Publix Buttercream Icing

Publix Buttercream Icing is known to be one of the best buttercream you can get in a grocery store. For years, people have requested a buttercream icing that tastes just like the one they use in Publix supermarkets. Everyone needs to have a dependable and good tasting icing in their personal library, because not all of us are fortunate enough to live in an area where we can go down to our local Publix and purchase some of their famous buttercream icing.

Buttercream icing that tastes like Publix
Image by Scrumptous photo

Publix Buttercream Icing

So when you want to make some buttercream icing, something flavorful that looks fabulous, this buttercream icing won’t let you down. By using both vegetable shortening and butter, you will have an icing that tastes wonderful, and will hold up in a warm room without loosing shape.

Buttercream icing is the perfect icing to use on most any flavor of cake. It doesn’t matter if you like chocolate cake, white cake, yellow cake, or even a red velvet cake—this is an icing that tastes good with any of those.

Want more tips on Buttercream Icing?

Buttercream Icing Made Easy
Making Buttercream icing for decorating

Publix Buttercream Icing

  • Author:
  • Recipe Type: Copycat Restaurant Recipes, CopyKat Recipes, Dessert Recipes, Featured
  • Prep time:10 minutes
  • Cook time:10 minutes
  • Serves: 1
Publix Buttercream Icing

Not everyone is fortunate enough to live near a Publix, but you can make frosting that tastes almost as good as theirs.


  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
  • 2 cups vegetable shortening (preferably Crisco)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon butter flavoring
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 tablespoon meringue powder
  • 2 pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon milk (optional)


Combine the butter, Crisco, and salt in a large bowl and beat on low speed for 5 minutes. Add the vanilla, butter flavor, and almond extract and beat until well blended. Turn off the mixer and add the meringue powder and half of the confectioners’ sugar. Mix on the slowest speed the mixer has. Mix in the remaining sugar 1/2 cup at a time, until all the sugar is mixed in. Turn the mixer up to medium and beat until smooth and creamy. This should take about 5 minutes. If the icing seems too thick to spread, beat in up to 1 tablespoon milk to loosen it.

Additional Notes

Meringue powder and butter flavoring can be found where cake decorating supplies are sold. The recipe can be made without these two ingredients, but the icing tastes better if you use the butter flavoring. And the icing with hold its shape better with the meringue powder.

I highly recommend sifting your confectioners’ sugar before using. Sifting eliminates those clumps that sometimes form in the confectioners’ sugar. Once you have sifted the confectioners’ sugar it blends together better than unsifted confectioners’ sugar. If you don’t have a sifter you can use a regular sieve, it works well.

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  • Mary Kastor

    Publix does not use homemade icing! I worked there for 2 months and saw what they were doing. It is premade Brill Vanilla icing they get delivered in 25 pound blocks. They put those blocks in their mixers, add water and corn syrup and beat for 10 minutes. Their cakes are prefrozen and come in cardboard boxes. As decorators, we were instructed NEVER to allow the public to see the boxes or the frosting blocks. We were told to take the cakes out of the boxes, put each cake on a cookie sheet on a rack and wheel it out front so it appeared to be fresh.

  • Lisa

    Delicious! This was the best buttercream I have ever made! I’m attaching a picture of the cake I made just to give you an idea of how much cake you can ice dThe bottom is a 9 in round with 3 layers. I mixed a lot of colors and tossed a ton of frosting out afterwards. It piped very well and held up in the Florida heat at an outdoor birthday party at a park. We were in a covered Pavillion, but that doesn’t do much for Florida heat in July! I used the Dream cake recipe on the side of the dream whip box with this frosting and there was seriously not a bite left on anyone’s plate. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that, even when I purchase a real Publix cake. Thank you so much for this recipe. I will use it from now on! It’s perfect!

    • stephaniemanley

      Thank you for letting me know how this worked out well for you. I wished I would have seen your photo. It is also good to hear how this holds up in warm humid heat, I know how the icing holds is very important. Thank you for giving the recipe a try. I bet your cake was lovely!

  • LuLu

    Thanks for the Publix Buttercream recipe tastes delish xo

    • stephaniemanley

      I am glad you enjoyed the Publix Buttercream icing. What are you going to make with it?

  • gmilor

    I want to use this recipe to decorate some cupcakes. How many cupcakes would I get out of this recipe?

    • stephaniemanley

      It would make a lot, a whole lot, maybe 50 to 75.

  • Georgia

    I just made this. It’s superb! Thank you!!!! Is there any way to make this chocolate?

    • stephaniemanley

      I haven’t done this in a chocolate form, but I believe if you add about 1/2 cup cocoa it should work well.

  • Nicole

    will this recipe still work well if you only have a hand mixer?

    • stephaniemanley

      Yes, it works.

  • Chrissi O’Callaghan

    Little confused… It is supposed to be 2 pounds or 2 sticks (which comes to 1 cup) of butter?

