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Strawberry Frosting

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This is the best Strawberry Frosting recipe bursting with sweet strawberry flavor. Swirl this easy strawberry buttercream over your favorite cakes and cupcakes, all summer long!

Creamy Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

This amazing strawberry buttercream is based on my perfect vanilla frosting, with a few key additions. After a few test runs, I finally achieved what just may be the perfect strawberry frosting, too: fresh, creamy, and chock-full of strawberry flavor all the way through. 

This homemade strawberry buttercream holds its shape, so it can be easily piped over everything from Strawberry Cupcakes to cakes, cookies, and more. It’s quickly becoming my go-to frosting for all of my summer desserts!

A piping tip swirls strawberry frosting into a glass jar.

Why You’ll Love This Frosting Recipe

What’s to love about this strawberry frosting? Just about everything. This frosting is the buttercream answer to my just-as-luscious Strawberry Whipped Cream. Here’s why it’s one of my new favorite frosting recipes (and soon to be yours, too!):

  • Quick and easy. Have your strawberry frosting whipped up and ready for decorating in about 15 minutes.
  • Extra creamy. I use freeze-dried strawberries as the strawberry flavoring in my frosting, and the results are SO GOOD. Powdered strawberries make this recipe light and creamy, with zero impact on the rich, creamy texture of the buttercream.
  • Super flavorful. It took some trial and error, but I can confidently say that this is the best strawberry buttercream, bursting with a bright, sweet strawberry flavor.

Frosting Ingredients

Below are the key ingredients you’ll need to make the most flavorful strawberry buttercream, enough to frost approximately 24 cupcakes. Remember to refer to the recipe card for the full ingredients list and details.

  • Freeze-dried Strawberries – I love making this strawberry frosting using freeze-dried strawberries, ground into a fine powder. It adds tons of sweet strawberry flavor, among other, more practical benefits. See below for details.
  • Butter – My buttercream frosting recipe starts with cold butter. This may seem a bit unconventional, but I promise, you’ll end up with the fluffiest frosting! I recommend using unsalted butter and adding salt to taste.
  • Powdered Sugar- I don’t find it necessary to sift, unless you have really large clumps of powdered sugar. Since this frosting requires the mixer to really beat the frosting, it usually breaks up any chunks of powdered sugar.
  • Vanilla Extract- Just a touch of pure vanilla extract for flavor. You can use strawberry extract, but I find it tastes artificial.
  • Heavy Whipping Cream – Full-fat heavy whipping cream will yield an ultra-creamy buttercream frosting. However, you can use milk if you prefer.
  • Strawberry Jam (OPTIONAL) I like to amp up the strawberry flavor with strawberry jam or preserves. If you do add jam to your frosting, make sure to use the kind that’s smooth and without chunks, so that it won’t impact the consistency of the frosting. 
The ingredients for homemade strawberry frosting laid out in bowls.

Why Use Freeze-Dried Strawberries?

You might be thinking, “Are freeze-dried strawberries the same as frozen strawberries?” And the answer is, no. Freeze-dried strawberries have gone through a process that removes nearly all of the fruit’s moisture while leaving behind the flavor and nutrients. You’ll find freeze-dried fruit in your nearest Trader Joe’s, Target, and most major grocery stores. 

Unlike dried strawberries, which tend to be chewy, freeze-dried strawberries are airy and light with a crisp texture. This makes them ideal for blending into a fine powder to use in frosting. There are a few benefits to making strawberry buttercream without fresh strawberries:

  • You are not reliant on the fruit being in season.
  • Strawberries have the best flavor when they’re ripe, but ripeness can vary. 
  • Powdered freeze-dried strawberries won’t impact the consistency of the buttercream. This frosting tends to turn out softer when it’s made with fresh berries.
  • Freeze-dried strawberries have a more intense, concentrated flavor than even the ripest fresh berries.

How to Make Strawberry Buttercream

With your ingredients on hand, this easy strawberry frosting is ready in 15 minutes. All you need is a bowl and your stand mixer. Here’s how to make it:

Pulse and sift the freeze-dried strawberries. First, pulse your freeze-dried berries into a fine powder using your food processor (or blender). Afterward, pass the powder through a fine mesh sieve to sift out any larger chunks or granules.

A mesh sieve with powdered freeze-dried strawberries

Whip the butter. Next, take the butter out of the fridge, and cut it into cubes. Give it a good whip with your mixer for 5-7 minutes. It takes a bit of extra whipping to soften cold butter, but the end result is truly light-as-air buttercream!

Combine the ingredients. Slowly beat in the first 2 cups of powdered sugar as well as the vanilla, then increase the mixing speed. Add the powdered freeze-dried strawberries, additional powdered sugar, and finally the heavy cream. After another couple of minutes, you’ll beat in the strawberry preserves (if you’re using them), followed by the remaining powdered sugar and a pinch of salt. 

Beat additional air into the frosting. Lastly, starting at low speed, bring the frosting ingredients together, then whip for another 2-3 minutes on high until stiff peaks form.

Strawberry buttercream frosting coating the end of a spatula laying on a countertop.

Can I Make This Frosting Recipe Ahead?

Yes! This homemade strawberry frosting can be made ahead of time and refrigerated airtight for up to 7 days. You’ll want to take your frosting out of the fridge and give it another quick whip in the mixer before using it. See further down in the post for detailed instructions on how to store and even freeze buttercream frosting.

Strawberry frosting swirled inside a glass jar surrounded by freeze-dried strawberries.

