The Key Ingredient Swap That Gives Frosting Bakery-Like Richness

Cake is synonymous with celebrations, from birthdays to weddings and holidays alike. It's actually been that way for centuries — the ancient Greeks celebrated birthdays of their Gods and Goddesses by baking moon-shaped cakes adorned with candles, meant to represent the light of the moon (via DORÉ by LeTAO). They report that cakes were previously reserved for the wealthy because sugar was costly and hard to come by. Fortunately, they are now widely available for everyone to enjoy.

If you're looking to save some money while party planning, baking your own cake or cupcakes is a great way to cut back on costs — especially if you're kitchen-savvy and already use other baking tricks to enhance your batter. While your cakes are baking in the oven, whip out your favorite frosting recipe to prep for decoration. But if you're looking to upgrade your usual frosting, there is one ingredient you can substitute for an even more decadent experience.

Bakery quality on a budget

If you want that rich, creamy frosting that can often be found in bakeries, consider swapping out the milk in your go-to recipe for heavy cream, reports Taste of Home. According to Modern Mom, that heavy cream has more fat content than milk does, making it thicker and richer — and perfect for your icing. The amount of butterfat in milk varies from around 0.5% to 3.5% from skim to whole milk, while heavy cream is typically around 36%, per The Spruce Eats. This will allow the frosting to hold its shape longer, keeping your piped rosettes perfectly in place.

One of the most common types of frosting is a classic vanilla buttercream, which calls for milk in most recipes. By swapping in heavy cream, you will add another layer to the flavor profile and some additional decadence to your treats.

Ready to bake? Decide what kind of cake you want to bake, and pair it with your favorite frosting for a delicious sweet treat!