Crusting Cream Cheese Icing

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Recipe by Sarah Phillips © 2006 Sarah Phillips

Photo and cupcakes by BakeryL © Sarah Phillips
This icing forms a thin sugar crust (crusting) as it dries which allows you to smooth it to perfection!

BakeryL, Premium Member Says: "I also (baked)  some cupcakes...these were for my Sunday School Class - Just to celebrate spring with them and try out my new dogwood gum paste cutter. I love making those flowers. It's a good thing too because my daughter has requested the same for her 3-k class next week - minus the carrot cake. Tried the crusting creamcheese buttercream for these and I am so excited about how well this recipe holds up! Thank you, Sarah!"


For a smooth cake, apply frosting to cake and let sit for 15 minutes until crusted. Then smooth with paper towel without a pattern, which can be transferred to the icing.

1 cup (2 sticks or 16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened (for a whiter frosting, find an all-natural white butter)
1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
1 pound (16 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon clear vanilla extract
3 1/2 POUNDS powdered sugar, sifted, more if necessary; measure and then, sift; do NOT use 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons meringue powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons heavy cream

NOTE: This recipe makes a stiff consistency. For a thinner recipe, use 3 pounds of powdered sugar.

Cream shortening until softened and add cream cheese and butter, plus extracts and salt and beat again until softened and well combined. With the mixer on low, at the side of the bowl, gradually add the powdered sugar mixed with the meringue powder and salt, 1/2 cup at a time until the frosting is of spreading consistency. Beat until creamy. If you need to, adjust consistency with heavy cream.

The frosting is perishable and needs refrigeration. Keeps for a few days, well covered.