Swiss Buttercream Recipe

Swiss Meringue Buttercream


This swiss buttercream recipe is the recipe that put me on the map.

Little did I know 5 years ago when I first shared this recipe that I would be ranking #1 in a google search for Swiss Buttercream!

Before this most recent change-over to all things Gretchen’s Bakery my recipe was coming up first, even before Food Network Recipes and Martha Stewart!

Holy Cannolis!

Originally named the World’s Best Swiss Buttercream, because well… has made it’s way around the world and back again!

So if you are on the fence as to whether or not you should try this recipe…GET DOWN FROM THAT FENCE and TRY IT!

PLEASE READ THE Q & A down below before asking your question, because there is a great chance it has already been addressed! THANKS!

#1 This is not a crusting Buttercream.

#2 This is a GREAT icing for under fondant.

#3 You can leave out the confectioners sugar if you think it is going to be too sweet (but please read “My two Cents” below before making that judgment)

#4 THIS RECIPE CAN BE STORED 4 days room temp, 2 weeks fridge, 2 months freezer

4.8 from 27 reviews
Swiss Buttercream Recipe
Prep time
Total time
Please read all the way to the bottom of this blog post before beginning and before asking questions! Thanks!
Serves: 6 Cups: Enough to ice 30 Cupcakes, or Fill and Ice 1- 8" Cake
  • Fresh Large Egg Whites 180g (6 Large)
  • Granulated Sugar 300g (1 + ½ cups)
  • Confectioners Sugar 240g (2cups) *Domino brand is recommended 10X sugar
  • Solid Vegetable Shortening 170g (3/4 cup)
  • I prefer to use SWEETEX, it is a High Ratio vegetable shortening
  • Unsalted Butter 454g (2 cups)
  • Vanilla Extract Or Vanilla Paste 1 Tablespoon
  • Salt - pinch *(I did not mention this on the video, but a dash of salt can heighten all these flavors and really pull this recipe through- add at the end with the vanilla)
  1. Over a double boiler, in a large metal bowl whisk together the granulated sugar and the egg whites stirring constantly until the mixture reaches approximately 115 degrees F and the sugar grains have dissolved and are not longer gritty to the touch.
  2. Pour this mixture into the metal bowl of the stand mixer with the WHISK attachment and whip on high speed until it is thick, glossy and white in color. The peaks should be as firm as firm can be.
  3. In the meantime you can sift your confectioners sugar, and once you have achieved STIFF peaks meringue, add the confectioners sugar all at once with the mixer on very low speed to avoid having a snow shower of sugar all over your kitchen!
  4. Once all of the sugar has been incorporated you can turn the mixer speed to med-high until it is all nicely mixed in.
  5. Be sure your butter and shortening are at room temperature and they are the same consistency. Add it in about 2-3 additions, but FAST Additions.
  6. Add vanilla extract
  7. Switch to the paddle attachment and blend on low speed until smooth
This Recipe Can Be Stored for 4 days room temperature, 2 weeks refrigerator, 2 months freezer

After refrigeration or freezing:

Take it out several hours or a day before you need it, and let it get to room temperature.
Place entire recipe back on the mixer and with the PADDLE attachment on low- medium and let it mix.
It will look as if it is broken, and curdled, don't be alarmed this is normal, it will come back together eventually.

For those who prefer to use pasteurized egg whites (like Just Whites®) it will take considerably longer to whip the whites and they will not gain the same volume as fresh whites do.

For those using a hand beater you will not get the same volume as the balloon whisk attachment of a stand mixer, and the whites may take anywhere from 15 minuted to 45 minutes to whip (I have been told)
Check out other variations on this recipe by learning how to Create Your Own Buttercream Flavors
4.8 from 27 reviews
To make this recipe chocolate simply add melted COOLED Chocolate at the last stage of mixing
Serves: 6½ cups
  • 1 Recipe Swiss Buttercream above
  • 4 - 8 ounces of melted Chocolate
  • *adjust according to your desired "chocolate-y-ness!"
  1. Add the melted COOLED Chocolate to the buttercream at the last stage of mixing
Adding anything to the base recipe of Swiss Buttercream will cause a less stable result, so chocolate buttercream should be refrigerated not because it will spoil, but because it needs to be colder to hold up to decoration and prevent drooping on the cake
4.8 from 27 reviews
Mocha Swiss Buttercream Recipe
Serves: 6½ cups
  • 1 Recipe Swiss Buttercream above
  • 1 Tablespoon Instant Coffee Granules
  • 4 - 8 ounces of melted Chocolate
  • *adjust according to your desired "chocolate-y-ness!"
  • OR
  • 8 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
  • PLUS
  • 6 Tablespoons Hot Water
  1. Dissolve the coffee granules in the hot water
  2. Add the coffee paste and the melted cooled chocolate (or the cocoa paste) to the buttercream at the last stage of mixing
Adding anything to the base recipe of Swiss Buttercream will cause a less stable result, so mocha buttercream should be refrigerated not because it will spoil, but because it needs to be colder to hold up to decoration and prevent drooping on the cake
4.8 from 27 reviews
Peanut Butter Swiss Buttercream Recipe
Serves: 6½ Cups
  1. Prepare the swiss buttercream recipe as directed
  2. Add the peanut butter at the last stage of mixing
Adding anything to the base recipe of Swiss Buttercream will cause a less stable result, so peanut butter buttercream should be refrigerated not because it will spoil, but because it needs to be colder to hold up to decoration and prevent drooping on the cake


I make it a rule not to ever change a recipe before I have had a chance to try it, because how will I ever know what it was supposed to taste like unless I make it the way the author intended it?

Now of course I have changed many recipes to suit my liking once I have tested it, BUT ONLY AFTER I HAVE TESTED IT. Perhaps it is my way of being respectful to the author, because after all, I do not know everything and those who think they do, are missing out on the great many things that others have to offer.

Please be aware that this is a very different recipe than what you may be used to. It is REAL BUTTERcream and it’s made with butter, so ummmm it tastes like butter

Trouble shooting:

  • My Whites will not whip!” – Is your bowl very clean and completely free of all traces of fat, or grease? Are you using pasteurized (from a carton?) egg whites? Or fresh?  Fresh whites always whip better, and some have found that pasteurized whites will not even whip at all! Using a hand beater will take about two times as long to whip compared to the balloon whisk of a Kitchen Aid or any stand mixer.  **Also, if using fresh eggs, be sure they are indeed FRESH! (meaning “not old”)
  • I think many of you are not getting your egg whites STIFF STIFF and glossy before you add the butter and shortening. This will cause a thin, runny buttercream that will NOT hold a shape for piping and flowers.
  • Additionally one VERY BIG mistake is to add the butter/shortening to the meringue while it is still too warm.  This will melt your butter/shortening and you will have butter soup.
  •  I think some of you are afraid to just DUMP in the confectioners sugar all at once and then do the same with the butter/shortening.
  • BUT- if you are still having trouble- PLEASE DO NOT PANIC and THROW THIS “so called disaster” in the garbage! 9 times out of 10 you can bring it back to life! Simply by continuing whipping until comes back together!
    HOWEVER for those of you who cannot get your meringue right from the start- well…you can’t make it stronger at the end, you get what you get.

FAQ’s – Frequently ASKED Questions:

Q- “Will this buttercream hold up in hot weather?”
A- “It gets pretty hot here in NJ in the summer. July & August sees normal temperatures of 100 degrees F and very humid. I use this buttercream for all of my wedding cakes in those months. I do not recommend ANYTHING or ANYONE to be outside in those temperatures; but this buttercream holds up fine indoors in air conditioned rooms and it also survives the transport in an air conditioned vehicle just fine.”

Q- “Can I use this recipe under Rolled Fondant Icing?”
A- “YES, you can use this icing under ANY Type of Icing, Rolled Fondant, Poured Fondant, Ganache, Whipped Cream…LIKE EVERYTHING!!”

Q- “What can I substitute for the Crisco, I don’t have that in my country?”
A- ” Please read SUBSTITUTIONS blog post”

Q- “Can I use all butter?”

Q-“Can I use all shortening?”
A- “Yes!”

Q- “Can I use Margarine”
A- “Yes”

Q- “Can I use Meringue Powder?”
A- “Yes, follow the instructions on the can (or bag) or Meringue Powder to equivalent to 6 large Egg Whites, and then proceed as you will for the rest of my recipe.”

Q- “Can I double this recipe?”
A- “YES, if your mixer bowl is large enough to accommodate that amount of ingredients DOUBLED. Be wary that the meringue alone with the 1X recipe comes just about half way to the top of the bowl-(IF you mixed it properly that is)”

Q- “How long can I store this icing?”
A-  “4 days room temp, 2 weeks fridge, 2 months freezer”

Q- “Is it safe to eat raw egg whites?”
A- “Please read to the bottom of this post.”

Q- “Can I use a hand mixer if I do not have a Kitchen Aid?”
A- “Yes. However you must make sure that your meringue is STIFF STIFF STIFF! This is the most important step in this whole recipe and why so many have trouble. You must get that meringue as stiff and glossy as possible, and the hand mixer, well… it takes a very long time to achieve this.”

To add colors to this buttercream, I recommend using Gel Paste Colors like Chefmaster or an oil based color is great too, since this is a high fat recipe.
The gel paste color should be added at the end after you have achieved Buttercream Greatness!! After you get to the point of done, you will then switch to paddle attachment and add color.
You may color the whole batch, or divide it up and color smaller portions at a time.
Gel paste colors are the best since a little goes a long way and they do not add extra liquid to the recipe like food colors do.

Turn the speed up to high and let it mix smooth. Add the vanilla extract at the end, and you are DONE!  Best Buttercream EVER!

The debate on raw egg whites:

The trouble is in the yolks, never the whites. At school we were taught that you can leave the egg whites at room temperature for a week, and nothing bad would happen because the trouble is in the yolks. But only if the yolk is contaminated with salmonella, NOT ALL EGG YOLKS ARE DANGEROUS. The problem is, you don’t know when it is or isn’t contaminated.

Now keep in mind I also went to school almost 20 years ago and the world has changed, and our food supply has also changed due to the industry pumping out mass amounts of it to keep up with the demand, hence why our food has gotten so dangerous.

To avoid this “danger” you can simply use pasteurized egg whites in a carton, like Egg Beaters JUST WHITES. I do not feel there is a risk in this recipe whatsoever. But this should be a personal choice for each and every one of you. Although it is possible for Salmonella to be in both the white and the yolk of the egg, the white does not readily support bacterial growth. Cold soufflés, mousses, and chiffon’s containing raw beaten whites require refrigeration to maintain their character, and an added safety factor. Such dishes might be considered low risk for healthy individuals.

And now for a note on Copha from a fellow Gretchenator:

If you live some where, where you have to use copha as your substitute chances are you’ve had fights with it just like me but now I won and just had to share with you all.

PROBLEM: If you’ve had to use copha you would know the main problem is it does not get soft at room temperature and you usually end up with clumps of copha all through the finished icing which is horrible.

SOLUTION: Before you do any steps of the icing recipe melt all the butter and copha together in the microwave until completely melted (it will be very hot and runny!!!).

Then put the mixture in the fridge stirring occasionally while continuing the normal recipe.

By the time you get to the step where you need to add the butter and copha, the mixture in the fridge should be at the perfect constancy (not hot or runny but a cooled down pour-able paste).

Add the butter and copha mixture all at once. Swap to a paddle attachment and mix until well combined. As the butter and copha mix will still be a little warm when you add it your finished icing product will be runner than it should be.

Simple cover the mixing bowl and put in the fridge (sorry no exact time here) until it hardens up, then mix again with paddle attachment until soft and fluffy.

Bam perfect you win !

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  1. Hi Gretchen!! im not sure if anyone has asked this question..but i made your SMBC earlier and it was awesome….until i mixed in the coffee and the melted chocolate…both of which are completely cooled….the bc looses its thick consistency..i know you said we must refrigerate prior to decorating but I’m gonna use this under fondant and it will have to stay out of the fridge at least for 1 night while I’m decorating the cake….will the bc slide underneath the fondant? what can i do to make slightly thicker? add more shortening/icing sugar..anything at all? 🙁 thanks you are great!! x

    1. Whenever I use fondant to cover a cake – the buttercream coating underneath is so very THIN. If you have a thick layer of any type of icing and then drape heavy fondant over top, it will have the potential to slip and slide.
      Additionally I do not typically use flavored (unstable) BC icing under fondant for the reason we are talking about here.
      The undercoat is so thin it doesn’t really add any significant “flavor profile” to the cake, it is more acting as glue.
      At least that’s how I do it- to avoid any major catastrophes the day of the event

      **a whole night? You will leave your cake out?
      Ive heard that so many people leave their fondant cakes out- I have never done this (and I am not saying I know everything- buit I have never in my 20 years exp. left a fondant cake out of the refridge except for the day of the party)
      I d like to know why so many do this?

      1. we normally leave a covered fondant cake out in the air conditioned room..instead of placing it in the fridge…hmm mainly to avoid excessive condensation when you take it out? it will ruin the decorations…but thats my not sure about others gretchen!!…thanks for your reply! i tried your vanilla sponge cake too!! love love it..thank you for sharing..appreciate all of your efforts 🙂 good luck with the move… 🙂

      2. Hi Gretchens, I’m not sure if anyone has asked but if I decorate my cake with Swiss butter cream and put it in the fridge the day before required will it still taste ok the next day if I take it out of the fridge and leave out till we cut it.. Also how long before can I take it out of the fridge that day so it can be soft and not hard.. Is 1 hour ok out of the fridge before serving.. Please if you could get back to me it would be appreciated as I’m making my sons christening cake.

        1. Yes this is the standard protocol for a buttercream iced cake, bring to room temperature an hour to 2 hours before serving

        2. 2 hours only if the cake has buttercream inside out. if the cake has custard filling inside, half an hour before is enough usually. hope this helps.

      3. Hi Gretchen,
        Many SMB recipes I’ve come across use only granulated sugar. May I ask how the powdered/icing sugar affects the SMB? Does it make it stiffer or drier and thus making it hold up better in warmer weather?

        Hope to hear from you soon.

    2. Gretchen.. when I got my kitchen aid mixer abt 5 or 6 years ago it only came with a paddle attachment. Is it possible to make swiss butter cream icing using only the paddle attachment or is the whisk a MUST??

    3. Best Swiss Meringue Buttercream ever!!!! Thank you Gretchen . Today I’m making you amazing Best Moist Vanilla Sponge Cake and your custard recipe.

