If you are trying to decide which buttercream to choose for your cake, this should help. I’ve listed 4 options and each and every one of these deserves a spotlight.
Ever since I started decorating cakes back in 1989, I have used American Buttercream. It was and still is easy to make, inexpensive, and versatile in its use. ABC served useful for filling and frosting a cake and with different consistencies, it is perfect for piping stiff roses and other buttercream flowers. This buttercream is very easy to color using food gels and the flavor options are endless. From basic vanilla to sophisticated flavors like Mocha, it’s super easy to pair it with just about anything you can imagine. If this is all appealing to you, then this is a great choice for your cake. Its sweet flavor pairs well with just about any cake flavor. Now, this may all sound perfect and you’re ready to jump on the buttercream bandwagon but there is one downside to this creamy goodness and that is its sweetness. ABC, in my opinion, is the sweetest of all the buttercreams out there; I’m talking really sweet! I keep telling myself that I want to move away from traditional American Buttercream, but somehow I circle back around to it. Many people still prefer this buttercream so I still offer it as a choice.
Russian Buttercream is a lovely choice because it’s super smooth and silky and only calls for 2 ingredients making this buttercream even easier to make than ABC. With only 2 ingredients, this is also the one buttercream that doesn’t require measuring cups and spoons, so the clean-up is a breeze. Russian Buttercream can take on flavors like chocolate, mocha, or caramel and its texture is light and fluffy making it really nice piped-on cupcakes like the ones pictured here by Bonnie Bakery. It has a medium consistency which is great for frosting a cake but that consistency does not do well for piping stiff roses or other buttercream flowers like the ABC above. If your preference lies in taste rather than piping, this is a great option.
Drum Roll, Pease!! My favorite buttercream is Swiss Meringue, hands down! Swiss meringue, which is similar to Italian Meringue buttercream is made with pasteurized egg whites and has the silkiest and smoothest texture of any other buttercream. The taste is so dreamy, your tastebuds will do a dance in your mouth. This is a very versatile buttercream in its use, from filling or frosting a cake to piping flowers and borders. It’s mildly sweet and filled with so much flavor. Swiss Meringue is very stable, even in high temperatures, and can be flavored or colored quite easily too. This buttercream is a gift from the buttercream gods. (Yeah! It’s THAT good!!!).
Ganache – a completely different playing field! Chocolate ganache, rich dark chocolate ganache, Oh how I love thee. Magic happens when this is being made. It’s 2 simple ingredients that are heaven on your tongue. Depending on the consistency, this can either fill a cake, frost a cake, pipe a cake, or drip a cake. The thick consistency of this ganache is what you’ll find in my glorious chocolate truffles. It’s rich, sweet, smooth, and silky and there is no way anyone can have a bite and not want more. A chocolate lover’s dream!