This 10-minute raspberry cream cheese frosting is a luscious blend of juicy raspberries and velvety cream cheese. It's sweet and tangy and adds a charming pretty pink blush to cakes, cookies, and cupcakes.
I created this raspberry buttercream recipe specifically for these tender raspberry cupcakes but there are so many other cake flavors that would benefit from its bright, fruity flavor and pretty pink color.
It pairs perfectly, of course, with a classic vanilla layer cake or gluten-free vanilla layer cake. Likewise for this champagne cake, which is practically begging to be bathed in a blanket of blushing pink buttercream.
But also, consider the effect of a swirl of light pink raspberry frosting on rich red velvet cupcakes. I cannot imagine a sweeter, more perfect Valentine's Day treat, can you?
For a classic white chocolate and raspberry combo, fill and frost the creamy white chocolate layers of this white forest cake instead of cherries and white chocolate ganache.
Or, swap out the blackberry buttercream on this 8-layer lemon cake with raspberry buttercream.
I think you see my point - this super quick juicy buttercream has about a thousand uses, all of them divine.
- Cream cheese. Use the real deal full-fat cream cheese for this frosting.
- Butter. I used salted butter but if you're sensitive to salt, use unsalted butter.
- Heavy cream. Just a couple of tablespoons of heavy cream makes this buttercream impossibly rich and creamy.
- Pure vanilla extract. Don't use imitation vanilla which can leave a slightly bitter aftertaste.
- Salt. Salt is often left out of frosting recipes, a fact that I find puzzling because salt brings out the flavor of anything it touches. It's just as essential in sweet foods as it is in savory foods. This recipe includes just ¼ teaspoon of salt which isn't enough to make the buttercream taste salty, but is enough to significantly boost the flavor.
- Powdered sugar. Aka, confectioners sugar.
- Raspberry jam. Using raspberry jam in this frosting instead of fresh raspberries imparts the maximum amount of raspberry flavor while keeping the consistency thick, creamy, and easy to pipe or spread. Fresh raspberries are delicious, but their high water content makes it very difficult to achieve a thick, cohesive cream cheese buttercream.
Variations and Substitutions
- Obviously, you can use this recipe to make any kind of berry or fruit-flavored cream cheese buttercream. Orange, strawberry, blackberry, huckleberry, plum, pineapple, or any other kind of jam will work to make whatever flavor of cream cheese buttercream you like.
- Swap the heavy cream for sour cream. In my favorite recipe for cream cheese buttercream, I include a bit of sour cream which increases the tang and creates an even creamier frosting. In this recipe, I opted for regular heavy cream instead of sour cream because I didn't want anything to compete with the raspberry flavor. BUT, feel free to substitute sour cream for the heavy cream in this recipe if that sounds good to you.
- For a softer, milder flavor, use mascarpone cheese instead of cream cheese. Mascarpone Frosting is a gorgeously light and creamy frosting with a more subtle flavor than cream cheese buttercream. In this recipe, swapping mascarpone for the cream cheese will create a lighter, slightly airier texture with a less tangy, and more buttery flavor.
- For raspberry almond flavor, add a teaspoon or so of almond extract or drizzle in some amaretto.
- For raspberry lemon or raspberry lime flavor, add some lemon or lime zest or a few drops of lemon oil or lime oil.
- For a more intense raspberry flavor, add a couple of tablespoons of Chambord raspberry liquor or raspberry extract.
Step-by-Step Photos and Instructions
Making this frosting is a super simple process that's basically two steps:
1. Beat the cream cheese, butter, heavy cream, vanilla, and salt until aerated and well combined, and then beat in about 3 cups of powdered sugar.
2. Beat in the raspberry jam then add as much more powdered sugar as you like to reach your desired consistency.
The amount of powdered sugar you add to this frosting is 100% up to you. The more you add, the stiffer the frosting will be. If you're going to be using the frosting to pipe a scalloped boarder or other decorations onto a cake, you'll want a stiffer frosting. If you plan to gently spread the frosting over a cake or cupcakes the buttercream can be softer.
For the raspberry cupcakes pictured here, I wanted the consistency to be just barely stiff enough to hold its shape when piped onto cupcakes. This amounted to a little over 4 cups of powdered sugar, but that amount can vary based on things like humidity in the room and how much liquid is in the raspberry jam you're using.
Start with 3 cups of powdered sugar then continue to beat in more, adding no more than ½ cup at a time, until it's as stiff or as soft as you want it to be.
Yes! Raspberry cream cheese frosting will keep well in the refrigerator for up to a week. It can also be frozen for up to 3 months. Store the frosting in an airtight container and allow it time to come to room temperature before using.
If the frosting has been refrigerated or frozen, it's a good idea to beat it for a couple of minutes with an electric mixer before using to bring back its light, airy, and consistently creamy texture.
Yes! Swap out the raspberry jam for any kind of jam you like. See the variations and substitutions section above for more flavor ideas!
This recipe makes about 4 cups of frosting which will give you enough to top 16 cupcakes with a generous swirl or frost and fill a two-layer 8 or 9-inch round cake. It's also more than enough frosting to cover a 13x9-inch sheet cake.
More recipes for raspberry lovers
If you give this recipe a try, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, or take a picture and tag it #ofbatteranddough on Instagram.
- 8 ounces (1 cup/ 227 grams) cream cheese, at room temperature
- 8 ounces (2 sticks/ 226 grams) butter, salted or unsalted, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon (14 grams) pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3-5 cups (340 grams - 567 grams) powdered/ confectioners sugar
- ½ cup (170 grams) raspberry jam
- Add the cream cheese, butter, heavy cream, vanilla, and salt to a mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium-high speed for about 3 minutes, until aerated and well combined.
- Add 3 cups (340 grams) of powdered sugar and beat on low just until the powdered sugar is incorporated, then on medium speed for another minute or so.
- Add the jam and beat until combined.
- Continue to add more powdered sugar, adding ½ cup at a time, until the frosting is at your desired consistency. Add more powdered sugar for stiffer frosting and less for softer frosting.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: ¼ cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 295Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 47mgSodium: 173mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 0gSugar: 32gProtein: 1g