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+ servings
The BEST Cream Cheese Frosting is thick, creamy, with that mouthwatering tangy taste. Best of all, it's not too sweet but full of vanilla flavor and can be made ahead of time! Can you guess what the SECRET ingredient is?!

The BEST Cream Cheese Frosting

The BEST Cream Cheese Frosting that's not too sweet but full of vanilla flavor and can be made ahead of time! Tons of tips, video, and the reveal of the SECRET INGREDIENT below.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Yields: 1 1/2 cups frosting
Recipe by Tessa Arias


  • 8 ounces (227 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla paste (or extract)
  • 2 cups (250 grams) powdered sugar, sifted (don't skip sifting!)


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla on medium-high speed until very light, creamy, and smooth. On low speed gradually add in the sugar and beat until fluffy. If you need a stiffer consistency for decorative piping, add more powdered sugar.

Serving, Storing, and Make Ahead:

  1. Cream cheese frosting, alone or on cake or cupcakes, can sit at a cool room temperature for up to 8 hours before it should be refrigerated.
  2. The frosting can be made and transferred to an airtight container and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 1 month. Bring to room temperature and re-whip with an electric mixer before using.

Recipe Notes

This recipe makes enough frosting for 12 cupcakes. It can be easily doubled to frost an 8-inch two layer cake.