My Raspberry Buttercream recipe makes a fresh raspberry frosting that’s bursting with natural flavor and color. It pipes beautifully on cakes, cupcakes, macarons, and more. Recipe includes a how-to video!
Fresh Raspberry Frosting
Much like my strawberry frosting, this raspberry buttercream is bursting with fresh flavor and gorgeous color (no food coloring needed!). It’s the perfect blend of sweet and tart, and it pipes beautifully, similar to classic buttercream frosting. You’ll love it as a macaron filling or paired with my dark chocolate cupcakes for a stunning contrast of colors and flavors.
Today’s recipe starts on the stove with a homemade fresh raspberry sauce. We’ll cook the berries down to reduce their water content and intensify their flavor before straining, cooling, and blending them into buttercream.
This raspberry frosting isn’t complicated to make, but it does require some patience during the cooling process–so make sure to set aside some time for that!
Why use my raspberry buttercream recipe:
- Totally natural–no food coloring or artificial flavor needed!
- Not too sweet or too tart.
- Pipes beautifully (just look at those rosettes!).
- Easily doubles if needed.
What You Need
Just 6 ingredients come together to make this fresh raspberry frosting. Most importantly, you will need:
- Raspberries. I personally prefer to use fresh raspberries for the best results (easier to sample the flavor of the berries and you don’t have to cook off as much excess liquid). I do provide instructions for using frozen raspberries below, if you’d like to go that route.
- Lemon juice. Just a splash of lemon juice brings out the tartness of the berries and balances the sweetness of this raspberry frosting.
- Sugar. A bit of granulated sugar helps to macerate the berries to create a juicy sauce, and then we’ll use powdered sugar to create the buttercream itself.
- Butter. Use unsalted butter and make sure it is softened before starting. If you only have salted butter on hand, you can use that and just omit the salt.
I do NOT use vanilla extract in my raspberry buttercream because I found it bullied the fresh raspberry flavor a bit too much for my liking.
SAM’S TIP: If your frosting is too thick after adding your sauce, you can always add a splash of milk or heavy cream to thin it out. Conversely, if your frosting is too thin, a bit more powdered sugar should thicken it up.
Remember, this is just an overview of the ingredients I used and why. For the full recipe please scroll down to the bottom of the post!
How to Make Raspberry Frosting
This recipe starts on the stovetop where we’re making something like a raspberry jam. We’ll cook the berries and strain them, but if you like some texture feel free to add a few more seeds back in.
Cook the Berries
- Stir together the raspberries, lemon juice, sugar, and salt over medium heat, stirring frequently.
- Break the berries down with your spoon as they soften and release their juices.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking until the sauce is thickened.
- Pour through a fine mesh strainer, then let cool completely before adding it to the frosting.
Make the Buttercream
- Beat the butter until smooth and creamy.
- Gradually add the powdered sugar until combined.
- Add the raspberry sauce 1 tablespoon at a time until fully incorporated.
- Pipe or spread on cupcakes/cakes.
SAM’S TIP: Measure the strained raspberry sauce to make sure you have reduced it enough, otherwise your raspberry frosting will be too runny to pipe or spread onto your cake.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can use frozen raspberries to make this raspberry buttercream, but they tend to be less juicy than fresh raspberries. As a result, you may have to add a bit of water to the pot to keep the berries from burning.
My recipe makes enough raspberry frosting to cover a 9×13 cake or a 2 layer 8 or 9” cake, but it won’t be super thick and you won’t have enough to pipe pretty swirls on top.
You can also use this raspberry frosting to generously frost 12 cupcakes, or more modestly (think rosette decoration) swirl 18. If you like less frosting, you will be able to do 24, but it will be sparse.
You can certainly double the frosting if you want more, but just make sure you gradually add the sauce gradually or you risk curdling your raspberry buttercream.
The most likely cause for this is adding too much liquid, and the best cure for this is prevention. Measure your raspberry jam before adding it (to make sure it has thickened/reduced enough) and then make sure to add it gradually to the frosting so the buttercream has time to absorb it. Adding the jam while it is too warm can also cause this. If your buttercream breaks, you can try adding a bit more sugar or placing the bowl in the refrigerator for a bit before mixing it again.
I can’t wait to hear how you use this raspberry buttercream!
Let’s bake together! I’ll be walking you through all the steps in my written recipe and video below! If you try this recipe, be sure to tag me on Instagram, and you can also find me on YouTube and Facebook
Raspberry Buttercream Frosting
- 1 cup (113 g) fresh raspberries 4 oz
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (226 g) unsalted butter softened
- 3 cups (375 g) powdered sugar
- Combine raspberries, sugar, lemon juice and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat.1 cup (113 g) fresh raspberries, 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar, 1 Tablespoon lemon juice, ⅛ teaspoon salt
- Cook, stirring frequently, until berries release their juices and berries are softened. Smoosh the berries with your spoon or spatula as you stir until berries are completely broken up.
- Reduce heat to a simmer and continue to cook, stirring constantly until mixture is thickened – the spoon or spatula should leave trails in the sauce.
- Set a fine mesh strainer over a heatproof bowl and pour raspberry sauce through the strainer. Use a spatula to stir the mixture to encourage as much juice through the strainer as possible.
- Discard the seeds caught in the strainer. I recommend measuring the sauce, you should have 3 ½-4 Tablespoons after straining. If you have significantly more than this you may not have reduced your raspberry sauce enough and should return it to the saucepan to thicken a bit longer.
- Allow sauce to cool completely before proceeding.
- Once sauce has cooled, place butter in a large bowl and use an electric mixer to beat until smooth and creamy.1 cup (226 g) unsalted butter
- Gradually add powdered sugar until completely combined.3 cups (375 g) powdered sugar
- Add raspberry sauce gradually, about 1 Tablespoon at a time and stirring until completely combined.
- Use frosting as desired.
Storing/making in advanceThe raspberry sauce may be made up to 3 days in advance, just store in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use. The frosting may also be made up to 5 days in advance, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature and stir again before using.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.
Sam – so excited to see this recipe and plan to try it right away. I have a question and would value your thoughts: what do you think about using freeze dried raspberries? If I used them would I rehydrate and then follow instructions to reduce them strain them? Or could I grind them to powder, strain the seeds out and just add to buttercream perhaps adding water to make a loose paste?
Thanks for bringing such wonderful recipes to us!
Hi Margie! I haven’t tried using freeze dried raspberries so it’s tough for me say exactly how it would need to be done. If you do try it, I would love to know how it goes. 🙂
This frosting is delicious! I found it in December on the dark chocolate cupcake recipe and made it for my daughter’s birthday party. She loved it!
I’m so glad everyone enjoyed it so much, Miriam! 🙂