lemon frosting in white bowl on teal background

Easy 4 ingredient lemon buttercream frosting is a dessert staple to pair with lemon cake, white cupcakes, strawberry cake or homemade sugar cookie bars! Make lemon frosting in one bowl in under 10 minutes.

I am a chocolate girl, through and through. But once the weather warms up, my soul craves lemon.

We’re sharing another dessert staple today!

Lemon frosting with fresh lemon juice is an essential recipe for a baker! It pairs well with so many cakes and cupcakes – further down in the post I’ll be sharing my recommendations.

Lemon buttercream is incredibly easy to make and most likely you have all the ingredients on hand already.

close up of lemon frosting with lemon zest with text overlay

What is Buttercream?

Buttercream is a type of frosting that calls for creaming butter and powdered sugar together to make a fluffy frosting.

Buttercream is the typical frosting that you see paired with cakes and cupcakes.

How to Make Lemon Buttercream Frosting

  1. Place room temperature unsalted butter in a mixing bowl.
  2. Use an electric mixer on medium and beat the butter for 1-2 minutes, until whipped and fluffy.
  3. Add in the powdered sugar and fresh lemon juice, beat again on low for 1-2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until everything is incorporated.

If the frosting is too thick, add a splash more lemon juice, beat until creamy.

how to make lemon frosting collage

What to Pair with Lemon Frosting

My Lemon Frosting Looks Curdled, Help!

Lemon frosting can look curdled if you add too much lemon juice or if the ingredients are too cold.

To fix curdled lemon frosting, start by adding 1/4 cup powdered sugar to the frosting and beat with a mixer. If the frosting still looks curdled, add an additional 1/4 cup powdered sugar.

You can also place the frosting in a warm place (near window) for 10 minutes, then mix again with mixer.

lemon frosting in clear mixing bowl with electric mixer

Tips for Making Lemon Buttercream

  • Use room temperature butter because it whips more easily and produces a fluffier frosting
  • Use fresh lemon juice
  • This recipe makes enough frosting to frost a 9×13 inch cake, a two layer 8 inch cake or 24 cupcakes
  • Add a drop of yellow food coloring for a bright lemon colored frosting

Is Lemon Frosting Gluten Free?

Yes!!

lemon frosting on metal spatula with lemon slice with text overlay

Does Lemon Frosting Need to be Refrigerated? How Long Does Lemon Frosting Keep?

You can store frosting in a sealed container on the counter for up to 2 days.

However, you can store frosting in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Before using, place the frosting on the counter and allow it to come to room temperature. Give it a quick whip with an electric mixer before using.

Why Do I Have Air Bubbles in My Frosting and How Can I Get Rid of Them?

Air bubbles form when whipping the frosting, which is a necessary step in making buttercream! But you can reduce the amount of air bubbles by beating the frosting on low speed for a minute or by hand mixing the frosting. You are essentially pushing out the air bubbles.

lemon frosting in white bowl on teal background


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Lemon Frosting

Lemon Frosting

Yield: 2-3 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Easy 4 ingredient lemon buttercream frosting is a dessert staple to pair with lemon cake, white cupcakes, strawberry cake or homemade sugar cookie bars! Make lemon frosting in one bowl in under 10 minutes. 

Ingredients

  • 3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 & 1/2 to 4 & 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • optional: zest of 1 lemon

Instructions

  1. Place room temperature unsalted butter in a mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer on medium-low and beat the butter for 1-2 minutes, until whipped and fluffy.
  2. Add in the powdered sugar and fresh lemon juice (and lemon zest if desired), beat again on low for 1-2 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until everything is incorporated.
  3. If the frosting is too thick, add a splash more lemon juice, beat until creamy.
  4. Spread on cake or pipe onto cupcakes.

Notes

  • This recipe makes enough frosting to frost a 9x13 inch cake, a two layer 8 inch cake or 24 cupcakes. 
  • Add a drop of yellow food coloring for a bright lemon colored frosting. 
  • Does your lemon frosting look curdled? See the detailed notes in my post.
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