Brown Butter Frosting

LAST UPDATED: Aug 03, 2020 | PUBLISHED: Oct 05, 2015 | By: Julie Blanner

  Kick your cookies up a notch for fall with Brown Butter Frosting!  It uses just 3 staple ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes to make.

brown butter sugar cookies with brown butter frosting on a white serving plate

Brown Butter is one of my favorite fall ingredients. It enhances just about every dish – and even better, baked good!

So, I took my favorite sugar cookie buttercream icing recipe and adapted it with brown butter. It has a deeper, richer flavor and makes the perfect sugar cookie for fall!

Now all I can do is think about it! I could just eat the Brown Butter Frosting off of a spatula for days. You can slather it on cinnamon rolls, cookies, cakes or warm it to pour over scones and muffins. One bite and this Brown Butter Frosting recipe will be your favorite, too.

If you love the flavor of brown butter as much as I do, be sure to check out my Brown Butter MuffinsOatmeal Coconut Cookies with Brown Butter and Gooey Butter Cake with Brown Butter.

To Make Brown Butter Frosting, You Will Need:

  • Butter – You can use unsalted or salted butter to make this frosting, but it actually doesn’t make any noticeable difference to the flavor. I prefer to use unsalted as it is easier to avoid burning the butter.
  • Powdered Sugar – Also known as confectioners’ sugar. This sugar is super fine so it combines really well to create a wonderfully smooth frosting.
  • Milk – I like to use a full fat milk for the creamiest and richest frosting, but you ca use a lighter milk if you wish.

How to Make Brown Butter Frosting:

  1. Brown Butter – In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter until it turns golden in color and has a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and allow to cool 10-15 minutes. You can watch the video how to brown butter in this post for more details.
  2. Make Frosting – Pour butter into a large mixing bowl and gradually add in powdered sugar. Add milk and beat until smooth and slather onto your favorite baked goods!

brown butter frosting on top of cookies

Important FAQs

Why Brown Butter?

Browning butter creates such a wonderful flavor, and if you haven’t tried it before you really should! The milk solids brown and create a rich and nutty flavor that really elevates your baked goods.

Can You Burn Butter?

Yes you can! The butter is ready when lightly browned specks begin to form, and that’s when it’s ready to take off of the heat. It can go from browned to burnt pretty quickly so keep your eye on it. If you do burn it, you can pour the butter through a coffee filter and you should be good to use it.

How Long Does Homemade Frosting Keep?

This brown butter frosting is so quick and easy to make, I usually whip up a batch when my cookies or cakes are in the oven or cooling, so it’s ready to use straight away. If you have leftover frosting, it will keep in the fridge for two or three days, just keep it covered so it doesn’t harden. 

Tips

  • When you brown the butter, I find it’s best to use a light colored pan so you can see when the butter starts to brown and it’s less likely to burn.
  • Be sure to cool cookies and cakes before frosting them or you run the risk of it melting and sliding off.
  • If you prefer a runnier icing, add a little milk, a bit at a time, until you have the desired consistency.
  • The frosting can be frozen for up to 3 months in an airtight container. Thaw in the refrigerator and bring it up to room temperature before using.

More Frosting Recipes

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If you try this yummy brown butter frosting, please come back to share using my 5 star rating in the comments below! Not only do I appreciate it, but I know readers do, too!

Irresistible brown butter icing for cookies and cakes

Brown Butter Icing

Julie Blanner
Kick your cookies up a notch for fall with Brown Butter Frosting!  It uses just 3 staple ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes to make.
0 from 0 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 servings
Calories 126 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk or heavy cream

Instructions
 

  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter until it turns golden in color and has a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and allow to cool 10-15 minutes.
  • Pour butter into a large mixing bowl,and gradually add in powdered sugar. Add milk and beat until smooth.

Notes

  • When you brown the butter, I find it's best to use a light colored pan so you can see when the butter starts to brown and it's less likely to burn.
  • Be sure to cool cookies and cakes before frosting them or you run the risk of it melting and sliding off.
  • If you prefer a runnier icing, add a little milk, a bit at a time, until you have the desired consistency.
  • The frosting can be frozen for up to 3 months in an airtight container. Thaw in the refrigerator and bring it up to room temperature before using.

Nutrition

Calories:126kcalCarbohydrates:15gFat:7gSaturated Fat:4gCholesterol:20mgSodium:68mgPotassium:2mgSugar:14gVitamin A:235IUCalcium:3mg
Keywords brown butter frosting, brown butter icing, homemade frosting recipe
Did you Make This Recipe?Mention @JulieBlanner
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