  2. Hi! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe! Right now, my swiss meringue buttercream recipe is all butter based BUT I live in Texas and its starting to get really hot outside. I figured a butter and shortening mixture would hold up better in this heat. Does your recipe harden in the fridge? I usually have half a centimeter of icing on a cake and then chill the cake so i can get smooth, sharp edges on my fondant. Do you think this will be possible with your recipe?

    1. I prefer the shortening – butter mix (more stable) yes it will get hard in the fridge- let it come to room temp before serving and it is a DREAM!
      Yes to under fondant- ½ cm seems OK

  3. I skimmed through the comments and even the ones on the create your own buttercream flavors just to make sure this question wasn’t already asked and answered, didn’t see it. I am making your moist fluffy white cake recipe and want to frost it with peanut butter butter cream, how much peanut butter would I add to your SMBC recipe above? I know it can be to taste but as you’re such an amazing baker I would like your recommendation on how much to start with. Also should I make any alterations to the regular SMBC if I’m adding peanut butter?

    1. good question! Ill have to update this post to add more variations!I usually add about 1 cup to the entire recipe (I dont alter the base recipe- I like to just add it in, the peanut butter is one of the best add-ins since it makes it MORE stable rather than less (unless of course you add too much!) start with 1 cup see how you like it!

  4. We love the taste of this icing after adding 8 Oz of white chocolate, however it does become more soupy than seems right? I know it can be manipulated with refrigeration but is it going to melt right off the cake when it comes to room temp? Scared to death!

    1. I know it really does make it so soft, but I have not had any trouble with the icing sliding off any cakes….I let them come to room temp for at least an hour before serving so it is not hard cold icing and never had trouble!

  5. Hi Gretchen! Appreciate your reply re: grainy buttercream. The egg white-sugar WAS totally dissolved . So I remade this today using “Domino” 10xxx sugar and it is perfect!!! I had previously used an “off” brand 10xx sugar and can only conclude that it was the 10xx sugar that caused the grainy texture. Maybe this will help others who had the same problem. Thanks!

    1. Great thankyou for the feedback and I can now pass this information to others who are having this same trouble (and I will update the post to reflect this note!)

      1. I have made the discovery (after some research when I experienced the grainy texture as well) that some off brands use beet sugar and not cane sugar. I always stick with confectioners sugar that specifically states it is pure cane sugar. Hope that helps.

  6. Thank you, thank you thank you sooooo much for posting this. I used your recipe for my first SMBC & it was perfectly amazing! We decided to use this for my daughter’s wedding cake, it’s that good! Then it disappeared from the internet. We were scrambling to find something close to no avail. Her wedding is tomorrow & I thought one last look. I am beyond happy. I have confidence it’s going to be the best cake possible! You made our day! Jo

  7. Hi Gretchen,
    I made a strawberry swiss buttercream using this base recipe. I simply added a little more than 1/2 cup of cooked strawberry puree (Cook the puree till the quantity reduces by half i.e the liquid content is reduced). It turned out to be amazing.
    Do you think this buttercream can be stored like the base recipe?

  8. Love your BC recipe! Question: Can I use cocoa instead of melted chocolate, and if so how much do I use? I think you had this in your FAQas on the other website because I made the chocolate BC version a while back and I don’t remember melting any chocolate. Thank you!

  9. Hi Gretchen… First of all I should tell you I LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe… i have used it so many times in the past year since i discovered it and everyone raves about it 🙂 I had one question- I need to be transporting a cake tomorrow which is completely decorated with SMBC– the ride is about 3 hours… will it hold up? It will be in an air conditioned car and its between 70-75 degrees outside. Will it hold up in a regular cake carrier? Or do you suggest I alter the ingridients a little bit– like more shortening or something?
    Thank you so much.

    P.S: Did i mention this is recipe is AMAZING already?? 🙂

  10. My husband is allergic to cow milk (butter). I see you said it was ok to substitute margarine in your swiss buttercream. Does it change the consistency? Will it still taste good? It is so difficult to find desserts made without butter and milk. I plan to try this on his chocolate birthday cake (sub coconut milk for milk). Thank you

    1. Lesley, Try Wacky Cake for the cake. It has no milk or eggs in it and it awesome. It may also may be known as Poor Man’s Cake.

  11. I finally found you (yet again)! Quick question, will you make white chocolate buttercream, again? That’s how I found out you had changed, trying to find that recipe (sine I chad pinned it 🙂


    1. Hey! thanks! Im so happy you didnt give up!
      Right now I just got moved to Florida to rebuild my blog and my life! LOL, and I have to get settled and set up to start filming again, I have a mountain of work ahead of me! gaaaaah!
      I plan to rebuild the blog with the most popular and most requested vids/recipes first, and then I can start to make exclusive content from requests! I am so thrilled to have so much support so thankyou so much! in the meantime if you go to my Gretchens Bakery facebook page in PHOTOS I have alot of the most popular recipes and also there are so many people who
      have saved the recipes and can share with you right away! Just ask on the main page! Thanks!

  12. I carnt get high ratio shortening… I can get normal shortening, called trex… would that work? Would it create the same results?

    1. I have heard alot of people to use that, and I got mixed reviews, some think it is great and others not so much…but I think Trex has to be handled a certain way if I am not mistaken? I have not had experience with this ingredient.

  13. Gretchen,
    Was looking @ recipe for chocolate fudge Swiss buttercream icing & the recommendation was to use organic palm shortening like Spectrum rather than sweetex as it is more stable & natural. What’s your take on it ? Unless u r a bakery Sweetex can be difficult to find in smaller quantities as it has to be divided by retail store & there may be legal issues in doing so.

    1. I actually have not tried this, and I do understand that getting sweetex is almost impossible if you are not a commercial bakery. I know they sell it on amazon but its 50lbs so unless you have some friends to go in on it with you, its quite alot.

  14. Gretchen…I love this recipe. I do have a question…can this recipe be used to make image transfer to place on a sheet cake? thanks.

  15. Hello Gretchen☺️ Thank you so much for all the knowledge you always share with us. I am still a very new Baker. But I am very excited to be trying your recipe for the next order that I have for this coming up Saturday I will be making a two-tier cake, two small cakes and 40 cupcakes all decorated with the Rose shape. The question that I have is if I want to add more shortening to make it a little bit more stable do I need to remove some butter?

  16. Hi Gretchen, finally i found you and my favorite buttercream recipe! What happened to your woodland bakery blog and all the videos at youtube?

    1. Hello, the Woodland Bakery Blog business has been shut down due to some major business dysfunction since February,
      I know much of the content that you are used to seeing is gone 🙁
      But I have been forced to start over again from zero and I am working as hard as possible to get the most popular and most requested videos and recipes done first.
      Please be patient but in the meantime if you go to my Gretchens Bakery facebook page in PHOTOS I have alot of the most popular recipes and also there are so many people who have saved the recipes and can share with you right away! Just ask on the main page! Thanks for searching for me! and for the support!

  17. Hi Gretchen.

    could you please tell me what has happen to your Chocolate roulade recipe. I cannot find it anywhere. I’ve made it twice but can’t remember the amounts.



    1. Hello, the Woodland Bakery Blog business has been shut down due to some major business dysfunction since February,
      I know much of the content that you are used to seeing is gone 🙁
      But I have been forced to start over again from zero and I am working as hard as possible to get the most popular and most requested videos and recipes done first.
      Please be patient but in the meantime if you go to my Gretchens Bakery facebook page in PHOTOS I have alot of the most popular recipes and also there are so many people who
      have saved the recipes and can share with you right away! Just ask on the main page! Thanks!

  18. OMG! Ok, so I have been wanting to try this recipe for quite some time but, I was just a little intimidated. So I watched the video and read the recipe over a lot of times:) If you do everything the recipe says and take the suggestions it comes out like a dream. I can’t wait until my co-workers taste this recipe! I will let you know how that goes:) Please come to Manhattan, KS!

    Thanks again Gretchen for coming back! Keep up the great work!

  19. Hi Gretchen, like everybody else, I love you!!! You’ve changed my life!
    I use this recipe for my custom cakes, along with MMF. I always leave my cakes on the refrigerator until delivery time, I leave in Arizona and never had problems with cake condensation, just keep under air conditioner and is perfect.
    I have a 2 tiers necked cake for November, its a wedding cake. Do you think its going to be fine for an outside wedding reception ?

    1. awesome! and thank YOU for the support!!
      I think you will be fine with the naked cake, as long as you have a good rim of buttercream to hold the layers together- also keep it refridged of course until the very last moment

  20. I am so happy right now! I have been searching for the perfect buttercream frosting for years now (and I’m 57…I’ve been searching a LONG time!) and finally found this recipe. I read the instructions, watched the video, and just made it. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!! My search has finally ended! My very first batch came out perfectly!!! I just iced my daughter’s birthday cake with it, and cannot believe how fabulous this buttercream is! You’re my new best friend! I cannot wait to try your other recipes! God Bless you!

      1. Made this frosting again today. Came out perfectly once again! It is SO GOOD! I frosted a birthday cake for my daughter’s boyfriend, and piped trim with it as well. I am actually proud of how it came out! Yay! Thanks again, Gretchen! You’re amazing!

  21. Hi Gretchen,
    I absolutely adore this recipe -especially the chocolate. I always chill the frosted cake and serve cold – makes it like delicious ice cream on the cake!!

    I was wondering, do you think melted peanut butter cups would work mixed into the buttercream?

    Thanks in advance and I wish you the best in your new business venture!!!

    1. Great! thanks for the comment! I think chopped peanut butter cups will be AMAZING! – so if you are looking to get a peanut butter BC you can simply add creamy peanut butter too!

  22. Hi Gretchen, I love the way your recipe tastes, but it seems very soft (buttery) when I finish…am I not mixing enough? wrong attachment? It just seems like it won’t hold if I try to make flowers, etc.

  23. Hi Gretchen

    After icing and trying a cake with this buttercream today, I find that it has a little bit too much of a buttery flavor for me. I seem to remember seeing a similar recipe for swiss meringue buttercream somewhere else, and that it said you could stop after the eggwhites had been heated and the icing sugar added, to make a much lighter frosting. Do you think that could work out okay? And since you know so much about baking I thought I’d also ask, if I did cut out the butter and shortening from this recipe, how would the texture of it be and would it need to be refrigerated/kept in a different way?

    1. Do you mean omit the butter altogether? Sure you can do this, it will be more of a marshmallow icing then, nothing wrong with that! It will be less stable since the butter and shortening is what give it that stability. You can keep it at room temp, but not for very long, it wont go bad but it will flop. Refridge will keep it a bit more stable

  24. Hi Gretchen
    The recepie sounds awesome, just wondering how much egg whites should I use if I’m using the pasteurized egg white?
    Thank you kindly

  25. I am about to embark on a 3 tier wedding cake for my Son and I have made your buttercream before to use on cup cakes and under fondant and it has been great but the bride to be wants a buttercream coated cake and I wonder if your recipe would hold up for a day at a wedding reception on an English summers day> No air con.

    1. Hey there! Yes I always used this recipe for all my summer NJ weddings with no trouble. Of course, keep your eye on it, don’t put it out for display until the very last minute etc….
      I would also use a higher ratio shortening and more of it than butter to help stablize

  26. Hi how can I holdup my buttercream flowers when using all butter buttercream recipe in hot weather ? my mom doesn’t eat shortening (she thinks it’s unhealthy) I wanna make her a birthday cake. How to avoid from melting? (soak my hands into ice water for few sec??) Thank u very much!!!!!

    1. the shortening really helps the stability, so you can give it a try and be sure to keep the cake in the fridge as long as possible.
      Wear gardening gloves (or dish gloves) while you make the flowers

  27. Hi Gretchen
    Thank you so much for sharing your tricks and techniques and showing us the exact way you do it.
    I had to GET OFF THE FENCE AND TRY THIS. I used a hand beater and it came out perfect. i just kept on beating until what i felt it was stiff and glossy and had no idea how long it took. well it wasn’t that bad. You mentioning that it can hardly go wrong and that it will achieve its goodness as long as we keep on beating, did the work. I loved it as I don’t fancy the normal buttercream. My husband loves buttercream but he did feel this was better and I’m so glad my mother-in-law being a baker and a cake decorator, liked it instead of the normal buttercream.
    Thank you so much. can’t wait to try out a lot more of your recipes.

  28. I’m a huge fan of your work and recipes! I love this BC recipe! It’s fantastic and use it all the time! I was wondering however, how would you and could you add cream cheese to this recipe? I did some online research about doing so and have seen that it causes problems when incorporating the cream cheese (some people state they get soup.) So just wanted to know if this could be done and if so, what would recommend. Softened cream cheese mixed in at the end? Or would it be better to whip the cream cheese first and then combine? Your help is much appreciated! Again, huge fan and so glad to see you’re back!

    1. Hey there, alot of people have added cream cheese here and have no trouble, just remember anything you add to this recipe will make it softer so with that in mind, yes to whipping it first and then adding it in
      and THANKYOU for the support!

  29. I just made a half batch of this recipe and I must say BEST BUTTERCREAM EVER! Although next time I will half the amount of powdered sugar other than that it is perfect, great firm pipeable consistency! I put pure almond and vanill extract as well as a vanilla bean. Love it! Thanks so much!

  30. I finally got a Kitchenaid mixer last week, and was brave enough to try this. The whites got stiff and glossy so quickly! I can’t get a good shortening so had to use all butter. At first it was runny, but I left it alone and after about 5 minutes beating it all came together and made a beautiful creamy fluffy buttercream. The taste is so rich and buttery (of course!) and everyone loves it. Thank you so much again Gretchen!

    1. YAY! Success!! See, so many people would get annoyed with me when I would specifically say KITCHEN AID (or stand mixer really) they felt I was “dissing” the hand blender people, and I am not- some recipes work with a hand blender and some (like this one) you will not know BLISS until you make this recipe with the power of a stand mixer- sorry- its not ME- its the science of it all! LOL Thanks for the comment!

  31. I love this recipe, it is my favorite! First time I made it I had a bit of a problem but now I have made it dozens of times and it is perfect. Thanks for your wonderful recipes Gretchen, and I love your videos!

