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That’s the Best Frosting I’ve Ever Had

Posted by in Baking, Step-by-Step Recipes

I’ve been intrigued with this frosting recipe for months, not just because of its alluring title, but also because if its ingredients. Five tablespoons of flour? In frosting? Let’s just say my interest was piqued.

I finally got around to making it yesterday evening; Marlboro Man’s grandmother has some old friends staying at The Lodge and I wanted to take them a treat. So I whipped up this frosting, slapped it on some chocolate cupcakes…and wound up considering not sharing them with the guests because it was so delicious.

You owe it to yourself to make this frosting sometime in your life.

You’ll just have to trust me on this.

Here’s how you make it:


First things first: I made chocolate sheet cake cupcakes. They’re the best cupcakes around.

Here’s the recipe:

The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake (or Cupcakes!) Ever

Let your cupcakes (or cake) cool completely.



Begin by pouring 5 tablespoons of flour into 1 cup of milk. I used whole milk because I can if I want.



After adding the flour, whisk it together until combined, then place the saucepan over medium heat. Whisk it as it heats up and thickens, and stop when the mixture is very thick.

Cool the mixture completely.




The mixture will be very, very thick.



Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla to the cooled flour/milk mixture.




Stir it around to combine.





Pour one cup of sugar into a bowl with one cup of butter.



Whip it around until it’s light and fluffy, scraping the bowl once or twice to make sure it’s all mixed well.



Add the cooled flour/milk/vanilla mixture. Make sure it’s not the least bit warm!

I’m bossy. Sorry.



Next, just whip it on medium-high until the mixture resembled whipped cream.



This was slightly tricky for me, as I was afraid of overbeating the mixture and causing everything to start breaking down and falling apart. I’d say this is about 45 seconds of pretty hard beating.



And then it was time for the rubber to meet the road.





This was spread with a big spatula…



This was spread with a dinner knife. The frosting definitely has a whipped cream consistency; it’s not thick like a decorator icing.



Before I allowed myself to taste it, I made some sprinkled ones for my punks.





This makes for a crunchy cupcake!


And now…for the moment of truth.


THE VERDICT: Okay. Let me just explain something to you. After I took this bite, I looked around for the hidden camera. I was certain someone was playing a trick on me. This frosting is so UNBELIEVABLY divine, I almost couldn’t believe what was happening to me. The consistency is light, the flavor indescribably delicious, and a perfect complement to the rich chocolate cake. And don’t just take my word for it—after my daughter took her first bite, she looked at me and said “WHAT is this FROSTING?”

Even she knew she was in the presence of greatness.

Here’s the frosting recipe:

That’s the Best Frosting I’ve Ever Had

Note: I would probably recommend making the frosting on the same day you intend to serve it.

Thank you to MissyDew for sharing such a great recipe!



Comments are closed for this recipe.

Annie Rae on 3.27.2010

Ok, I really wanted this to turn out well, because Ree said it was sooo wonderful, and everthing of hers I’ve ever cooked has been unspeakably delish, but it took a couple of tries to get it “right”. This is what worked for me…and it’s just my 2cents worth…

First, completely whisk the flour into the milk before you put it over heat. Whole milk works better than 2%. Continuously whisk while it heats, don’t blink, it thickens fast. When I put the vanilla in I wisked again to make sure there were no flour lumps.

Make sure the butter is room temp, softening in the microwave didn’t work, it made the edges melty,and it’s cold here, so this took some doing. I ended up in the bathroom with a space heater…seriously….soft by not liquidy

Cream the butter and sugar and test it … make sure the sugar is dissolved, not grainy before adding the four mixture. Then switch to the whisk attachment on the mixer. Over mixing causes it break down and look curdly.

Sorry I’m making up words…but I figure yah’ll will know what I mean.

1 batch I used almond extract instead of vanilla….that was pretty yummy too, but not as pretty as the vanilla, which gives ever the slightest color to the icing….

And then it was so good I gasped, and my chihuahua barked at me.

Chris Morris on 3.27.2010

Am I the first person to have overcooked the flour and milk? It thickened up super fast and now I have lumpy frosting….I may stick with butter cream.

Amy W. on 3.27.2010

I just made this today and it taste delicious! Not overly sweet, which I love. One thing that I that I did, but caught myself on was that I put 1 cup of sugar in the bowl then 1 stick of butter instead of 2 sticks (to equal the 1 cup of butter). I realized my mistake then put the other stick in. Just wanted to throw that out there incase that is where anyone else may have gone wrong.
Also I had to beat it more than 45 secs.

Caitlin on 3.27.2010

Okay, I TOTALLY messed this one up. At first I thought I thickened the roux too much, but mine was the consistency of mashed potatoes, and others commenting here said that was okay. Maybe I didn’t cool the roux enough before adding it to the sugar/butter. Or maybe I didn’t cream the sugar/butter thoroughly enough? Maybe the butter was too warm?! Whatever it was, this just would not thicken up. I beat it with a handheld mixer for about 10 minutes, but it stayed soft and liquid-y. And there were gelatinous bits of flour in the frosting. Bummer. At least the cupcakes were still good!

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hollyglen on 3.26.2010

I made this yesterday and, like many other posters, it looked curdled to me. I kept thinking – it looks separated or broken. I thought I whipped the heck out of it, but maybe not enough? And the flour mixture was REALLY thick but also had tiny lumps, not really noticable in the final frosting, but still. I will try it again – never made a Ree suggestion that hasn’t been great – but I wouldn’t plan on serving it to company until I do another test-run.

Diane on 3.25.2010

I made these tonight. The cupcakes were amazing. The frosting, well…not so much. Mine never got to the whipped cream consistency. Not sure what happened. It tasted good, but was runny and grainy textured. I can make a mean buttercream, but this just didn’t work. It is a little humid here today in the South…maybe that’s it.

Ramona Owen on 3.25.2010

Thank you so much for sharing. This is the recipe that my Great Aunt used to frost Red Velvet Cake. As far as I am concerned….it is the most delicious frosting in the world.

Have a wonderful day.

Smiles ~ Ramona

Vicki Madden on 3.25.2010

Some recipies you just have to try and I’m trying this icing with “theprovidentwoman’s” Red Velvet Cake. Sounded so good together!! I’ll let you know if it lasted more than one night! We have a large family!!

B on 3.24.2010

My father has made this for many years. It is by far the best frosting I have ever had. The bowl is never safe.. everyone would attack it before the cake was frosted.

Meg on 3.24.2010

I saw this (or a very similar recipe) in one of my mum’s cookbooks almost twenty years ago and have wanted to make it ever since…. Finally this Christmas I made it to put on a birthday cake, but the request was specifically for chocolate icing. I sifted a tablespoon of cocoa powder into the milk/pudding mixture (before cooking), and melted several ounces of semisweet chocolate, cooled it, then beat it into the butter/sugar before adding the pudding. I believe I added a bit of vanilla, because chocolate with vanilla is … actually, there isn’t a word for what magic vanilla does to chocolate.

The frosting was ridiculously rich but surprisingly airy and fluffy too. I’m going to try this plain vanilla version: in fact, I’m going to make it tomorrow – though I think I’ll have to make cupcakes to justify it. I’m glad you shone a spotlight on this insanely delicious icing!

Lee on 3.24.2010

Did anyone have an issue with this frosting looking curdled? The flavor was wonderful, and the texture in my mouth felt like whipped cream.. but to look at it, it didn’t look all that appetizing. Any suggestions? Perhaps I needed to whip it longer?

christine on 3.23.2010

I made six dozen cupcakes this weekend and needed a great frosting recipe for them. This was definitely it. What a great frosting!

I made one batch of frosting following the recipe exactly, which was heaven on the chocolate cupcakes.

I then made another batch adding 3 tablespoons of Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon. Divine on yellow cake cupcakes.

Thanks for sharing this recipe.

Jo on 3.23.2010

Jessica K:

Definitely not, although I have not found a cake flavor that it was not good on either. It is so good that, as others have said, you can eat it alone with a spoon. I’ve used it as topping for pies, jello (plain & jello salads, a dollop in a cup of hot chocolate, kahula & milk, and I could go on and on. Bottom line, I basically have used it for anything/everything that I would use whipping cream on or in. When fixed right, it is THAT GOOD!


Jessica K on 3.23.2010

SOOOO….Do you HAVE to make a cake to put it on? Just askin’.

Jo on 3.23.2010

For Michelle:

I’ve been using my hand held mixer to make mine frosting for many, many years and it works fine. As Emily said, you do use real butter, get the flour mixture thick enough and cold enough and get the butter/sugar creamed thoroughly and some patience when whipping the two mixtures together.


Emily on 3.23.2010

p.s. I made mine with butter as the recipe suggested and I didn’t have any issues. I think it’s important to get your flour mixture thick enough, to let it cool adequately, and to not overbeat. Just my two cents!

Emily on 3.23.2010

I made this frosting, along with the Chocolate/Texas Sheet Cake and they were both amazing! Actually the combination kind of reminded me of gobs, which we had growing up in western Pennsylvania. Do you guys have gobs in your neck of the woods?

Angel on 3.23.2010

I made this icing this weekend for the middle and undercoat of a fondant decorated cake. DEE-LICIOUS. Thanks!

Michelle on 3.23.2010

I made this frosting (and Ree’s chcoloate sheet cake) last night for the Mister’s birthday and it did not quite turn out the way I expected. Maybe you need a standup mixer to whip it jsut right? I was using a hand-hald mixer and beat the frosting for a good 10 minutes but it was STILL separating! It did not look good, but it tasted OK, so I used it. Ugh. I really need to win one of your Kitchen Aid contests, Ree!!

Amy on 3.22.2010

This is the ONLY frosting I like on Red Velvet Cake! I request it every year for my birthday but it seems that people only know about cheesecake frosting for the famous Red Velvet Cake! I don’t even like the cake unless it has the creamy frosting on it!! It’s absolutely the best!! Matter of fact…it’s high time I post my original recipe card on my web site! May have to make me a cake too!! YUM!!

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Marie on 3.22.2010

I made this frosting for my classmate’s birthday together with the Hershey’s perfectly chocolatey cupcake. I added 1 teaspoon of coffee dissolved in 1 tsp water. It was SOOO GOOD! Now my other classmates pay me for my cupcakes.

Shirley on 3.22.2010

I was given this receipe in the 50’s by a friend I worked with at the time in Los Angeles and when I moved to the Northwest I lost it, thank you very much for posting it. It’s exactly the same.

Sarah on 3.22.2010

For me, this frosting separated almost instantly! But after some searching online and one particular commenter said their Grandmother would say, “ya gotta beat the hell out of it!” and that it may look curdled in the beginning, I was able to save it. Thank goodness I found that before I had washed it down the drain! I beat it about 10 minutes and it recovered. I’m not sure it was quite like PW’s, but next time I’ll beat the butter and sugar better and try her 45 seconds. LOL!

Monica Ingle on 3.22.2010

Dang,it didn’t turn out right!Is that why I didn’t like it as much as plain old buttercream?I guess I’m picky!

Kendra on 3.22.2010

I totally screwed up this frosting! I didn’t let the flour mixture get thick enough, and I put it in the butter mixture when it was still just barely warm….disastrous.

Michelle on 3.21.2010

I just made this frosting and it’s very delicious…BUT I ended up with little lumps from the flour and milk. So any suggestions on what to do differently next time, because there will be a next time!

Amanda Jones on 3.21.2010

I made this and oh my GOD!!!!! Amazing. Even more amazing if made with Ree’s chocolate cake recipe. Seriously, go and make this immediately!

Angie on 3.21.2010

I use this for red velvet cake too. It is definitely the most wonderful stuff ever created. Better than chocolate, and that’s saying a lot!

Linda on 3.21.2010

To ensure this frosting has the volume and consistancy of whipped cream you must cook and stir the flour/milk mixture til it is properly thickened to the consistancy of mashed potatoes. Place in a bowl, cover w/saran and refrigerate while you continue recipe.

It’s best to use at least part Crisco for the shortening. Whip butter and Crisco for 4-5 minutes til really light and fluffy. Once the flour/milk mixture is totally cooled to room temperature, beat into shortening mixture one tablespoon at a time combining well.

If you wish, you can whirl the granulated sugar in the processor to give it a finer texture, then add to the butter 1/4 cup at a time, beating well each time. Add vanilla and you should have a frosting that looks and tastes like whipped cream.

The key is cooking to a THICK paste, and whipping enough air into mixture at each step.

Linda on 3.21.2010

My mother often used this recipe when I was young. We knew it as “Poor Man’s Whipped Cream.”

Bonnie on 3.21.2010

I tried the frosting today on a chocolate cake . It was delicious. I’m glad Ree posted it. My grandmother used to make it and, I forgot about it. Thank You

marywether on 3.21.2010

Hmm, in reading some of the comments, maybe the problem was that I had started off with cold-ish butter. And that you need to use room temp butter.

But I had read someone else’s comment that said that they used room temp butter, but that it was too warm.

So go figure.

marywether on 3.21.2010

Hmmm, maybe I had overbeaten it or something. But at 45 seconds, mine did not look ANYTHING like the picture, so I kept beating it. But it never really amounted to anything good. :-(

So I had to supplement it with powdered sugar, and then it came out alright.

I think I’d better stay with my buttercream frosting recipe, because I can’t figure out where I went wrong with this one.

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plantgirl on 3.21.2010

Well..just did the cupcake/sheetcake recipe with this frosting. Verdict? Scrumpddiddlyicous!!!!!!

Kendal Smiley on 3.21.2010

so my mom made this icing in the morning and she said it turned out great. When I came home in the evening, it was curdling!! no one could figure out why but then i tasted it and it tasted sour! she then told me, “yea maybe i might have used the old milk, i thought it would be okay!” haha. we had to remake the batch with fresh and it then it tasted great! :D

Cathy Lundin on 3.21.2010

This is the same receipe that my mom used to make when I was a kid (which was a very long time ago!) & I still make today,it’s delicious! Except that, she did put it on chocolate cake but she also made a chocolate fudge drizzle she put on top that, to die for!

Teresa on 3.21.2010

A cooked “butter roux” frosting was traditional for Red Velvet Cake before we began putting Cream Cheese Frosting on everything. Many of you reading this are too young to remember the days before CCF! It’s a bit more trouble to make, but this recipe produces a light, fluffy delicately flavored frosting that enhances the flavor of simple cake. Cream cheese frosting is heavy and it’s pronounced flavor competes with most simple cakes. Save it for heavy, spiced cakes such as Carrot Cake, Hummingbird Cake, etc.

Lana on 3.21.2010

I put this on cupcakes (Ree’s chocolate sheet cake recipe). Everyone agreed it tasted so much better the second day. The cake was more moist and the frosting tasted less like flour.

Carla Robinson on 3.21.2010

Very similar to a recipe I got from my grandmother. It was typically what they would use for frosting, as regular sugar was something they would have on hand more so than icing sugar.

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lotzodotz on 3.21.2010

I made this yesterday for a two layer chocolate cake. It was really delicious. I doubled the recipe and that was a bit too much. I have some left over in the refrigerator, I will try very hard not to eat it by the spoonful.
It does not yield a perfectly smooth frosted cake, but who cares it is so good!
I will make this again and again!

Angel Wheeler on 3.21.2010

I made your chocolate sheet cake, topped it with this frosting and it was yum-o. But try this, sprinkle just a tad, just an inkling, not too much, of instant espresso powder on top for a different kick.

Margaret on 3.21.2010

I’ve been using this recipe for years. It can be used to make filled cupcakes by injecting it into cupcakes with a Bismark tip on a pastry bag. Also this recipe makes a great flavored cream filling between layers of a layer cake (add liquid flavoring or better yet jam or jelly of your choice.) I have tinkered with this recipe to make it into a chocolate frosting for my cakes.

Deborah Klenke on 3.21.2010

I’ve been using that recipe for over 30 years with my red velvet cake. It was passed down from my husband’s grandmother.

kidkopf on 3.20.2010

Family watching movie upstairs, me down in the kitchen “cleaning up” — really just couldn’t wait to have a reason to make this frosting! Oh my oh my, it is the best stuff! I don’t even have any cake.I just frosted it onto a graham cracker and had at it! {Contented sigh!} Thanks, Ree!

Judy on 3.20.2010

This is called what my mother called “flour frosting” and has been the classic frosting on my “birthday” red velvet cake since forever. I LOVE THIS FROSTING!!!

Will on 3.20.2010

This is the basic recipe for the frosting I use on Red Velvet cake. I think cream cheese frosting on a Red Velvet is sacrilege, this is the recipe. It’s so delicious, you are correct!

maggie on 3.20.2010

This frosting was awesome! I was a little freaked out by the use of flour, but everyone loved it, including my daughter who hates frosting (I know, she’s weird). I will never make another frosting again. (except maybe cream cheese frosting)

Joy on 3.20.2010

Ok, I tried this frosting. It separated & looked really awful. What did I do wrong???? I was so sad & the cupcakes looked so lonely. so I made chocolate frosting instead. They were still delish.

Jillian on 3.20.2010

OMG this is the frosting i put on red velvet cake! it’s so much better and does not over power the flavor of the red velvet the way cream cheese does.

i’m so glad someone else has heard of it <3

Luna on 3.20.2010

This delicious white frosting has been a favorite of mine for 20+ years,
the frosting from a red velvet cake recipe – the best cake EVER!
A similar version is used in my “Amish whoopie pie” recipe too.