Cream Cheese Buttercream Recipe

Finally a cream cheese buttercream recipe that tastes amazing AND is stable for piping decorations, icings cakes, icing cupcakes!

As I mention in the video below this may seem like “the long way around” and I will admit~ it is.


But where you end up is in Happy Town because this cream cheese buttercream is just unmatched!

I like the preparation of the two separate recipes of Swiss Buttercream and Cream Cheese Icing because~ I will say it again ~ stability and taste that is unmatched.

Combining the two together rather than just adding cream cheese to the end of the mixing of a Swiss Buttercream Recipe is way better.

But don’t take my word for it, just trust me on this one!

I have been using this recipe for my Red Velvet Cake and Red Velvet Cupcakes for over a decade now!

I can wage a bet that you will adopt this method too once you try it!

So….what are you waiting for !?

Go ahead! Try it!

5.0 from 3 reviews
Cream Cheese Buttercream Recipe
Serves: 12 cups
  1. Combine both recipes together, mix well
Store cream cheese buttercream (and cakes & pastries made with cream cheese buttercream) in the refrigerator.

Can be stored refrigerated for up to 10 days

You can leave out at room temperature before serving for up to 4 hours

You can also flavor this icing very easily with the same techniques as you would add to regular buttercream.

The #1 requested is “How to make this chocolate”

Well, just add 6 – 8ounces of melted Couverture Chocolate White or Dark to this recipe ~ HOWEVER I prefer to add it to the Buttercream portion FIRST (since it mixes in much nicer to buttercream versus cream cheese icing for some reason) and then fold the two recipes together.

Click here for some helpful tips on Creating Your Own Buttercream Flavors


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  1. You are so right about this Gretchen! Having made cream cheese frosting for decades I thought I could get away with adding the cream cheese to the Swiss buttercream at the end. Big mistake. Even though it is more work your way is superior! I just freeze my extra frosting and by combining the two I get a way superior and stable and delicious frosting. Thank you so much for this great video and recipe!

  2. Holy fats pants, Gretchen! That looks totally amazing.

    Would this frosting be any good for forming roses with? Also, would it colour well?

    I’m so seeing crushed up Oreos in this, placed between the layers of your Buttermilk Chocolate Cake.

  3. Just try this with a taste did a chocolate cream cheese buttercream. My taste tester LOVE it! Thank you for teaching me to become a great baker.

  4. Having difficult time finding hi ratio shortening. Can I substitute solid coconut shortening as I have on hand?

  5. Hello i watched your vedio and wanted to use your recipe for topping for my daughter birthday, but there is no portion for the recipe, i was wondering if i can grt the ingredients with the portions i’ll need.i would really appreciate it thank you and have a bless day.

  6. I want to use this for my son’s wedding cake, does it crust well? The cake will but cut around 6pm, how long can it sit out (in presentation) before that?

    Thanks again!

    1. Thank you so much. I just found your site and I’m really glad I did.

      So for crusting I should use the straight butter cream then?

      I really need it to be smooth and hope the paper towel method will work.


      1. Hi Thanks WELCOME!! I actually dont have a crusting buttercream – those tend to be a more “Wilton style” or “decorators icing” which tend to be straight up shortening with icing sugar. I do have an American buttercream recipe which I LOVE that is sort of, kind of almost like that but tastes AMAZING!!

    2. I’m sorry, another question. What if it has the pudding whip cream filling? Is the window the same or can it be left out at all?

      Thanks again

      1. Hi Gretchen, I love to follow your recipes. the link “Click here for More ” is not working. Can you please advice on this recipe’s functionality under the fondant.
        Thanks in advance.

  7. Hi Gretchen, thanks for this incredible blog. For this cream cheese buttercream, can I use your American BC instead of the Swiss? Also I want to make this a lemon flavour so I was thinking that I replace to 6 TSP of heavy cream in the American BC with fresh lemon juice? Will this be enough juice to bring out a zest lemon flavour, and should I reduce the lemon juice on the stove 1st for more flavour? Also will the icing be stable? I am a bit worried that the acid might affect the cream cheese and I want a firm stable icing to pipe roses and rose petals on cupcakes? And if this icing is viable how much would I need to cover 2 dozen cupcakes with roses. Thanks again, and will appreciate any advice you can give.

    1. HI you are welcome and thank YOU too! Yes to any recipe buttercream you prefer it will be fine! And yes you can use lemon juice & extract if you have it! Also a zest would be FAB. I actually prefer to mix in lemon curd to make lemon buttercream, but who wants to make a whole other recipe just for that!? So the juice will be fine. Just about 1 juice from a small lemon to brighten it and the zest will more flavoring than any of it! Zest is a treasure!
      I think this recipe will be fine for 24 cuppies

    2. Thanks for getting back to me. One for thing, will this cream cheese BC be firm enough to make buttercream roses and flowers?

  8. Hello Gretchen,

    You stated in the video to add equal amounts ( by volume) of the Swiss Buttercream and cream cheese Icing. The total yield for the combined recipes is 12 cups.

    Does it mean that the individual recipes each produce 6 cups of icing?

  9. This is the best recipe I have encounter yet, it is creamy and delicious. I used it to fill and coat a pineapple cake under fondant and it was amazing, got lost of compliments on it.
    Thank you so much for sharing.