  32. May I just add about 1/4 cup of water with the sugar and make an italian buttercream? Do you still have your italian buttercream recipe? Thanks

    1. Italian Meringue Buttercream

      Butter is to be at room temperature and softened to the same consistency as the shortening
      Yield: 3 lbs

      Egg Whites 7 large (210g)
      Granulated Sugar 2 cups (400g)
      Water 1cup (237ml)
      Unsalted Butter 5 sticks (1lb 4oz) (566g)
      Solid Vegetable Shortening 1 cup (198g)
      Vanilla Extract 2 Tablespoons


      In a large heavy bottom sauce pot, combine the water and sugar and stir over high heat until the sugar is dissolved into the water.
      Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pot and continue boiling without stirring, until the sugar solution reaches 240° F
      Meanwhile in the clean bowl of your kitchen aid mixer with the whisk attachment place the egg whites.
      As soon as the sugar mixture reaches 240° F you can turn on the mixer to medium high speed to get the whites frothy and gaining volume.
      Once the egg whites are starting to get white in color and frothy and gain some strength SLOWLY, as fine as a thread of hair, begin pouring the hot syrup into the whipping whites.
      Try to avoid splashing the syrup onto the whisk attachment as it is whipping the whites, or you will be making spun sugar as it hits the sides of the metal bowl!
      Continue whipping the whites until the mixture has COOLED COMPLETELY before you add the butter/shortening or you will have Butter Soup!
      Once the Italian Meringue is COOL TO THE TOUCH you may add the butter/shortening that is at ROOM TEMPERATURE to the meringue while whipping on medium-high speed
      Add the vanilla extract
      Switch to the paddle attachment and mix on low- medium speed until smooth

      THIS RECIPE CAN BE STORED 4 days room temp, 2 weeks fridge, 2 months freezer

      If you decide to store it in the fridge/freeze, you will have to bring it back to room temperature before re using.

      Take it out several hours before you need it, and let it get to room temp, then put it back on the mixer with the PADDLE attachment on low- medium and let it mix, it will look as if it is BROKEN, and curdled, don’t be alarmed this is NATURAL, it will come back together eventually, you can turn the speed up to med-high and it will mix out smooth

  33. I am decorating a wedding cake and im using a 1M tip to pipe rosettes all over the cake. I was curious as to if this icing would be good for that?

  34. Hi Gretchen I have a request from a friend who wanted a less sweet buttercream… so i reduced my powdered sugar to almost half… however my smbc turned out very yellow!!! I have used the ratio of butter and shirtening in the recipe stated…. have i dobe something wrong?

  35. Thanks for your reply! I have another question! Will homemade food coloring color this icing? Will the icing still hold up okay? I look forward to making this recipe soon! I really enjoy your videos!

    1. Sure thing, I have no experience with homemade color – the only think I warn is if it is very liquidy- then you run the risk of “breaking” or oversaturating the buttercream if you have to add alot

  36. Hi Gretchen! Can i make the meringue just beeting the egg whites with the wisk attachment until soft peaks, then adding the granulated sugar and beeting the mixture untill stiff peaks? Also can i make two mixtures, the meringue, and the buttercream using only the icing sugar, the butter and the shortening, and then folding the meringue into the buttercream?

    1. You can do whatever you want really- and you may invent some amazing new recipe that way- but if you want the buttercream to come out the way mine did, you should follow my instruction

  37. Hello Gretchen. I write from my beloved Argentina.
    I’ve seen your videos and tried to replicate your recipes. Most went well but I had problems with this recipe for Swiss buttercream.
    I have a hand mixer so it cost me a lot to achieve the consistency that your cream has.
    First it seemed to have a bit of liquid but I did not give up and kept on beating. a
    After a while it took more consistency …similar to yours, but had no taste at all. So I had a good consistency cream but without sugar. What did I do wrong?
    Forget my bad english..hugs.

    1. Hey there, I just read your comment for the sponge cake too, and now I know what the problem was for both- the hand beater 🙁
      Unfortunately the balloon whisk and the power of the stand mixers (aka- my kitchen aid) are what makes these recipes really at their best- it HAS been done with a hand beater of course- but it will take a VERY LONG TIME to get the eggs to the correct volume with a hand beater, as you already experienced as you explained in your comment.
      AS for the no taste? hmmm thats odd.
      Did you use Butter? Vanilla?

      1. I was like “did I write another comment before and now don’t remember?”, so I looked and no Gretchen, it wasn’t me. I will be more specific in my nickname in next comments haha. Besides I made the vanilla sponge cake and the result was fabulous.
        About the swiss buttercream at first the taste was good, sweet but after all the problems with the mixing, finally got the consistency but the sweet of the cream dissapeared. Just like that! it left me.
        was a complete disaster and a waste of money. 🙁


    1. Hi Great! yes I have but I prefer to add an equal ratio of Cream Cheese Icing Recipe to this one – it keep everything way more stable, but some folks do not want to prepare another entire recipe (and i get that) so they have added cream cheese in place of the shortening – but you will get a softer end result for sure

  39. Hi Gretchen! You should try this easy smbc that saves so much more time! It’s 2 lb powdered sugar whipped with 1 cup of egg whites. After a stiff peak is formed, add in 1lb butter and 1 lb shortening in pieces. Adjust with salt & extracts. You are awesome!

  40. Love, love this recipe! I’m an American buttercream convert recently! Have you ever made this recipe flavored lemon? Is just adding extract the best way to do it? Thanks so much!

  41. Hi Gretchen,
    I’ve made dis fabulous recipe a lot of time
    But this time when I added the butter to the meringue it was a bit runny n liquid type of mixture
    I did everything single step correctly
    Whipped the meringue to stiff peaks
    Added confectioners sugar
    Then when started adding the butter it started to loose its shape
    Plzz help what should I do with dis

  42. Hi Gretchen! I really appreciate all your helpful videos you make! thanks for sharing your knowledge & talent 🙂

    i was wondering if it’s possible to make the frosting ahead of time? like when i want to make Roses for my cake & stick it into the fridge for when im ready to decorate my cake? Will the hold up even after they thaw out on the cake or will it just completely melt?

  43. hello;-)

    Your swissbuttercream recipe is amazing :-))))))) but I have one question,

    I need to make a lemon and a raspberry filling for a cake, can I had just the flavor to the BC and color food?? Or you have a revipe for that??

    Thanks 🙂 you are amazing!!

  44. Hi Gretchen,
    I have tried this Butter Cream frosting for my niece birthday last month and it was perfect. Smooth and buttery. Perfect!
    Now I doubled the recipe for a three tiers wedding cake and somehow it has curdled. Can I fix it? Please help

  45. Hey gretchen
    Loads of thanks dear for such an amazing recipe . I made it nd it was a grt hit in my fmly my friend circle . Just loved it

  46. This might be a silly question, BUT I’m ok with making myself look like a fool 🙂 I see you’ve made Mocha, chocolate and peanut butter flavored buttercream, so I’m wondering if I can make this with cream cheese for my red velvet cakes and cupcakes?!

    1. there are no fools on Gretchens Bakery! Except the person NOT Asking the question!
      Yes you can add cream cheese instead of shortening but it will make the recipe softer, so I prefer to make an entire recipe Cream Cheese Icing and add it to the Swiss BC equal parts! I know its more work, but worth it!

    2. I will be making a wedding cake for my son’s wedding in a couple weeks and want to use your Swiss Butter Cream frosting. I made it a few times for practice and everyone loves it.
      My question…will the buttercream hold up under the weight of several layers? Do you recommend my piping a dam or barrier on each layer using your American butter cream recipe to hold the swiss butter cream in place? I am very concerned that the swiss butter cream may collapse under the weight of several layers and squeeze out the sides.
      I will be transporting the cake in the car for 2 hours on the day prior to the wedding. My plan is to have the cake as near completion as possible but stack it and do final assembly the morning of the wedding. I plan to refrigerate it as soon as I get to the destination, remove it from the frig in the morning on the day of the wedding and finalize any decorating.
      Your advice would be appreciated. Thank you for taking the time to post your videos.

      1. HI Wanda, I have been using this recipe for my wedding cakes up to 6 tiers! for over 20 years
        Your plan to build it when you get there is a perfect one! Refrigeration is the key to success and also be sure not to OVERfill your cake with whatever filling you are using and the BC dam is the way to ensure no squishing sides!

        1. Thanks, Gretchen.
          Do I need to build or pipe a dam of American Butter Cream if I am using Swiss Butter Cream as the filling? Or can the Swiss Butter Cream hold up on its own?

  47. Just a quick question. I’ve used your recipe many times in the past and absolutely love it. My question is, I’m planning on making my niece an ice cream filled cake for her birthday and am hoping to be able to frost it the day before, so should this frosting be able to hold up after being frozen for about 24 hours without worry of it seperating? Thank you in advance.

      1. Thank you for your response. Just one other question. What is the best way to tint the buttercream black without risking it bleeding into a white background.

        1. Buttercream doesn’t typically bleed unless you have refrigerated it or worse- froze it and then put it out into a severely warm room.
          The extremes in temperature will cause sweating which causes the bleeding – otherwise the colors stay where they are supposed to be-

  48. Hi Gretchen. Im new to SMBC and I have a few Q im hoping you can answer. Iv read though all the comments but in some cases it just confused me more. Firstly is the powdered sugar used for any reason other than to sweeten the buttercream? Make it thicker perhaps? Also you say that ‘Swiss Meringue Buttercream is made with egg whites to achieve that stiff, glossy, strong base’ and I can see then from the video that adding butter softens this strong meringue but yet you said in another comment that the butter helpes to stabalise the buttercream so should I use less butter if I wanted a stiffer buttercream? I thinking this for when im wanting to add flavour to my buttercream like Nutella or melted chocolate ( reduce some of the butter amd replace with the flavouring for a stronger firmer buttercream?) And finally when making the meringue at the start does the amount of sugar used determine how thick the meringue will be eg if I used less or more sugar would it considerably alter the texture? Sorry for all the questions but I like to understand recipies and why you do certain things so I can work out how to add flabours or correct things that I might do wrong. Many thanks Gretchen and keep up the great work. The new blog and Facebook pages are coming along brilliantly 🙂

    1. Hey there, the powdered sugar can be left out- some think it makes it too sweet and others say it is a great balance to the really heavy taste of the butter, as most are used to the sugar shortening recipes that dont taste much like butter at all…anyway- yes adding anything to a meringue will deflate it- but the shortening is what will help to strengthen this recipe when it is all said and done.
      You can add so many different flavors to this buttercream CLICK HERE
      You can add more sugar to the meringue of you want to- but Im not so sure you want to- this is a pretty good balance of sweetness already

      And thankyou!

  49. So glad you are back up and running again. I use many of your recipes and love them. I really love the videos. They are a great help to me. You have helped me help my daughter to learn how to decorate sugar cookies with the Royal Icing. She is doing real well with her decorating. Thanks again for being such a good person to share your tips, techniques and recipes.

  50. Is this a good filling for French Macarons? If you wanted to do lemon, or any other citrus flavor or even raspberry what is the best method for adding those flavors and zest?

    What tip size works best for piping?

  51. Hi Gretchen,

    This is the first time I’m using Swiss Butterecream and I must say, this recipe is AMAZING! Thank you!!!


  52. Hi Gretchen, you and your recipes are amazing! I make your SMBC all the time but now I have to make it dairy free. The eggs are fine but I was wondering if it if better to use all Sweetex or add some Eath Balance or some Fleishmans unsalted margarine? I value your expert opinion ! Thanks

    1. I like the taste of earth balance as a substitute, but it will make it softer than when using butter, so maybe a higher portion of shortening than listed and cut back on the earth balance that same amount

  53. Hi Gretchen,
    I am a religious follower of your website ever since woodland bakery days. I tried the Swiss buttercream recipe (1/3 of it). But it is not sweet enough. Is there any way I can sweeten it without using powdered sugar?

    — Viva —

  54. Hi Gretchen, I love your new homepage!!!
    This recipe is lovely!! Thanks for sharing!
    I have a question: do you have an Italian Meringue Buttercream Recipe?
    Thanks in advance for your reply,

      1. I am Italian and am waiting for your Italian Buttercream recipe with baited breath. I am so glad that you are now on Facebook and look forward to more wonderful baking with you. It is so great to know that recipes from you are going to turn out. I’m not saying I haven’t had any failures, but that is do to my mistakes not your recipes. It is wonderful to try each and everyone of them and know if I follow them to the letter they will be perfect. Thanks again for taking the time to post these wonderful, delectable treats. I am learning so much.

  55. Hey Gretchen,

    I have been having a problem with the recipe but I’ve been doing everything you’ve been doing but everytime I taste it, it taste like shortening, and I am using Crisco. Have any comment?

      1. And I also don’t want to substitute the shortening for more butter because I feel it’s a lot of butter so can I just leave the shortening without having to do the substitute?

  56. Hi Gretchen! I just made your Buttercream recipe and I was delighted that for the first time, my butter cream didn’t turn out gritty. Yey! Anyway, I was thinking that if I just whip up some egg whites and add my remaining buttercream, will it be the same as this Swiss Meringue Buttercream?
    And, If I add white chocolate to it, will it affect the stability? I live in the Philippines and I am torn between using a ganache or buttercream under fondant. I reckon both will melt after putting on the fondant.

    Thank you for your continuous generosity on sharing your culinary expertise to everyone! 🙂

  57. Hi Gretchen!

    Love your new and fresh blog.

    I’m from Malaysia. Anyway.. Can I use salted butter instead unsalted butter? (Unsalted butter is quite expensive here ~_~ ) then I don’t need to put a salt isn’t it?

    I want to make a Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream.. What kind of chocolate can I use? Can I use Dark Chocolate? Or Bittersweet Chocolate? Or Cooking Chocolate?

    Highly appreciate and thanx in advance for you reply! ^_^

    1. HI Thanks! Yes you can and just omit salt
      The type of chocolate you use depends on the taste you want, if you do not want to add alot more sweet to it, go for a more bitter chocolate and yes to cooking chocolate

  58. Thank you sooo much, Gretchen, for generously sharing your expertise! I’ve been a loyal follower since your woodland bakery. I get nothing but raves about your swiss buttercream, and now, when customers don’t want the eggs, I use your wonderful American buttercream recipe, which is light and fluffy and not too sweet! Thank you again, Gretchen, you are THE master pastry chef in my book!

  59. Hi, want to try your buttercream however, can I pipe it on cupcakes? Will it be a good consistency to pipe like rose swirls etc?
    I now only use the normal buttercream with butter and icing sugar however, too sweet!
    Can you advise please:)

  60. Hi Gretchen , I was wondering if you have ever heard of the “Viva towel ” method of achieving a cake with buttercream icing look like it has a fondant layer over it…. If you have would your Swiss Buttercream icing work as I like this icing so very much!…….. You take the paper towel and press it around the cake to achieve the fondant effect… thank you! Cynthia

    1. HI there I have not, well not on purpose, only for toweling off sweaty cakes in the heat of the summer at the bakery, so I would towel them off and get a slight impression so yes it will work,but not as great as a crusted BC will (and I do not have a crusted BC recipe)

  61. Hi Gretchen!

    Thank you for being so generous with your recipes and videos!!

