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Salted caramel filled spoon sitting in front of a caramel buttercream frosted vanilla cupcake.

Salted Caramel Frosting Recipe

This Salted Caramel Frosting recipe is simply perfect to top your favorite cake recipes. The sweetness of the buttercream is balanced with salty caramel goodness for a fantastic complement to your baked cakes.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Course: All Recipes, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: buttercream frosting, cake filling, caramel cake filling, caramel frosting, cupcake frosting, salted caramel, salted caramel frosting
Servings: 24
Calories: 225kcal


Salted Caramel Sauce

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter room temperature, cubed
  • cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Buttercream Frosting

  • 4 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1-2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ½ cup Salted Caramel Sauce from recipe above


Make the Salted Caramel

  • In a medium saucepan, heat sugar over medium heat, stirring constantly. Don’t worry when you see the sugar becoming clumpy. It will begin to melt into an amber colored liquid as you continue to heat and stir it. Keep an eye on it, as you don’t want it to burn.
  • Once sugar is completely melted, add in butter (be careful, it may splatter!) and whisk until fully incorporated.
  • Slowly drizzle in the heavy cream while stirring the mixture.
  • Boil for one minute then remove from the heat and stir in the salt. Set aside and allow to cool while you make the buttercream.

Make Buttercream

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment affixed, cream the butter on medium speed until smooth and shiny. With the mixer on low, add the powdered sugar one cup at a time then add the heavy cream, turning the mixer to high and mixing until light and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Turn the mixer off, add in the cooled salted caramel sauce (reserve a small amount to drizzle on top later) and beat on medium speed to combine evenly. Using a rubber spatula, spread the buttercream up against the sides of the bowl to break up any air bubbles (this makes for a smooth buttercream). Test to see if buttercream is the right consistency by sticking a rubber spatula straight down into the buttercream and pulling it straight out. If the frosting has a loose curl that flops over, it’s too loose; add up to ½ cup more powdered sugar, a couple of tablespoons at a time, beating well to combine and test again. If the frosting sticks straight up with no curl it’s too stiff; add 1 tablespoon more heavy cream then beat on medium speed until well combined and test again.
  • If the frosting has a slight curl to it, it’s ready. Spread the buttercream evenly over cooled cupcakes or cake, then drizzle the reserved salted caramel.


  • This recipe makes enough frosting to frost 24 standard size cupcakes or a 2-tier 8-inch cake.
  • Store prepared frosting in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Bring to room temperature and mix well with a rubber spatula before using
  • Frosting may be frozen in a freezer safe bag for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw to room temperature and mix well with a rubber spatula before using


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 225kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 0.5g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 29mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 18mg | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 353IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 0.03mg
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