7 Best Frosting Recipes Taste Tested

A good frosting completes the cake.
The best frosting recipes give that moist mouthfeel, enhanced flavour and burst of indulgence with every bite.
Today we are putting seven frosting recipes to the test to find out which frosting tastes the best and how the stand up in the heat outside in an Aussie summer.

The frosting recipes that were used in this comparison were:

best frosting recipe how to cook that ann reardon

American Buttercream Frosting Recipe (recipes for buttercream flavours here)
120g (4.23 ounces) Unsalted Butter
330g (11.64 ounces) icing sugar or confectioners sugar
1-2 tablespoons or 15-30ml milk
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence
Whip butter until smooth and pale, stir in the icing sugar, milk, vanilla and salt then whip for a further 2 minutes.

French Buttercream Frosting Recipe

french buttercream how to cook that ann reardon

2/3 cup caster sugar or superfine sugar
3 tablespoons water
5 egg yolks
200g (7.05 ounces) unsalted butter, bring to room temperature
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence

Mix together the sugar and water in a saucepan.
Whip the egg yolks on high until they are pale.
Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves and then continue to heat it until it reaches 238 farenheit or 114 centigrade.
With the mixers running pour the hot sugar syrup into the yolks. Keep beating and it will thicken up as it cools. Add in the butter a little at a time. Then add the vanilla and salt and keep beating on high for a minute until it is smooth and glossy.

Italian Meringue Frosting Recipe

italian meringue how to cook that ann reardon
3 large egg whites 120g (4.23 ounces) you can use pasturized egg whites, they do not make quite as stiff a frosting as fresh but are safer.
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence

Add the cream of tartar to the egg whites. Beat on high speed until you have soft peaks.
Mix together the water and caster sugar, heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
Then add a candy thermometer and heat until its 238 degrees Farenheit or 114 Centigrade.
Turn your beaters on and pour in the sugar syrup in a thin stream. At first it will make it quite liquidy but keep the mixers running for about 5 minutes and as it cools it will thicken up. Add your vanilla and salt.

Swiss Buttercream

swiss buttercream how to cook that ann reardon
3 large egg whites 120g (4.23 ounces) you can use pasturized egg whites, they do not make quite as stiff a frosting as fresh but are safer.
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence
250g (8.82 ounces) unsalted butter at room temperature
To make swiss buttercream take cooled italian meringue frosting and add cubes of butter. At first it will look like a curdled lumpy mess but just keep whipping on high and it will come together to form a smooth glossy frosting.

Ermine Frosting

srmine frosting how to cook that ann reardon
1 cup or 250ml milk
3 tablespoons or 35g (1.23 ounces) plain or all purpose flour
1 cup or 220g (7.76 ounces) butter
1 cup or 200g (7.05 ounces) caster sugar or superfine sugar
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence

Beat together butter and caster or superfine sugar until it is smooth and pale. In a saucepan whisk together the flour and milk, then stir it over heat. The mixture will start to get lumps, keep stirring it the whole time and then it will thicken into a smooth paste. Allow it to cool. Then with the beaters running add one spoonful at a time to the butter mixture. Add the vanilla and salt and beat until light and fluffy.

Traditional Cream Cheese Frosting

cream cheese frosting how to cook that ann reardon
500g (17.64 ounces) block cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 cup or 110g (3.88 ounces) unsalted butter at room temperature
2 1/2 cups icing sugar or powdered sugar
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence

Beat together cream cheese and butter until they are smooth.
Stir in your icing or confectioners sugar and then beat on high for 2 minutes.

White Chocolate Ganache Frosting Recipe

white chocolate ganache how to ann reardon
440g (15.52 ounces) white chocolate (choose real chocolate, check on the ingredients that it contains cocoa butter)
150ml cream
small pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon or 5ml vanilla essence

Heat up your cream until it just starts to boil and then pour the hot cream over white chocolate. Let it sit for 30 seconds and then stir. If there are still lumps of white chocolate you can microwave it for 10 seconds and stir it again until its smooth. Leave it to cool overnight. Put it into the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high for 2 minutes.

