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Cream Cheese Frosting is a rich, decedent frosting that pairs great with everything from cookies to sweet rolls. This simple recipe will be you next go-to!

cream cheese frosting, piped into a small bowl.

The Best Cream Cheese Frosting

Cream cheese frosting is one of those rich and creamy things you just can’t get enough of (I know I can’t!) It’s savory, sweet, has a slight tanginess and compliments just about every dessert known to man. It’s possibly one of my most favorite frostings to use because it can totally transform something simple into something decadent. 

There’s nothing better than fluffy cream cheese frosting because it can be eaten as-is (guilty) or spread on top of everything from brownies to cinnamon rolls. Cream cheese frosting for cupcakes is always a welcomed choice in my books too. You really can’t go wrong with it either, it’s such an easy to make a timeless classic.

Making your own frosting is so much more rewarding than buying a can of it from the grocery store. Did you know that Pilsbury containers of cream cheese frosting don’t even contain dairy? (could be why the flavor is off, it’s missing real cream cheese!) This cream cheese frosting is the real deal, and worth the few minutes of mixing. 😉

cream cheese frosting piped onto cookies

Homemade Cream Cheese Frosting ingredients

  • Softened Butter: If you have some butter room temperature, that would be perfect! If not, you can microwave it for 10 seconds, turn it over and microwave it for an additional 5 seconds.l That is what I tend to do and it works like a charm. 🙂
  • Room Temperature Cream Cheese: Using room temperature cream cheese is very important in this recipe. If it is hot (from the microwave) it can melt the butter, causing the frosting to have a funny texture. Best case scenario, pull it out of the fridge about an hour before making the frosting. If you need to bring it to room temperature quickly, placing the cream cheese in between some heating pads on low seems to do the trick quickly. 
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Salt

The frosting really is that simple, made with real ingredients and nothing crazy. 

cream cheese frosting on red velvet cookies

How to make Easy Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Cream together the cream cheese and butter until completely incorporated and smooth.
  2. Slowly add in the remaining ingredients, mixing thoroughly after ever addition until everything has been added.
  3. You can use either a stand mixer or a hand electric mixer for this recipe. I wouldn’t recommend mixing this by hand as it is a thick frosting. 

How to serve the Best Cream Cheese Frosting

You can serve and use this frosting in a variety of ways. Here are some of the most popular:

  • Frosting cakes or cupcakes
  • use with piping tips for decorating
  • serve as a dip with fruit or cookies

How to store Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting

Does this Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting need to be refrigerated?

For short term, no, long term, yes. If you are planning on eating your treats within a day or two, you are fine to leave them out on the counter. If you are wanting to keep your treats for a bit longer, refrigerating would be your best bet. 

I know, I know, DAIRY! There is enough sugar in the frosting to stabilize the dairy and keep it from growing bacteria, so you are good to go keeping it at room temperature for a day or two. 

How long will this Recipe for Cream Cheese Frosting last in the fridge?

Keep your cream cheese frosting in an airtight container (or on covered baked goods) in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. 

Can you freeze Cream Cheese Frosting?

Yes, this frosting freezes extremely well. Just allow the frosting to thaw in the fridge for 24 hours before using. You may want to rewhip the frosting before use.

pin image for cream cheese frosting.

Easy Cream Cheese Frosting FAQs

Is there a difference between cream cheese icing and cream cheese frosting?

Icing tends to be thinner, while frosting is thicker and can be pipped.

Can you over beat cream cheese frosting?

Yes, if the cream cheese frosting is over beat, the frosting will break and become lumpy.

Why is my cream cheese frosting not stiff?

This means that too much liquid was added in the mixing process. I typically do not add any liquid to my cream cheese frosting.

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5 from 1 vote

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting

Cream Cheese Frosting is a rich, decedent frosting that pairs great with everything from cookies to sweet rolls. This simple recipe will be you next go-to!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 24 servings


  • 2 tbsp salted butter, softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 pinch salt
  • milk, optional


  • Using either a stand mixer or an electric hand mixer to cream toghether the room temperature butter and cream cheese until completley combined.
  • Slowly add the remining ingredients (minus the milk) into the bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Feel free to add a little milk to adust the thickenss of the frosting to your liking.


Calories: 64kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 25mg | Potassium: 7mg | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 93IU | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

About Karli Bitner

This blog is a little glimpse into my kitchen, family & life. I hope you’ll giggle the days away with me and enjoy the craziness that goes on at my house. If you are Cookie obsessed like I am, check out my Sister Site, Cookies for Days.

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  1. I would like to make this recipe for the Cream Cheese Frosting but I am on the Keto Diet and would like to get some kind of alternate sugar sweetner other than a powder sugar. Could you help me out and if the amount would be the same
    Donna Patrick

  2. Hi Donna, I am not an expert at this but I reached out to a friend that is and she suggested to substitute Lakanto Monkfruit or Swerve. They measure 1:1 like refined sugar. Hope this helps!