Vanilla Cupcakes with Swiss Meringue Buttercream

February 3, 2011

Now that we’ve discussed food politics and the passions surrounding the meat industry, let’s talk about something a little less controversial. It’s like those times in college when you took a really hard test and then celebrated by reading fashion magazines and watching mindless television.

You know you’ve been there.

For years, I’ve been baking and decorating cakes for weddings and special occasions. But it wasn’t until yesterday that I realized I’ve been doing it all wrong. Sorry, anyone I’ve made a cake for. I should have been using this buttercream. It’s everything it should be: smooth, creamy, lighter-than-air.

It’s slightly more time-intensive than butter and powdered sugar-based icings, but the extra ten minutes is worth it. Instead of causing you to struggle for that smooth, satiny finish atop a cake or cupcake, the process with this buttercream seems almost effortless.

And after your’re done photographing your cupcakes, you can spill them all over your computer, table and floor. Oh wait, that’s just me?

Since my mission was to experiment with the Swiss Meringue Buttercream, I stuck with a trusted favorite for the cupcake base. I love this recipe for its ease and adaptability. And when decorating larger cakes, I have found it holds up well when stacking and transporting.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream
Recipe and tutorial courtesy of Whisk Kid 

*5 egg whites
*1 cup granulated sugar
*2 sticks butter
*1 tsp. vanilla extract
*Blue food coloring (optional)


*While I could easily give you the recipe, since I didn’t do anything to change the original that Whisk Kid posted, I would feel wrong not simply directing you to her website. Her tutorial is fantastic, with step by step instructions that walk you through the more dicey parts of making Swiss Meringue Buttercream. You can find the tutorial HERE
Additionally, this summer I made a very similar buttercream recipe to fill my first attempt at macarons. You can find that recipe HERE.
Happy Baking!


  • Reply Lauren at KeepItSweet February 3, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Love the color of your buttercream, so pretty:-)

  • Reply The Blue-Eyed Bakers February 3, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Oh good, glad to see we aren't the only clumsy ones. Baked goods end up on the floor about 60% of the time at our houses. But they look delicious!

  • Reply ashley@quasichick February 3, 2011 at 2:27 pm

    So pretty and they look yummy!

  • Reply Jennifurla February 3, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    Oh no…I take one of the dropped ones…5 seconds rule and all

  • Reply Natalie February 4, 2011 at 3:08 am

    I've never tried swiss meringue…but now you have me craving it!!!

  • Reply Lisa February 5, 2011 at 4:05 am

    I have not yet tried making swiss meringue buttercream but have always wanted to do so. Yours looks absolutely delicious. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog called “Sweets for a Saturday” and I'd like to invite you to stop by and link your treat up.

  • Reply Helena February 6, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    I'm always looking for new frosting recipes, and this looks very promising 🙂 My current favorite is from the Pioneer Woman.

  • Reply Sophia February 8, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    I love Valentine's Day desserts, and yours looks so, so delicious! You should really consider submitting this to Recipe4Living's Valentine's Day Recipe Contest! You could win a GreenPan Stainless Steel Todd's Perfect Gourmet Cook Set!

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