How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Is your cream cheese frosting runny? No need to throw it out! Here are a few ways you can thicken it up in no time at all. You don’t even need powdered sugar or cornstarch to thicken your icing!

Runny Cream Cheese Frosting? Here’s How To Fix It

1) Add more cream cheese to the frosting: If your frosting is still too thin despite adding some cream cheese, add more until you achieve the desired consistency.

2) Mix in sour cream, milk, or yogurt: If you want to make your frosting lighter and less sweet, just mix in some sour cream or yogurt for a milder flavor.

3) Add flour: If you want your frosting to be fairly thick, just add a little flour. This works pretty well and you can easily get a fluffy consistency. Add a small amount at a time while stirring until you reach desired consistency.

4) Add more powdered sugar: If your frosting is still runny after trying the above steps, add in more powdered sugar until it has the right texture.

5) Beat it: If your frosting is too thin, you can just beat the frosting for a few minutes at medium-high speed until it has the correct texture.

6) Use a different cream cheese: Using a different brand of cream cheese or one with a higher fat content may result in a thicker consistency. Try a different type next time to see what kind of results you get and if they are thicker.

Does cream cheese icing harden?

The answer is yes. Cream cheese icing can become hard and almost solid after being refrigerated. To re-soften, allow cream cheese icing to sit at room temp for an hour or place in an oven heated to 200 F for a few minutes.

Can I leave cream cheese out overnight to soften?

No, you shouldn’t leave cream cheese out overnight. Cream cheese could possibly grow mold or bacteria. It is better to soften cream cheese on the counter for a couple hours at most before using.

How long can you store leftover cream cheese frosting?

Cream cheese frosting should be stored in an airtight container and in the refrigerator. Leftover cream cheese frosting can last up to five days in the refrigerator.

What best thickens cream cheese frosting?

Overall powdered sugar or cornstarch are the most commonly used cream cheese frosting thickeners but if you don’t have either of those I would recommend using more cream cheese or a small amount of all-purpose flour.

Why is my cream cheese frosting grainy?

This is most likely because you didn’t whip the frosting enough or fast enough when adding in more powdered sugar to thicken your cream cheese frosting. To fix this, beat the frosting on medium-high speed for a few minutes until your desired consistency is achieved.

Why does your cream cheese icing separate?

If the ingredients were not brought together cold enough or over mixed, the fat and liquid components of your cream cheese icing could separate.

Why is my cream cheese frosting gummy?

In order for an icing to be smooth and free from lumps, it needs to be mixed for at least five minutes. Cream cheese Icing takes a little longer to mix than other frostings because of the softer consistency.

Can cream cheese frosting go bad?

Yes, but only if it is kept at room temperature. Store it in your fridge for up to five days.

Conclusion

If you follow the above steps, your cream cheese frosting should be thick and fluffy! It may take you a few tries to get it exactly right, but that’s okay, just keep trying and you’ll learn how to change it up a bit.

This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. wikiHow’s Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards.

This article has been viewed 110,631 times.

Cream cheese frosting is a deliciously rich and creamy topping for cakes, cookies, muffins, and cupcakes. This frosting is easiest to use when it is nice and thick. There are multiple ways to thicken the frosting. Add icing sugar to the mixture to quickly and easily stiffen the consistency of the frosting or experiment with other thickening agents such as cornstarch, meringue powder, and arrowroot powder. Apply the thick, creamy frosting to your treats and enjoy!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • In some countries, icing sugar is called powdered sugar or confectioners sugar.
  • This method will make the cream cheese frosting sweeter as it is adding extra sugar to the mixture.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If you do over-mix the frosting, place it into the fridge for 1 hour to harden.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • It is best to add small amounts of icing sugar at a time, as this stops the frosting from accidentally getting too thick.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If you want to use the frosting at a later date, place the airtight container into the freezer for up to 3 months. [4] X Research source

Did you make this recipe?

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Avoid adding more than 1/2 cup (62.5 grams) of cornstarch per 8 oz (226 grams) of cream cheese. Adding more cornstarch than this can impact the taste of the frosting.
  • In some countries, cornstarch is called corn flour.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If the cream cheese is still too soft after 1 hour, leave it in the fridge for a further 30 minutes.
  • If the cream cheese frosting gets too hard, simply leave it at room temperature to soften.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Purchase meringue powder from a speciality cooking or baking store.
  • This option is really effective if you want to pipe the frosting onto a cake as it helps the mixture to hold its shape.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Continue to add soft butter to the frosting until you are satisfied with its taste and consistency.
  • If your butter is hard, simply leave it at room temperature for 1 hour to soften.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If the mixture is still too runny, add another 2 teaspoons (5.2 grams) of arrowroot powder.

