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Piping buttercream on thick

psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 12:47 PM

I'd like to know how to pipe buttercream in a thick swirl (2-3 turns, ~1 inch high) so that it doesn't fall.

When I try the buttercream just starts to fall and turns in to one big glob of icing. Do I have to make the buttercream thicker? It is just the temperature?

I've attached a picture as an example (courtesy of http://ourkitchen.fisherpaykel.com/re...



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  1. sunshine842 RE: psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 01:07 PM

    sounds like your buttercream is too thin.

    1. splatgirl RE: psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 01:44 PM

      That might not even be "turns" as you put it. I think it looks like it was done with a fat round tip and more of a bloop, bloop, bloop, raising and lowering the tip/bag while squeezing out the buttercream all in the center of the surface. Hopefully that makes sense. The way DQ puts ice cream on a cone.
      If you are doing it by making circles with the bag, IME it works best to do the outside bottom ring, then go fill in and sort of stack up the middle a little and move to a couple more rings on the outside. That way you don't end up with a hollow center.

      +1 for stiffer buttercream.

      1. chowser RE: psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 01:52 PM

        I agree that your frosting could be too thin and you also want to build up in the middle. I was going to try to describe it and decided a video would be more helpful.


        2 Replies
        1. re: chowser
          biondanonima RE: chowser Aug 23, 2012 02:09 PM

          YES! This is exactly what I was trying to describe below - thank goodness for Youtube!

          1. re: biondanonima
            chowser RE: biondanonima Aug 23, 2012 02:29 PM

            I know==I started to describe it and then thought that there must be a video of it somewhere.

        2. biondanonima RE: psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 01:56 PM

          Definitely stiffer buttercream (and keep it cold), but you may also not be using the right tip or technique. That looks to me like it was done not with the technique that splatgirl described, but with an actual spiral using a very large round tip. There may also be a small "mountain" of icing underneath the spiral to keep it from collapsing - you just pipe a mountain with the large tip right in the center and then build the spiral around it.

          1. r
            rasputina RE: psyko514 Aug 23, 2012 10:00 PM

            And now I want to make cupcakes LOL

            1. c
              chrishel RE: psyko514 Aug 24, 2012 07:45 AM

              You might also want to use half shortening (Crisco) and half butter rather than all butter to get stiffer icing that will stand up. Add a little butter flavoring if you want. I usually double the vanilla in my recipe. I suppose you could use butter flavored Crisco a well.

              I've found half shortening/half butter still tastes good and is a good compromise between frosting workability, taste, and texture.

              1 Reply
              1. re: chrishel
                biondanonima RE: chrishel Aug 24, 2012 08:37 AM

                If you make an American-style buttercream (butter, powdered sugar and a little milk), using half shortening will definitely make it stiffer, but any of the European-style buttercreams that use egg will be fine with straight butter. I never have trouble with all-butter American buttercream either - just be sure to keep it cold as you're working and don't add too much milk.

              2. Becca Porter RE: psyko514 Aug 24, 2012 08:17 AM

                I frost almost all of my cupcakes this way and I have never had to use shortening. Shortening frostings are for practice not eating, IMHO.

                The cooked flour frostings pipe and taste great.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Becca Porter
                  sandylc RE: Becca Porter Aug 24, 2012 09:40 AM

                  "I frost almost all of my cupcakes this way and I have never had to use shortening. Shortening frostings are for practice not eating, IMHO."


                2. p
                  psyko514 RE: psyko514 Aug 24, 2012 08:25 AM

                  Thanks for the tips so far, everyone! I'm looking forward to testing this out soon.

                  Becca, I'd never heard of flour frosting. I might give that a try too.


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