50’s Buttercream Frosting

This is a classic buttercream frosting without any concern as to the amount of butter or sugar being used. When you’re feeling decadent af – go for it without regrets. You can make it a standard vanilla or chocolate. This was the frosting on my grandpa’s birthday cake every fourth of july all my life (and before). Now I make the cake for my son, and it’s still just as big a hit as it was decades ago.

50’s Buttercream Frosting

Makes: An insane amount of frosting


  • 2 C powdered sugar (plus more if needed)
  • Sprinkle of kosher salt
  • 2 T cream or milk (plus more if needed)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2-3/4 stick unsalted butter (plus more if needed)
  • 1 T hot water (plus more if needed)


  • Large mixing bowl
  • Electric hand mixer
  • Various measuring cups and spoons


  1. Combine the powdered sugar, salt, cream/milk. Add the butter and, using your electric hand mixer, begin to beat the mixture. Add the vanilla extract.
  2. You’re looking for a firm, but spreadable consistency and fluffy texture. You may need to add more sugar, butter, milk, or hot water to create the right consistency.
  3. To make chocolate – you can add your preferred amount of cocoa powder to the mix – I usually fold it in, prior to using the hand mixer so it doesn’t explode all of over the kitchen.

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