Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting for All Your Cake Needs

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We all know that a cake sometimes needs to come from a mix, but not the frosting! Top your favorite cake with this easy-to-whip-up Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting.

Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting | Life as Mom

Every mom knows that sometimes a cake needs to come from a box. There are times and places for things, and while you would love to be the hostess with the mostest, some times and some places call for a cake mix shortcut.

However, I draw the line at using frosting from a can. I’ve done my time in Frosting Can Land, and I know — yes, sweet sister — I know with every fragment of my being that there’s a better way.

The wonderful thing is that homemade frosting is not hard. Oh no! It’s not hard. It’s so quick and easy that when you slather it on your cake mix cake and serve it at your next party/potluck/PTA meeting, everyone will want to know what in the world you did to make such an amazing cake!

Trust me.

Such is the case with this Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting. It’s what I typically use to top my very favorite Carrot Cake. But, I’ve been known to use it on chocolate cake, lemon cake, zucchini cake, and banana cake. It’s just very friendly and versatile like that.

Now let me tell you there are two tricks you need to keep in mind in order to make this Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting quick and easy.

  1. Your butter and cream cheese MUST be softened.
  2. Your powdered sugar MUST be sifted.

If you don’t follow these rules, my young Padawan, your frosting will not be Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting, Lumpy Cream Cheese Frosting it will be.

And lumpy does not get you points at the PTA meeting. Sorry.

You want this to be almost like whipped cream, which means you’ll need to prep your ingredients accordingly.

Cream Cheese Frosting | Life as Mom

You will note that there’s a range recommended on the sugar content in this frosting. If your cake is very sweet, feel free to use the lower amount of sugar. I find that cream cheese does a great job in “cutting” the sweet. If you prefer a sweeter, but not overly sweet frosting, use the 2 cups of sugar. My boys prefer it with the full 2 cups. Of course.

How to make this good and cheap:

Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:

  • Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. When I find regular kitchen staples on sale, I buy a lot. I’m currently using a price book to track prices and that’s saving me money. For this recipe, keeping an eye on the price of butter and cream cheese is important.
  • Buying in bulk – I buy my butter in big ginormous packs at Costco. It offers the best unit price in my neighborhood. If you don’t go through butter very fast, just freeze it, packaging and all. Thaw in the fridge or on the counter when you’re ready to use it.

How I make this recipe easy:

This recipe really couldn’t be easier than it is, but having the right kitchen tools can really make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. Over time, I’ve honed my collection so that they are perfect for my needs.

Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting | Life as Mom

4 from 1 vote
Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
0 mins
Total Time
10 mins
We all know that a cake sometimes needs to come from a mix, but not the frosting! Top your favorite cake with this easy-to-whip-up Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cream cheese frosting
Servings: 6 cups
Calories: 585 kcal
Author: Jessica Fisher
  • 8 ounces 1 cup or 2 sticks butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and completely softened at room temperature
  • two 8-ounce packages Neufchatel or light cream cheese cut into pieces and completely softened at room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar sifted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cream cheese one piece at a time, beating well after each addition.
  2. When all the cream cheese is incorporated, reduce the speed to medium low and gradually add the vanilla and then the sugar, in 3 to 4 additions. Mix until the frosting is very fluffy. Use as a frosting and keep chilled until ready to serve.
Recipe Notes

Store frosting, covered, in the fride up to one week. You can also freeze frosting up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.

Nutrition Facts
Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting
Amount Per Serving
Calories 585 Calories from Fat 378
% Daily Value*
Fat 42g65%
Saturated Fat 26g163%
Cholesterol 122mg41%
Sodium 626mg27%
Potassium 196mg6%
Carbohydrates 46g15%
Sugar 44g49%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 1362IU27%
Calcium 121mg12%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting | Life as Mom

About Jessica Fisher

I believe anyone can prepare delicious meals—no matter their budget.

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  1. Alisha says

    I really just want to make a batch of this and eat it out of the bowl- no cake needed. 🙂

  2. kay says

    I made this to top your very favorite carrot cake. The result of the recipes, both of which I followed exactly, was a scrumptious, moist cake with delectable frosting. Yum. My teen daughter and I agree they are keeper recipes.

  3. Kelly says

    I have made cream cheese frosting no less than 100 times. It is my “go to” frosting for everything. I often joke that I’m going to write a cookbook devoted my belief that it can be used on anything! One thing I have always wished was that the frosting could be a bit lighter, not quite so heavy and cheesy. However, my life has changed tonight. I found this recipe. I tried it, skeptical that it would produce anything better than my recipe. I was so wrong! This frosting turned out the silkiest, lightest cream cheese frosting that has ever passed my lips! It was a bit less sweet than mine and a little bit…saltier, maybe? It is so decadent without being overly sweet. I LOVE it! This IS the best cream cheese frosting recipe.

  4. ChrisB says

    Can’t wait to try this. Can this frosting be made ahead?

  5. Amy Beveridge says

    Can you freeze this frosting after making it for future use?

    • I have not done this, but I think it should be okay. You may lose a bit of the texture, though.

  6. Shivani says

    Can you use this icing to pipe rosettes on the side of a cake? Will they fall/melt down?

    • I’m not sure. I’ve not used this for piping purposes. Sorry I can’t be more help!

    • Hillary says

      Did you try piping with it? Wanting to use it on my sons soccer ball cake, but I’m afraid it’ll run and not be stiff enough.

    • Mar says

      I did last night and I had to work quick. The cake was small. 8” round. By the end it was almost liquid hahaha. The “rosettes” were very soft. The ones on the top of the cake managed to keep their form but along the sides they did not hold their shape. When I was done, I immediately put the cake in the freezer for 15-20 mins. That did the trick. Then i put it in the fridge overnight. I would say you probably could pipe this icing if the icing sat in the fridge for maybe 20 minutes before using. You’d have to work quick or refrigerate every so often to keep the icing stiff.

  7. Valerie Exar says

    Can you use full fat cream cheese instead of neufchatel?

  8. NurseBetty says

    I don’t know what happened but mine was a little bit salty. Any suggestions??

  9. Rachel Brach says

    I believe, if I am not mistaken , the recipe should read 16 oz. not 8 oz. , because in ( ) you clarify 1 cup or 2 sticks of butter = 16 oz.

    • A stick of butter is 4 ounces. Four sticks make one pound of butter, or 16 ounces. The recipe is correct as is.

      Each stick is 8 tablespoons; that may be where the confusion is coming in. 😉

  10. Angela Phillips says

    Cream Cheese Frosting – Hi there. What would be your measurements in grams please. I can convert the ounces but the Cups is a little difficult as your cup sizes may be different to ours and it would also depend on how tightly the sugar is packed into the cup. Thanks

    • I’m sorry, Angela. I’m not familiar with conversions like that. However, my guess is that there’s an online calculator out there to help.

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