    I’ve made your white moist cake which turned out great and 4 batches of the plain smbc for my daughter’s first birthday.

    The icing all turned out ok but the first batches had small lumps of shortening (I’m in Australia and couldn’t find a high ratio shortening like sweetex so used Copha). I beat the icing for an eternity but the lumps just wouldn’t come out! they are small so even trying to pick them out is difficult. Do you have any ideas for how I can get them out? I really don’t want to throw what I made because the consistency and taste are good…

    The remaining batches I completely omitted the shortening and used butter and had no problems with lumps. They turned out perfect.

    Also – everything was well and truly at room temp (out for three hours before) and I sifted the icing sugar etc…I think it’s just because it’s not a high ratio shortening. I’d really appreciate your ideas to get out those lumps!


    1. Hi Thanks! and you are welcome too!
      As for the copha. I have no experience with it so I am not great to ask, but I have been told that it needs to get softened before you add it, since – once you add it in a more solid form, you will get lumps, as you have learned first hand. Im not sure if you can actually whip up the copha first and get it really aerated and whipped to soft before making the recipe?
      CLICK HERE for more suggestions on substitutions

      1. Copha never goes soft, I have tried leaving it outside for a week, still I got lamps in y mix.

        I have been told to use Frymasta (vegetable fat) found in refrigerated section of Coles super market. I haven’t tried it yet though.

    2. In Australia you can buy white shortening. It is called Solite and is available from all cake decorating supply shops in small or large quantities.

  62. Hey Gretchen I decided to make your buttercream again but it got soupy and I kept whipping it but kept getting soupier is there a way to fix it because like you said 9 time out of 10 you can fix it

      1. Hi Gretches, thank you for the best taste recipe! Taste great and not too sweet. I had successfully made the SBC for few times.
        But I tried again couple of time lately. The SBC came out rainy soupy/ creamy. Not sure what I did wrong this time? I did keep in refrigerator for a little while but it doesn’t help get any thinker. Do you have any idea what’s the reason why? Please? I’m appreciated your great recipes.

        1. HI Carol I’m sorry this happened this time! It possible your meringue was not stiff as the first couple times you made it? That is the key to this recipes success. Also have to be sure it is fully cool before adding in the butter

          1. Hi thanks for your respond.
            Yes, my meringue was very stiff. I never have problem with the meringue. At first I thought maybe was the meringue problem but no it Came out beautifully.
            Then I thought maybe it was the butter, should I always keep butter in room temperature few hours before use? Can I take the butter right out from refrigerator and put in microwave few second to soft them? Would this be the problem then?

          2. I have done the microwave to soften butter in a pinch so it has worked for me both ways.
            You want to be sure to add that butter semi fast though, and make sure it is not TOO SOFT- it does need some integrity to help aid in the structure of this buttercream, too soft butter could mean too soft butterCREAM!

  63. Hi Gretchen! I have been using ur SBC for a while… Perfect every time . But this time it became too dry on the cake when it was time to serve it, (birthday cake) the borders were separating..What did I do wrong ? If the cake need to be stored for some reason, what is the preferred method ? Thank you for ur generosity .

  64. Hello Gretchen,

    I LOVE you website! I just recently used your buttercream recipe for a shower cake and it was amazing. I used to struggle with the crusting buttercream and it was a nightmare. You are a god send!

    I have a couple of questions!

    I am making a wedding cake that will be covered with fondant and will be airbrushed. I will NOT be able to refrigerate it because of the airbrushing and the bride just told me today she wants Raspberry buttercream! I have never made perishable frosting in a fondant cake and she is insistent!

    I found some recipes that call for jam to avoid the fresh berries problem, but I am not sure if you can safely use jam without refrigeration! I did purchase some dehydrated berries to try to get around this but I was just wondering if you had any experience or thoughts on the matter.

    Secondly, I prepared your buttercream in advance and will need to pull it out of the fridge to warm up before I can use it. Once it has hit room temperature can I put it back in the fridge?? I want to frost the cakes a day before I cover them with fondant to help with the timing aspect. Once covered they will sit out again and I just want to be sure with the eggs that I don’t poison anyone!!!

    Any advice you can give would be deeply appreciated!

    Kind Regards,

    1. Hey there! Good Im so glad you found something that works now for you!
      Raspberry buttercream is not highly perishable- it is just going to be softer. I use raspberry puree and extract or emulsion to heighten the flavor without adding in excess sugar (from jams) although you cna do the jam option too- its your preference.
      How long do you plan to keep out of the fridge? Well– before we get into tons of questions- CLICK HERE AND READ

      Im not so sure what you mean in your second question:
      You are correct you have to bring to room temp before using, but then put it back in? Why?

      I guess you mean once they are iced?
      I always refrigerate my fondant cakes- so again read the above link

      At the wedding these cakes will be fine for 5+ hours- Ive done wedding cakes in hot humid NJ and they have always been fine

      1. Thank you for the prompt response!

        I normally refrigerate my fondant but I have never tried to refrigerate it after it has been airbrushed! I worry the condensation will ruin the paint. I guess I can try it and pull it out early enough to wipe it and spray it again it if runs.

        Sorry to confuse you about the frosting! I am just worried that if I let it come to room temperature then put it back in the fridge it might cause some bacteria growth. My old recipe was all pantry stocked dry ingredients so I did not have to worry. The eggs are just making me nervous.

        1. Oh right- forgot about that part
          Yeah that can pose a problem
          I would do everything the night before and then the airbrushing right before I walk out the door to go to the event

          Dont worry about the swiss bc and the egg whites- Ive left it on the counter for 4 days and never had a problem

          if you are very worried though- use this recipe here

      2. Hi – I just found your recipe and came across this comment. A friend of mine makes flavored buttercreams all the time and her trick is to add flavored gelatin (Jell-O) in addition to any puree or jam to help keep the frosting firm and also helps increase the flavor (just add the powder of the gelatin). I haven’t tried this myself, but it sounds like such a simple solution.

    2. You can intensify your berry flavor in your SBC by grinding those dehydrated berries up and adding them to the SBC along with some jam or compote. Less moisture = happier buttercream.

  65. Gretchen, your SMBC saved the day yet again. My daughter is catering a wedding for her g/f today, and waited til the last minute to beg me to whip up something for the wedding cake. I love the ease of making your SMBC,,, it is perfect each and every time I’ve made it. Thank you for sharing it. You’re nothing short of an angel. So I through together a naked 3 tiered wedding cake filled with your heavenly SMBC with some Cointreau to flavor it. Decorated with fruit and flowers. You’re recipes have pulled her bacon out of the fire and everyone Raved about the cake. It’s Silky smooth, and we topped each serving with your chocolate ganache. I Love you Gretchen!

  66. I am going to try your recipes for cake for a baby shower. For the chocolate swiss buttercream what kind of chocolate do I use?

  67. Hello! I am a long time user of your delicious SMBC. I normally use white modeling chocolate for roses but recently have been getting requests for roses made of frosting. I have tried (struggled) to make some and was unable to get good definition. Would it be advisable to add powdered sugar to stiffen the frosting or do you have a better solution? It could be that I just suck at roses but any and all help would be greatly appreciated.

  68. Hi Gretchen

    When you said,

    “Adding anything to the base recipe of Swiss Buttercream will cause a less stable result, so chocolate/peanut butter/mocha/etc. buttercream should be refrigerated not because it will spoil, but because it needs to be colder to hold up to decoration and prevent drooping on the cake.”

    Just a thought; perhaps the resulting droopiness could be lessen by adding more confectioners sugar and/or fat (butter and/or shortening) to the recipe, and this would result in a more stabilised flavoured swiss buttercream? This is all of course theoretically speaking and coming from me who doesn’t have any professional culinary training, since I would imagine by adding confectioners sugar to the buttercream recipe is somewhat similar to adding flour to a cake batter which would make it stiffer/tougher (please correct me if I’m wrong), and by adding more fat would provide a more solid base for the confectioners sugar to hold on to. I don’t know if I’m making any sense at all though. LOL

  69. Hi Gretchen I wanna try a Swiss Meringue Buttercream cause my aunt wants the Swiss Meringue Buttercream can you please send me the recipe I really only trust your recipes the other ones was a real flop

  70. Hi, I’ve had a batch of swiss meringue buttercream sitting in the freezer for who knows how long…it’s definitely been over 2 months. Is it still safe to use? is there any reason why the icing only last 2 months in the freezer?

    1. Yes it will be fine, it lasts longer than that (as far as safety goes) but lengthy time in the freezer for anything can start to compromise taste. SO I try to leave general storage info here for the masses (since I have people watching and making my recipes all over the globe) I want to be sure no one has a problem- but you can definitely freeze longer, as long as it is stored really airtight, you can store it a year! LOL

  71. Hello Gretchen, I love love your recipes, I want to make my own birthday cake, that it’s in two weeks. Your Swiss meringue buttercream looks amazing and want to use it but I would like to know which of the following cakes the frosting will taste good. Chocolate, vanilla or red velvet. I would love your recommendation. Thanks

  72. Hi Gretchen –
    This is my first visit to your new site. I see that the video for the buttercream frosting has been redone. I remember in the first version of the video you had many extra tips including how to keep it extra bright white. Is there a way to look at the old video? My unsolicited two cents: as you redo your videos, make sure not to lose the charm that made the first ones so delightful and informative to watch. I learned a lot from them. Thanks!

  73. HI Gretchen,

    I tried to read all the posts before I write this question but I either I missed it or no one has asked yet. Sorry if you already answered it. Is this frosting good in high heat? I am making a cake for my niece and her marching band mates, worried about 100+ degree on the field. No place cool to store before serving. It would be out of the fridge for transport and serving for about an hour. What about fondant or ganache?

  74. This is my first time making your recipe and it turned out very well. Very very well 😀 From now on, I’m gonna use this for all my cakes that need buttercream. I followed you on youtube since your woodland bakery series and I love how you make it so easy to understand.. Thank you so much!!! More power! From PH ♡

  75. Hi Gretchen,

    thank you so much for all you do! I first discovered you when you were featured on a podcast I listen to some time ago (I believe it was Pat Flynn?) and then rediscovered you when searching for a SMBC…I’ve used your recipe several times, and it’s always delicious.

    I have the fortune of living in California, currently, which usually means warm, dry temps. But recently we’ve been having unusually humid weather in addition to heat…I’ve got my first wedding cake for a client that I don’t really know, and am really nervous about the icing holding up. It will be indoors, but with no A/C, just fans, as I learned today (I was originally told they had a frigdge available)

    In july, I piped roses onto cupcakes and they were wilting (literally) by the end of the day (which turned out to be a little rainy…at first I thought it might have been because I froze them, but really think it must have been the humidity that I’m just not used to dealing with.

    Do you have any recommendations/adjustments to recommend for the humidity? Would you recommend a traditional American BC instead? And with regards to your ABC (hehe ABC, couldn’t help it!), is it lighter than most because of the whipping cream? The one I typically have used uses milk

    Thanks in advance for your help!!!

    You are awesome!

    1. Great thanks for sticking around!
      Yeah the humidity will do a horror job on cakes and especially piped roses. I had a nightmare battle in the bakery when I owned it way back when, the NJ humidity was awful.
      I have a new found love affair with my American Buttercream so yes I would recommend to use that for at least the roses and you can even mix it with the swiss buttercream for the icing if you are super concerned about that part of it too.

  76. Hello Gretchen, I wanted to make a chocolate pudding (my-t-fine cooked pudding) for my filling, but I wanted to mix it with the SBC. Would that be a success? If so, what would the ratio be? Many thanks,

    1. yes you can mix it! I would mix it 2:1 (pudding to buttercream- but its really to your taste, start with a little and keep adding it until you get what you are looking for)

  77. Hi Gretchen,

    I love making this buttercream because everyone loves the taste. I’m just wondering if this recipe is safe to use for a baby shower cake, as so many pregnant women will be eating it?

    1. I feel that it is safe, Ive never had a problem with this recipe and Ive been using it for over 20 years. BUT if you feel nervous you can always use the American Buttercream Recipe OR try using carton egg whites instead of fresh – however I feel that the carton egg whites do not whip up nicely

  78. Gretchen,
    Thank you for your generosity sharing recipes. I only ever use your recipe. It’s brilliant. I made 1 1/2 x the recipes and used 3/4 as vanilla and, for the first time ever to the remaining 3/4 I added 1 1/4 cups melted chocolate. It was AMAZING as chocolate SMB. I’ll now never use any other recipe.
    Thank You!!!!!
    PS I also only ever use your red velvet recipe. Everyone raves about it.

  79. Hi Gretchen! This is my go to recipe for all my cakes! I can’t even tell you how many recipes I tried before finding this one! I don’t even look at any other recipes anymore! To anyone who hasn’t tried it…well, you just HAVE to give it a go…you won’t be disappointed!
    Quick question…I have a 5 quart mixer and everytime I’ve doubled the recipe, the meringue part sets up perfectly, but once I add the butter/shortening, it never comes together, even after letting the mixer go for a long time. That’s happened 3 times now….It’s the weirdest thing! When ever I make a 1x recipe, I never have this issue. Do you know why this would happen?
    Thank you!

    1. Great thanks!!!
      It too much in the bowl to handle
      Separate your meringue into 2 equal portions.
      Separate your butter/shortening the same way
      Add it back to each half of the meringue as if you were making a single recipe to each portion of that “perfect meringue” and then combine them both together.
      More tedious but LESS work than making the batches separate

      Hope that made sense

      1. YES…I think that makes sense! At what point do you suggest I combine them? Thanks so much for your time and all you do!!!

          1. Sorry to be a pest, but I just want to be sure I’m clear. I should combine the batches once I add the fats or once it’s past the “soupy/curdled” stage and it’s come together? Thank you!

  80. Hi, I am at the moment trying out several buttercream recipes and there are a lot. Unfortunately those that use icing sugar(confectioners sugar) I have a problem with the slight gritty texture to it regardless how long I beat it for.

    With this SBC recipe if I leave out the icing sugar, what adjustment should I make if any?
    Thank you so much for sharing your valuable knowledge.

  81. can I use the swiss meringue icing for my layers as well as the outside? Is there a trick to making it hold up well for stacking? I m making an ombre 5 layer cake w the swiss meringue – want to be sure its OK for the layers as well…. was thinking of adding a hint of almond flavor to the layers.. recommendations? while keeping the exterior all white.

