This Small Batch Cream Cheese Frosting is sweet, tangy, and creamy, and it pairs great with cakes and cupcakes. Made with five simple ingredients, you can whip it up in no time. It’s the perfect amount for frosting twelve cupcakes or a small cake.

small batch cream cheese frosting on a cupcake.

If you’re looking for a frosting that’s a perfect balance between sweet and tangy, look no further. This small batch cream cheese frosting is sweet from the sugar and tangy from the cream cheese.

You can whip up this frosting in just minutes and it’s enough to frost 12 cupcakes or 2 6-inch cake layers.

INGREDIENTS FOR SMALL BATCH CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

How to make small batch cream cheese frosting

A bowl of small batch cream cheese frosting.

Tips for making small batch cream cheese frosting

  • Make sure the butter and cream cheese are at room temperature. Remove them from the refrigerator at least one hour before using them.
  • Beat the cream cheese first before adding the butter or other ingredients. Make sure to beat the cream cheese until it’s very creamy and lump-free before adding the butter.
  • Sift the powdered sugar into the bowl to remove any lumps in the sugar. This will prevent lumps in the frosting. You want a creamy and smooth frosting.
  • You can add food coloring to this frosting, but I recommend using gel not liquid. The liquid food coloring will thin down the frosting.
  • Make sure to use unsalted butter in this recipe. There’s already a specific amount of salt in the recipe. There’s never a sure way to know how much salt is in salted butter.

Piping the frosting

This cream cheese frosting is so smooth and creamy. It’s perfect for piping on cakes and cupcakes. I used a Wilton 1M open star tip in the picture below and piped a flat rose.

Cream cheese frosting on a cupcake.

How to make the frosting thicker

Adding additional powdered sugar will thicken the frosting. However, it will also make it sweeter. If you don’t want to make it sweeter you can try adding a tablespoon of cornstarch to the frosting. Alternately, you can place the frosting in the refrigerator for a few minutes until it’s chilled and then pipe it.

How to make the frosting thinner

If you feel your frosting is a little too thick for piping or spreading, add a little bit of milk or cream. Add only 1 teaspoon at a time until you get a perfect consistency.

A cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.

Does cream cheese frosting need to be refrigerated?

Yes, simply because it contains cream cheese. Once you frost your baked goods refrigerate them. Remove them from the refrigerator about 20 minutes before serving them. The frosting can sit out at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours.

Can I make this frosting in advance?

Yes, you can! You can make the frosting up to 2 days in advance. Remove it from the refrigerator a few minutes before using it so that it’s not too stiff.

Can I freeze this frosting?

Yes! Make sure you transfer it to a freezer-safe container. You can freeze it for up to 3 months. To thaw, place it in a refrigerator overnight, then whip it with a mixer for about one minute to bring it back to a creamy smooth consistency.

Cream cheese frosting on a cupcake.

More frosting recipes you might like…

Butterscotch Frosting

Perfect Swiss Meringue

Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Peanut Butter Frosting

Whipped Chocolate Ganache Frosting

Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

Print
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Small Batch Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Author: Cindy @mycountrytable
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: Mix
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This Small Batch Cream Cheese Frosting is sweet, tangy, and creamy, and it pairs great with cakes and cupcakes. Made with five simple ingredients, you can whip it up in no time. It’s the perfect amount for frosting twelve cupcakes or a small cake.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted

Instructions

  1. Add the cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer).  Mix on medium speed until cream cheese is smooth and free of any lumps.  Add the butter and salt and mix until creamy and smooth.  Add the powdered sugar one cup at a time, mixing to incorporate.  Add the half & half or milk if needed for a perfect piping consistency and mix until smooth.
  2. If not using right away, refrigerate the frosting for up to 3 days. Remove from refrigerate and allow the frosting to sit for about 15 minutes, then mix with a hand mixer for about 1 minute until it’s creamy and smooth again.

Notes

  • For piping on cupcakes, fill a pastry bag two-thirds full with frosting, using your favorite piping tip.  Frost cupcakes and decorate with sprinkles if desired.
  • This recipe makes enough to frost 12 cupcakes or 2 6-inch cake layers.

Keywords: cream cheese frosting, frosting, frosting recipes, cupcake frosting, small batch frosting, small batch cream cheese frosting,