This Vegan Strawberry Frosting is exactly what you need for beautiful and fuss-free cakes, cupcakes, bars, and cookies! No cooking required and made with just 4 ingredients. It's rich, creamy, and can be made with other fruits for limitless flavor possibilities!
Since I shared this Vegan Strawberry Cake back in 2019 it has consistently been one of top dessert recipes on the blog and brings in the loveliest, most enthusiastic feedback.
So I decided to tweak the recipe slightly and create a new vegan strawberry cupcake recipe, along with this easy frosting.
Easiest Vegan Strawberry Frosting
There are different ways to infuse strawberry color and flavor into vegan frosting, but the easiest and most foolproof is to use freeze-dried strawberries.
Adding too many fresh strawberries to frosting doesn't work because it adds too much liquid. So to amplify the strawberry flavor while reducing the juice, many recipes use a condensed, cooked strawberry puree.
And it's not like that method is difficult, but it does add time to the whole process plus extra steps. So we're keeping things super simple today and going with freeze-dried strawberries.
This strawberry frosting recipe is nearly identical to the one in the layer cake recipe, but uses only vegan butter for the base (omitting the shortening).
Anyway, let's get to it! I'll show you how quick and easy it is to make dairy-free strawberry frosting that will fool even the most skeptical eaters!
You'll need just four ingredients plus a blender, sifter, and electric mixer to whip up this dreamy, rich, naturally pink vegan frosting.
- vegan butter - look for buttery sticks, not vegan butter in a tub, which has a higher water content. More on this below.
- freeze-dried strawberries - this is the only ingredient that might be a little tricky to find. Well-stocked grocery stores should carry freeze-dried fruit near the dried fruit. And of course you can always order freeze-dried strawberries online.
- almond extract - adds such a lovely, sweet note to the frosting; feel free to use vanilla instead.
- powdered sugar - in the US, choose organic to make sure it's vegan and not processed with bone char.
- non-dairy milk - you'll only need a splash, just for consistency. Any type of milk you have on hand is fine. I used oat milk.
See recipe card for quantities and full instructions.
How to Make Vegan Strawberry Frosting
- Blend the freeze-dried strawberries until powdered. If you're making my cupcake recipe, you'll also need some strawberry powder for the batter.
- Sift the powder into a bowl, and discard seeds and larger bits. Set the powder aside.
- In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. It will look similar to mayonnaise.
- One cup at a time, sift the powdered sugar into the bowl, beating on low speed between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the extract(s), and beat until smooth.
- Sift in 3 to 4 tablespoons strawberry powder, and beat on low speed. Taste for sweetness, adding more powdered sugar if desired. If the frosting seems too stiff, add a tablespoon of milk. Beat on medium-high speed until fully incorporated and smooth.
Tip: the frosting will be too warm and soft to use right after mixing. Just pop it into the refrigerator for about 10 minutes. It will firm it up just enough for spreading and piping!
What type of vegan butter is best for frosting?
Vegan butter sticks are the best choice for frosting. The spreadable tub varieties contain more water and are softer. For frosting we actually want the extra stability of stick butter.
Sometimes you might even want MORE stability and a slightly stiffer frosting. This is when it's helpful to use a combination of vegetable shortening and butter.
New brands of vegan butter have hit the market in the last few years, and there are some I haven't had a chance to try. My go-to vegan butter for frosting has always been Earth Balance. It's dependable, usually easy to find in stores, and now comes in an unsalted variety.
Try Other Flavors
Since this frosting gets its unique flavor from freeze-dried strawberries, it's super easy to switch up the fruit and create other flavors.
Blueberry, raspberry, pineapple, banana, mango... if it's a freeze-dried fruit and you can turn it into a powder, you can make vegan frosting with it!
Mix and match different frosting and cake flavors.
Ways to Use Vegan Strawberry Frosting
- Obviously it's perfect with strawberry cake and cupcakes, but it's also amazing with vanilla or chocolate cake.
- Spread a layer of frosting on almond flour brownies or vegan peanut butter brownies.
- Use it to decorate this chocolate chip strawberry cake.
- And make chocolate-strawberry cookie sandwiches. Or try these sunbutter cookies!
This vegan strawberry buttercream is fine at room temp for up to 8 hours on a cake.
It will keep in the refrigerator for up to 6 days. This is helpful if you need to prepare it in advance. Let the frosting come closer to room temperature before using it so that it's easier to pipe and spread.
Can you freeze vegan frosting?
Absolutely! Freeze this vegan buttercream frosting for up to two months in an airtight container. When you’re ready to use it, transfer it to the refrigerator to thaw. Then let it come closer to room temp, and briefly beat it with the mixer again until fluffy.
Intimidated by baking? Don't be! Check out this list of Top 12 Vegan Baking Tips.
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Easy Vegan Strawberry Frosting
- .7 ounce freeze-dried strawberries
- 1 cup vegan buttery sticks such as Earth Balance, room temperature - see NOTES
- 3 to 3¼ cups organic powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon almond extract, optional but recommended
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
- 1 tablespoon non-dairy milk, optional - for consistency, only if needed
- Blend the freeze-dried strawberries until powdered. Sift the powder into a bowl, and discard seeds and larger bits caught by the strainer. Set the powder aside.
- Make sure the butter is at room temp. In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- One cup at a time, sift the powdered sugar into the bowl, beating on low speed between additions. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Add the extract(s), and beat to incorporate. Sift in 3 to 4 tablespoons of the strawberry powder. You can start with less then decide whether to add more. Beat on low speed.
- Taste for sweetness, adding more powdered sugar and strawberry if desired. Keep in mind that the more sugar you add the stiffer the frosting will be. If the frosting seems too stiff, add just 1 tablespoon milk. Beat on medium-high speed until fully incorporated, smooth, and spreadable.
- The frosting will likely be too warm and soft to use right away. Chill it in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes to firm it up for spreading and piping.
- at room temp: this strawberry buttercream is fine at room temp for up to 8 hours on a cake. After this I recommend keeping the dessert in the fridge.
- chilled: frosting keeps in the refrigerator for up to 6 days, which is helpful if you need to prepare it in advance. Let the frosting come closer to room temperature before using so that it's easier to pipe and spread.
- frozen: freeze for up to two months in an airtight container. When you’re ready to use the frosting, transfer it to the refrigerator to thaw. Then let it come closer to room temp, and briefly beat it with the mixer again until fluffy.
Estimated Nutrition (per serving)
Nutrition information is an estimate and will vary depending on the exact amounts and specific products and ingredients used. We calculate this information using the online calculator cronometer.com.