Did you make this recipe?

Related wikiHows

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  1. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  2. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  3. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  4. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  5. ↑https://thestayathomechef.com/perfect-cream-cheese-frosting/
  6. ↑https://thestayathomechef.com/perfect-cream-cheese-frosting/
  7. ↑https://cakewhiz.com/best-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe-piping/
  8. ↑http://bakingbites.com/2013/09/how-to-thicken-frosting/
  9. ↑https://tastessence.com/arrowroot-vs-cornstarch

About This Article

You can quickly and easily thicken cream cheese frosting with icing sugar, corn starch, or by lowering the temperature. If you don’t mind the frosting getting sweeter, add 2 tablespoons of icing sugar to the frosting and mix it together until it reaches the consistency that you want. If you don’t want to add additional sweetness to the frosting, add a tablespoon of cornstarch to it and stir it well to thicken it. You can add additional corn starch to thicken the frosting even more if you want to. Another simple way to thicken cream cheese frosting is to place it in the refrigerator for an hour to allow the cool air to harden the fats in the cream cheese and butter. For tips about how to use meringue powder to quickly thicken cream cheese frosting, keep reading!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Most cream cheese frosting can end up too soft and runny, unstable, or too sweet from an excess of powdered sugar added to thicken it enough to use on decorated layer cakes. It’s a problem that most bakers face. Fear not: with a change in technique and an easy recipe, you can make thick cream cheese frosting that you can use to decorate cakes and with a lot less sugar!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Why is cream cheese frosting runny or too sweet?

Typical recipes for cream cheese frosting have you cream the butter and the cream cheese together, then add A TON of icing sugar. The reason cream cheese frosting recipes call for so much powdered sugar is because without the extra powdered sugar, cream cheese frosting tends to be runny, unstable, weepy, and soupy.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Why is it so unstable?

A block of cream cheese contains a lot more water than the same weight of butter. Remember that most grocery store butters have roughly 80 % fat in them, while cream cheese is half of that, around 40 % fat. What remains in both cases is mostly water, so cream cheese contains more moisture than butter.

When the cream cheese is creamed with the butter, and then the icing sugar is added in, the icing sugar draws out that moisture from the butter and the cheese. Butter has very little moisture to draw out, so you can make a thick, pipeable frosting with butter and icing sugar without much worry. But since cream cheese contributes double the moisture, when the icing sugar draws out that moisture, you end up with a soupy, runny, unstable cream cheese frosting.

This is the main reason why most cream cheese frosting recipes recommend a huge amount of icing sugar. Without all the extra powdered sugar, the frosting is too soft to work with. The frosting doesn’t hold its shape when piped and it’s quite unstable. Bakers tend to overload the frosting with powdered sugar to stiffen the frosting. This leads to a cloyingly sweet cream cheese frosting that doesn’t taste very good.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to make thick cream cheese frosting that is stable and can be piped

Without resorting to adding an excess amount of icing sugar, to make a thicker cream cheese frosting that can be used to frost a cake or decorate cupcakes, the solution is simple: change the order you mix your ingredients in:

  • Step 1: Cream the butter with the icing sugar first, thereby coating all the little sugar molecules with fat
  • Step 2: Once the butter and icing sugar are well mixed, THEN you add in the cream cheese. The sugar is coated with fat, therefore making it more difficult to draw out the moisture from the cream cheese. The cream cheese remains intact, and no water leeches out.

By following this mixing order, you can make a frosting with significantly less sugar. In fact, you end up with a frosting that tastes a lot like cheesecake, tangy and not overly sweet!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Cream cheese in the tub versus blocks of cream cheese

The cream cheese product you buy has an impact on this recipe. Cream cheese sold in the tub is formulated to be spreadable and that softer consistency comes the water content: cream cheese sold in the tub has slightly less fat and more water than cream cheese sold in blocks, which is much firmer.