Frosting Taste Test

how to cook that ann reardon frosting

So how did they score on the taste test? Average taste test results are shown below for each frosting.  Taste testers did not know which frosting they were tasting watch the video to see their reactions and hear their opinions.

4.0  White Chocolate Ganache (3,2,5,5,5,4)
3.8  American Buttercream Frosting (5,1,5,4,3,5)
3.8  Ermine Frosting (4,3,4,4,4,4)
3.3  French Butter Cream Frosting (2,4,3,4,4,3)
3.3  Italian Meringue (5,2,4,3,4,2)
2.6  Cream Cheese Frosting (4,4,1,1,1,5)
2.5  Swiss Buttercream Frosting (4,3,1,1,3,3)

frosting tastes best how to cook that

They were asked to rate frostings using the above scale

1 hate it, 2 not so sure about it, 3 like it, 4 love it and 5 favorite

The Frosting Heat Test
Which frosting is the best to use in hot weather? If you have to take your cupcakes or carefully decorated themed cake outside for the party you do not want it to fall apart. Watch the video for time-lapse footage of the seven frostings outside on a 32C (89.6 degrees Fahrenheit) day.

Which one is your favourite frosting?

2014

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Ann

About Ann

Hi I'm Ann, food scientist, dietitian, wife, mum to 3 boys. Join me each week for desserts, chocolate and cakes.
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60 Responses to 7 Best Frosting Recipes Taste Tested

  1. Pingback: iPad Cake Recipe | HowToCookThat : Cakes, Dessert & ChocolateHowToCookThat : Cakes, Dessert & Chocolate

  2. Bethany says:

    I’m getting ready to make a tiered cake that will be sitting out in the Texas heat and humidity. This was an extremely helpful post! Thank you very much for taking the time to put all of this together!

  3. Nora says:

    How much frosting does the white chocolate ganache make?
    Enough for 12 medium cupcakes ?

  4. Sky Kim says:

    Hi Ann Reardon, What type of cake goes well with whitechocolate ganache?

  5. a says:

    Aw, this was a really nice post. Taking the time and actual effort to produce a great article… but what
    can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and don’t seem to get nearly anything done.

  6. Eva says:

    Hi Ann, your recipes are really good, and i really like how they taste. :D However when u say cream what type of cream did u meant?

  7. Eva says:

    Ann, for the white chocolate ganache frosting, what type of cream do we use?

  8. Remy says:

    Hi Anne, I just got some questions about the frostings:
    - If I want my chocolate ganache frosting to be spreadable like american buttercream, how much cream to chocolate should I use?
    - Is it possible to reduce the sugar in ermine frosting? I made this the other day and one cup of sugar was too sweet for me
    - If I don’t use real chocolate for the ganache frosting, will it still work?
    - Do you have any other frostings that aren’t too sweet and can be frosted on a cake?

    Thanks :-)

  9. berenice ramirez says:

    gracias por todas tus recetas ojala que un dia pueda hacerlas tan bien como tu esto es en especial para mi familia muchas gracias

  10. Rabia Khanll says:

    The white chocolate ganache frosting ; Can we substitute white chocolate with dark or milk? Will it give the same thickening result when being whipped?

  11. Elma says:

    I really want to come to your show and do the tast tests.

  12. Fairuz says:

    thanks Sera for the info. Really appreciates.

  13. Fairuz says:

    Great !! I am attracted the way you decorate that ombre cake in youtube. I found your buttercream frosting recipe in HOWTOCOOKTHAT.NET.

    I have a question regarding american buttercream frosting recipe.

    what type of milk that mention in the recipe ? is it condensed milk or fresh milk ? hope u give me the answer so that i can try this. thank you.

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