Recipe Tips

The idea of homemade strawberry frosting may sound intimidating, but you’re going to ace it. I’ve tried and tested getting the ingredients exactly right, so you don’t have to! Here are some final tips for the best strawberry buttercream:

    • Sift the powdered freeze-dried berries to remove any larger bits before you combine them with the frosting. This will yield a smoother, less grainy buttercream.

    • Cube the butter. Chop the cold butter into tablespoon-sized cubes before you start. This helps the mixer to break it down a little faster.

    • If you add strawberry jam, add it a little at a time to get the right consistency. If you add too much at once, you may need to thicken up the frosting again with additional powdered sugar.
    • Strawberry gelatin: If you can’t find freeze-dried strawberries, then Strawberry Jell-O is the next best alternative.

Frosting FAQs

New to making buttercream at home? Or, maybe you’ve never brought strawberry flavor into the mix. Here are some common questions, answered:

Can you use fresh strawberries in this frosting?

I recommend using powdered freeze-dried strawberries over fresh or frozen strawberry puree for the best consistency. Freeze-dried berries have all of the nutrients and better flavor than even the ripest strawberries!

Do I need to refrigerate the buttercream frosting?

Not right away. However, if you’re not using your frosting within 24 hours, it should be kept in the fridge. See the section further on with details on how to store and freeze your buttercream.

How do you fix buttercream frosting that’s too thick?

If your strawberry buttercream frosting is too thick, beat in additional heavy cream, a little at a time to thin it out a bit. If your frosting is too thin, you can thicken it with a bit more powdered sugar.

Strawberry frosting swirled on top of an unwrapped strawberry cupcake.

Ways to Use Strawberry Frosting

You’ll be surprised by how versatile this strawberry frosting is! Pipe swirls of creamy strawberry buttercream onto a Strawberry Cake, or use it to frost a batch of Vanilla Cupcakes. I’ll even spread this frosting over Sugar Cookies. If you’re new to decorating with buttercream, I have handy tutorials on How to Use Piping Tips and How to Use a Piping Bag to get you started!

Strawberry frosting swirled inside a glass jar next to a piping bag.

How to Store

Store your strawberry buttercream frosting in an airtight container. If you’re using your frosting within 24 hours, you can keep it at room temperature. Otherwise, it’s best to refrigerate it until you’re ready to use it. Keep in mind that if you live in a particularly warm climate, it’s best to refrigerate buttercream right away. Bring the strawberry frosting back to room temperature and re-whip it before you use it.

Can I Freeze Strawberry Buttercream? 

Yes, it’s easy to freeze this strawberry frosting if you’re not using it right away (or if you have any leftover). To freeze buttercream, seal it in an airtight container or freezer bag, and keep it frozen for up to one month. Thaw the frosting to room temperature and re-whip it before using. 

More Homemade Frosting Recipes

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Strawberry frosting swirled inside a glass jar on top of a pink napkin with a piping bag and freeze-dried stawberries next to it

Strawberry Frosting

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4-5 cups, enough for 24 cupcakes

Description

The best Strawberry Frosting recipe bursting with sweet berry flavor! This easy homemade buttercream is soft, creamy, and perfect for piping onto summer desserts.

Ingredients

  • 1 oz bag of freeze-dried strawberries
  • 1 1/2 cups (339g) unsalted butter, cold
  • 6 cups (780 g) powdered sugar
  • 23 tablespoons strawberry jam (optional, see notes)
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) heavy cream or milk
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Pulse the freeze-dried strawberries in a food processor to a fine powder. Sift the powder through a fine mesh sieve to remove any larger granules.
  2. Cut the butter into pieces. Using the paddle attachment, whip the butter for 5-7 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally, and beating until the butter looks light in color.
  3. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar and the vanilla extract and mix on low speed until incorporated, then increase the speed to high, and beat for approximately 60 seconds or until well combined.
  4. Next, add the freeze-dried strawberries, 2 cups of powdered sugar, and the heavy cream and beat on low speed until incorporated, then increase speed to high and beat for 3 minutes. Then add 2 tablespoons of strawberry preserves, mixing to combine.
  5. Add the remaining 2 cups of powdered sugar and salt. Beat on low until the ingredients start to mix together. Increase speed to high and beat for another 2-3 minutes until it reaches desired consistency.

Notes

  • Strawberry preserves: Adding strawberry jam enhances the strawberry flavor. I recommend starting with 2 tablespoons and then adjusting to taste. Adding too much will thin out the frosting, and you may need to add additional powdered sugar. If you don’t have any jam on hand, the frosting will still turn out fine without it.
  • Strawberry gelatin: If you can’t find freeze-dried strawberries, then Strawberry Jell-O is the next best alternative. 
  • Strawberry extract: If you have it on hand, you can use this instead of vanilla, but I prefer vanilla 
  • Storing: Store your strawberry buttercream frosting in an airtight container. If you’re using your frosting within 24 hours, you can keep it at room temperature. Otherwise, it’s best to refrigerate it until you’re ready to use it. Bring to room temperature and rewhip before using. 
  • Freezing: Once prepared (or if you have any leftovers), it can also be frozen in a freezer-safe bag or container. If using a bag, press out any excess air and seal tight. Bring to room temperature and rewhip before using. 
Nutrition Information:
1/4 cup
308
41.2 g
4.1 mg
15.7 g
42.9 g
0.3 g
0.3 g
41.6 mg
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: No-bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: strawberry frosting, strawberry buttercream, homemade buttercream

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