That extra water in the tub product means your cream cheese frosting will be more prone to breaking down or becoming too soft. If you can, buy the cream cheese sold in blocks and make sure to buy full-fat cream cheese, preferably Philadelphia brand.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

What recipes to make with it

Once you have mastered this thick cream cheese frosting recipe, you will see that it is so thick that you can use it to make layer cakes and for decorating. I’ve used this recipe for:

You know this recipe is good because this cream cheese frosting works great in layer cakes without the risk of sliding layers and weeping frosting!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

There are so many ways to get creative with this frosting. You can alo use this frosting to fill whoopie pies and you can also colour it with gel food colouring for decorating. Try browning the butter, then cooling it to room temperature to give the frosting a nutty flavour.

Frequently asked questions

The brand and type of cream cheese makes a HUGE difference in frosting recipes. You should use Philadelphia, full fat cream cheese, sold in blocks of 250 grams (roughly, though the weight of the block depends on the country).
Any other brand may lead to a different taste and mouthfeel as some have more gums or different stabilizers which has an impact on taste and texture.
Also, in some countries, cream cheese is sold exclusively in tubs. Cream cheese sold in tubs may have more water in it. I recommend straining the cream cheese by placing it in a strainer lined with a few layers of paper towel or cheese cloth to try and drain the excess water before proceeding with the recipe.

Change the order you mix your ingredients in and your frosting will be thicker and you won’t need as much sugar! Mix the butter with part of the icing sugar first, then add the cream cheese and the rest of the sugar (or as much to achieve the right flavour). You’ll see that you won’t need so much if you mix the ingredients in this order!

I do not suggest substituting any other type of sugar in this frosting recipe. The smooth texture of cream cheese frosting has as much to do with the butter and cream cheese as it does the icing sugar. You can’t replace it here with anything else. This is not a baking substitution that I would recommend. If you would like a cream cheese frosting without icing sugar, try this white chocolate cream cheese frosting!

Cream cheese frosting is very versatile and tastes great with most types of cake. I love to frost chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting, and of course it goes well with spice cake and carrot cakes. It’s great on cupcakes too, as you can see in the photo!

Yes, you should definitely store frosted cakes in the fridge. If you aren’t a fan of cold cake, slice it cold and let the slice come to room temperature for about 30 minutes before enjoying.

Yes, you can, but don’t leave it out for too long. I wouldn’t suggest storing it on the counter for more than a day. Cream cheese frosting contains butter and cream cheese, and both of these ingredients spoil and go bad at room temperature, so opt to refrigerate as much as possible for long term storage.

This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. wikiHow’s Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards.

This article has been viewed 110,631 times.

Cream cheese frosting is a deliciously rich and creamy topping for cakes, cookies, muffins, and cupcakes. This frosting is easiest to use when it is nice and thick. There are multiple ways to thicken the frosting. Add icing sugar to the mixture to quickly and easily stiffen the consistency of the frosting or experiment with other thickening agents such as cornstarch, meringue powder, and arrowroot powder. Apply the thick, creamy frosting to your treats and enjoy!

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • In some countries, icing sugar is called powdered sugar or confectioners sugar.
  • This method will make the cream cheese frosting sweeter as it is adding extra sugar to the mixture.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If you do over-mix the frosting, place it into the fridge for 1 hour to harden.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • It is best to add small amounts of icing sugar at a time, as this stops the frosting from accidentally getting too thick.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If you want to use the frosting at a later date, place the airtight container into the freezer for up to 3 months. [4] X Research source

Did you make this recipe?

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Avoid adding more than 1/2 cup (62.5 grams) of cornstarch per 8 oz (226 grams) of cream cheese. Adding more cornstarch than this can impact the taste of the frosting.
  • In some countries, cornstarch is called corn flour.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If the cream cheese is still too soft after 1 hour, leave it in the fridge for a further 30 minutes.
  • If the cream cheese frosting gets too hard, simply leave it at room temperature to soften.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Purchase meringue powder from a speciality cooking or baking store.
  • This option is really effective if you want to pipe the frosting onto a cake as it helps the mixture to hold its shape.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • Continue to add soft butter to the frosting until you are satisfied with its taste and consistency.
  • If your butter is hard, simply leave it at room temperature for 1 hour to soften.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  • If the mixture is still too runny, add another 2 teaspoons (5.2 grams) of arrowroot powder.

Did you make this recipe?

