Member recipe

Italian meringue butter cream

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Cooking time

Prep: 5 minutes Cook: 20 minutes

Skill level

More effort


Enough to fill Wiltons Tasty fill cake tin

A great butter cream recipe that is not too sweet and worth the fiddling around to make

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  • 5 large egg whites at room temp
  • 1 1/4 c (250 g) ganulated or castor sugar, divided
  • 2 sticks (226 g) butter at room temp and chopped into tablespoon-sized slices before continuing
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c water


  1. Boil 1 cup sugar and 1/4 cup water over medium heat until it reaches 245o F or the firm ball stage. Never leave the kitchen when you are cooking sugar, and be stingy with your time spent away from the stovetop. It is very important that you watch it or it may burn. Another thing to do is to swirl the syrup. Don’t stir it or whisk it, just gently swirl the pan by the handle to ensure that the sugar crystals are evenly distributed and dissolved

  2. While the sugar is cooking, pour the egg whites into the bowl you plan to whip the icing in, then wait for the syrup to come to about 230F-235F. Whip egg whites with a wire whisk in a stand up mixer on high until soft peaks form. About 1-2 minutes. Sprinkle in 1/4 cup sugar. Beat

  3. Slowly pour the hot syrup into the meringue steadily with the mixer still on high.

  4. Beat the frosting for 7-10 minutes until the outside of the bowl is room temperature

  5. During this time fill the pot the syrup cooked in with water and bring it to a boil to remove the hardened sugar from the sides. Toss in the candy thermometer too, while you’re at it

  6. Beat in butter by the tablespoon using a medium speed. The butter will deflate the frosting a bit. After all of the butter is added, turn the speed up to high. The whole process will take about 10-15 minutes, but you will begin to see the buttercream go through stages after all of the butter is added. First it will deflate and become soupy, then thicken, then curdle, then thicken to the final stage. If, for some reason your buttercream does not progress from the “soupy” stage (typically due to adding the butter too quickly or the butter/meringue being too warm), simply place your work bowl in the fridge for 7-10 minutes before whipping again

  7. Add in desired flavourings Flavourings • Chocolate: 1/2 cup melted and cooled chocolate and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. • Coconut: 1 teaspoon coconut extract and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. • Coffee: 1 teaspoon espresso powder or 3-5 tablespoons strong coffee. • Also use jams to flavour buttercream, but be sure that they are quite thick as too much liquid will cause the buttercream to break down so be careful when adding jams and drop in about a tablespoon at a time

  8. Leftover buttercream may be kept in the refrigerator for a week or two or frozen, well wrapped, until needed. Just be sure to bring it to room temperature and whip well with a beater before using

Comments, questions and tips

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9th Jan, 2015
Try this tonight! Is it 226g of butter per stick or is that the altogether amount?
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