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Two Perfect Recipes for the Best Cream Cheese Frosting

by Angela Roberts on December 28, 2011

There is a magical taste and texture to cream cheese frosting. I like it so much more than plain vanilla butter cream because it’s not so sweet. It also captures flavors exquisitely.

Add in some nutmeg and coconut for the best coconut cupcakes in the world. In fact, since you’re here, I need to tell you that I have made those cupcakes more than 30 times and it’s  my most requested recipe from friends.  In summertime, I love these chocolate zucchini cupcakes, with an orange and basil cream cheese frosting, and in the spring we brighten up with a carrot cake with a lemon cream cheese frosting. But the quintessential cake and cream cheese duo has always been the much beloved red velvet cake with a vanilla cream cheese frosting. I wouldn’t dare try to play with this combination. It’s classic. It’s perfect and that’s why it shows up so often at weddings and special occasions. Recently, I even created a new cream cheese frosting with espresso.

I think I found the near perfect red velvet cake by way of the Loveless Cafe Dessert Cookbook, but there still remains in my mind a debate about the cream cheese frosting.

Their recipe calls for a more butter to cream cheese ratio than I usually make. It is a heavenly, very creamy, velvety frosting and I think perfect for red velvet. But sometimes, I want that more of a cream cheese flavor to jump out. I use both recipes, depending on the cake, and the mood.

Both are delicious and I’m giving you the choice.  You might even change the ratio for your own taste buds. Ingredients to consider playing with include orange zest, orange juice, dark rum, real vanilla bean, sea salt, crumbled cookies, various herbs, cocoa powder, heavy cream, maple syrup, nutmeg, cinnamon, or any pureed berries. You may need to adjust the amount of confectioner’s sugar to get the right consistency. You want it to be able to hold shape as above.

So tell me, what is your favorite cake or ingredient in a good cream cheese frosting?

 Two Recipes for Cream Cheese Frosting by Angela Roberts

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe #1

(cream cheese to butter ratio is 2 to 1 in ounces). Adapted from Loveless Cafe Dessert Cookbook


  • 10 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 5 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract


  1. Cream butter and cream cheese together. Add in sugar, one cup at a time. Add vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy.

5.0 from 6 reviews
Two Perfect Recipes for the Best Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
Cream Cheese Recipe 2. Two recipes for Cream Cheese.
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, softened (1½ of the 8 ounce packages)
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 5 to 5½ cups confectioner's sugar
  • 3 tablespoons of heavy cream (optional) If you use this option, you will need to add in another ½ cup or more of confectioners' sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
  1. Cream butter and cream cheese together. Add in confectioners' sugar, one cup at a time. Add in heavy cream and vanilla. Beat until fluffy.

Related Posts
Espresso Frosting for Chocolate Cake
Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting for Carrot Cake

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Rosa December 28, 2011 at 7:24 pm

I love cream cheese frosting. That cupcake looks so pretty and tempting!




Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen December 29, 2011 at 1:08 am

Cream cheese frosting is my husband’s favorite. I usually make it in a 1-1 ratio but I’ll have to try it the other way as well.


Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella December 29, 2011 at 9:05 am

This is hands down my favourite icing ever! It’s actually quite embarrassing how much of it I can eat! :P Interesting using some cream in the second recipe, I must give that a go!


Lora December 29, 2011 at 11:18 am

I love cream cheese frosting on the deeper, spicier flavor cakes. Thank you for these. For some reason I am dismal at cream cheese frosting, it always ends up too runny. Will try these next time! Happy New Year.


jb November 20, 2012 at 12:28 am

i know this is a year later, but if your frosting is too runny add a couple of spoons of instant vanilla pudding


Teresa Blackburn December 29, 2011 at 7:52 pm

Beautiful, lovely, deliciously yummy looking frosting. I will try this on my next cake.


Norma December 29, 2011 at 9:58 pm

Ay Dios Mio! I will try this when I learn to bake. My goal is to make bread and bake a cake from scratch for 2012….get ready….

Much love for 2012.



Barbara | Creative Culinary December 29, 2011 at 11:11 pm

I made a brown butter cream cheese frosting this past year that was one of my very favorites ever but then I’m sort of on a brown butter with everything kick!

These look gorgeous!


Magic of Spice December 29, 2011 at 11:48 pm

I never thought frosting could be so pretty!
Happy New Year!


Valérie ( France ) December 30, 2011 at 7:39 am

Très gourmand et haut en couleur j’adore
Je te souhaite un bon dernier vendredi de l’année


Tim December 30, 2011 at 5:32 pm

I really really like cream cheese frosting! How much sugar in the second recipe?


Haley @ Cheap Recipe Blog March 1, 2012 at 4:05 pm

I found your site while doing a search for “best cream cheese frosting recipe” – and I must say, I love your blog! The photos are beautiful and the recipes are creative. Excited to try this recipe for banana bars I’m making for a party this weekend.


Zay July 31, 2012 at 8:46 pm

I sooooooooo loved this frosting!!! It went perfect with my carrot cake. Thanx a bunch ^_^


Zay July 31, 2012 at 8:46 pm

Sorry I forgot to rate it


angela July 31, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Zay, thank you. I’m so glad it worked for you and I love carrot cake!


Kathy Sowders August 22, 2012 at 4:10 pm

OMG!!! The best cream cheese frosting I have EVER had. Just completed an order for two dozen red velvet cupcakes and I am sooo in trouble…..there is frosting left over (and I piped it on, kind of like the picture)!! Not exactly compatible with Weight Watchers….Thank you for the recipe (#1)!!


Courtney F October 28, 2012 at 9:31 pm

Made recipe #1 for my red velvet cupcakes & it was seriously the best cream cheese icing I’ve ever tasted. Perfect balance of sweetness & creaminess. So yummy. Thanks for sharing.


Vicki December 17, 2012 at 3:00 am

Hi, by saying serves 8, does this mean it can frost a two layer cake?


dijon February 9, 2013 at 6:18 pm

I made the frosting in the first recipe for my mother’s birthday cake. It was amazing; very delicious and it was the perfect consistency.


Ernestine Robichaux June 17, 2013 at 11:11 am

I really thought this was my personal Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe Try a teaspoon of Lemon Extract Very Unique

Reply August 2, 2013 at 4:11 am

Hi mates, its impressive piece of writing about tutoringand completely defined, keep it up all
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Allison February 28, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Which of the two recipes produces a stiffer frosting? I’m on a never-ending hunt for a pipe-able cream cheese frosting, and it looks like the recipe used in your last photo piped really well!


carla April 7, 2014 at 12:06 am

About how many cupcakes can I frost with this recipe?


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