Related wikiHows

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

  1. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  2. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  3. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  4. ↑https://kerrycooks.com/foolproof-thick-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe/
  5. ↑https://thestayathomechef.com/perfect-cream-cheese-frosting/
  6. ↑https://thestayathomechef.com/perfect-cream-cheese-frosting/
  7. ↑https://cakewhiz.com/best-cream-cheese-frosting-recipe-piping/
  8. ↑http://bakingbites.com/2013/09/how-to-thicken-frosting/
  9. ↑https://tastessence.com/arrowroot-vs-cornstarch

About This Article

You can quickly and easily thicken cream cheese frosting with icing sugar, corn starch, or by lowering the temperature. If you don’t mind the frosting getting sweeter, add 2 tablespoons of icing sugar to the frosting and mix it together until it reaches the consistency that you want. If you don’t want to add additional sweetness to the frosting, add a tablespoon of cornstarch to it and stir it well to thicken it. You can add additional corn starch to thicken the frosting even more if you want to. Another simple way to thicken cream cheese frosting is to place it in the refrigerator for an hour to allow the cool air to harden the fats in the cream cheese and butter. For tips about how to use meringue powder to quickly thicken cream cheese frosting, keep reading!

Everything seems to taste better when it’s homemade, but sometimes, you simply don’t have time to bake from scratch. However, a number of shortcuts are available that not only help you simplify your life, but also help you improve canned frosting. For example, you can frost a homemade cake with “doctored-up” store bought icing, and most of your guests won’t even be able to tell the difference. Whether you’re adding additional flavors or using a trick or two to fake the icing’s origins, using canned frosting hacks is one of the easiest ways to enhance the taste of your dessert.

Make Canned Frosting Better

You can improve canned frosting‘s appearance and taste by adding flavorings, colors and other ingredients. Spoon the store-bought icing in a large mixing bowl. Choose an extract flavor and begin by adding two to three drops of the extract to the bowl. Add the extract slowly, thoroughly mixing after each addition, until you reach the desired flavor. Supermarket vanilla icing tastes better with the addition of 2 drops of vanilla extract and 1 drop of almond extract. Follow the same steps when adding liquid food coloring to frostings. You can add red food coloring to chocolate frosting to make a deep, burgundy shade of red.

You also can make cream cheese frosting with store bought icing. Place the canned icing in a mixing bowl, and add one 8-ounce package of cream cheese and 2 to 3 drops of vanilla extract. Mix the ingredients together until smooth; then frost your dessert with an easy cream cheese frosting.

Add other ingredients to create your own versions. For example, using canned frosting as your base, add ½ cup peanut butter and a pinch of salt. Top with chopped honey-roasted peanuts to make a Snickers-like frosting on chocolate cupcakes.

How to Make Store-Bought Frosting Stiffer

You also can improve the texture and thickness of canned frosting. Although store bought frosting hardens when exposed to open air, it won’t duplicate the effect of royal icing, which is best for decorating. To thicken canned frosting, empty the container into a large bowl. Add 3 to 4 tablespoons of confectioners’ sugar and thoroughly mix it into the frosting. If the icing is still not the desired texture, continue adding sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you reach the desired thickness.

To thin frosting, you can use water, but milk makes it taste more like homemade. Again, empty the store-bought frosting into a large mixing bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of milk at a time to the frosting, thoroughly combining after each addition, until the desired texture is reached. Do this slowly to prevent the frosting from becoming too runny.

Tips for Improving Large Batches

To improve a large batch of store-bought frosting, don’t add the ingredients to each individual can; instead, combine all the cans you need in one large mixing bowl, followed by the appropriate amount of extracts, cream cheese or food coloring. For example, if you’re using three cans of frosting, add 9 drops of extract or food coloring or three 8-ounce packages of cream cheese. This ensures consistency both in the texture and taste of the frosting.

If you’re mixing more than three or four containers of store bought icing, write down how much of each ingredient to add per can of frosting, such as the number of drops of extract or food coloring. Also note the length of time to mix the frosting as well to help you get the texture right.

No carrot or red velvet cake is complete without a creamy layer of cream cheese frosting. The frosting is made by mixing firm cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract to make a sweet icing to complement almost any confection. When cream cheese frosting is over-beaten, it becomes runny and will not adhere properly to your sticky buns or cupcakes. There are several solutions to restore the thick texture to your cream cheese frosting.

