Last Updated on February 25, 2022
Today, we will be looking at the most effective ways how to store buttercream. This includes traditional recipes and meringue-based ones too.
Our fool-proof methods will help prevent the frostings from drying out or separating. And, we have even covered how to store buttercream cakes with fondant decorations!
What Is Buttercream? - How To Store Buttercream
Buttercream, more generally referred to as frosting or butter icing, is a type of garnish used as fillings or coatings for cake. They can however also be used to create beautiful and quiet elaborate decorated cakes.
This frosting mainly consists of softened butter and sugar, usually confectioners or powdered sugar. It can also be flavored using extracts and essences and is often colored with food-safe coloring powder or gel. This makes it an incredibly fun and handy decorative ingredient that is also tasty!
Buttercream is mostly made in one way. Butter and sugar are creamed together to create a light and fluffy mixture. The consistency can be adjusted by adding a tiny bit of liquid, usually milk or cream.
How to store buttercream? - How different types will be affected
Okay, now even though buttercream usually only refers to mixtures made with butter and sugar, there are different ways of making it. These different types of buttercream have different flavor profiles, consistencies, textures, and naturally, shelf life.
This is the quickest and easiest buttercream to make that requires the least amount of ingredients too. You only need butter (or margarine) and sugar.
Cream these two ingredients together for at least 10 minutes to create an airy and fluffy texture.
This type of buttercream contains a ton of sugar, usually twice as much as the butter amount. This means it is generally extremely sweet as compared to other varieties. But, the higher sugar content also means it has a longer shelf life and is more shelf-stable.
Swiss meringue buttercream
This buttercream is made using a Swiss-meringue. First, the granulated sugar and egg whites are beaten together to form a Swiss meringue. This meringue is then whipped with some softened butter to create the frosting.
Because this meringue contains eggs that aren't cooked, it is not only more hazardous to consume, but also has a much shorter shelf life.
An Italian meringue is much more stable and safer than a Swiss meringue. This is because it uses a hot sugar syrup instead of granulated sugar. When the sugar syrup is added to the beating egg whites, they essentially cook the eggs and create a stable product.
Then, the Italian meringue is whipped with the butter to create an uber fluffy frosting.
While Italian meringue still has eggs in them, they are cooked and will generally last longer than a Swiss buttercream, but shorter than a traditional one.
How To Store Buttercream Frosting?
There is only really one way to properly store any buttercream frosting and that is in the fridge. This applies to any and all types of frosting. Their shelf life will still vary, but this technique is the best to ensure they last as long as they possibly can!
First, place the buttercream frosting inside of an airtight container. Then, place the container inside of the fridge away from any other odorous foods like onions, garlic, curry, or stews. Also, make sure that the fridge has a stable temperature between 32-40°F (0-4°C).
Tips and tricks for how to store buttercream
- Make sure that the container you are using doesn't have any stains or odors. These will be absorbed by your buttercream or will stain it (especially if it is light in color).
- If you are planning on using the buttercream soon, you can also store it inside of a piping bag. Just cover the tip with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out.
- If you want to use your buttercream after it has been stored, you can simply use it as-is if the consistency is still fine. If the frosting has sat for a while, you can quickly re-whip it to bring back its fluffy texture.
Can I store buttercream in a ziploc bag?
Instead of using an airtight container, you can also store the buttercream inside of a ziploc bag. Any re-sealable plastic bag will work!
Just make sure that it is clean and creates an airtight seal. Otherwise, your buttercream will absorb roaming odors and will dry out inside of the fridge.
How To Store Buttercream Covered Cakes?
When you have decorated and covered your cake with buttercream, it essentially helps create a protective barrier. This barrier will help prevent the actual cake crumb from drying out in the fridge. However, your buttercream will to a certain extent dry out.
Luckily, there are also ways to prevent this. Depending on the size of your cake and the decorations you are using, you can cover the cake with saran or plastic wrap. Alternatively, you can place the entire cake in a cake dome or inside a large plastic container. Make sure the cake is stored in something that is relatively airtight.
How to store a buttercream cake with fondant decorations?
You can store a buttercream-covered cake with fondant decorations. But, there are some tricks involved. First, you have to cover the cake completely in buttercream and allow it to set (and dry out a bit), preferably overnight. This will help prevent the fondant decorations on top from getting soggy.
Then, add the decorations on at the last possible minute. Once decorated, you can cover the cake with plastic wrap, a cake dome, or a cake box and store it in a cool dry place. The fridge will make the fondant decorations soggy and sticky.
Final Thoughts - How To Store Buttercream?
This method of storing buttercream will ensure that all of the different types will last for as long as possible. Furthermore, it will help prevent them from drying out as much as possible. Feel free to share this informative guide with your fellow baking community!
How to store buttercream frosting?
Place the buttercream in an airtight container or Ziploc bag. Then, store it in the fridge for up to a week. Just ensure that the container is away from any strong odors and in a stable cold fridge.
How to store a buttercream cake with fondant decorations?
You should only place the fondant decorations on at the very last minute possible. This will help prevent them becoming instantly soggy. Once they are placed on the buttercream-covered cake, store the cake in an airtight cake dome, box, or container at room temperature.
Can I store buttercream in a Ziploc bag?
You can easily store buttercream frosting in a Ziploc bag. This will make prep so much easier as you can just cut off the tip and pipe the frosting onto the cake.
Can you fridge buttercream?
Not only is it possible to refrigerate buttercream, but it is actually highly recommended. This will help the perishable ingredient like butter and eggs from going off quicker than they have to.
Lindy Van Schalkwyk is a culinary specialist with a background in Advanced Cooking, Advanced Pâtisserie, Media Communications and Nutrition. She has gained invaluable experience in the culinary industry having worked in some of the top restaurants in Africa in 2016 and 2017. Her expertise in nutrition has enabled her to develop recipes for special dietary needs. In 2018, Lindy began working in the Food Media industry, focusing on recipe development, recipe writing, food writing and food styling.