This is my five-ingredient cream cheese frosting that can be made in 5 minutes. I use a hand mixer to make this one, but if you use a stand mixer, it will come together a bit quicker.
I use a different technique to make my cream cheese frosting to ensure it has a super thick (non-runny) and creamy consistency that's great for intricate piping and smoothing onto cakes.
Texture-wise, this frosting is super creamy and has the most delicate crust when left out at room temperature. (The time will vary based on your climate, but it takes about an hour in my dry California kitchen.) The crust is similar to a Krispy Kreme donut glaze, if that makes sense.
This wouldn't be a Sugarologie recipe unless I messed with it to make it more stable. 😁 In most recipes, butter and cream cheese are mixed, then powdered sugar is added. Doing it this way, or treating the cream cheese like a solid fat, will give the frosting a looser texture. That's because we treat the cream cheese like a liquid (up to 60% water!), which is typically added at the end of frosting recipes. So that's what we do in my recipe.
So first, we combine the sugar with the butter to create something that looks like sugar cookie dough. Then we add the cream cheese to soften everything up. This works because we somewhat trap the sugar inside the butter, restricting its access to the water in cream cheese.
This buys us a little time, so we can pipe or frost with it, but eventually, as the frosting sits, the sugar will find its way to the water in the cream cheese, so it's best to use it immediately. You can then put your cake in the fridge (as with all other cream cheese frostings), and it should maintain its shape when you have to remove it a couple of hours before serving.
This recipe is also in the Cakeculator if you need a quantity greater than the 3 cup recipe I have down below. You can use the Cakeculator here.