Add 1/4 tbsp. powdered sugar to the mixture. Stir the cream cheese frosting and continue to add more powdered sugar until the desired consistency is achieved.

Pour 1/4 tbsp. heavy cream to the mixture. Place the cream cheese frosting into the fridge for 30 minutes and stir. Add more heavy cream to the mixture until it is thicker. Avoid using too much heavy cream, as it will make the frosting taste too sweet.

Cover the cream cheese frosting with plastic wrap and store inside the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Remove the frosting, stir it and place it back into the fridge for 30 minute increments until you achieve the consistency you’re after.

Add 1/2 tbsp. vegetable shortening to the mixture. Stir it well and continue to add small amounts of the shortening. The shortening will thicken up the frosting without altering the flavor.

Avoid over-beaten cream cheese frosting by mixing in any liquids in small amounts and by using cream cheese that is chilled and firm, not runny and room temperature.

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click one of these links and make a purchase, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. In addition, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. —

Cool Whip has long been a favorite topping for desserts. It is light and fluffy and just sweet enough to add flavor. The problem with Cool Whip is that it doesn’t always last after it has been added. When you make frosting, it needs to be able to sit out at room temperature and last.

If you want to use Cool Whip to make frosting and make it thick enough to last, you can do this. There are different ways to stabilize it, and the way you choose will depend on what texture and taste you are trying to achieve.

Take a look at how versatile Cool Whip frosting is and how to make it thicker.

How to Flavor Your Cool Whip Frosting

Cool Whip has a light and sweet taste. Most people find it delicious on its own, but you can add flavor to create the perfect complement for your cake. Cool Whip goes well with a number of flavors, including vanilla, cocoa, strawberry, lemon, cinnamon, and so much more.

You can add various spices or fruits to your Cool Whip to mix it up. The problem is that you will still need to thicken it if you want to put it on your cake and serve it at room temperature.

Why Is it Important to Make Cool Whip Thicker?

Cool Whip is light and fluffy, and it doesn’t hold its shape well at room temperature. You do not normally store your cake in the refrigerator, so it will drip and droop all over the cake.

Part of presenting a delicious cake is having it look the part, and the consistency of the frosting goes a long way toward making the cake look good.

If the frosting is too soft, it makes the cake look droopy. When you add an ingredient to stabilize it, the consistency is just right, and you can alter the flavor to get exactly the taste you need to go with your cake.

Whether you want it to be extra sweet or tangy, any of the following choices will work to thicken your Cool Whip.

How to Make Cool Whip Frosting Thicker

1 – Add Cream Cheese to Cool Whip

You can add cream cheese to your Cool Whip to make it thicker and stabilize it. It will change the taste of your frosting by adding a creamy, tangy flavor. If you are trying to move away from a sweet sugary taste, this is a really great option.

You can stir together the cream cheese and the Cool Whip, and you can add vanilla extract, sugar, and powdered vanilla pudding for a flavorful and thicker frosting. It will be delicious, and you can use it to frost your cake. It will hold up and taste delicious.

Cream cheese and Cool Whip make the perfect combination in this No Bake White Chocolate Strawberry Cheesecake too!

2 – Add Cream of Tartar to Cool Whip

Another option is to add cream of tartar to your Cool Whip. It has small grains in it that help to stabilize the frosting. These little grains encourage the forming of large air bubbles that help frosting to become thick and creamy.

You need to watch how much you use because it can make the Cool Whip frosting become acidic.

3 – Add Powdered Sugar and Cornstarch to Cool Whip

Not only will adding powdered sugar and cornstarch to your Cool Whip make your frosting thicker, but it will also make it sweeter. If you don’t want all the sweetness, you can use cornstarch alone.

Powdered sugar actually has cornstarch in it, which is why it works as a stabilizer. You can use as little as a tablespoon or two of cornstarch to thicken your Cool Whip, and this is definitely the easiest way to thicken your Cool Whip.

4 – Add Powdered Pudding to Cool Whip

You can also add instant pudding alone to your Cool Whip, and it will thicken it. You can choose an unflavored variety, or you can select vanilla or another flavor. I personally think this Oreo pudding would be an amazing addition.

Powdered pudding will also add thickness to the Cool Whip and stabilize it so that it will last at room temperature.

