Bright, flavorful, and a gorgeous natural pink color, this fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting is super easy to make and pairs beautifully with a ton of different desserts and treats!
Looking for a bright and flavorful frosting made with fresh strawberries? Then look no further!
This strawberry version of classic cream cheese frosting is perfect for spring and summer.
what makes this frosting so good?
Fresh strawberries: perfect for strawberry szn! Also great for using up any strawberries you may have in the fridge that are on the verge of going bad
Juuust the right amount of cream cheese: I'm not a fan of overly cheesy cream cheese frosting - so this is just the right balance of tartness!
Silky & smooth: seriously so. creamy.
Easy to make: 3 steps total, and most of the work is just mixing!
fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting ingredients
• strawberries: duh!
• cream cheese: duh ... again
• butter: I like to add slightly more butter than a traditional cream cheese frosting recipe for a slightly firmer and more stable frosting
• salt: to balance the sweetness
• vanilla: for added flavor
• powdered sugar: for the main body of the frosting.
how to make fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting
1. Cook strawberries down to a thick paste. Cool completely before using!
2. Cream together butter and cream cheese to combine. There won't be much of a difference in terms of volume or fluffiness - you just need to get them well combined and lump free!
3. Add cooled strawberries and the remaining ingredients. Whip together until smooth and creamy.
Use to frost cakes, cupcakes, brownies, or whatever else you like!
Let the cooked strawberries cool completely before using! Seriouslyseriouslyseriously the most important step! Otherwise you'll have frosting soup. Really not great...
Sift your powdered sugar. It loves to get clumpy.
Don't skip the salt. It helps balance out all the sweetness! And if your frosting is too sweet for your taste, you can add some more to dull the sweetness.
Is this frosting the same consistency as buttercream? Can cream cheese frosting be piped?
Cream cheese frosting is not quite as fluffy and stiff, but it is much creamier than buttercream because of the cream cheese. For that reason, it's not as firm and pipe-able as buttercream.
You can pipe with this frosting, but the lines won't be as clean and sharp as piping detail done with buttercream frosting. Buuuuut that being said, here's a little tip to make cream cheese frosting firmer and more pipe-able:
While yes, you can add more powdered sugar to firm up the frosting, it's going to make it QUITE sweet. A better option that I love to do is chill the frosting for 30 to 60 minutes, or until firm enough to pipe bolder patterns!
Make sure to give the frosting a light mix every 15 or so minutes to make sure it cools evenly. If you leave the frosting in the fridge for too long, it will get very firm. If you happen to forget it, it's totally fine - just set it out at room temperature for a few minutes to resoften.
You can see in the photo below what the frosting is like right after it's made. You can create some cute soft swirls on top of a cake - but notice that the peaks of the swirls are on the softer side:
Can I use cream cheese spread instead of block cream cheese?
Nooo! Cream cheese sold in blocks is really the only cream cheese you should be using for baking / frostings (unless the recipe states otherwise). Cream cheese spread is too soft.
Can I use pureed strawberries instead of chopped?
Yes! Using pureed strawberries will give you less defined chunks of strawberry in the frosting. Use the same amount (1 cup) of puree if you prefer.
Can cream cheese frosting be colored?
I personally don't think this recipe really needs coloring because of the natural pink you get from the strawberries. That being said, if you want a stronger pink, feel free to add a few drops of gel food coloring until it reaches your desired shade!
I wouldn't recommend using liquid food coloring. It can water down the frosting.
Is cream cheese frosting good on chocolate cake?
I'd say a million times yesssss!! ESPECIALLY this strawberry cream cheese frosting. I mean strawberries + chocolate are a match made in heaven!
Can cream cheese frosting be left out?
No. Cream cheese frosting is not shelf stable and should not be left out for too long at room temperature. Generally you can leave it out for around 3 to 6 hours, but that depends on how hot your home is.
I would avoid leaving it out as best you can because it can spoil easily if not refrigerated.
Is cream cheese frosting sweet?
Cream cheese frosting is slightly less sweet than classic buttercream frosting, but it is still on the sweet side of things. It needs to be sweeter because the powdered sugar is what gives the frosting it's structure.
What recipes pair well with this frosting?
Check out these other recipes!
Fresh Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
- 1 cup chopped strawberries (about 140g)
- 4 ounces (115g) full-fat cream cheese block, room temperature
- 10 tablespoons (145g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 4 cups (520g) powdered sugar, sifted
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Add chopped strawberries to a medium sized skillet. Set over medium-high heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the strawberries soften and cook down into a thick paste. This takes about 5 to 10 minutes. It should measure about ¼ cup worth of strawberry paste after cooking.1 cup chopped strawberries
- Transfer the cooked strawberries to a plate or bowl, and set aside to cool completely to room temperature before using!
- In a large bowl, combine cream cheese and butter. Using a spatula or an electric mixer fitted with the beater attachment, cream together until well combined and smooth.4 ounces (115g) full-fat cream cheese block,, 10 tablespoons (145g) unsalted butter,
- Add the cooled strawberries, powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract to the cream cheese / butter mix. Mix together until well combined.4 cups (520g) powdered sugar,, ½ teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Use to frost cakes, cupcakes, brownies, or whatever else you like!