The Perfect Crusting Buttercream

filed under: Miscellaneous on February 21, 2011

The Perfect Crusting Buttercream is just that…perfect!


I use this recipe when making my rose cake,


my hydrangea cake,

or any cake that I want the frosting to be able to hold its shape!

This makes quite a bit, but can be refrigerated quite easily.

And yes, I sometimes use half crisco/half butter.  This recipe is SWEET.  Super sweet.  If you dont like sweet, simply use less sugar.



*Some people seem to get very upset that I call this frosting a buttercream. 

I’m sorry.  I dont have a much better answer.  You are welcome to yell at me all you want in the comments. (Some already have!)

5 from 12 votes
Lemon Frosting Hydrangea
The Perfect Crusting Buttercream
Prep Time
5 mins
Total Time
5 mins

The Perfect Crusting Buttercream

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttercream
Servings: 12
Author: Amanda Rettke
  • 2 pounds confectioners sugar
  • 1 cup shortening, check alternate method for butter
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract, use clear if want white frosting
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup whole milk
  • pinch salt
  1. Cream shortening and vanilla in mixer for 2-4 minutes. Add in powder sugar, one cup at a time. If you find your mixer struggling, slowing add in milk. Use more milk for a creamy consistency, use less milk for a stiff consistency.

Alternate Method:
  1. Use 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup shortening. Place room temp. butter and shortening in mixer. Put entire bag of powder sugar on top, then add vanilla and 1/2 cup milk. Turn mixer on low and mix until all ingredients are incorporated. Turn mixer up to med-high and mix for 2-4 minutes. Can add more milk to reach desired consistency.


See more examples of how I use this frosting on my Rose Birthday Cake and Royal Wedding Cake.

I also share this decorating technique and many others in my new book, Surprise-Inside Cakes!  I am so honored and touched at the world wide support!  Be sure to let me know if you are baking from Surprise-Inside Cakes!

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  • Soigne Gundt says:

    I’m looking for a buttercream that can be refrigerated and remain soft as I have a fruit filled cake to make and the customer wants it frosted with buttercream—not cream cheese nor whipped cream— (as I usually make an all butter buttercream) would this recipe—or subbing all of the butter out for shortening work?

    Thanks so much!

  • Yup says:

    How much buttercreM does this make?

    • Kay Roach says:

      Delicious. !!! thanks for the recipe..m.

  • Melissa says:

    Can you use heavy whipping cream instead of milk?

    • Debbie says:


  • Kim says:

    Can I use water instead of BUTTEr… I don’t eat cream either. Bit of a diary thing.

    • Debbie says:

      Use shortening (think crisco) instead of butter. You can buy butter flavor and add it to the frosting to give it the buttercream taste without the dairy!

  • Leah colvin says:

    CAN’T please everybody.. sad u had to even comment about ppl getting mad.. i mean really its fosting whats to get mad over ? =)

  • Annelies Puranen says:

    Will water work in place of milk? I have a bad dairy protein allergy in the family.

    • Debbie says:

      I have made buttercream with no liquid, it works. You just use less sugar. Also, if you like coconut, coconut milk works well!

  • Jennifer liz Buensalida says:

    I love baking but dont have oven

    • Sissy says:

      Pray you will get one soon. 🌝

  • Cathy Gibbons says:

    Can you add sugar water to stiffen this up some or does it need it?

  • Caren lumba says:

    I need butter cream frosting last longer time..which is affordable…thank and Godbless…

  • Aleisha says:

    Do you use the butter crisco or the regular?

  • Dee Cortiglio says:

    I would like to use your buttercream frosting recipe on a wedding cake I will be making next week. How many recipes will I need to cover 2-layer 10″ base tier, 2-layer 8″ middle tier, and 2-layer 6″ top tier. I will not be doing a lot of decorating as I’m using fresh flowers on the cake. I want to be sure I have enough ingredients on hand before I begin.
    Thanks for your help.

  • Susan Williamson says:

    Is this high ratio shortening?

  • Chipo says:

    How much is 2 pounds in grams and can I use butter only without shortening. Can I use a hand mixer instead of stand mixer.

  • Marilyn Russell says:

    I can’t believe some people get upset. Does everything in there life work out. All they think of is themselves..I have made a similar recipe. Yummy. I do alot of making and baking…always looking for new ideas…Thank you. Will try this one…Looks delicious!!!

  • Gary E Hood says:

    Looks Good

  • Kay Roach says:

    Delicious !!!! Thanks for the recipe…

  • Maria Godino says:

    Does your buttercream frosting need refrigeration?

  • Jill Stevenson says:

    Thank you for sharing this. My mom has a great butter cream frosting that has to be kept in the fridge due to the butter, this will be great to add special flowers on it due to they will stay hard. Beautiful recipe. Thanks again !

  • Lule Melgarejo says:

    Thank you for sharing this fantastic recipe.🍃🌹🍃😊

  • Beverly Kelley says:

    I use crisco and sift the powder sugar makes it less sweet and I use vanilla and butter extract I use water instead of icing comes out great not to sweet and I actually have people that tell me they like mine better than a bakery.

  • Stacia Livingston says:

    Hi Amanda!
    I am trying your crusting buttercream because Bake at 350 had you on her site. I’ve never made this before and I am not a baker. Could you please, tell me how long this icing takes to dry and do I put it in front of a fan like royal icing?

    Thank you

  • Katie says:

    How long will this last in the fridge?

  • Barbara Pierce says:

    My Mother always used Crisco to make her ‘butter cream’ frosting. I remember that it crisped up and could be left outside the refrigerator. It was a wonderful way to make things last. Glad to see you using this recipe. I have for 50 some-odd years.

  • Marcia says:

    Hi Amanda! Is the milk necessary? Or could I use a plant based option? Almond, or coconut perhaps?

  • Dee says:

    I love all your post , do not to worry about comments people always have two side , a lot of people are appreciate for your sharing that included me , thank you verymuch .

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