Need to store leftover buttercream? Or simply want to make it ahead of time and save it for later? Discover how to freeze buttercream frosting so it’s creamy and delicious every time!
But sometimes, we make a bit too much. And if we don’t end up simply eating the extra buttercream (no judging, please!), we store it and save it for later. One of the best ways to do that is in the freezer.
Here’s how to to freeze buttercream — and how to thaw it out — so it’s as creamy and tasty as when you first made it.
How to freeze buttercream frosting
One of the great things about buttercream is that it’s pretty resilient. It can stay out at room temperature for a day or so just fine. And it can keep for up to a week in the fridge.
But if you need to save some for longer, your best option is to freeze it. Here’s how:
Step 1: Place the frosting in an airtight container or freezer bag, removing as much air as possible.
Step 2: Seal it tightly to prevent freezer burn or ice crystals from forming on the frosting during the freezing process. That can allow liquid to seep into it later and thin it out, which you don’t want.
Step 3: Place it on a flat surface in the freezer away from other foods with strong odors, like seafood. If you use a plastic bag, be sure not to place anything on top.
Properly frozen buttercream frosting will last for up to 3 months. You can still use it after that, but you may notice some reduction in taste and texture.
👉🏼 Related: Can You Freeze Decorated Sugar Cookies?
How to soften buttercream
When you’re ready to thaw out your frozen icing, transfer it from the freezer to your fridge and let it defrost overnight. The next day, bring it to room temperature by letting it rest on a kitchen counter for an hour or so.
Once it’s at room temp, it’s a good idea to re-whip it before you frost anything, to help it regain its original texture. Do this by simply moving it to a mixing bowl and giving it a good whisk.
How long will buttercream last at room temperature?
If you have a bit of extra frosting left over, you can safely store it at room temperature for 2 days. The same goes for a cake or cupcake frosted with buttercream.
For best results, simply place the frosting in an airtight container. If you have it in a piping bag, make sure the bag is sealed. You can also place the bag in a tall glass to catch any frosting that may leak out. Keep the buttercream in a cool, dry place like a pantry.
Cover buttercream-frosted baked goods with a layer of plastic wrap, saran wrap, or aluminum foil at room temperature to help keep the frosting from drying out and cracking.
☀️ Note: if you live in a warm environment, you’ll likely want to refrigerate your buttercream, especially if your frosting uses all butter, as it may melt if left out.
How to store buttercream frosting in the fridge
If you need to save leftover frosting for more than a couple of days, the best way to do it is by keeping it in the fridge. This is also a good storage option if you want to make your frosting a few days ahead of time.
Just place the buttercream in a tightly sealed plastic container or glass food container. Then store it away from other foods in the fridge that mayhave strong odors. Buttercream will last for up to 7 days in the refrigerator.
👉🏼 Related: How Long Does Cake Last in the Fridge?
Once you’re ready to use the frosting, take it out of the refrigerator and bring it to room temperature. Then whisk it in a stand mixer until it’s light and fluffy again.
Royal icing on its own does not freeze well. If you’re making royal icing to decorate cookies, your best option is to ice your cookies, and then freeze them instead. Just make sure to let them dry completely first so the decorations don’t crack or run. Sugar cookies or other treats decorated with royal icing can last for 3-6 months in the freezer.