Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

Browning your butter brings out a delicious nuttiness that elevates a basic frosting or icing. It’s a simple trick for creating a richer flavour without adding more ingredients. You can use this smooth frosting on all your favourite cake, cupcake, and cookie recipes. Sometimes a little extra nuttiness in the kitchen is a good thing!


approximately 3 cups


15 minutes + 10 minutes chilling time


5 minutes


  • ⅓ cup (76 g) butter (room temperature)
  • ½ cup (109 g) Redpath® Dark Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1 cup (227 g) brick-style cream cheese (room temperature)
  • 3 ½ cups (420 g) Redpath® Icing Sugar
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) lemon juice
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp (3 g) salt


In a small pot or pan, melt butter over medium heat. Swirl pan once the butter begins to melt and foam. Keep heating and swirling the butter until the milk solids on the bottom of the pan begin to brown, and the butter starts to turn a deep golden brown and become fragrant; about 5 minutes.

Once you notice a nutty aroma coming from the butter, watch carefully as the butter can quickly go from brown to burnt. Remove from heat and transfer contents to a heatproof bowl. Stir in the Redpath® Dark Brown Sugar until combined. Place into the fridge to cool; 10 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add the cooled browned butter/dark brown sugar mixture. Cream until mixture is smooth and fluffy; about 3 minutes.

Sift in the Redpath® Icing Sugar, about a cup at a time. Mix well after each addition starting at low speed and increasing to high once the sugar has been incorporated. Repeat until all the sugar is used. Beat in the lemon juice, vanilla extract, and salt until combined. Cream for an additional 3 to 5 minutes until frosting is smooth and aerated.

If frosting is too soft to pipe, place into the fridge for about 30 minutes to stiffen up.

Spread or pipe the browned butter cream cheese icing onto cookies, cupcakes, or cakes.

Frosting can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Bring frosting to room temperature and then beat until smooth and pipeable before using.

Piping browned butter frosting onto cookies



*The pot or pan used should be light coloured as this will help you determine how dark the butter is turning.

*Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature before proceeding.

*The brown sugar should be free of lumps before using. Break down any lumps that the sugar may have before adding to the recipe.

*If the browned bits from the butter are not desired, use a sieve and strain the hot butter into the heatproof bowl before cooling.