When To Use Buttercream Instead Of Whipped Frosting For Your Baked Goods

There are those of us who prefer buttercream frosting and those who like whipped. But, when it comes to making a selection between the two for your baked goods, knowing when to use them is about more than personal preference.

While buttercream and whipped frosting are both quite creamy, buttercream is much thicker. So, if you prefer that for your frosting's texture, you'll want to go with buttercream. Buttercream is also a little bit sweeter, so it may be the ideal supplement for a baked good that you want to be extra sugary like a cookie or brownie. In addition, buttercream holds its shape extremely well, making it a good choice to use for any kind of intricate decorating — such as designs on cakes or for the swirl on top of a cupcake.

Buttercream also lasts much longer than whipped frosting. So, if you need to make a cake or other baked goods in advance, or simply want to keep it around for longer, buttercream, which lasts for at least a week if stored in the fridge, is the option to choose.

Whipped frosting is the lighter and airier option

Whipped frosting is not only a little less sweet than buttercream, but its texture is much lighter and airier. If you prefer a fluffier mouthfeel, there are plenty of opportunities to use whipped frosting on your desserts, like for a homemade birthday cake or simple cakes, such as a classic pound cake or a butter cake. The whipped frosting won't hold the shape for any kind of fancy decorating — but a more rustic vibe may be just what you're looking for. 

Similarly, if you're not someone who loves a ton of frosting in each bite, using whipped frosting for cupcakes may work out perfectly since you don't need to add as much to each. Another great use for whipped frosting is strawberry shortcake, which is a light dessert that will pair well with an airy frosting. Just remember that whipped frosting, when stored in the fridge, lasts for only a few days.