    • stephaniemanley

      It was 1/2 pound, therefore 2 sticks of butter.

  • Dani305

    The best ever!!!!!!

  • Guest

    How many cups of icinf with this recipe?

  • Mickeebabe

    Hi. Thanks for the recipe. Just one question; does this buttercream crust?

    • stephaniemanley

      This doesn’t not get a crust within the first 24 – 36 hours.

  • Tiffany Adkins Smith

    I also purchased their icing for comparison. This recipe is very good.

    • Stephanie

      Thanks Tiffany. I am glad to hear you thought the recipe was very good.

    • stephaniemanley

      Wonderful, I am so glad that you enjoyed the taste.

  • Tiffany Adkins Smith

    this is perfect! I left out the meringue powder only because I couldn’t find it, but I followed the directions, and this is the closest to publix bc I’ve found! Delicious!

    • Stephanie

      Thank you for your response. You can find the meringue powder at many craft stores.

    • stephaniemanley

      You can find this at many craft stores as well as stores that carry cake decorating supplies.

  • Tracy Henry Crews

    Just made this recipe for the first time. I’ve read several comments saying this isn’t at all like the Publix recipe. I disagree. Although not 100% the actual recipee a little stronger buttery taste than Publix, it does seem to be pretty darn close. I am very impressed. I will def be using this going forward. Thanks for shawring!

  • Cindy Hardy

    Do you know if there’s a difference in adding all butter instead of Crisco and butter. I can’t get my mouth watering mind around eating the Crisco:/

    • Stephanie Manley

      If you need it to take some heat the Crisco should be added.

  • Amanda

    Can you please add the Publix Chocolate Sheet Cake Recipe as well? My Gawwwd it is so good and I am miles from a Publix, like 60 miles from a Publix!

    • Stephanie

      I appreciate the suggestion. I will see what I can do.

  • Faw

    I used to decorate at Publix. From what I remember there was a lot of butter, but we added a giant block of white stuff, it was half shortening with a bunch of other crap in it. Also the layers for the birthday cakes come in frozen. If you want a yummy icing leave out the nasty shortening and make a classic buttercream or Italian meringue buttercream! Also, bake your own cake from scratch, fresh, no preservatives or artificial crap. :)

  • Angie Siegel

    I am looking for a good recipe for buttercream icing and everyone is raving about Publix. We do not have those in Missouri. So for the people below who worked there, who was the supplier of the icing? Dawn, Henry and Henry, Brill?

    • Karen Vaughn-Davis

      This is the best: Swiss Butter Cream icing I’ve ever tasted adn you can get the recipe at Woodland it’s
      6 egg whites
      1 1/2 cups sugar heated together in the top pf a double boiler and you mix it with your rubber gloved hand so you can tell when the granuals of sugar are melted and no longer gritty, this ensures it’s hot enough to kill any germs in the eggs like “slamonella” anyway once the sugar is clear, add it all to a stand mixer and beat on high until stiff peaks form, add one table spoon vanilla,*( Make sure it is cool to the touch before you add the butter) change paddles from whisk to paddle on your mixer, shake off the meringue, then add 2 cups of Powdered sugar, then add 2 cups of softened butter, and 3/4 cups “Sweetex” ( you will have to order that on the Internet, it is a high ratio fat shortening, or use Crisco… whip on medium speed until light and fluffy. the more you whip the lighter in color it becomes. I sometimes

      split up my vanilla flavoring, and use 1/4 tablespoon almond, 3/4 tablspoon Vanilla, or even subsitute butter flavorings I use the clear flavorings.

      • Stephanie Manley

        You can also buy the eggs that are already pasteurized. This would love the problem with possibly undercooked eggs. I honestly think that this is only a concern if you are feeding this to people with compromised immune systems.

  • Jessica

    How much chocolate would you add to this recipe if wanted a chocolate buttercream icing?

    • Karen Vaughn-Davis

      to make it a chocolate butter cream; add another tablespoon of flavoring and another cup of confectioners sugar, and one cup of cocoa. Because Chocolate is bitter, I add a little instant coffee powder, be careful to make it Not gritty , use a mortar and pestol to grind it into a soft powder before adding.

      • stephaniemanley

        Wow, you sound like you know what you are doing there, I will give your version a try. I would love to get out the mortar and pestle and try adding some coffee powder to the frosting. I can’t wait to give this a try.

        • Karen Vaughn-Davis

          Or you can buy the powdered Meringue by Wiltons, I buy it at Walmart and follow the directions on the can, add it straight to stand mixing bowl , then heat my sugar and water together and pour the hot liquid into the stand mixer and whip on high. saves yokes..

  • Mary Kay

    Sorry people, but this recipe does not even come close to Publix frosting…

  • Peachy82551

    Just made this frosting and it if so creamy and yummy, love it! This is the one i’m going to use from now on! Thank you!