      1. Gretchen you are fabulous!!! I need some help. My daughter wants a chocolate buttermilk cake with nutella swiss meringue buttercream for her birthday. How much nutella should I add?

  82. Hi Gretchen:
    I am looking for some advice today. I have an order for a cake with 7 minute frosting. My mom made it a lot when we were young, but I have only made it a few times and probably not for about 30 years. Looking on line I see many recipe variations. Some use cream of tartar, some not. Some say to start whipping at 140 degrees, others 160. Some say whip the entire time and others say to whip 2 minutes and then transfer to mixer (as we do for SMBC) for 5 minutes. Some say refrigerate others say not to. Any recommendation for the from you on the subject? Any advice would be appreciated.

    1. Cream of tartar is a helpful stabilizer if you have it, great use it. if not, not the end of the world.
      In my opinion 140 is not THAT far from 160 and I find that alot of times when there is a recipe that is a classic- bloggers will (in the interest of plagiarism) change things a few degrees or a few teaspoons here and there to make it “their own”. Since honestly how much can you realllllly change a classic recipe! it is what it is! So and Im not saying this is the case…. the authors may very well have done the tests at 140 AND 160 and found that one was better than the other- BUT if they made no mention of this little experiment or gave no reason as to WHY the temperature is to be such then I would lean more towards the former.
      That being said- I would split the difference and whip it at 150 LOL

      1. Thanks, I have the recipe my mom used from her 1948 Women’s Home Companion Cookbook, but it makes no reference to temperature. Do you think refrigeration would be in order?


  83. Hi Gretchen.

    I am wondering if you have ever used a stencil on your SMBC. I know most people say you need a crusting buttercream to stencil, but since yours has Sweetex in it, I thought it might work.

    If so, did you use royal icing with the stencil?

    1. I would never use royal icing on buttercream because it will not dry (and royal icing needs to dry) otherwise it breaks down and melts) but you can stencil on the cold base coat of buttercream with more buttercream, sure

  84. Hi Gretchen, I am having another problem. Lately, when I whip my buttercream it won’t cool and it’s plast like 30 minutes and I am using a stand mixer. Before it would cool quickly. Any idea?

    1. Well the first thought is that continuing to whip it causes friction
      so thats my best scientific guess at this problem.
      Perhaps you are overthinking it?
      I mean, once it comes off the stove I place the same hot bowl onto my mixer and start whipping. Within 5 minutes I am adding the other ingredients. So perhaps you are just not thinking it is cool enough- so you keep whipping, and the excessive whipping makes it heat up again??
      Just a suggestion, dont be scared.

  85. Hello Gretchen,

    It is my daughters birthday on Friday and I am going to make her a yellow sponge cake with SMBC and also some red velvet cupcakes with SMBC. I don’t want to spend her birthday making cakes so was going to make the cakes and the icing on Thursday night. My question is if I iced the layer cake and the cupcakes on Thursday night, what would be the best way to store them? On the counter covered? Or in the fridge covered? And would the icing become hard or should I just take it out a while before serving? Thank you.


  87. hi I am having truble what is the right butter I never no what is the right butter for a buttercream every time I make it it turns out to greasy tasting or does not hold its shape thanks

    1. Hi Kim, well…Im not sure there is a “right” butter. I use whatever is on sale quite honestly! You can try a European Butter but I am not sure it is necessary. The greasy taste is probably coming from teh shortening you are using. Crisco will do that, so it is best to use a Hi Ratio Shortening for this

  88. Hey Gretchen!! I love your SMBC! It’s my all time favorite!! But I have a two vanilla cakes and pumpkin spice cake to finish this weekend. I think the pumkin cake would be amazing with a cream cheese frosting. How would I incorporate the cream cheese into your SMBC? I really don’t want to make 2 frostings. THANKS!!

  89. Hi Gretchen, thank you for sharing this amazing recipe. This has been my go-to SMBC for about 2 years now, and I send this link to everyone looking for SMBC? Have a rather silly question about adding extra’s at the end (PB, melted chocolate, etc) – does it not make it go TOO soft? I know it changes the stability, but I’m wondering by how much approximately. I’ve been avoiding experimenting with flavors because I’m worried it’s just going to turn to soup. I know it must work as you & others do it all the time, but part of me is still skeptical.


  90. Hi Gretchen, this recipe looks amazing and I was planning to use this on my sons birthday cake early next year but I have a concern about the shortening. I’m from Australia and we don’t have a lot of the same brands available here than what you do in the states. I’ve found only one brand that I can get locally and its call Bakels Buttercream Shortening. Can’t find a lot about it online from people who have used it, but was wondering if you might know? Does it taste ok and not leave a film in the mouth. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks

  91. Hi Gretchen, I need to frost a 9 inch 8 layer cake. Wondering how much frosting of your Swiss Meringue Buttercream I should make? Thanks


    If you live some where, where you have to use copha as your substitute chances are you’ve had fights with it just like me but now I won and just had to share with you all.

    PROBLEM: If you’ve had to use copha you would know the main problem is it does not get soft at room temperature and you usually end up with clumps of copha all through the finished icing which is horrible.

    SOLUTION: Before you do any steps of the icing recipe melt all the butter and copha together in the microwave until completely melted (it will be very hot and runny!!!).

    Then put the mixture in the fridge stirring occasionally while continuing the normal recipe.

    By the time you get to the step where you need to add the butter and copha, the mixture in the fridge should be at the perfect constancy (not hot or runny but a cooled down pourable paste).

    Add the butter and copha mixture all at once. Swap to a paddle attachment and mix until well combined. As the butter and copha mix will still be a little warm when you add it your finished icing product will be runner than it should be.

    Simple cover the mixing bowl and put in the fridge (sorry no exact time here) until it hardens up, then mix again with paddle attachment until soft and fluffy.

    Bam perfect you win not the copha =)

      1. Thanks for adding it to your post I hope it helps many people. I was ready to give up on this amazing recipe just because of copha but pushed through to find a solution.

        All my customers love this icing recipe and so do I, so much flexibility with it.

  93. Hi Gretchen

    I want to put fondant roses on a cake iced with buttercream. Will the fondant work melt? It did when i used them on top of cream cheese frosting. Is there a way to use the fondant decor?

  94. Hello Gretchen,

    No doubts about SMBC. It’s perfectly perfect

    I want to ask you , when you say we can use meringue powder equivalent to
    6 eggs and then follow the instructions as mentioned.
    Does it mean that I have to use meringue powder equivalent to 6eggs and then use double boiler to melt the granulated sugar with meringue powder (water) where water is used as mentioned on the meringue powder tin.
    And then follow the procedure as mentioned above
    Please help

    1. That is correct- I believe the carton of meringue powder will give you the equivalents to 1 egg white so you can measure appropriately and yes to double boiler since you have to melt that sugar

  95. Hey Gretchen! LOVE all your recipes. Quick question. If I have a stand mixer with a plastic bowl, will it be ok if I heat the egg whites and sugar then take it off the heat, leave it to cool a little, before putting it in my plastic mixing bowl and whipping it? All help is appreciated! Thanks in advance

    1. yes sounds like a great plan (just be sure your plastic bowl does not have any residual grease from previous recipes on it- plastic tends to hold that in the tiny pores of the plastic so if you have any trouble getting that meringue to whip- its the plastic bowl culprit for sure)

  96. Hi Gretchen, I love your website! I found it after wanting to venture away from my traditional Wilton BC. I have made your SMBC a couple times and have frozen it and rewhipped as per your instructions. I made a cake this week, iced in SMBC, covered in fondant. I piped a large fluffy border around the bottom and then placed fondant leaves on it. A couple hours later, the border was weeping clear liquid. Taking off the leaves would have messed up their metallic dust colors, so, I left it as was and just wiped it away (wish I could post a pic). Anyway, what are your thoughts? I assume I didn’t whip it long enough, but I was afraid of overwhipping. I did use half butter and half Crisco. Thanks for your advice!

    1. Im sorry that happened! I try not to freeze the buttercream whenever possible, however it is fine to do so- but things like you mentioned can happen. We have to remember that buttercream is an emulsion. Because we are asking a few ingredients that normally would not mix (like oil and water foe example) to please mix! SO when you do things like freeze, the stable mix because unstable and you can see that clearly when you thaw it. It is curdly- separated… and we have to whip it (emulsify it) back together, so you are correct that you probably didnt whip it enough to get it back to a stable state, and why it collapsed the way it did

    2. UPDATE………..after this experience above, I thawed the remaining SMBC for some quicky cupcakes. I put it in my stand mixer and just let it go for quite a long time. To borrow some hillbilly slang from around here, I “beat the tar” out of it. And…………it worked!!! I was worried about overmixing it and getting air bubbles, but it was beautiful and shiny when piped on the cupcakes. I’ll keep it in mind for the future to not be afraid to beat it and keep your emulsion comments in mind. THANKS!

  97. Strange question: If I have half a batch of the Swiss buttercream and half batch of your “American Buttercream” leftover from 2 different cakes, can I combine the two batches successfully?

  98. I just made this recipe for a chocolate caramel cake I’m making, it is sooo good! I wasn’t sure my old sunbeam mixer that was left behind by the previous owners of my house could whip up the egg whites. To my surprise it did! I will never use another buttercream recipe. I added some melted chocolate and caramel to it, and that just put it over the top! I could eat it by the spoonful! So creamy and yummy! I’m sure it’s going to go great with your chocolate buttermilk cake recipe I also made! Thank you for taking the time and sharing all your recipes!

  99. Hi Gretchen I will definitely try this out. However, I only have a hand mixer and was planning on making & freezing the buttercream but I do not have a paddle attachment to use when I bring the swbc to room temperature. Will it still be ok to use with the whisk attachments when rewhipping it ?

  100. Hi Gretchen! I loooove this butter cream recipe, however I think I went too far with the whipping today…Can you over whip it like to the point of ruining it??

    1. Well, it turn out very soft like cream cheese frosting. But I was able to frost a cake and pipe some tiny roses…still delish!!

  101. The first time I made this icing I fell in love with it. The last 2 times it seems to taste too buttery. I am making 3 cakes this week and want to try it again. Any suggestions on what I did wrong or how to correct this problem?
    Thank you


    1. Hi Becky Im not sure, if you changed the quantities? I mean, how can it taste too buttery unless you put extra (or a higher ratio of butter:shortening?)
      You can go heavier on the shortening though and cut back on that same amount in butter if you feel that may help

    2. I have no idea. It was weird cause amazing the first few times I made and then the last few were really buttery tasting. But going to try again cause the first few times it was the best icing I ever had!!! I will let you know. I will adjust the shorting butter ratio and see it how it goes. Thank you.

  102. Hi, Ms. Gretchen. Good day. I’m planning to bake a Coffee/Mocha Cupcakes with Salted Caramel SMBC. Do you think it would be a good flavor combination? Also, do you have a recipe for Mocha/Coffee Cupcakes? Thanks. God bless you.

    1. Hi there, I think it sounds like an awesome combo! I do not have a recipe exactly for that, but you can turn most any recipe into mocha by adding coffee paste and cocoa powder

  103. Hi Gretchen, I’m a big fan of yours all the way from the Caribbean where its very humid and temperatures range between 77-89 degrees Fahrenheit. Will this recipe hold up in that type of weather? We want to transport the cake between islands which means having a wait in the airport. What type of frosting do you recommend?

    1. Oh wow, hmmm I will like to say yes but I’d hate to see a disaster! I would recommend to do a small test first, on a small cake. let it stay out the amount of time needed to travel and see how it reacts. I have always used this recipe in NJ hot weather which aslo got ot be very hot and humid almost to 100°F in the summer! But definitely use the high ratio shortening for this

  104. I am so thankful for this! I just spent a LONG time on another Swiss meringue buttercream that came out the consistency of soup and had to be thrown out. I thought it was my fault for using all shortening (we are dairy-free due to allergies). This recipe came out BEAUTIFULLY and is so tasty! You saved a birthday!

  105. Hi Gretchen, I love to read your recipes and view your videos, also done some of your recipes! Love them! My question is, can i add instant pudding mix to the butter cream recipe? I want to make pistachio cup cakes,and want to top them off with your butter cream recipe but want to flavor the butter cream. Thanks Maryann

  106. Hi gretch. Thanks for this recipe. Ive been following you on youtube and woodlandbakery and constantly seeing this but i was too scared to try to end my frosting soupy. But i have tried this making cupcakes for my daughters party and it was a success.

  107. Hi Gretchen!!! Hope your Christmas and New year was great…mine was..especially all the baking I did..with great success..thanks to you!!! If I use meringue powder for you swiss butter I still go through the heating process? Thanks ahead of time…All the best in the New Year!!!!

  108. Hi Gretchen, I wish you a Happy New Year and all the best!
    I need your help: I would like to prepare your Swiss Meringue Buttercream and need to add Mascarpone cheese… is this possible? And if yes which ratio of Mascarpone cheese could I add to your recipe?

    Thank you so much in advance for your reply,

    1. Hi Gretchen! Thank you so much for your reply.
      Let me tell you, I want to fill a Red Velvet with Swiss Meringue with Mascarpone. Crumb coat with Ganache and covering with Fondant!
      What do you think about this, could be fit?

  109. Hii Gretchen
    Can i leave out the shortening and powdered sugar ? Or should i substitute the shortening wid butter ??? So totally i will have to add 454g of butter plus 170g ???
    Please let me know i really want to try ur recipe. Thank you

  110. When I make this frosting I use the actual mixer’s bowl over the simmering water. It saves a step in the recipe.

    If you know your egg vendor, and trust their processing of eggs (refrigeration and freshness), many chefs consider raw eggs safe to use. The Barefoot Contessa, Martha Stewart, and some of the Iron Chefs are known for using raw egg whites in recipes.

  111. Its alot buttery than expected but still taste good. Can I add more powdered sugar to cut the better taste a little ? What do you recommend?

    1. I am not use to REAL BUTTERCREAM either. I personally do not care for that much butter flavor I alter it and use 1 1/4 c butter and 1 1/2 shortening. Just note that this may change your consistency. But I really like it. I am so thankful for Gretchen’s recipe!

  112. Hi Gretchen, got to ask if you can clarify what a high ratio shortening is? I know you have a link for the CC brand sweet ex but I can’t get that here in Canada. The only thing I have found is this would it be considered better then crisco for high ratio
    Sunspun blended shortening
    Fat 10g. 15%
    Saturated 5g Trans 0.5g. 28%

    1. Hi Trena Hi Ratio shortenings make fluffier, creamier icings and they contains emulsifiers, it makes our icings more stable and will hold air better upon whipping, improving volume and stability of icing.

