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This recipe comes from Baked Explorations, but the method is mine. There are two things to keep in mind when making cream cheese frostings. First of all, the icing sugar should be well beaten in order to fully incorporate it into the fat. Under beaten icing sugar will have a raw taste and sometimes grainy texture. This is why it is imperative to start with soft butter. The butter must be soft, but not melted, in order to beat the most air into it. The fluffier the butter, the more icing sugar will get incorporated and the two can be beaten up really well. Cream cheese poses an entirely different challenge. Cream cheese should be cold and should not be beaten, only blended. Beating cream cheese destroys its structure, in fact the more you beat cream cheese, the runnier it will get. Yes you can use light cream cheese, but this will not hold up as well in a cake. It might be fine to pipe it on the top of something, but to fill and to decorate an entire cake you really need full fat cream cheese. Making a cream cheese frosting reminds me of a dance, one two three, one two three… turn left and continue.
3 cups icing sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, soft
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 large full fat 240g [8oz] package cream cheese, chilled
• Sift powdered sugar into medium bowl.
• Beat the soft butter until very, very fluffy. If the butter is not soft it will not get fluffy. Set it aside and come back to it when the butter is soft.
• Add the maple syrup and beat on high speed until fully incorporated.
• Lower the speed and start adding the sifted icing sugar 1/3 cup at a time.
• When the frosting begins to get thick, start adding about a tablespoon of cream cheese along with the icing sugar.
• With a rubber spatula occasionally scrape the sides of the bowl.
• You will run out of icing sugar first. At this point beat the frosting at high speed for about a minute or two.
• Lower the speed and gradually add the remaining cream cheese and beat to combine. 
• When all the cream cheese is incorporated, beat on high speed for a few seconds only.
• If all else fails, cover and refrigerate until the frosting has sufficient body to spread and to hold up without spreading.



  1. Thank you for these concise instructions. Does the cream cheese get runny if over beaten because of the water content?

  2. Eva, the chemical and food industries often use centrifugal force to separate liquids and solids. Considering soft cheeses contains 80% liquid, in the case of whipping cream cheese can be a good thing or a bad thing. The difference between block cream cheese and spreadable cream cheese [with the same fat content] is the spreadable cream cheese was whipped and the block cream cheese was not. High fat content has a definite stabilizing force, but is still no protection against over whipping. That is why cream cheese icing tends to become a blotchy glaze or [with copious amounts of icing sugar added for stabilization] a sickly sweet and coarse textured thing that you end up leaving on your plate, which may not be a bad thing after all.




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