Monday, March 31, 2014

Swiss Meringue Buttercream - Tutorial

You know how you have a 
Bucket List
in life, well, I have one
in cooking and 
Swiss Buttercream 
was on that list.  I have had it
at weddings before and the 
fabulous texture and taste put it
right at the top of the list, but the
time needed put it further down 
the list.

Decorating cupcakes for the big
birthday party this week with a
house full of company put me 
in the mood to try it - I know, crazy with
a house full, but my sister in law
likes to bake too and she whipped
up the cupcakes and we sat and chatted
while the frosting came together so it
was fun.

Such a decadent frosting!
It is really just a pound of butter
with a little sugar and egg whites
for stabilization.

It literally melts in your mouth.
(I have seen it literally melt off a
wedding cake at an outdoor summer
wedding, so don't use it for that!)

I followed Martha Stewart's recipe
Swiss Meringue Buttercream and
I also read a few other recipes online
to get a few tips.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream Recipe

5 egg whites
1 C. plus 2 T. white sugar
Pinch of salt
1 lb. or 2 C. room temperature butter,
 cut into tablespoon sized cubes
1 1/2 tsp. white vanilla (she calls for regular)

Combine the egg whites, sugar and
salt in your metal mixing bowl and
place over a pan of simmering water.

Using a whisk, and whisking constantly,
mix the egg whites and sugar until the
sugar is all dissolved.  The mixture
will be warm to the touch and you 
shouldn't feel any sugar crystals.

I wiped down the sides of my bowl
with a damp paper towel to ensure there
were no undissolved sugar cubes.

Place the dissolved sugar mixture on your
mixer and beat with the whisk attachment
on medium speed until the bottom of the bowl
is no longer warm and the meringue has 
achieved a stiff peak.  

Mine had achieved a stiff peak but the bottom
of the bowl was still slightly warm so I 
continued to beat.  I finally touched the frosting
on the bottom to make sure that it wasn't warm
as that will melt your butter.  She said about
10 minutes of beating, but mine took more like
15-20 for it not to be warm.

Now switch to your paddle attachment.

Add the room temperature butter one
tablespoon at a time on medium low.

While reading recipes, I saw
one at Sweetapolita
where her butter was too soft
so the whole thing turned
goopy and separated.  I was afraid
mine was too soft so I popped it back 
in the fridge for about 10 minutes
to firm it up.

Make sure each cube is incorporated
before adding another.  This is what
takes the time!  Well, I guess beating
it until it cooled took time too.

When all the butter is incorporated,
add the vanilla.  Beat on low a couple
of minutes to eliminate air bubbles.

This covered 24 cupcakes in a rosette pattern
using the 1M tip.  I had a little left over.

Click here for printable recipe.

It took me more than an hour, start to finish
but it is incredibly silky and delicious,
perfect for a special occasion. I would
probably be faster next time!!

I will be posting this with


Chocolat - French for Chocolate. I adored chocolate from a young age when I had to sneak in the cupboard to find where my mother had hidden the Nestle's Chocolate Chips. Having read about the famous chocolat shoppes in Paris, when I finally got there I was determined to try a chocolate from every Paris shoppe. I invite you to share my adventures in creating, in travel, and in life.


  1. Absolutely gorgeous! Wish I had a big finger full right now:@)

  2. An hour well spent! Especially after I spent two hours on a cake that was a flop but I did everything according to the recipe. Your cupcakes are gorgeous!

  3. OMGOSH!!! That LOOKS delicious. Thanks for the recipe and tutorial on making it- xo Diana

  4. When I took my cupcake decorating course, the instructor was from Europe and gave us her Italian Meringue Buttercream recipe which is almost the same as yours. She recommended 1 cup of pasteurized egg whites sold in a carton from the dairy section though.
    Another recipe she gave us was a custard-based German Buttercream which we all wanted to just sit and eat when she brought it in.
    She said the "stuff" we make in Canada for frosting was disgusting and we should learn to make quality frostings for our cakes. Our butter and icing sugar mixture doesn't hold a candle to this decadent type of frosting, does it?
    Thanks for sharing your recipe.

  5. Oh, this looks delicious! The cupcakes look so pretty with this topping. I've never tried to make this, thought I've ready many recipes. Perhaps I'll give it a try.

  6. Yes, Quite a labor of love, but I bet it tasted fantastic! They look fantastic too. Joni

  7. Oh...god...*drool*
    I love Swiss meringue frosting!

  8. Beautiful rosette frosting, Jacqueline! We have a big birthday bash this weekend and I would love to try making this if I dare.

  9. I need help! I've attemp twice all goes great until I add butter! First time my butter was to soft second it was cold but soft enough to mix what am I doing wrong as soon as the butter goes in it gets all watery

  10. I need help tried this twice and all goes well up until I add the butter the first time I had it the better it was too soft the second time added the better it was cold but soft enough to plan and still as soon as I put it in a gets all watery what am I doing wrong

  11. Hello Jacqueline ! How are you ?
    I love your pictures of the rose !!
    Did you take it by your own ?
    Are there any picture credits ? I need to use it in HD.
    thanks for your answer :)
    Have a good Day
    Raphaele from France

  12. Hello Jacqueline, how are you ?
    How wonderful your creations are !!
    About the Rose above, the picture is very great, did you take it by your own ?
    Is there any picture credits ?

    Thank you for your answer.
    Best regards.
    Raphaele from France :)

  13. Hello Jacqueline !

    Wonderful desert !! very beautiful :)
    Did you take picture by your own ?
    I'm interested in your great photo : the one with the rose top view!
    Could you tell me if there are copyright on it ?
    Can you have it in High Definition ?

    Thank's a lot for your answer.
    Best regards.
    Raphaele from France :)

  14. I've made this icing twice, both times it's come out with a slick texture. Is this is normal?

  15. I would love to try this recipe. I need to make it a day or two before severing it and it would be served for like two days in a row. Will it hold up like regular buttercream?
    After frosting cupcakes, how long is it before it starts to droops or melts off? If it does at all. Thank you for your time!


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