Sweet and Fluffy Vegan Vanilla Frosting: The Perfect Topping for All Your Non-Dairy Sweets

If you take one peek in my fridge, you’ll see it. It’s obvious. There’s a teetering tower of it perched high on my top shelf.

Vertical photo with vegan vanilla frosting spread on top.

Butter. Pound after pound of sweet, creamy, fatty butter.

Like any dairy-loving pastry cook who has a (cough cough) healthy obsession with this ingredient, I enjoy using butter in baking.

A lot of it.

Vertical closeup image of white fluffy icing on a paddle attachment.

Its greasy goodness is smeared allllll over so many of my recipes for Foodal. Especially in my frostings.

American-style buttercream, Swiss meringue buttercream, Irish cream icing – all have a hefty serving of it.

I even add a little to my ganache recipe. Because, well, butter.

Vertical image of a spoon with icing on a large white plate on top of a napkin.

But even someone as obsessed as I am has a limit! All that dairy… oof. It certainly isn’t the best for your daily diet!

After working in a vegan bakeshop and ice creamery, I was able to explore alternative recipes without dairy, ones that didn’t sacrifice any flavor.

This amazing vegan vanilla frosting is a great example!

It is still sweet, thick, fluffy, and perfect piped high on a cupcake – just like any lactose-laden buttercream.

Vertical image of a spoon with white fluffy buttercream on a white plate.

Five ingredients, and just 5 minutes to make, it’s a simple and easy recipe that you can mix together in a flash for an effortless, delicious icing.

Whip up this tasty creation now with the recipe below.

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Horizontal image of a white paddle attachment with icing on it.

Vegan Vanilla Frosting

  • Author: Nikki Cervone
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: About 2 cups 1x


If you made a vegan cake or cupcakes, but still need a tasty icing, make our 5-ingredient sweet and fluffy vegan vanilla frosting.


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) vegan stick margarine, room temperature
  • 33 1/2 cups vegan powdered sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 12 tablespoons non-dairy milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Using the paddle attachment, mix the margarine in the bowl of a stand mixer until whipped.
  2. Slowly add the powdered sugar a little at a time, starting at a low speed and slowly increasing to high speed, until light and fluffy.
  3. Mix in the salt, milk, and vanilla until completely incorporated.
  4. The mixture should be thick, but still easy to spread. If it is too thick, add more non-dairy milk. If it is too thin, add more powdered sugar.
  5. Use immediately, or store in the refrigerator for up to one week. When ready to use, let it sit at room temperature for 10 minutes, and re-whip with a stand mixer to make it light and fluffy again for decorating.


1 recipe can decorate 12 cupcakes, or 2 8-inch cake rounds. 

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: Mixer, No-Cook
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Keywords: frosting, icing, vegan, cake

Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Gather and Prep

Horizontal image of a block of margarine in paper.

Set out a mixing bowl and paddle attachment for a stand mixer.

Soften the margarine to room temperature. Measure the powdered sugar, salt, milk, and vanilla extract.

Step 2 – Whip the Margarine

Horizontal image of whipped butter on a paddle attachment.

Place the margarine in the mixing bowl. Whip with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy.

Use your favorite variety of non-dairy stick margarine, rather than the spread, to get the exact quantity that you need.

Step 3 – Slowly Add the Powdered Sugar

Horizontal image of a white paddle attachment with a white fluffy mixture.

Mix in the powdered sugar a little at a time. Start at a low speed and slowly increase to a high speed. Mix until light and fluffy.

Step 4 – Add the Remaining Ingredients

Horizontal image of a white paddle attachment with icing on it.

Mix in the non-dairy milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Re-whip until light and fluffy again.

Hold the Butter!

If you already baked your favorite vegan cakes, whoopie pies, cookies, or brownies, but still need a tasty icing to cover the top, definitely make this recipe for fluffy vegan frosting!

Vertical image of chocolate cupcakes with white frosting and a white napkin.

It’s like a traditional buttercream, but with no dairy. You still get to enjoy the sweet, classic flavors of vanilla, powdered sugar, and the perfect pinch of salt to round out the taste.


If you enjoyed this recipe, be sure to check out all of our vegan offerings.

Horizontal image of a bowl of white buttercream on a wooden table.

What are your favorite vegan versions of buttery foods? What dessert do you plan to decorate with this icing? Give us your tastiest suggestions in the comment section below!

For another vegan decoration option, consider using our frosting-free technique to decorating desserts!

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Nikki Cervone

Nikki Cervone is an ACS Certified Cheese Professional and cheesemonger living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

3 thoughts on “Sweet and Fluffy Vegan Vanilla Frosting: The Perfect Topping for All Your Non-Dairy Sweets”

  1. This recipe is the easiest and tastiest!! Thank you so much for sharing. My family loves it on top of my vegan chocolate cupcakes. It has the perfect consistency for decorating too.

  2. Thank you for this recipe! My son can’t have dairy but his birthday is coming up so I’m going to make this. I’m wondering though, we are going away to a cabin for it. There will be a fridge but do you think it would be better to make it and frost them there or can I frost them before we go and they won’t fall? Some of the other vegan recipes I’ve tried the icing just gets greasy and sort of melts off.

    Thank you!


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