German Buttercream

March 1, 2016


Author Notes: A yummy frosting that starts with pastry cream, it's great for filling cupcakes (even doughnuts!) and for filling "naked cakes". Erin McDowell

Makes: about 4 cups

Ingredients

For the pastry cream:

  • 9 1/2 ounces (1 cup plus 3 tablespoons) whole milk
  • 3 1/2 ounces (1/2 cup) granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 ounce (1/4 cup) cornstarch
  • 4 ounces (about 2 large) eggs
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the final buttercream:

  • 1 pound (2 cups) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 ounces (1 cup) confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. In a small pot, bring the milk and half of the sugar to a simmer over medium heat. While the milk heats, whisk the remaining sugar with the cornstarch. Place the eggs in a medium, heat-safe bowl.
  2. When the milk is hot, whisk the sugar/cornstarch mixture into the eggs to fully combine. Gradually add the milk to the egg mixture in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly. Don't dump the milk in too fast, or you risk scrambling the eggs!
  3. Return the mixture to the pot and cook until the mixture comes to a boil—large bubbles should emerge from the center of the pot. Remove the pot from the heat and mix in the 2 tablespoons of butter.
  4. Transfer the pastry cream to a shallow bowl and cover directly with plastic wrap. Chill the pastry cream in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  5. Transfer the cooled pastry cream to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and whip for 1 to 2 minutes, to aerate. While the mixer is running, gradually add room temperature butter in 1/2-tablespoon chunks. Continue adding and mixing until all of the butter is added and the buttercream is light and smooth.
  6. Beat in the powdered sugar and vanilla, mix to combine. The buttercream can be used immediately or refrigerated in an airtight container.

More Great Recipes:
Cake|German|Milk/Cream

Reviews (5) Questions (0)

5 Reviews

Prathima March 11, 2016
German Buttercream is my favorite frosting to make, but I've never seen a recipe including confectioners sugar. I wonder if that is a typo. In my experience, German Buttercream is incredibly fluffy and smooth, and less sweet than American Buttercream.
 
Author Comment
Erin M. March 16, 2016
You can totally leave the confectioner's sugar out - I like to add it to help make the mixture homogeneous (thanks to the cornstarch inside powdered sugar). But if you prefer it less sweet, it's definitely not required!
 
Can I. March 11, 2016
This looks yummy but I don't see where the confectioners sugar gets added.
 
Author Comment
Erin M. March 16, 2016
Hi there! I've added it in - thanks for pointing out the error!
 
frizz March 10, 2016
I'm really curious about the texture of the buttercream. How does it differ from other types of buttercream? I assume it'd be more substantial? Maybe that's good for a filling but less appetizing for a swirl on top of a cupcake? So many questions, so little time.