  113. Hi Gretchen
    sweetex is not in my country but I can use Crisco shortening . does it make a greasy taste in the mouth? I do not like a greasy taste.
    also if I use whole Margarin (vegetable butter) instead of butter and shortening, then how is consistency and keeping its form in room temperature ? is it better than using whole butter?

    1. You can use all butter or margarine but nothing compares to the stability of shortening. Crisco gives a heavy greasy mouth feel, yes you probably wont like it, however for those who cannot get the hi ratio- they DO use it.
      Just be sure to keep the cake in the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature about an hour before serving

  114. Hi there. .thankyou for all the recipes. I’ve just subscribed. I was wondering how could you make any frosting a little less sweet?

  115. Hi Gretchen,
    Can I use pasteurized egg whites for this? I have a whole carton of these pasteurized egg whites that I got and is still new but don’t know what to use it for.

    — Viva —

  116. Hi Gretchen,
    Thanks for all your recipes and tutorials. Although the buttery taste of the Swiss buttercream can be a little overwhelming, wouldn’t the use of either Sweetex or shortening change the mouth feel of the final buttercream?

  117. Hello Gretchen, can I use lemon to flavor the icing? I did not know if it would curdle. Is this icing lighter than regular buttercream?

    1. Hello gretchen! Thanks for your recioe and tips, they are all very helpful. I just want to know if i can use lard instead of shortening since it’s easier to find lard in our local market than the shortening. Thanks and more power!

  118. Hi Gretchen,
    This recipe is awesome. Love the texture. Fluffy yet holds the shape. However it’s too sweet to my taste. I read in your previous reply to omit the confectioners sugar to tone down the sweetness. My question is will it still hold the shape?

  119. Hi Gretchen,

    I’m looking for a honey flavored filling for a cake, and I was wondering if you could help. Adding straight honey to this recipe would make it much sweeter and much looser than I could use (comfortably). What would you suggest? Leaving out the powdered sugar and adding in a bit more butter or shortening to stabilize?

    Any suggestions or advice would be wonderful! I unfortunately don’t have the money to experiment to my heart’s content so I figured I’d ask the expert!

    Thank you!

  120. Hello Gretchen.

    I have been following you fooorrrrrreeeevvvvverrrrr :)… love love you. With that being said I use your famous SBC for just about every thing, My question is I need to make this famous SBC taste like amaretto, what shall I do. Please answer as soon as you can. Desperately seeking your help.


  121. I tried your Swiss buttercream recipe the other day. It was perfect and soooo delicious! I made a banana cake and frosted it with your recipe. I have enjoyed reading what you share. Thanks!

    1. Place the mixing bowl with the Swiss meringue buttercream in the refrigerator for 15-30 minutes. This should cause the buttercream to stiffen up. Now using a paddle on low speed, paddle the buttercream until the mixture comes around. There is a possibility you may have gotten the buttercream too cold so use your hands and a warm/hot towel if needed to apply heat to the bowl while mixing. OR Use an towel which was dipped in ice water and wrap it around the bowl. Continue to paddle the buttercream on low speed until the mixture comes around.

  122. Hi Gretchen! Let me preface by saying I love this recipe! However, this weekend I ran into a very strange problem that I could not figure out and has never happened to me in the past. I followed the recipe exactly and tried to color it with royal blue gel from Americolor; goal color was baby blue. For some reason, the frosting would not take the gel. I started with a small batch (1/2c.) to test and dropped in one drop of the royal blue and it ultimately turned purple. I tried again and same result. I tried a 3rd time with Wilton royal blue gel and I got the same result. I tried to add a drop of sky blue and it only got more purple. Has this ever happened to you?? I will try it out again and take pictures.

  123. Hey Gretchen I was wondering if I could seperate my meringue before I put in the butter to cool it down faster since it takes me like 30 minutes to cool the mixture and then the meixture deflates. Btw, I am using a stand mixer

  124. Hi Gretchen and fellow Aussies!

    A former professional chef but amateur cake baker, today I made a SWBC for the first time ever for a layered red velvet cake for my daughter’s birthday on the weekend.
    After reading the issues some of you have found as well as some of the solutions you came up with while using Copha, I thought I’d problem solve in my own way. On my first attempt I had great success, I’d say in excess of 7-8 cups of smooth (although a little too sweet for me) vanilla SWBC!
    My approach was to get the Copha as close to butter in consistency and feel just like you have mentioned above.
    So before starting any of the recipe I put more than the measure of Copha (kept at room temperature overnight) into the KitchenAid with the paddle attachment and beat it on high for a few minutes scraping down every minute or so until I got a smooth whipped look to the copha with no lumps or transparent chunks left in the Copha. Magic! Then I emptied out the KitchenAid, washed it completely, and weighed out the portion of whipped Copha required for the recipe. I then followed your recipe exactly, and it worked a treat.

    I’ve never posted online before, ever, but just thought I had to share this trick. It seems a little easier, cleaner and less risky than some of the solutions already posted.

    Good luck fellow Copha users and thanks for the recipe Gretchen.

  125. im 19, and i just made your recipe last night, my 1st time making buttercream and it turned out amazing! i was so impressed.
    guess it helps that my so bought me a stand mixer for christmas 😉
    love your tutorials. youre awesome 🙂

  126. I made this recipe today for the first time and I am seriously impressed! I did end up taking some of the sugar out of the eggs to adjust the sweetness. This is my new favorite! I couldn’t by believe how well it piped. Thank you so much for this!

  127. Hi Gretchen, I’m new to your site(and also to baking), but I am willing to give your recipes a try. I would love to make your vanilla sponge cake and I was wondering if it’s okay to put this swiss buttercream over it? Will it not be too heavy for the cake? Thank you so much!

  128. I’ve made this recipe twice and i keep getting the result. When I finish the frosting is actually pretty thick the texture it similar to butter. I’ve had people say the texture is odd. Is this what it’s suppose to be like? I’ve never tasted a frosting like this. Help?

    1. HI Mary Im not sure if you are suing this recipe straight away or are you storing it after mixing and then using it for the cakes?
      Either way it needs to get whipped pretty fluffy as you can hopefully see in the video it is very light and airy not heavy or dense. I have seen the result you are talking about and that typically comes from a cake that has been iced and is left for several days in the fridge or even out (it will tend to get a “buttery heavy” look to it

  129. First, I want to say thank you for your improved version of ABC.
    About SMBC, I get that one of the ‘cons’ is that you can’t achieve a true white bc. Wouldn’t it be possible if one used homemade butter (from whipping cream) since it comes out really white? Thanks.

    1. HI Thanks and you are welcome too
      I always whip mine for longer and switch to paddle at the end to get it whiter (air=whiter) some add a drop (literally a drop) of violet to offset that yellowish tinge.
      But sure you can use homemade butter would be great!

  130. Hi Gretchen,
    I have made t his recipe many times. But I don’t t like the slight powdery taste. Can I avoid the powdered sugar and add a little more regular sugar to the egg whites In the double boiler phase? If so, how much granulated sugar should I add?


  131. Hey Gretchen,

    This is an emergency. Let me start by saying that, i made this recipe before and it was fabulous. However i am making it again today and it came out perfect, until i added the chocolate. It refuses to come together and i dont know what to do. I can literally see the separation and it is extemely soupy. I put it in the fridge in hopes that it will firm up.

    Please help!!!!

  132. hello , i have been using this fab recipe.. i have a question tho’ on what temp will this recipe melt or is there a possibility that it will melt? my client is a bit skeptical if they will be able to transport this cake after 5 hours trip and will possibly encounter rough roads along the way since this is not a crusting recipe..can i make this recipe a crusting recipe by adding more powdered sugar? thanks! by the way im using iy for flower wreath cakes

    1. 5 hours is a long ride first of all at any temperature, unless the car is super cold (like a refrigerated truck) I would hesitate. UNLESS it is very mildly decorated (any heaviness of decor will be compromised in a long trip – rough roads- like that)
      This is not a crusting buttercream you may do better with my AMerican Buttercream

  133. Hi Gretchen! I’ve got to say, I can’t wait to try this recipe. I was wondering, though… I only have a 4.5 qt mixer. Will that be big enough for all that buttercream? (Sorry if this question has been asked before, I couldn’t find it anywhere).

  134. Hi Gretchen,
    First of all thank you so much for sharing your recipes. I used your Swiss
    Buttercream. I just love it. My question is there is a lot of air ( not sure if that correct word ) in my buttercream.

  135. Hello Gretchen,

    Been quietly admiring all the lovely recipes and stories you’ve been sharing since W-B times and now.

    Sent you an email once about your culinary experience and if you were okay to share with me.

    However, today I’ve a question, as it seems that my few experiences with the SMBC does not turn out smooth and always has pockets of air or bubbles. How do I solve that?

    Additionally, I understand that sugar is the holding force, I presume, but if I still find it sweet after removing the confectioners’ what would you recommend

    1. Hello Gretchen,

      I’ve tried the SMBC again, and followed exactly.

      I’ve tried to make a different flavour following your guides in the “creating your own buttercream flavour” page. Making a tea version.

      Adding no more than 3 tbsp of tea, and letting it stay in the refrigerator overnight, the SMBC now becomes very very droopy, making it very hard to even apply onto the sides! Are there any ways to make it more stable again?

      I also recall you had a frosting a cake guide at your old web, but I guess it has not been re-shoot !

  136. Hi Gretchen,

    I’ve recently discovered your website and you have some amazing recipes that you share with us! Thank you! I was wondering, could you use Splenda in a Swiss Meringue Buttercream instead of granulated sugar? My husband and I are both diabetic and while I can make cakes using Splenda, the frosting is a weird consistency when you make Splenda icing sugar. I usually just make stabilized whipped cream and colour it like I would frosting, but wonder if Splenda would work in a Swiss Meringue. If it would…..the sky’s the limit for us!! 🙂

    Many thanks,

  137. Hi Gretchen I simply love your site anyway I have made swiss butterrcream all was fine left it out on the counter the next day when I tried to rewhisk it all crudled and there was liquid even though I did whisk it please help me as I do love this icing because I don’t like butterrcream cause of the sugar crust thank you

  138. does it go hard once chilled like the italian buttercream? any frosing suggestions that doesnt really become hard after chilling? thanks for sharing

  139. Thank you for sharing your recipe. After heating the egg whites and sugar, should the egg white mixture be cooled before whipping until stiff? Thank you

  140. If i substituted meringue powder for the egg whites, how long could this recipe be left at room temperature. Currently I fill my cakes with American buttercream and crumb coat with ganache and then cover with fondant. I don’t refrigerate my cakes after they are assembled. I would like to use this recipe instead of American butter but am worried it will “go bad” if not refrigerated. My hope is that the meringue powder version of this recipe with work. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

  141. Hi Gretchen! This is my first attempt to make Swiss Meringue with fondant covered wedding cake! Oh MY!!
    I live in Texas where it is humid & warm.. yes even in February.. 70 degrees this weekend! With this said.. Wedding Venue 35 minute drive.. would you add a litte cream of tartar or meringue powder to help stabilize the Swiss Meringue? I just don’t want a droopy fondant 4 tiered Wedding Cake and an upset Bride. Your thoughts and expertise is invaluable me. Your Fan.. Laura 🙂

  142. Dear Gretchen,
    Thank you and God bless you for sharing these absolutely wonderful delicious cakes and icings with all of us. I have never been fond of cakes and icing although I bake them for everyone else. When I made your coconut cake and Swiss buttercream icing I was speechless when I tasted it, it was fantastic!!! Your directions and videos are helpful , entertaining, and my cakes look like yours when I’m done. They actually look like a cake from a bakery! I have received countless compliments. I give credit to you each time and share your web site with them. When I’m feeling down I watch one of your videos and you bring a smile to my face. Your recipes and my making them have many people VERY HAPPY. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  143. Hi Gretchen, I can’t find shortening in my country, can I replace it with butter? I don’t like raw eggs can you show how to make eggless buttercream ? Thank you.

  144. Thanks for sharing this recipe. I tried it few days ago, and it gave my taste buds some kind love potion! 😀 Really liked it, i was so hesitant to try it, i always use ITMBC, but now ill use this as often as needed. Not super sweet, easy to prep., its a sugar heaven on a cupcake. JUST GIVE THIS A TRY!! wont regret it! Thanks! 🙂

  145. I am going to attempt this Swiss Butter Cream icing, however my son requested “Blue” icing. At what point should I add the food coloring? If i’m making the icing a head of time should I add it when I re-whip it when I’m ready to frost? Thanks!

  146. So my colleagues discovered the other day that I bake and I have been served an ultimatum: bring a cake to the next meeting or don’t come! So I’m gonna attempt your peppermint cake recipe.. I don’t have junior mints here in india but a few other mint based candies are available so that should help. I’ve always used the regular buttercream recipe but that gets a little boring over time so I’m hoping this will be better… I totally agree with you about following the recipe to the letter the first time and I really wish I could but I’m gonna have to replace the shortening with butter 🙁 . The good thing is, I’m awesome with a hand whisk and can whip up a nice stiff meringue! So with that on my side, here’s a prayer for a wonderful cake for tomorrow’s meeting!

  147. Hi Gretchen,

    I am making the strawberry cream cake right now. I made the swiss butter cream first and it came out well. Kept it in the fridge for a while and then when I mixed the strawberry puree(in mixer with paddle attachment) it seems to be curdled. Is there a way i could fix this?


  148. I love your recipes and videos. I make your swiss buttercream and its wonderful, but I always seem to have a hard time when making the roses. My technique is fine but the consistency of the icing always seem to be too soft and it makes it so difficult. I put piping bag in fridge to firm it up a little but I just can’t seem to resolve this problem. I tried putting nail in freezer but Its a constant battle!!! PLEASE HELP ME!!!!!!

  149. Does the confectioners sugar have anything to do with the firmness or the buttercream holding in hot weather? I don’t like my buttercream too sweet so of its optional I would like to avoid !ore sugar..Pls let me know if its a mandatory ingredient

  150. My meringue melted whn I added butter… is there any way I can fix it…
    I refrigerated the meringue but still not so stiff yet… do I need to throw it away? Or can I use it. ..

  151. Once the cake is iced, should it be refrigerated? Will the icing be ok in the fridge over night? making 1 day before. Thanks!