  10. Hi, Thank you for the recipe. i have two questions:

    1- Can I divide the quantities by 2? I don’t need as much of these 2 recipies. And for the first time I don’t want to waste a lot of ingredients in case I fail.

    2- Can I use this recipe for a rose layer cake?

    Thank you 🙂

  11. I made this icing for a carrot cake and it was absolutely fabulous 😉 I have a small tub left in my fridge, should I re-whip this recipe like I would if were a regular swiss buttercream? Thank you so much for sharing you recipes and techniques 😉

      1. I want to thank you so much! Thank you for the fast reply. This is the first buttercream I have had split. Your excellent teaching skills walked me right though the problem to an even lighter fluffier buttercream than the first time I had made it. The tip with using the paddle to re whip the buttercream worked like a charm. I love your content, Keep up the excellent work!

  12. I know you’ve said you can pour mirror glaze over your Swiss buttercream…but can you pour it over this Cream cheese Swiss buttercream recipe?

  13. Hi Gretchen, I have a hard time finding cream cheese that is in a block. What can I do so that my CCBC holds when piped onto cupcakes – add gelatine?

  14. Hi Gretchen, I live in South Georgia, we get the hot humid air up from the Gulf…. I have a wedding cake to make (indoor reception) on July 8th….. Is this frosting stable enough to hold up if I used it to ice the wedding cake? I am just looking for an alternative icing instead of the usual ABC. I love SMBC but it will not hold up in the heat… I need something stable. Do you have any suggestions? Thanks, and I LOVE your recipes, you are so very helpful and I have learned a lot from your videos. You are Awesome!

  15. Hi! I have made your swiss meringue recipe with butter instead of shortening ( I don’t like shortening). my question is can I still do the same while combining these 2 recipes? And how long can it stay our for? As I would be using this for a red velvet cake for an engagement party.

    1. yes sure it will be fine, same rules apply for the storage as noted in the “Notes” section here
      No more than 3 hours at room temperature

  16. Just for anyone need to know in some countries Philadelphia cream cheese is sold in tubs not blocks or whatever.
    Also In Greece is hard (if at all) to find the whipped kind.

    As for your Greek audience i inform them that vegetable shortening is called μαργαρινη (margarini) and plain shortening called actually any butter (βούτυρο, λαρδί, μαργαρίνη etc) that’s solid at room’s temperature.

    P.s Havent tried yet (i’ll do today or maybe tommorow) but combining 2 totally different buttercreams makes me a little bit nervous.
    What actually trying to achieve is get rid the sweetness of the Buttercream but keep the usability since im going to apply an edible printout on it…For that im extremely nervous i may say!

  17. Hi Gretchen
    I made the swiss buttercream, which came out perfect, a little bit on the off white site but still was pretty good, I think that becuase I didn’t have clear vanilla extract. I then made the cream cheese frosting, in wipe the butter first as cream cheese in the uk get soft pretty quickly. Then i added the cream cheese and followed the intruction as written. However it came out slightly sloppy. I added them together and the sloppy cream cheese made my Swiss buttercream sloppy aswell. Any tips on how to avoid this happening?

  18. Hi Gretchen! Thank you for your amazing detailed tutorials. I’m learning a lot from you. I’m trying to do your Redvelvet Cream cheese Buttercream recipe for my daughter’s 1st birthday. I only have a handmixer, can I use it in re-whipping the refrigerated Cream cheese Buttercream frosting? Also, after freezing the layered cakes and then filling with frosting. For how long can I keep it in the refrigerator. I would like to finish the cake 2 days before the event. Is that fine? Thank you sooooo much!

    1. great! thanks! yea just let the cc/bc sit out for an hour or so before you try to rewhip it so it doesn’t break. The cake will stay fine in the refrigerator for up to a week!

  19. Gretchen,
    Could I use this as a filling for macarons?
    If so how could I adjust the recipe to fill about 30 macarons?
    Kindest Regards,

  20. I love your swiss butter cream and it is the world’s best! So yesterday I came here first for a great cream cheese frosting recipe and you have a hit on your hands again! I made your recipe and I love it better than the other!! You are the best!!

  21. I appologize if this question has already been asked, but is this stable enough to use under fondant and still get nice sharp edges? My niece wants a red velvet cake for graduation and I have learned the hard way that regular cream cheese buttercream doesn’t work well.

  22. Hi Gretchen,
    I was watching a cake decorator from veitman the Swiss buttercream they use looks like our royal icing. The texture is soft and playable. Ive never made your
    swiss buttercream yet, just wondering if it’s the same consistency of theirs..Thank you Gretchen!!

  23. Hi Gretchen! I’ve been a follower of yours for a couple years now and love all your recipes! thank you! just a quick question though… I just made your Cream cheese butter cream but only remembered after i mixed it that i actually need it for tomorrow… if i put it in the fridge and rewhip it will it curdle??

  24. i love making your fantastic cakes and frosting, i have been making your desserts for a few years now. my go to frosting of yours is your Swiss buttercream, but i am having trouble finding the strawberry Swiss buttercream. do you just use your strawberry puree ?

    1. Thanks! Yes I do use the puree every since I sold my bakery, but and if you can find extract that will help along with the puree BUT when I had my bakery THIS IS LIFE!! So much better Strawberry Fruit Compound it is by far the BEST thing to use to flavor your buttercreams instead of adding liquid to a recipe that is going to be very finicky CLICK HERE FOR MORE

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