  • cuppycake

    Meshelle, I worked for Publix for about two years as a baker, mixer, and decorator. Most of the time they just use Pillsbury white cake mix if they don’t have white cake mix on hand. Cream cake and white cake is two different things. I’ll be trying this receipe today to see how it compares. As a at home decorator now I was still purchasing Publix buttercream but its $5.29 for a pound now!!!!

  • Deborah

    This is an absolutely amazing recipe. I have never had Publix icing, but this was wonderful!! Icing held up very well made ahead and stored in refrigerator, and held up very well when 3 tier cake was out for the event with very warm weather. This will be my icing recipe from now on.

  • Ebeth916

    Wow, I am spoiled by my Publix I guess…they sell the leftover icing here in Southwest Florida for about $3.00 a tub. I usually end up buying 2 of them to have a nice thick icing for my cake. SOOO GOOD!!!

  • Guest

    wwwhhhhaaaaa? 2 cups of Crisco ! Holy cow, who knew ?

    Our Publix sells their leftover icing some days, but it’s a heck of a lot more than $5 a lb, they sell it in those lil containers for like $7-8 for a HALF a pound.

    it’s sssooooo good though !

  • Jen-Castro

    Does this buttercream crust?

    • Stephanie

      It stays soft for a good while.

  • Sstormie84

    Publix employee here, we actually do not use cream cake mix for our white cake…. Cream cake mix is for wedding cake, speciality shaped cakes, or on the rare occasion that
    we have to bake a.. Haha.. Cream cake! Not often

    • Kmiami80

      Any suggestions on the buttercream from an actual publix employee?

  • Msgarden4

    Sorry I just made this step by step and it tastes nothing like Publix icing which I eat alot!

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  • Cadymomma

    this is close but not quite it….

  • Cadymomma

    this is close but not quite it….

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  • Sarah

    LOVE IT, im so happy that someone put this up because we have moved to VA where there is no Publix and that was the only cake i would eat.This recipe defiantly needs 2 tbs of butter flavor in it for it to taste just like Publix butter cream icing though….. YUM

    • Stephanie

      Buttercream icing is one of my favorites. I think it is hard to beat a delicious buttercream icing.

    • Karvinbran

      Try Martin’s, formerly U’Krop’s, cakes. I just moved from VA to GA, where they have Publix but no Martin’s. I had a Publix cake recently and was thrilled that I had found a place that made a cake and icing just as good as Martin’s! Yummm!

    • Aowillia

      Go to Martins its the Publix of VA :)

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  • Lauren

    This frosting is delicious! And it tastes just like Publix’s! It’s definitely worth the (little) effort.

  • Krystal

    You can try this recipe, or, you can go buy just the icing from the Publix Bakery… they will sell you a bag of it and it costs the same as buying a tub of icing off the shelf… To me its a no brainer… buy the time you buy all the ingredients and take the time to make it, you actually save money buy just buying it directly from the store.

    • Stephanie

      I think you have a great idea if you are near a Publix! If you aren’t, this may be a good solution. So few grocery stores bake from scratch. So this is one you want to try if you can’t by the real stuff!

      • Rita

        I went by there yesterday and they said they would sell some for $5 a pound.

    • sarah

      They sell it by the pound so it is a little more pricer than canned icing. I just made it today and the ingredients cost me around $14. If i had a Publix near me i would rather buy it (less work)

    • Rleanos03

      My Pubix sells their butter cream for $5 a pound. That is too much for me, lol.

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  • Dori Chapman

    can you use butter flavored crisco instead of adding butter flavoring???

    • Stephanie

      You could try it, I don’t think it will give the same flavor, let us know how it turns out!

      • Jen

        I used the butter flavored crisco and it was fantastic! I also used the butter flavoring as well so it was soo good!!!

  • AManda

    I am SOOOOO excited to try this!!

    • Stephanie

      I feel the pressure now, from the lovey cake decorating maven! Folks check out her beautiful cakes, and be prepared to stand in awe.

  • Deeba @ PAB

    Great buttercream recipe, and it looks so good and luscious. Got here after speaking to Mayank @ Blog Design.

  • Meshelle

    Sounds great! Does anyone have the recipe for Publix’ white cake?? It is sooo delicious!

    • Kelly M

      Publix uses a creme cake recipe for their white cake. You can buy the Pillsbury brand at stores that sell specialty cake items.

      • Paminpenn

        I live in PA and my boyfriends parents live in Florida. When I lived in Florida I was soo hooked on the Publix cake because of the icing. His mom will actually send me the icing from the store. I was just in florida and brought home two cakes. Love it, Love it, Love it.

      • Paminpenn

        I live in PA and my boyfriends parents live in Florida. When I lived in Florida I was soo hooked on the Publix cake because of the icing. His mom will actually send me the icing from the store. I was just in florida and brought home two cakes. Love it, Love it, Love it.

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