Vanilla Buttercream Style Frosting
This recipe makes a buttercream style frosting that is perfect for cakes, cookies, filled cupcakes, spoons and fingers! Most buttercream frostings have milk or a milk alternative. I’ve discovered that using water works just as great and lets the flavor you choose be the star of the show. You don’t have to stick to vanilla, change up the extract flavors to create endless adventures. My favorites are black licorice (anise) and peppermint. Be sure to get real deal extracts that are made from the oil of the real food, not imitations that often have preservatives and weird chemicals. A few of my favorites are included in our store, you can find them here. Or you could make your own extracts if you’re feeling adventurous and have a few weeks, here’s how! You can also make amazing coffee frosting with this recipe by using all water and dissolving 2 heaping teaspoons of instant coffee into the water before adding.
The butter substitute you use will change how much liquid you use, and may change the stability of your frosting especially in warm environments. Earth Balance soy free buttery sticks are my all-time favorite for this frosting. I’ve had trouble finding them locally lately and have switched to Spectrum organic palm shortening, which I’ve come to love just as much- maybe even more. I use the same amount (4 ounces) of Spectrum as I do Earth Balance. If you don’t have a kitchen scale, 4 ounces of shortening is about a half cup plus a tablespoon. If you choose the organic shortening you will need the full 9 teaspoons of water. The butter substitutes in tubs are not a great option for frosting. They are too soft and tend to separate. It still works if you want to simply eat it off the spoon, or are frosting cookies that don’t need to be pretty and probably won’t last long enough to figure out how to store… then go for the tub version, just add less water.
If you’re the kind of human that craves frosting and then decides it should go on something, check out our easy Free Love Bakery cake mix. Enjoy!
2 ½ cups powdered sugar
1 stick (4 oz) Earth Balance or Spectrum organic palm shortening
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or extract of choice
5-9 teaspoons water
Combine all ingredients in medium bowl. Using the whisk attachment on your stand mixer, or regular beaters on your hand mixer, blend on low until all ingredients are combined. Scrape the sides of your bowl and whip on medium high until light and fluffy, adding additional water one teaspoon at a time. Use immediately or store in the fridge for up to 3 months, or the freezer for up to 12 months.