Learn how to make strawberry buttercream frosting using real strawberries. This pipable strawberry frosting is delicious on vanilla or chocolate cupcakes, and so perfect for spring! If you don’t have fresh berries on hand – frozen berries work too.
probably definitely my favorite part of any cake. I realize some people might think it’s embarrassing to say that out loud – but I have no shame when it comes to frosting.
Fluffy, creamy buttercream is my weakness. And one of my all-time favorites is strawberry buttercream frosting. Every spring my Vanilla Cupcakes with Fresh Strawberry Frosting starts to go crazy on Pinterest – so I figured it was time to create a step by step post on how to make fresh strawberry frosting.
For this strawberry buttercream frosting recipe – we’re using real strawberries. No artificial flavors here. It does mean that there’s a little extra work involved to get that delicious, natural strawberry flavor – AND thick, creamy consistency.
But the little extra work is totally work it.
Ummmm…. Yes – I’d like to slather that on a cupcake… or just like the knife…
How to Make Strawberry Buttercream Frosting
To get started, first we’ll core the fresh strawberries, then puree them in a food processor or blender. Here’s what mine looked like in this stage.
Then the puree is put through a sieve to remove the seeds. This isn’t 100% necessary, but I prefer my frosting without the seeds. Then it’s time to boil down the strawberry puree. The mixture is boiled over medium heat while stirring occasionally until it’s reduced to about 1/3 of it’s original volume. At this point, it should be much darker in color (think a dark red-ish pink) and thick in consistency.
It’s really important to boil down the strawberry puree until it’s very thick, otherwise you’ll have too much water in your frosting and it’ll be too thin.
Then the thick strawberry sauce needs to be cooled. This step is 100% mandatory. If the reduced strawberry puree is even the tiniest bit warm when you add it to your frosting – the frosting will separate and it won’t work.
From there – making the strawberry buttercream is pretty straight forward. We beat the butter until it’s fluffy, then powdered sugar, the reduced strawberry puree, a little vanilla and some cream are whipped into the mixture.
If you want frosting that’s extra thick for piping, you might skip the cream. But that’s up to you. I was able to pipe mine just fine with a little cream added – but it’ll depend on how much you boil down the strawberry puree.
This strawberry buttercream frosting is so perfect on vanilla cupcakes, chocolate cake, or thick sugar cookies. I love the natural strawberry flavor and the color is just way too pretty!
Learn how to make strawberry frosting using fresh berries. This strawberry buttercream tastes delicious on vanilla or chocolate cake, and is totally pipeable. The fresh berries give this frosting the most beautiful color!
- 12 oz strawberries , fresh
- 1 cup unsalted butter , softened to room temperature
- 4 and 1/2 to 5 cups powdered sugar , sifted
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon whipping cream , as needed
First core the strawberries to remove the white centers.
- Then place in a food processor or blender and pulse until smooth. You should have about 1 and 1/2 cups of strawberry puree.
Then put the puree through a sieve to remove the seeds - I do about 1/3 of the mixture at a time.
Pour the strained strawberry puree into a medium saucepan over low-medium heat. Allow the mixture to boil gently while occasionally stirring.
Continue boiling until it reduces to at least 1/4 of the original volume. It should be thick. Place the reduced strawberry puree into the fridge or freezer and cool fully.
In a large bowl using a stand or hand-held electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until fluffy and no lumps remain.
Turn the mixer down to low speed and carefully beat in 2 and 1/2 cups of the powdered sugar.
Ensure the strawberry puree is cold, then add 3-4 tablespoons into the frosting along with the vanilla and salt. Beat together on medium speed until combined. (At this point the mixture will look uneven and not much like frosting).
Beat in the rest of the powdered sugar on low speed. Once combined, turn the mixer to medium-high speed to beat it until fluffy. Beat in a little extra powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of cream as needed.
This recipe will make enough to frost 12-18 cupcakes if frosting using a piping bag, or 18-24 cupcakes if frosting using a knife. It's also enough to frost the top of a 9x13 inch cake.