This classic vegan buttercream frosting recipe is easy to make and perfect for all of your favorite cakes, cupcakes or even cookies. It requires just a few simple ingredients and takes about 10 minutes to whip up.
Vanilla buttercream is truly one of my favorite things in the world. Well, vanilla anything is my favorite. But vanilla vegan buttercream really takes the cake. Literally, lol.
This is my go to recipe that yields a silky, smooth, rich buttercream for all of your favorite cakes, cupcakes and more.
All you need for this recipe is vegan butter, powdered sugar, a little non-dairy milk, vanilla and salt. The salt might seem like a strange addition, but I promise, the smallest pinch really helps round out the flavors.
The most important thing to consider when making buttercream is the temperature of your butter. You want room temperature butter, and I find the fastest way to bring it to room temperature is to just stick it in my bra for a few minutes.
Seems odd, but it works! You can also add hot water to a bowl and add a second bowl with the butter to soften it.
BUTTER. Buttercream frosting of course has a base of butter, but in this case it’s vegan! I like using Earth Balance sticks for this recipe.
POWDERED SUGAR. This is what will sweeten the frosting and when combined with the butter will make it nice and fluffy.
VANILLA. A bit of vanilla and salt really round out the flavors here.
MILK. This is needed to thin the frosting if it gets too thick but also helps make it creamier.
How to make vegan buttercream
Add the room temperature butter to a bowl or bowl of a stand mixer. I recommend a stand mixer if you have one because it can get tiring holding the hand mixer for too long!
Beat for about 5 full minutes.
Beat in the powdered sugar two cups at a time while the mixer is on low. Let run for an additional 5 minutes.
Beat in the milk and vanilla until completely creamy and well combined. If it seems too thin, add in another 1/2 cup of powdered sugar at a time until it reaches your desired consistency.
Pipe onto cupcakes or add to cakes. Store any extra in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Make it chocolate!
Simply add in 1/2 cup of cocoa powder when you beat in the sugar and decrease the amount of sugar to account for the extra dry ingredients to make this a chocolate vegan buttercream!
You can start with less cocoa if you prefer a more mild flavor/color, or add more for extra richness.
Frequently asked questions
What vegan butter is best?
For everyday use, I love the brand Miyokos, but when it comes to vegan buttercream, I prefer Earth Balance sticks.
Do you need to sift the powdered sugar?
I used to always sift powdered sugar for vegan buttercream, but have come to realize you don’t really have to. If you notice your sugar is particularly clumpy, then it might help to, but you absolutely don’t have to.
How do you thicken vegan frosting?
More powdered sugar! If you add too much milk or the frosting simply isn’t thick enough, just beat in an extra 1/2 cup of powdered sugar until it reaches a thicker consistency.
Can you make it without butter?
Unfortunately, butter is a key ingredient in buttercream! You can use margarine as a last resort, but sticks of vegan butter work best.
Enjoy with these recipes!
Vegan Buttercream Frosting
by: claire cary
- 3 sticks room temperature vegan butter I like Earth Balance
- 24 ounces powdered sugar
- 2 tbsp non-dairy milk
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract I like clear vanilla
- pinch of salt
- Add the room temperature butter to a bowl or bowl of a stand mixer.
- beat for about 5 minutes, until fully whipped.
- Beat in the salt and powdered sugar two cups at a time while the mixer is running on low speed. Let run for about 5 minutes.
- Beat in the milk and vanilla (I like clear vanilla for this) until completely creamy and well combined.
- Pipe onto cupcakes or add to cakes. Store any extra in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.