This recipe appears in:The World of Buttercreams: 6 Varieties to Try at Home
This buttercream is light, fluffy, and delicious. It is made by first cooking a simple pudding made with milk, sugar and flour. Once this pudding base has cooled to room temperature, you add it to beaten butter by the spoonful. The result? A smooth, light buttercream with a pale ivory color.
Although this buttercream is hardly any more difficult to make than Classic American Buttercream, it's less sweet and more subtle in flavor.
Why this recipe works:
- By whisking the flour into the sugar before adding the milk, you minimize the risk of getting flour lumps in the pudding base.
- By dissolving the sugar into the milk, the buttercream is guaranteed to be creamy and smooth! No sugar crystals crunching between your teeth.
- By first beating the softened butter until it's light and fluffy and then adding the pudding base one spoonful at a time, the buttercream comes together very easily.
Note: You can make this buttercream allergy-friendly by using gluten-free flour instead of the all-purpose, and also lactose-free milk. No lactose, no eggs, no gluten!
About the Author: Nila Jones is a gutsy home baker-turned-blogger who secretly prefers cake batter over cake and who has made it her personal goal to demystify so-called difficult recipes so that everyone, even the most ignorant novice baker, can bake like a master. Make sure to check out her blog The Tough Cookie for more amazing recipes!
- 4 1/2 tablespoons (1.4 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cubed and softened at room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
Whisk together flour and sugar in a medium saucepan. Whisk in milk. Place saucepan over low heat and bring to a boil, whisking continuously, then cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Pour the pudding onto a clean heatproof plate or shallow container. Immediately cover it with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic wrap directly against the pudding's surface.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk or paddle, or in a mixing bowl if using a handheld mixer, beat the butter until smooth and fluffy and lightened in color, about 2 minutes. Add the cooled pudding one tablespoon at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla and salt and beat until buttercream looks thick, smooth, and creamy, about 3 minutes.
Use immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container or a zipper-lock bag for up to one week. To use buttercream that has been refrigerated, first allow to come to room temperature then beat until smooth and spreadable again. Cakes or cupcakes decorated with buttercream generally keep up to 3 days, stored in an airtight container in the fridge. Serve buttercream at room temperature.