the best lemon buttercream recipe for cakes and cupcakes

Best Lemon Buttercream Recipe (video)


If you’re looking for an amazing lemon frosting, this one is it! My best ever lemon buttercream recipe is so fluffy, creamy, zesty and tangy! Made with lemon zest, lemon extract and a bit of citric acid, which makes the buttercream zesty and sour! This recipe makes enough frosting for a three layer, 8-inch cake; two-layer, 9-inch cake; or 24 cupcakes. Make sure to check out the rest of my ‘Back to Cake Basics’ episodes for more cake and frosting recipes!

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How to Make Lemon Buttercream

This frosting recipe is so simple and so delicious! To make this recipe, I start with a basic buttercream base, then add the lemon flavors and color. When making any type of buttercream, the first step is preparing the butter. Allow the butter to soften at room temperature. The butter should be just slightly soft, not runny or melted! Whip the butter on its own for about 6 to 9 minutes on high speed, making sure all the butter is whipped. The butter should be fluffy, creamy and a pale creamy color.

Next, add in the confectioner’s sugar and start whisking on low speed first, then on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes, until the lemon frosting is fluffy. And now, you’re ready to add the flavors! Add in the extract, acid, zest and color and whisk for 1 minute until the flavors are well incorporated.

fluffy lemon buttercream recipe; lemon frosting


You’ll need a few supplies for this recipe. The lemon extract and yellow color is available at most stores, while the citric acid may be harder to find. Here are some products links (affiliate links):

  • Citric Acid – this is what makes sour candies, sour! Citric acid has the same texture as granulated sugar is a great option for this recipe because it makes this lemon buttercream sour and tangy.
  • Lemon Extract – add 1 to 2 teaspoons of lemon extract for more lemon flavor.
  • Lemon Zester – I love this zester and use it all the time for zesting lemons, limes or oranges.
  • Yellow Gel Food Coloring – I recommend using a concentrated gel food color for this frosting recipe.

piped lemon buttercream with lemon zest using ateco tip #847

Recipe Ideas

Want to enjoy this lemon buttercream? Here are a few recipes you can use this frosting with!

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The Best Lemon Buttercream video recipe


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