Tangy Cream Cheese Frosting

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | September 13th, 2017 | Desserts, Recipes

Serve it atop a cake or a spoon; it’s your choice!

As I worked on my recipe for Margarita Cake with a Kick, I wondered what sort of frosting should be paired with it. I debated some sort of coconut frosting but didn’t want to lose the margarita feel. I also thought about a citrus-flavored frosting, but it seemed that might overwhelm the other flavors. A plain buttercream might be too sweet. Then I considered one of my favorite frostings- cream cheese.

The funny thing about cream cheese frosting is that can come in so many different iterations. There are some that are heavy on the cream cheese flavors and others that barely have a hint of cheesiness. They can be light and fluffy or dense and smooth. I wanted a frosting that would offer some sweetness but also could offer a bit of a bite, which although not the same as a salted rim, would act as a foil.

Thankfully in the past few months I had experimented with buttermilk powder. It’s a new to me ingredient that I have tried adding to my cream cheese frosting mixture. What it provides is a nice amount of tang without needing to increase the amount of cream cheese. You get a frosting that has a bit more depth of flavor.

I’ve now made this frosting a few times and had good results with it topping both margarita and carrot cakes. It also tastes quite yummy eaten directly from the spoon. I can vouch for that personally. 🙂

Make a batch. Frost your cake. You still should have enough left to enjoy a spoonful or two plain (or served on graham crackers). It’s time for some cream cheese frosting happiness!

Tangy Cream Cheese Frosting

A sweet frosting with a bit of a bite


  1. 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  2. 2 Tb. butter, softened
  3. 16 oz. box powdered sugar
  4. 1 Tb. buttermilk powder
  5. 1-3 Tb. milk
  1. Combine cream cheese, butter, sugar, and buttermilk powder in the bowl of a stand mixer.
  2. Turn to stir, adding 1 tablespoon of milk, if needed.
  3. Mix until fully combined and smooth, adding extra milk until it reaches desired consistency.
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