  152. Not sure when to add the strawberry puree to Swiss buttercream do I add it when I change to paddle or when I add butter and shortening thank you love all your recipes

  153. If I use pasturized egg whites in the carton instead of raw egg whites, do I still need to do the double boiler step, or can I blend the egg whites and sugar in the mixing bowl?

  154. I’ve been making Swiss meringue buttercream for years but I just discovered this recipe yesterday and I am amazed! It’s light and silky, but holds shape so well, and absolutely delicious. This is my new favorite frosting. Thank you!

  155. Hye gretchen.. Im from malaysia.. Ive been following u since u r doing crumb boss video!
    Once ive tried ur swiss buttercream, ive fall in love with it. Not doing other anymore. I used it for my cakes n hv sold so many. All my customers love this recipe. Tqvm!
    Oh ya! Now its trend for buttercream flowers. Do you have any recipe that can hold flowers shape even tiny2 details?

  156. I made your buttercream icing today and loved it-Thankyou for all your recipes-I am already a fan!and my kids loved it too!

  157. Hi.

    I have a wedding cake due for next weekend and would just like to know if this swiss buttercream would be able to withstand the pressure of a 3 tier cake covered in swiss butterccream and then fondant.

    I eagerly await your reply.

  158. This recipe looks amazing! I’m planning to make cupcakes and decorate with flower-like piping on them, will this hold up?!

  159. Hi gretchen thank you so much for the recipe. I want to make the icing days ahead. Is it okay to take it out of the fridge then put put it back again once ive put it on a cake?

    1. For the first time today i made this recipe and for a noob like me in baking it turned out awesome not just the texture but the taste too. This will be the only icing i will be making from now on. Thank you Gretchen and best regards.

  160. Hi ms.Gretchen , what if i will not desolve the sugar into the egg whites by using a double boiler, would it be possible that i will ended into a failure meringue?
    Thank you!

  161. My buttercream is kind of gritty? I mean it’s not that much but you really can tell. Is it with the confectioner sugar that I used?

    1. I had this issue once before. When heating the sugar & eggs I wasn’t being careful to keep the mixture from splashing the sides of the bowl. I was trying to hurry as I had to leave for work, and knew that I needed at least 30 minutes in my mixer (old mixer, not because of the recipe LOL). Aaaanyhew, the mixture was perfect temperature, not grainy at all, except for the splatter on the sides. I foolishly thought that they would somehow get magically blended in once I got the bowl on the mixer. Silly, silly, silly!! Did I mention…silly!?

      Of course that batch got thrown away, and I wound up having to make a new batch that night after work. Didn’t save me any time at all!

      Now what I do, to prevent that from happening again, is I use one bowl on the stove, stir as gently as possible to avoid getting mix up the sides of the bowl, scrape the sides of the bowl often, and when it’s ready, I transfer into my mixer bowl. I used to do all in one bowl, but to be on the safe side, now I use two. Just means I have one more bowl to wash :-).

  162. Gretchen,
    i am making a 3 tier wedding cake for Sat Apr 2, got everything lined up Zakhan, bride from Cambodia wants 14″ chocolate then 10″ & 6″ layers to be strawberry AND coconut batter COMBINED, so thinking in the cake batter will add a cup or two of crushed dehydrated strawberries and a few drops of strawberry extract and gently swirl, then add some coconut flakes and coconut extract and swirl gently interlacing flavors, ? i have a can of full fat coconut milk or lite. should i add some of that to the batter for those 2 layers, 10 & 6 “,
    All cakes i will cut in half like i saw you do, make a dam around edge and fill the chocolate w a chocolate custard, the strawberry/coconut cakes w a vanilla custard, frost w the Swiss Buttercream Icing save some of the frosting add some merinque to stiffing up and make some roses. Been years since i have done a 3 tier cake so just bouncing this on you for any tips thanks Whitedove

    1. Sounds like you have a nice plan going! Good job! I would recommend to do a small test though just to be sure it all goes the way you like and you can tweak the flavors accordingly if necessary

    2. Thanks Gretchen, sounded good in my head so that is a compliment, will make a small cake tonight. will take pictures ok we had a bridal shower for her yesterday in which the groom came to explain the shower games to her lol

  163. I started to watch your videos a few years back and made the most wonderful mini Danish , cheese nuns and cinnamon buns ever , .Thank you for sharing your talent .
    Dolores Bella

  164. Hi Gretchen, I have tried this recipe 3 times now. 1 – use half margarine half shortening. 2 – use all margarine. 3 – use different brand of margarine again. All leaves me a greasy feel in the mouth. What can I do, so the SMBC doesnt leave a greasy feel to the mouth? Everybody hates the buttercream 🙁

  165. how much white chocolate should i use to make it a white chocolate Swiss buttercream? and can i use Wilton’s white candy melts?

  166. hello I follow you for years , I ‘m from Netherlands and really want to try the swiss cream but here in
    Netherlands do not have any shortening that you use only
    Crisco …. does that work
    Almost forgotten we Also don’t have corn syrup

  167. Hi Gretchen,

    First, thanks so much for your amazing recipes!! I love them and so does everyone else!!

    I’m making a 3 tier wedding cake for this Saturday. It’s an outdoor wedding and it’s supposed to be about 80 degrees. This is the buttercream she wants, but I’m just wondering how it will fair in that temperature. I’ve never used this recipe in temperature like that before (will it be a melted mess in an hour?). There’s also a raspberry filling I’m worried about. How long will this buttercream, and filling for that matter, last in this kind of temperature. Thanks so much for your advice. You’re amazing!!

    1. Hi Sorry for the late reply (I was out of town) this is the same buttercream I used in hot humid NJ! (Most were inside- but some were outside) It will be fine! Keep it as cold as possible in the refrigerator before the event and you will be great!
      Keep it in the shade too!
      Perhaps dont put it out until all the guests have arrived, it wont be too noticeable if you do it that way (And just keep your eye on it!)

  168. Hi Gretchen
    I want to use your smbc recipe on a wedding cake .I have to make and freeze the cake with fondant a week before the wedding due to time .I will box and wrap and double wrap the boxes .Take them out the freezer two days before the wedding put it in the fridge to slowly thaw then move to the counter top still covered in plastic wrap until all condensation has evaporated .Will your smbc still hold up on cake .I know many say that type of buttercream needs rewhipping.I have used American buttercream with no problem doing the above method when time called for it .
    My friend used your buttercream and it was delicious not overly buttery .I wanted to use it with this cake .Hopefully your answer will be it’s ok to use it

  169. Hi, hope you can answer my question ASAP, need to make this buttercream recipe for my son’s birthday cake today. I am thinking of using meringue powder to substitute the eggs. I know you said just follow the instructions on the can to equivalent of 6 eggs, then proceeds with your recipe. My question is, should I add the granulated sugar to the whipped meringue powder? is it going to dissolve? or I should just use confectioner sugar? if that’s the case how much I should use to substitute the granulated sugar? thank you

  170. Hi Gretchen, I chanced upon the site while looking for a smbc recipe that can withstand hot temp, as mentioned that it is possible for one to omit the confectioner sugar if we find it too sweet, but you also mentioned to read the comment below with regards to it, however I cant seems to locate it.. Could you please explain again if somehow I have issue viewing that portion with regards to what will happen if I omit the confectioner sugar? Thank you very much

  171. Swiss Buttercream in Switzerland 😉
    Thanks for the great recipe. Thougt I’d share my swiss experiments: we don’t have shortening, well the most similar thing is this Sais (R) vegetable fat, tastes weird tho. So after several trial runs I used slightly more butter (which is a bit on the yellow side in Switzerland due to what cows are fed on, i was happy with the colour of mountain-pasture fed cows only ;-), i.e 500 g, and threw in coconut fat (not oil, the solid fat) for the rest, turned out very nice. coconut fat has to be room temperature otherwise its weirdly grainy.
    Thanks again,

    1. Oops, just saw on Wikipedia the Copha you mention is the same as our coconut fat- so post probably superfluous, can still thank you tho
      and above i obviously meant the colour of butter made from milk of mountain pasture fed cows, not the cows themselves LOL

  172. I absolutely love this buttercream so thank you. A question though: no matter what I do, I cannot get it a true red. At most I get a dark pink. I’ve used Wilton true red gel, Americolor red, I’ve let it sit, added burgundy, etc. Nothing works. Do you have any advice on this? It would be so appreciated!

  173. Can I add seedless raspberry jelly to this recipe? I am making a lemon cake with raspberry frosting for a client and I love the SMB a.Thanks
    Leigh Ann

  174. Hi Gretchen,
    I was wondering if you have ever used the powdered egg whites for making the swiss buttercream? If you have can you give your readers the info, thank you for putting so much wonderful recipes, hints and pictures!

    1. I don’t use meringue powder, but yes you can here. You will have to reconstitute according to the package and still dissolve the sugar same as shown here! thanks for the support and you are welcome too!

  175. Hi Gretchen,

    I read the tip on melting the butter and copha together. Are you really sure this works? Can you tell me what the high vegetable fat does in the recipe, as other Swiss butter cream recipes don’t have the shortening.
    Many thanks

    1. HI! I actually have not used Copha, so I rely alot of my viewers from around the globe to tell me their experiences in hopes to help others in that same country. You can leave the shortening out of course and use all butter, but the shortening gives it super stability for piping decorations and borders, and less chance of melting in an outdoor (or even hot room) event

  176. Hi Gretchen it’s me again,

    I was wondering if I can you Crisco shortening rather than the Copha as I’m in Australia? Will this be ok or change the texture?

    1. yes you can, however some feel that Crisco lends a greasy, heavy mouth feel, so you can use all butter too, but you wont have the stability that shortening offers (BUT Crisco may be a better choice than Copha!)

  177. Thanks gretchen for sharing,i always wanted to try a butter cream with egg white , so now i will thank you

  178. Gretchen thankyou for this amazing recipe, I made it tonight and it turned out exactly like your video. I ended up using SoLite shortening rather than the Copha of Crisco (I’m in Australia), thanks for your advice with that! So I have stored the BC in the fridge till I need it later this week, I plan to use it to assemble my layered cake the night before:

    1) Am I able to store the cake at room temp overnight? Or refrigerate? I am also using Driscoll’s raspberry sauce in between each layer of your Yellow Sponge cake recipe and semi icing the out side of the cake so it’s naked.

    2) Can I leave iced cupcakes overnight at room temperature? Or better iced on the day?

    1. Great! Im glad you had success great job!

      The cake sounds like it will be fine out at room temp- as long as there is nothing perishable in the filling.
      Cupcakes I would prefer to ice the day of, keep them nice and wrapped so they dont dry out until you ice them

  179. This is the only recipe i use since i came across it a year back. It is fool proof. thank you gretchen for sharing this with us and all your other amazing recipes.

  180. Hi! Can i add some cream of tartar to the egg whites to stabilize it? if so, how much cream of tartar shall i add? And, how many cupcakes can this recipe frost? (considering simple swirl or flowers). How much cake can it frost? size and number of layers? Thanks a lot!

  181. Hi Gretchen, what’s the difference between meringue powder and powdered egg white. I know you mentioned meringue powder can be substituted into this recipe but what about the powdered egg white? And I read online that using these powders may result in a meringue and buttercream that isn’t as stable. Is this true? And will heating these “egg whites” like mess them up?

    1. Hi Meringue Powder= Powdered Egg whites. I dont really use the powders myself, but maany do and have here and had fine results (you will still need to reconstitute them, heat them up because you have to dissolve the sugar)

  182. Hello Gretchen, I’m Anne from the Philippines. I would like to ask you if this frosting is too sweet?. I’m not fan of American Buttercream cuz it makes me feel dizzy a lot after eating it. I like the korean buttercream. It’s light and like a bubbly texture and it’s not so sweet. I have thought of this recipe that this might be the frosting I’ve been looking for. My Grandma don’t like too much sweets too. Cuz she has diabetes that’s why I wanted to know if this frosting is just like the korean icing. Thank you

  183. Hi gretchen. Help!! I have been a huge fan of urs, since u own a bakery. I love all recipes. In fact, i dont trust anyone else’s recipes on youtube! Bt i always have probs when it comes to frosting. I have made ur swiss meringue buttercream thrice and it tasted amazing. But i always have a grainy texture. Wt am i doing wrong? Also, i tried ur cokie dough recipe ytd ans it was grainy as well. Im using a hand beater bt nvr found that a prob until when im making frosting. I threw all my cupcakes in the end;(

    1. Hi Thanks!! Im so happy you find success with my recipes! Perhaps you are not getting the sugar dissolved all the way when you are first heating it with the egg whites? If this is true, you can strain the egg white – sugar mixture through a strainer before whipping, this will get out any grains that did not dissolve. OR it is the quality of the confectioners sugar? Otherwise you can try the Italian Buttercream, it cooks the sugar syrup to 240F so you wont have a single grain leftover

  184. Hello Gretchen!
    Thanks for sharing your recipes! I’ve already tried your chocolate cake recipe and it was fantastic. Now I would love to do this swiss buttercream but I’m not very sure which thermometer do I have to buy. Can you please check these two and tell me which one is better?


    Thanks in advance


  185. LOVE you sweetheart…….. it took me perfectly 1 hour to make your lovely Swiss buttercream ….. but i love it….. a big tight hug to you …. :* now i can have a great birthday cake …. YAY!!! (soooo excited)

  186. Hi Gretchen,

    I’ve been making your swiss buttercream recipe for years. I was glad to see it back up again!

    A few things I learned…
    1. I’ve used high fat ratio and crisco. Crisco is a little more “melty” but works well in the Midwest winters and fairly well in summer under fondant.

    2. Glass mixer bowls take forever to whip the egg whites… See #3

    3. I didn’t realize you used fresh eggs! I have always used the carton egg whites, never had a problem whipping in my metal bowl. To help speed up the whipping time I use 2 tsp meringue powder after I heat up the mixture.

    Can’t say enough about this recipe. My new fan favorite is adding crushed Oreos at the end and hand mix with a spatula.

    Thanks for take no the time to add all of your great tips!!!

  187. I see that you have a vegan recipe for the Cake and the Ganache, is there a recipe for Vegan Butter Cream??? and if not what could you use in place of the Swiss butter cream?? Ps. if you could facebook me the reply cause I don’t always check my e-mails :/ Love your videos keep’em coming!!

  188. Hi Gretchen,

    This buttercream recipe uses egg white, so it isnt suitable for old people? I plan to make a chocolate cake for my grandma on Mother’s Day and the swiss buttercream seems to be the most not-so-sweet version of icing. Is there any other healthier option for icing?

