13170
  • Comments: 19

Cupcakes and photo by odetteganda © Sarah Phillips 

This recipe has been adapted from the Well-Decorated Cake by Toba Garrett. Over the years, I have taken numerous cake decorated classes from famed cake designer Toba at the Institute for Culinary Education (ICE) in the early 2000's, New York City. She is a real professional and her cake designs are exquisite. We made this recipe in class and I fell in love with it.
TOBA GARRETT SAYS:"This is simply the most delicious icing ever. It tastes like vanilla ice cream. Use this icing when looking for something similar to whipped cream." After you frost your cake, I highly recommend you chill it for a couple of hours so it firms; this frosting can be used to pipe borders with, but not for intricate work because it tends to soften because it contains a lot of butter."

ODETTEGANDA, Premium Member SAYS: "(The Red Velvet Cake cupcakes) turned out to be very moist and chocolaty! The texture also was very fine and smooth which kind of melts in the mouth...Of course I am not surprised, Sarah's recipes are the best. I was supposed to frost it with Cream Cheese Frosting, but then again, I did not have butter anymore so I settled for the French Buttercream that I have frozen. It was a lovely combination though. And as always, I made Manny and a few officemates' morning happy."

Jimmy Nix, Premium Member Says: "Sarah thank you so much. Great recipe! Toba is right - tastes like ice cream."

1 1/2 cups (345g) granulated sugar
3/4 cup (6 fl oz or 180 ml) milk
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3/8 cup (3 fl oz or90 ml) whipping cream
1 1/4 pounds (5 sticks or 567 g) unsalted butter, room temperature but not greasy or really soft

1. In a heavy bottomed medium size saucepan, under low heat, make custard by heating milk and sugar until sugar crystals dissolve. Add flour and salt and whisk constantly over an ice bath until the custard has cooled. You can also cover the mixture, with plastic wrap pressed on its surface and refrigerate for 1/2 to an hour to cool the mixture. Whisk in vanilla extract after the mixture has cooled.

2. Pour custard mixture into a mixer bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Turn mixer to low speed and add whipping cream and the cut-up butter pieces, about 2 tablespoon size pieces each. After the butter has been added, gradually increase speed to MEDIUM-HIGH until the mixture begins to thicken, taking at least 7 to 9 minutes for all of the butter to be incorporated.

Note: Don't panic if the buttercream looks like cottage cheese. The more you beat this buttercream, the creamier it gets.

Icing must be kept refrigerated and will keep for about 1 week. Icing can be stored in an airtight container and frozen for up to 2 months.

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