Choosing the Best Buttercream Recipe

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Choosing the best buttercream recipe for your cake projects can be a daunting task

Here you can check out each individual recipe including video tutorials to see the processes for each and decide which you like best

Rated for taste, sweetness and stability

1) Aquafaba Swiss Meringue Buttercream

This recipe hit the charts like none other and it is still one of my top ranking videos/ recipes.

Touted as the “adult buttercrea,” when I owned my bakery this is a sophisticated silky tasting buttercream that is like none other

You will notice the addition of confectioners sugar to this recipe and many people ask me about that.

I personally like the powdered sugar as it adds more sweetness as well as stabilization for piping and decorating your cakes.

For the most part this recipe is the #1 winner for the majority but some have said they think it is still too sweet and in some cases folks have said it is not sweet enough!

The recipe is very versatile though so you can adjust or omit the confectioner’s sugar altogether


Most people are used to grocery store buttercream which is essentially American Buttercream made with confectioners sugar and mostly shortening

I rarely use shortening in my buttercream recipes anymore unless I am traveling for hours or the cake will sit out for a lengthy time at a party or it will be displayed outdoors

This is the lazy man’s recipe so it’s easy to mix but the quality is not compromised by it’s ease of preparation.

Many people love it because it is the closest to my authentic bakery buttercream recipe that I used for my retail store cakes and cupcakes

Light and fluffy and a dream to work with but it does have the highest level of sweetness in comparison to the others

The best for piping stiff borders and making flowers, and it takes on food coloring better than any recipe

3) Aquafaba Italian Meringue Buttercream Recipe

This is probably the silkiest, smoothest buttercream recipe I have and I will dare to say that it is the most stable of all of them?

Many people ask me to compare this recipe with my Swiss Meringue Buttercream recipe and I guess if I had to choose I would pick this one.

It’s a lower sugar buttercream that is almost exactly like my original Swiss Meringue buttercream in taste

However the boiled sugar syrup poured into the whipping aquafaba makes for a very strong meringue, although a bit more lengthy of a project but well worth the time investment!

Just be careful with that super hot sugar syrup!


Finally a new buttercream recipe for those who are sensitive to chickpeas!

Most inventions are born out of a necessity and this flax Swiss meringue buttercream is a perfect example!

Whole Flax seeds when soaked in water and then boiled create a goopy, gluey substance called mucilage.

That resulting flax liquid will whip up to an Italian meringue just like our good buddy aquafaba!

Minimal sweetness like the Italian and Swiss recipes and super smooth and stable but without the digestive issues that aquafaba can impart!


This buttercream recipe was introduced well after developing the original recipes named above

Dare I say this one may beat them all out of the water in terms of taste and sweet level!

Ermine Buttercream also known as German Buttercream is made with a cooked custard base

Made from flour, sugar and plant milk that is going to add stability, richness and smoothness to your final buttercream.

By cooking the sugar into the custard there is no chance of a gritty buttercream which is a common complaint of many

The only problem with Ermine Buttercream is that it is the least stable of all the buttercream recipes and can easily break.

I will always make Ermine buttercream at the point of building my cakes and not before, since Ermine doesn’t re-whip easily and and will more often curdle

It is also difficult to add flavors to it, since it is already at the max saturation point with the base recipe

Adding to the list of Buttercream Options as of 2023 is my newest recipe for

6) Apple Ermine Buttercream Recipe 5X Less Sweet!

Hands down my new favorite buttercream recipe of all time!

Another Ermine buttercream recipe only this time it’s made with cooked apples to eliminate almost 5X the amount of sugar in a traditional buttercream recipe

Additionally this cooked custard base is made with cornstarch instead of flour so this one is even gluten free!

I am still not using shortening in this recipe but if you do it will only make it that much more stable!

All the same cons still apply for the original Ermine buttercream though, this is a buttercream recipe that does not like to be re whipped

So it is best to make this recipe and use it right away on your cakes

Once it’s on the iced cake though the stability holds up for a week!


Speaking of easily breaking buttercream, be sure to click through to read and watch all about Re-Whipping Cold Buttercream & How to Save a Failed Buttercream

The post Choosing the Best Buttercream Recipe appeared first on Gretchen’s Vegan Bakery.

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