A glass jar filled with a piped swirl of brown butter frosting, with a second jar and a piping bag in the background.

Brown Butter Frosting

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups


Take your basic buttercream up a notch with this creamy brown butter frosting with flecks of toasty, nutty browned butter throughout.


  • 1 ½ cups (339g) butter, cold
  • 6 cups (780g) powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  1. Divide out ¾ cups of butter. Cut the butter into 1 tablespoon size pieces and place in a saucepan. Turn stovetop on to medium-low heat slowly bringing the butter to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once boiling, the bubbles will go from big to small, and once the milk solids start to turn golden brown, stir constantly until the golden color starts to darken. Immediately remove from the heat and pour into a heatproof bowl.
  2. Refrigerate the browned butter for 20-30 minutes until it solidifies but it’s not too hard. This can also be placed in the freezer to speed up the process. Once chilled, stir the browned butter together with a spoon until the milk solids are mixed back into the butter.
  3. Cut the remaining cold butter into tablespoon-size pieces. Using the paddle attachment, whip the butter for 5-7 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally until the butter is whipped and easily spreadable. Then beat in the browned butter until well combined.
  4. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar, the salt, and the vanilla extract and beat at a medium-high speed until well combined, then beat for another 1-2 minutes.
  5. Next, add the remaining powdered sugar with 2 tablespoons of heavy cream and beat on low speed until sugar is incorporated. Increase speed to medium-high and beat for 3-5 minutes, adding additional heavy cream to thin the frosting as needed. Use immediately or store.



  • When chilled, all the milk solids settle to the bottom of the bowl, that’s why the butter needs to be remixed. Refer to the section of the blog post about properly chilling the butter. 
  • Storing: Store frosting in an airtight at room temperature for up to 2 days, after which you can keep it in the fridge. Refrigerated frosting will usually keep fresh for up to 7 days.
  • Freezing: Store the frosting airtight and freeze it for up to 1 month. Defrost to room temperature and re-whip it again before you use it.
  • Frosted desserts: Frosted cakes and cupcakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. If you live in a hot and humid environment, refrigerate and serve at room temperature.
Nutrition Information:
2 Tablespoons
11 g
10.1 mg
4.6 g
11.3 g
0 g
0.1 g
12.2 mg
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: No-bake
  • Cuisine: American