Lemon Buttercream Frosting

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Lemon is one of my favorite flavors. It’s bright and sunshiny and says, “Be happy.” It also tastes delicious in this luscious Lemon Buttercream Frosting.

Cupcakes with Lemon Buttercream Frosting

Want to add a little sunshine into your life? Then buttercream is your friend. Lemon buttercream, to be more specific. It’s light and tart and sweet and makes you pucker into a smile.

We’ve got four birthdays and three special occasions coming up in the next 7 weeks and already there’s one request for several batches of this Lemon Buttercream Frosting. It’s that good.

What ingredients do you need to make lemon buttercream frosting?

  • Unsalted butter – Be sure to use unsalted butter. Different brands of salted butter use varying amounts of salt, so it can be hard to control. 
  • Powdered sugar –  Also known as confectioners sugar. 
  • Lemon zest – Using the zest makes this frosting extra special and extra lemony. I used the zest of one lemon, but you can use more if you want to add a bit more lemon flavor. When zesting lemons, make sure to not use the white layer underneath called the pith, which is bitter. 
  • Lemon juice – To add a bit of liquid, and extra lemon flavor I used fresh lemon juice. To make it easier to juice the lemons, give them a roll on the counter to help release the juice.  Or you can try microwave the whole lemon for about 15 seconds before cutting it in half and juicing it. 

It’s also just enough to frost these lemon cupcakes with a spatula. If you want to pipe the frosting as pictured make a double batch of the lemon buttercream.

Also, be sure to lick the spoon!

Can you freeze buttercream frosting? 

You can keep the frosting covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You may need to just rewhip the frosting back to a spreadable consistency. 

And yes you can freeze the buttercream frosting for up to 3 months.  Just allow the buttercream to thaw in the refrigerator overnight, and then rewhip before using. 

Looking for other frostings? Try this Easy Chocolate Buttercream or this standard Vanilla Buttercream Frosting.

Tools I use to make this recipe easy:

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Lemon Buttercream Frosting
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
0 mins
Total Time
10 mins
Lemon is one of my favorite flavors. It's bright and sunshiny and says, "Be happy." It also tastes delicious in this luscious Lemon Buttercream Frosting.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttercream, frosting, lemon
Servings: 2 cups
Author: Jessica Fisher
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 -2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter until fluffy. Add the sugar and lemon zest. Beat until the mixture starts to be a bit crumbly.
  2. Add the lemon juice until you have a smooth texture. Beat until well combined and fluffy. Adjust with more sugar or juice, depending on what consistency you’re looking for.


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  1. Katie C. says

    Eek, this is killing! I just rejoined weight watchers. I could eat a cupcake but not a whole batch which is what might happen with that frosting!

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