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Thick Buttercream Frosting

This frosting is perfect for making a thick layer and it dries with a nice crust to make any cake or dessert look spectacular!
5 from 22 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 cups
Author: EmilyFabulous


  • measuring cups/spoons
  • rubber or silicon spatula


  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • ¾ cup vegetable shortening (makes a crust when dry)
  • teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 4 cups powdered confectioners sugar
  • 3-4 teaspoon water
  • yellow gel food coloring


  • Place butter and shortening in mixer and cream together on medium speed. Add in vanilla and salt and continue mixing.
  • Begin to add confectioners sugar one cup at a time, mixing on low speed until combined then med-high speed for a minute or so each time. After each cup addition, add a tablespoon of water to get your desired consistency. Add gel food coloring and fully incorporate it.


  • Buttercream frosting can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days before using. 
  • If you have leftover frosting, you can freeze it in a sealed container for up to 3 months.

Any nutrition calculations are only estimates using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.