How to Make Buttercream Taste Less Buttery?

Last Updated on May 31, 2023 by Lauren Beck

I’ve been making buttercream frosting for years, and let me tell you, there’s nothing quite like a creamy, velvety dollop of it on a cake or cupcake. But sometimes, that buttery flavor can be a bit overwhelming. 

Fear not, my friends! I’ve got some tried-and-true tips to help you tone down the butteriness and strike that perfect balance of flavors. Get ready to whip up some seriously delicious and less buttery buttercream!

Ways to Make Buttercream Taste Less Buttery:

  1. Use less butter: One of the easiest ways to reduce the buttery taste is to decrease the butter in your buttercream recipe. For a tangy twist, you can replace some of the butter with a neutral-flavored vegetable shortening or even cream cheese.
  2. Add flavor extracts: Enhance the overall taste of your buttercream by incorporating flavor extracts such as vanilla, almond, or citrus. These extracts complement the buttery base and bring a delightful aroma and depth to the frosting.
  3. Sift in powdered sugar: The sweetness of powdered sugar can help balance the buttery flavor. Sift the powdered sugar before adding it to the butter mixture to ensure a smooth and lump-free consistency.

What Happens if You Add Too Much Milk to Buttercream?

Adding too much milk to your buttercream can produce a runny and thin consistency. It can also dilute the buttery flavor, making it less pronounced. 

To avoid this, gradually add small amounts of milk until you achieve the desired texture and taste.

How Do You Firm up Buttercream?

If your buttercream is too soft, making it difficult to pipe or spread, there are a couple of ways to firm it up:

  • Chill in the refrigerator: Place the buttercream in the fridge for 15-20 minutes, allowing it to cool and firm up. Be careful not to leave it too long as it can harden and become difficult to work with.
  • Add more powdered sugar: Gradually incorporate additional sifted powdered sugar into the buttercream until it reaches the desired consistency. This will help thicken the frosting and make it easier to handle.

What Is the Secret to Perfectly Smooth Buttercream?

Buttercream on a Glass Bowl

To achieve a flawlessly smooth buttercream finish, it’s crucial to beat the frosting for sufficient time. 

The secret lies in whipping the buttercream until it becomes light and fluffy and all the ingredients are fully incorporated. This will create a smoother texture and eliminate any graininess.

How Do You Know if Buttercream Is the Right Consistency?

The ideal buttercream consistency is creamy, spreadable, and holds its shape when piped. It should neither be too stiff nor too runny. 

To test the consistency, take a small amount of buttercream on a spoon and turn it upside down. You’ve achieved the right consistency if it holds its shape without dripping.

How Long Should I Beat My Buttercream?

Beating your buttercream adequately is essential for achieving a light and fluffy texture. 

Generally, you should beat the buttercream for 5-7 minutes or until it becomes pale, smooth, and airy. This will ensure a well-emulsified frosting and enhance its taste and appearance.

Will Buttercream Harden in the Fridge?

Yes, the buttercream will harden slightly in the fridge due to the chilling effect on the butter. However, it should still remain spreadable and easy to work with. 

Allow the buttercream to come to room temperature for a few minutes before using it to soften it slightly.

What Is Buttercream Supposed to Taste Like?

Buttercream is meant to have a distinct buttery flavor, which is part of its charm. It should be creamy, rich, and sweet [1] but not overpoweringly so. 

The taste should be well-balanced, and any additional flavors, such as vanilla or other extracts, should complement the buttery base.


In the world of frosting, buttercream reigns supreme, but its buttery taste can sometimes be overpowering. Through years of experimentation, 

I’ve discovered ways to tame that butteriness without sacrificing the creamy texture we all love. Using less butter, incorporating flavor extracts, and balancing with powdered sugar, you can create a buttercream that delights the taste buds without overwhelming them. 

Remember, a little goes a long way, so start with small adjustments and taste as you go. With these tips in your baking arsenal, you’ll have the power to create perfectly balanced and irresistibly delicious buttercream every time. Happy baking!


Lauren Beck

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