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Yield: Single batch yields enough to ice and fill a two layer 8" cake or cover 20-30 cupcakes. If piping additional decorations or icing a larger cake, you should make the 1 1/2 batch.
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened but not squishy
3/4 cups vegetable shortening (Crisco works the best for this)
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
5 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
1 tbsp. water
1 1/2 BATCH
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened but not squishy
1 cup + 2 tbsp. vegetable shortening (Crisco works the best for this)
4 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp. salt
8 1/4 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
1 tbsp. + 2 tsp. water
1) In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
2) Add the vegetable shortening and beat for an additional 30 seconds.
3) Add the vanilla and salt and stir on low until incorporated. Scrape down the bowl.
4) With the mixer on low, add the confectioner's sugar in scoopfuls. Once all the sugar is added, scrape down the bowl so there is no powder remaining on the sides.
5) Set the mixer to low, add the tablespoon of water and mix until incorporated. Then switch the mixer to medium-high and beat the buttercream for 30 seconds to lighten.
This buttercream can be stored for up to 10 days in the fridge. Place in an air tight container with plastic wrap pressed to the surface of the buttercream for best results. Bring back to room temperature and stir by hand with a rubber spatula to reuse.
It can also be frozen for up to one month. Once again, bring back to room temperature and stir by hand with a rubber spatula to reuse.