Final Thoughts

Cool Whip is a favorite for many people, and its sweet lightness is delicious as frosting on a cake. Once you select a stabilizing agent to mix with it, Cool Whip will have the consistency you need so that you can frost your cake.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

I’ve heard it said that one can never have too many friends, and I’ve found the same to be true of cream cheese frosting. There are versions for every occasion—sometimes I want an icing with plenty of butter for structure (like the Cream Cheese Buttercream from my cookbook, BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts); in other cases, I’m more inclined to reach for a fluffy frosting like this one that I can whip up in no time flat.

The traditional method is to simply beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together until smooth, but this tends to produce a frosting that's runny and thin, as cream cheese itself doesn't aerate well. It can be made thick and light by increasing the powdered sugar, but at the cost of its flavor and texture, as the excess sugar makes it unbearably sweet and a little gritty, too.

So, when I want a no-fuss frosting in a hurry, I take an entirely different approach, ditching the powdered sugar for a combination of granulated sugar and cream.

The cream dissolves the sugar into a totally grit-free foundation, then whips up thick and light, whether you use a hand mixer or a stand mixer (we recommend the KitchenAid Pro Series mixer). In turn, the sugar protects against over-whipping, allowing me to chuck in cold cream cheese a few tablespoons at a time—no waiting around for it to soften. The cream cuts through the density of the cream cheese, aerating it so it’s firm and light.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Along the way, this frosting tends to appear slightly curdled, but it's not! The "curds" are simply tiny bits of cream cheese that have yet to be homogenized, and they'll disappear soon enough, so keep whipping until the frosting forms a thick and creamy mass. The occasional fleck of cream cheese may slip through, but these bits will disappear on their own in time.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Because it’s whipped, this frosting doesn’t feel heavy or dense even when served straight from the fridge; its cool, creamy consistency will melt in your mouth just like a spoonful of cheesecake. My approach uses roughly 70% less sugar than a recipe based on powdered sugar, meaning that this frosting behaves more like cream cheese, giving it a wonderful stability.

As a test, I piped the frosting on a few cupcakes and left them sitting out on the corner of my kitchen range, where they were exposed to the heat of my oven and stovetop running full blast all day. (Those recipes for panna cotta and roasted-cherry ice cream don’t test themselves.) Though the ambient temperature continued to rise, the frosted cupcakes looked as perky as ever, so I decided to continue the test by leaving them out overnight.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

I fully expected them to ooze into a puddle by morning, yet I found them none the worse for wear. If anything, losing its cool had made the frosting feel even richer and creamier on my tongue.

This isn't to say I recommend leaving frosted cupcakes out all day in the sun—only that this whipped cream–based frosting is sturdier than you'd expect. That means it's great for picnics, potlucks, and any other laid-back, casual occasions when cakes deserve an amazing frosting without any fuss.

Learn how to make the Perfect Cream Cheese Frosting for frosting cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. Recipe includes instructions for both vanilla as well as chocolate cream cheese frosting.

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Learn how to make the Perfect Cream Cheese Frosting for frosting cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. Recipe includes instructions for both vanilla as well as chocolate cream cheese frosting.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

How do I make my cream cheese frosting thicker?

Cream cheese frosting can vary in consistency based on temperature. The easiest way to thicken up cream cheese frosting is to pop it in the refrigerator. As the fats from the cream cheese and butter cool, the frosting will change consistency and become much thicker. No extra powdered sugar required!

Can you use cornstarch to thicken cream cheese frosting?

Yes, you can add up to 1/2 cup of cornstarch to the frosting mixture to thicken. This will not impact the flavor of the frosting.

Can cream cheese frosting be used for piping?

Yes! Cream cheese frosting is perfect for piping onto cakes, cupcakes, and more.

How to thicken cream cheese frosting

Can you add food coloring to cream cheese frosting?

Yes! You can add food color to cream cheese frosting. Gel based food colorings are the easiest to work with and will not add as much liquid to your frosting.

Does cream cheese frosting need to be refrigerated?

Yes. Cream cheese frostings need to be refrigerated for food safety reasons. A baked good frosted with cream cheese frosting should also be refrigerated. Cream cheese frosting can sit at room temperature for up to 2 hours safely.

Can cream cheese frosting be made ahead of time?

Yes, you can make cream cheese frosting ahead of time. Store in the refrigerator. The frosting will thicken significantly in the fridge and may become too difficult to work with. To soften, let sit at room temperature for 1 hour.

This cream cheese frosting can be used with the following recipes: