How To Ice A Cake

Learn how to make our signature Cream Cheese Frosting with various flavour adaptations and perfect your icing technique with our step by step guide.

Makes 1 batch


  • 200g Full Fat Cream Cheese
  • 400g Icing Sugar
  • 50g Unsalted Butter
  • Flavours:
  • Vanilla – seeds of ½ Vanilla Pod or ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • Raspberry or Blackcurrant – 50g Frozen Raspberry or Blackcurrant Purée thawed, or 100g Fresh or Frozen Raspberries or Blackcurrants
  • Coffee – 2 tbsp Instant Coffee, dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
  • Lemon – zest of 1 Unwaxed Lemon


If making raspberry or blackcurrant frosting from whole fruit, heat the fruit until the juices run, then blitz with a handheld blender. Boil until reduced by half, then pass it through a fine sieve to remove the seeds and leave to cool.

Put the cream cheese, icing sugar and any flavouring into a bowl and beat slowly with a handheld electric mixer until smooth. Put the butter in a small pan and soften over a very low heat so that it just disintegrates rather than becoming piping hot. With the hand mixer still on a slow speed, gradually pour the melted butter into the cream cheese mixture until it is completely combined, then whisk it briefly at a higher speed. If you’re happy with the consistency use it straight away. If the butter was too warm, the frosting may be a bit soft and will need chilling slightly first.


First spread a thin layer of frosting over the top and sides to bind the crumbs, using a palette knife. Chill the cake for 1 hour, then spread the rest of the frosting over the top and down the sides. If you use a cake turntable, give it a spin at the end with the tip of the palette knife pressed on to the top of the cake to create a spiral swirl. Place the cake in the fridge to set.