    Ps. Just discovered your youtube channel and I really love watching your videos. Im going to finish watching all your uploads and hopefully I can make one or two baked goods.

    Thanks again. Greetings from Malaysia!!

    1. Well, the egg white debate is just that- a debate and one that needs to be a personal decision. I use it all the time for people of all ages and never had a problem, however you may feel better about Italian Meringue Buttercream since the egg whites are cooked with a super hot syrup AND it is less sweet

      Thanks! I appreciate the support and I am glad you are here! There is so much more for you to discover! CLICK HERE

  189. Hi Gretchen I am from Singspore and I am so so happy to found your blog for this frosting. Baking cake with frosting has been my biggest fear due to the weather in Singapore is so humid. So long story short I tried out your Swiss buttercream I must say it again…. This is a keeper!!! Love to see more great recipe from you, God bless.

  190. Hi Gretchen, I just came across a wonderful Lemon Cookie Recipe but think it could be improved / embellished by making it a sandwich cookie. Most recipes I have found for cookie fillings contain cream cheese and would need refrigeration, since the cookie is crisp I would not want to refrigerate it. Any suggestions on a formula that would not need to be refrigerated?

  191. This is the frosting I have been looking for! I have been using the W*lton versions, but they were either too sweet or too greasy. Thank you so much!

  192. Oh my gosh I found you!!! I started using your recipe a few years ago and fell in love! Everyone who has had one of my cakes with your SMBC loves it. I haven’t made a cake in a couple of years and went to make one today and upon a search found tons of recipes which was surprising but they all seemed so lazy compared to the original amazing recipe I had from you. I’m so glad I found this site! Thank you for the awesome recipe and for not being out of reach as I had feared I can’t wait to make and eat some beautiful shiny delicious perfectly buttery smbc

  193. Hi Gretchen! I’ve used this recipe before and loved it (of course). Thank you so much for continuing to share your knowledge with us!
    In regards to stability, would using meringue powder keep this recipe stable at room temp a little bit longer?

  194. Hello Gretchen,
    I have to credit you for your recipes which I have tried gazillions of time. It’s still the best and when ever I have tried something else I have to pay heavy for it.
    I have tried this recipe with Nutella and peanut butter… Commendable results every single time.
    Thanks once again.

  195. Which icing can I using for a graduation cake that will crust some and stand up to the Houston heat and humidity

  196. I love this recipe and have made it <50x. I will admit that I love it even more since switching to high ratio shortening. Much better than even the original and I thought that one was good! I'm debating on my next cake, but no matter what, it will have some version of your SMBC on it.

  197. hi ms gretchen! i want to ask if in this recipe can i use all butter and not the shortening? because in kuwait sometimes i dont find shortening. thank u…

    1. HI ! Yes it can, I actually wrote an extremely long blog post here to answer a lot of the Most Asked Questions (that one is one of them!) I hope you read it! 🙂

  198. I’m so excited to start baking! Do you have a whipped cream cake frosting too? I look forward trying this recipe. Mind you, my mom took a cake decorating class! All 3 of us kids were begging her to bake a cake a NOT frost it!

    Your videos are awesome an informative!

  199. Hi Gretchen, I was just wondering if this was a good frosting for fondant shapes on the side of the cake. Will it hold up? Thanks.

  200. Hie gretchen, in luxembough i have not been able to find crisco or sweetex shortening is their any alternative i can use

    1. yes however those who have done that- have NOT Liked the result, I do not like those butter flavor shortenings either, they put a strange taste to the recipe, BUT to each his own and I suppose you wont know until you try- so the short answer is YES, the long answer- well you will have to decide if it is good

  201. Hi Gretchen I just thought I have to get back to you on this. I live in Indonesia, hot humid weather, room temp is 33-35 C. So, I decided to do a test , therefore modified and go with this :
    2 egg whites
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1/4 tsp cream of tar tar
    a pinch of salt
    55gr unsalted butter
    55gr shortening
    55 gr margarin

    I found it lack of sweet, thus added 4 tbs of powder sugar.

    It’s been 7 hours in roomp temp and it holds its shape very well.

    Thankyou Gretchen, you’ve inspired me by adding shortening here, where most people avoid doing that.
    The taste is ok, I’m sure all butter version would taste way bettet, but hey…this recipe works like a charm in such hot weathet, so…once again thankyouuuu Gretchen, you’re awesome 🙂

    1. Hi Gretchen and Mahaki,

      I’m from Malaysia and I’ve use full butter instead of mix of margarine and butter. Apparently the cream wasn’t that firm to work with. Just want to ask will the cream be firmer if follow exactly Mahaki’s recipe?

  202. Hi Gretchen! Glad i found this recipe! I have tried many recipes but never satisfied, because of the overly sweet taste they have. I was wondering if this is a non crusting buttercream, wouldn’t the fondant slip off the cake? Also, does this butter cream hold well if i wanted to add a liquor flavor to it or flavor it with raspberry or cherry preserves? If i were to add liquor or a fruit preserve, would you recommend that i skip the powdered surgar so it isn’t overly sweet? Thanks!

  203. Hi Gretchen, I love, love, love your recipes and videos. I have tried making buttercream flowers before with unsatisfactory results. However, your tutorial on buttercream roses seemed like a better method and I think your roses are stunning. Does the addition of shortening in your SMB make the buttercream easier to pipe? I’m so excited to try your method using your recipe. Thank you for all you do!

  204. Hi! I’m trying to make a salted Caramel buttercream and was wondering if I added dulce de leche instead of the powdered sugar, would that work? I don’t want it to be too heavy and lose its shape though

  205. I love your buttercreams all of them and I get a lot of complements. but I have a problem when I frost my cake and smooth out I always get some spotty parts of cake that shows through I would put more butter cream then smooth out again and again cake shows through – what am I doing wrong?

    1. Great thanks! I would say you just need some practice controlling the pressure with the spatula when you ice, seems you already know the problem & solution it is now just practicing! I tried to be really indepth in my instruction here with my Birthday Cake tutorial, maybe this will help you?

  206. Hello I’m going to try a naked cake for my daughters wedding, was wondering can I use salted butter? Plus will this frosting be ok to use in the middle of the layers?

  207. Hi Gretchen. Thank you for sharing your recipes. The question I need to ask is how long do you mix this when you put the paddle attachment on? Some have said 30 seconds and all the way up to 10 minutes. The one thing that all has agreed on is to beat slowly on the speed 3 to 5 with a Kitchen Aid so not to develop air bubbles. Thank you again for your recipes and great advice.

  208. Hi Gretchen, I was wondering if we can use this recipe with Russian icing tip? will it be stiff enough to make the flowers or is it too soft?

  209. I made a wedding cake for this pass weekend. i made two Swiss Buttercream recipes, Ben Ron Israel’s and Yours. I wanted to compare the two. I preferred yours. The texture and taste was wonderful Ron’s was very good. The addition of the confectioners really helped both flavor and ease of smoothing. I got so many excellent comments on the “BUttercream” It was a great success! I used it under marshmallow fondant. I ran out and it took no time to whip up another batch to use immediately on my cake. I would recommend this “swiss buttercream” to everyone. Thank you for sharing.

  210. Hello again Gretchen, made this the other day and it was excellent! Thank you so much, your the best. The only thing was I had loads left over after icing 30 cupcakes. So can u please tell me if I can half this recipe and if so do I literally half all the ingredients?

    Thank you so much 🙂

  211. Hi Gretchen,
    I love your site! I’ve used your site for many recipes and they’re all very easy to follow! Thanks so much!

    I’m interested in making this buttercream, but I’m wondering would this work for a buttercream transfer or would you suggest sticking with the American Buttercream recipe for that?

    Thanks again!

  212. Would this buttercream be able to frost my cake to a smooth finish with my bench scrapper. If so what would I have to do to achieve the perfect smoothness. Would I need to stick it in the fridge and my crumb coat then frost it.


    1. Yes I do that all the time. Im not sure what you meant about stick it in the fridge with my crumb coat? I crumb coat- fridge 15 min, then smooth ice in that order

  213. Hi Gretchen,
    I read your blog post and I want to use Meringue powder instead of egg whites.
    In your video it shows in the bowl egg whites with sugar then heating and mixing the egg whites with the sugar on the stove
    If I’m not using the egg whites ,so I’m not sure where I proceed?
    Please help!! Thanks =)

    Q- “Can I use Meringue Powder?”
    A- “Yes, follow the instructions on the can (or bag) or Meringue Powder to equivalent to 6 large Egg Whites, and then proceed as you will for the rest of my recipe.”

    1. You will have to recontsitute the meringue powder with water as stated on the carton/beg or jar of meringue powder. Since you must dissolve the sugar you will do so as shown in the video over a double boiler but instead of the egg whites you will have a water/meringue powder mixture to combine with the sugar

  214. I love this frosting! I want to take cupcakes camping. Freezing and then re-whipping would be tough. I could do it with a hand mixer if I must. What I would like to do is frost and decorate them, freeze and then defrost when ready to eat. Will this work?

  215. I am making a three tier wedding cake in August in Ohio. I will have to travel 2 hours to get to the wedding. Can I freeze the frosted cakes, travel while they thaw, then stack them at the venue?

    1. I wouldnt freeze ICED cakes only cake layers. Too much condensation on the thaw from freezer, you will have drippy cakes.
      I would just keep them in the fridge until you leave , then get them back to the fridge as soon as you get there

  216. What would you recommend to make a raspberry flavored SMB? I’m considering either swapping out the vanilla extract for raspberry extract or a few ounces of raspberry puree. Thank you!

  217. Hi Gretchen,
    I’ve made this swiss buttercream several times now, and it always comes out perfect! Made it again this past weekend. I just wanted to thank you again for sharing your bakery secrets with us! My family thinks I have mad skills as a baker now, but I tell them I owe it all to you! Seriously, this is the best frosting I’ve ever had!

  218. OMG!!! I made this tonight. My very first Swiss Buttercream. I used Meringue powder instead of egg white. It came out perfectly! I just realized that I forgot to add the salt. Honestly, it wasn’t missed. I used this buttercream on top of some white chocolate cupcakes. My family loved them.

    I’m super excited that I found a new buttercream to add to my repertoire. Thank you!!!

  219. Hi Gretchen
    First it all thank you for sharing your amazing talent with all of us.
    Just the other day I made the Swiss Buttercream for the first time and turned out beautifully and silky as yours. As a have to make a cake I wanted to do some prep the day before, so I left the buttercream on the counter to be used the day after and build my cake. The buttercream looked ok but when I mixed on the stand mixer the disaster started, it was completely curdled I mixed even for more than 7 mins but it never came together. All my effort was worthless.
    Do you know what could have happened?
    Thank you

      1. Hi Gretchen
        Thank you for your replay.
        Actually I don’t think so that was the reason because right now where I live it’s cold. So the buttercream was on the bench the whole night at room temperature, but I tell it was a bit hard because the weather.
        Anyway I watched your video and I’ll keep that in mind.
        THank you again

  220. Hi Gretch,

    It’s winter time here in Southern Hemisphere (New Zealand), even if i placed my butter and shortening outside the fridge for days its still hard. Is it okay to microwave it for a while to soften?

  221. hi Gretchen this must be longest comment I have seen anyway Gretchen I have to ice a 10″ three layers cake would the above sbc need to be doubled and another thing if I ice this cake the day before delivery would i need to fridge it or can I leave it out on the counter

  222. Have you ever substituted the granulated sugar for brown sugar? Have you ever added caramel sauce or dulce DE leche to this recipe? And if so, how much would you add and when? Thanks.

  223. Hi Gretchen, thanks for sharing your fabulous recipe! I would like to know if it is suitable for a 10 ” ganache drip cake? As I would be pouring the ganache on warm. Also would one quantity be enough to cover the outside only as the 4 inside layers will be filled with ganache? Will chilling the iced cake well before applying the ganache drip help?

  224. Hi Gretchen! Can’t thank you enough for this recipe. It’s my go to buttercream these days and even people that claim they don’t like frosting (insert blasphemous gasp here) end up scraping every last bit of this frosting off of their plates. I was thinking of making a brown sugar smbc. Do you think it would be possible to just replace the granulated sugar with brown sugar in this recipe? And if so, would I replace it with the same amount of brown sugar by weight? Or do you think that it would be better to make the original recipe and just make a variation of it by adding a few tablespoons of molasses to it?

  225. Hi Gretchen, I am a die hard follower of you and your recipes. I have used so many recipe of yours and they are amazing. Your Swiss buttercream was the best. I recently made a birthday cake frosted with SMBC with some fondant accents. When i put them out for few mins to decorate, the cake started sweating and the fondant became wet. Can you help me figure out the cause for this problem. I reduced the powdered sugar to 1 cup. That could be the problem?

    1. Hi Great thanks! Im sorry to hear this happened, however I don’t think it is the confectioners sugar. Sounds like the cake went from a super cold refrigerator to a severe drop in temperature (really warm room?) which causes condensation. When I had my bakery I could only store my fondant decorated cakes in 1 certain refrigerator that was less humid than the rest. It is possible your particular refrigerator is very humid (which is a great thing for everything EXCEPT fondant!) or a combination of all these factors?

  226. Hi Gretchen!! Not gonna lie, was scared to death to try SMBC…tried a different recipe, which curdled so instead of continuing to whip it, I threw it away. Came upon yours several times, pinned it, looked and looked but still relied omgosh my beloved American BC…until today. Took the bull by the horns, put my gloves on, literally, and had a go at YOURS!!! Well, this girl will NEVER make anything else (except your other meringue BC’s) Thank you soooooo soooooo much!!! Even using Crisco, it came out amazing!!! I may have switched over to my paddle attachment too early, that was a bit confusing, but it came out so light, so smooth, so creamy, even my hubby can’t say enough good things about it. You rock!!!!!

  227. Gretchen – Like so many others I love this recipe. Two questions…I would like to add caramel – should I add it after it has thickened considerably in the refrigerator so that the icing stays firm? and also, can the Sweetex be frozen or refrigerated to extend shelf life? Home baker here and you can only order it in 12+ pound quantities. Thank you for all you help and great recipes!

  228. H i Gretchen,

    I have used a couple of your recipes and love them, but I am struggling with this SMBC recipes. This is the second time I attempted it in last 48 hours. My first attempt the mixture was soupy. I read your troubleshooting tips about beating the egg whites until very stiff, but still glossy. The second attempt I beat the egg whites for over 30 minutes. They looked great so I added all the sugar and then the shortening and butter. The consistency was much better, but didn’t look like yours in the video. So I left it beating longer. This seemed to make it more soupy. The first batch I thew away. T