Mom's Buttercream Frosting Recipe -
Mom's Buttercream Frosting Recipe

Mom's Buttercream Frosting

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"A smooth creamy frosting, perfect for any occasion. This is an old recipe from the 1940's."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 2 cups Change Servings


  1. In a small saucepan mix the flour and the milk and cook over low heat until it forms a smooth paste with no lumps. Place in refrigerator and let cool completely.
  2. With an electric mixer beat the shortening, butter or margarine and the sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the cooled flour paste and mix until smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Use to frost any cooled cake. Makes enough to frost one 9x13 inch sheet cake or two 8 or 9 inch layer cakes.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Jun 26, 2008

The best way to ensure you will not have lumps is to start with the flour in a sauce pan over medium heat and very slowly pour in the milk, whisking the entire time. Also, so as not to get that gritty taste, I added the sugar to the flour mixture just before taking it off the heat. I then let the entire mixture cool in the fridge before whipping it into the butter. It turned out perfectly!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Nov 28, 2005

Followed recipe exactly, but the finished product tasted overwhelmingly like Crisco. Fortunetly, someone on site suggested using all butter, so I went back and remade the recipe. The second time around, it tasted a lot better, but lacked visual appeal.

Sep 01, 2006

This was a wonderful recipe. After I cooled the milk and flour mixture I beat it with the mixer until it was creamy and then added the rest of the ingredients. The frosting came out light and creamy like whipped cream, but better. I made a second batch and added melted semi sweet chocolate and a ½ cup more of powder sugar . It was perfect every one raved over the frosting on both of my cakes.

Nov 09, 2010

Oh, my.. this is amazing frosting. I've made classic egg-based buttercreams before, but always found them too buttery. And I'm not a fan of powdered sugar/butter/shortening frostings personally. This recipe was the perfect medium between the egg-based and American buttercreams: incredibly silky texture, not too sweet, nice and buttery but without tasting like sweetened butter (I've tried this recipe both as written and using all butter, and I actually prefer it as written). The only things I would recommend specifically are: 1) Use a stand mixer; 2) Cream your butter, shortening, and sugar together for at least 5 minutes before adding the milk mixture; 3) Add a pinch of salt; 4) After adding the milk mixture, beat the frosting for at least 5-10 minutes to give the sugar crystals time to dissolve, otherwise you'll have gritty frosting.

May 05, 2014

This is an old chestnut! I've been making this recipe for over 30 years. One ingredient that is missing is salt. You need to add a couple of nice, big pinches in order to counteract the blandness which shortening imparts. Measure flour into your saucepan with the salt, then whisk in the milk, little by little, to banish lumps. After it has been cooked (low heat, whisking constantly) long enough that it starts to boil (this has to be done in order to activate the flour's full thickening power, thereby eliminating an unpleasant "floury" taste) remove from the heat, and press a piece of plastic wrap right onto the surface of your paste. This is the best way to make sure your paste doesn't form a "skin" as the paste cools. The sugar should be added in a very slow, very tiny stream in order to incorporate it sufficiently, then the mixture should be beaten vigorously for 5-10 minutes, depending on the power of your mixer, to eliminate grittiness. Then incorporate your chilled paste. Add your flavoring (I add a dash of lemon and orange extracts to the 2 tsp vanilla for a beautifully complex finish) and beat for another few minutes. Not the heavy texture of your conventional buttercream, but, as others have noted, more of a whipped cream kind of texture. Light, luscious, not too sweet. It's the perfect finish for any cake. Best not to attempt to decorate with it, however, as it's not as sturdy as a conventional decorator buttercream. This is always served to raves.

Nov 11, 2006

Thank you! The best old fashioned buttercream frosting I have had. I did however use 10x confectioners sugar (1 1/2 cups) in place of granulated, and I used all butter. I will not be trying another recipe from here on out, it's that good when done correctly. Thanks Again!!

Oct 29, 2003

This recipe is very tasty and light. I was doubtful because of the use of flour in the recipe. It has a light taste. I used vanilla and almond extract and it worked really well. It was great straight from the bowl! It spread easily also. The only drawback to the recipe is the delay between cooking the flour mixture and getting on with making the frosting. I cooked the flour mixture and then cooled it in the fridge overnite so I could complete the cake in the morning. The mixture formed a crust which was tedious to remove. I recommend doing it all at once if possible. Great frosting. Thank you.

Feb 05, 2006

This frosting is smooth, pretty, easy to work with and most of all delicious! It's not too sweet at all and the consistency is really special. You do have to do it right, make sure that your "paste" is nice and thick and then whip the heck out of it, but it's worth the extra effort.


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  • Calories
  • 213 kcal
  • 11%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 15.5 g
  • 5%
  • Cholesterol
  • 22 mg
  • 7%
  • Fat
  • 16.6 g
  • 26%
  • Fiber
  • 0.1 g
  • < 1%
  • Protein
  • 1 g
  • 2%
  • Sodium
  • 63 mg
  • 3%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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