Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting is thick, silky, and bursting with strawberry flavor thanks to a special ingredient...crushed, freeze-dried strawberries!
I know a certain little 4-year-old who adores all things strawberry. Strawberry smoothies, strawberry ice cream, strawberry muffins, strawberry cake...if it starts with strawberry, she's a fan. She's requested strawberry cupcakes for her last couple of birthdays, and I've typically just topped them with my family's favorite Classic Cream Cheese Frosting recipe with some fresh strawberry puree blended in.
The problem is that fresh strawberry puree tends to be pretty watery. And that means that adding too much makes for thin, runny frosting. But adding too little means the strawberry flavor gets overpowered by the cream cheese. So what's a cream cheese frosting-loving mom with a strawberry dessert-loving daughter supposed to do???
Well, I'll tell ya what she's to do. She's to procure a bag of magical, freeze-dried strawberries. And she's to dump them into her blender or food processor and pulverize them into a bright red, strawberry-packed powder. And then she's to whip that powder into her tried-and-true cream cheese frosting recipe!
This recipe is super easy to whip up and it's good enough to eat with a spoon. It's thick and silky. It has a strawberry flavor that's big and bold. And take a gander at that gorgeous color!
This frosting is a beautiful, scrumptious complement to strawberry cakes, cupcakes, or cookies, but it's equally delicious on vanilla or chocolate treats. I mean, how good would this stuff be slathered on a rich, fudgy pan of brownies?!
And can I let you in on a little secret? The beauty of this recipe is that you can take the general concept and flavor your cream cheese frosting with different types of freeze-dried fruits! Peaches, cherries, mangoes, pineapple, bananas, blueberries, blackberries...a wide variety of freeze-dried fruit is readily available these days.
Just be sure you're using freeze-dried fruit -- which can be easily crushed into a fine, dry powder -- as opposed to dried fruit -- which is chewy and leathery and won't turn into a powder now matter how much you beat on it. 😉 Also, since freeze-dried fruit is always available, you can make fruit flavored frosting year-round, without worrying about what fruit happens to be perfectly sweet and in-season.
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting will make your desserts happy. It'll make your family, friends, and bake sale recipients happy. And I can guarantee that it'll make any and all 4-year-old strawberry lovers verrrry happy.
Tips & Tricks
- The longer you whip this frosting, the lighter and fluffier it will become.
- As depicted in a couple of the photos in this post, I like to scoop my frosting into a gallon-sized plastic baggie, snip off the corner of the bag, and pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes in a spiral, starting from the outside perimeter and working towards the center. Piping the frosting as shown in these photos requires a lot more frosting than spreading it with a knife, so in that case, plan on making a double recipe of frosting for 24 cupcakes.
- The small amount of almond extract gives the frosting a nice, but not overpowering, undertone. However, if you don't have any almond extract on hand, the frosting will still be delicious if you leave it out.
More Strawberry Treats
- Strawberry Shortcake
- Sparkling Strawberry Floats
- Easy Strawberry Cream Cheese Pastries
- Strawberry Spinach Salad
Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1 1/2 cups sliced freeze-dried strawberries, about 1 ounce
- 1/2 cup 1 stick salted butter, softened
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 3 to 4 cups powdered sugar, depending on your desired consistency & sweetness of frosting
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon pure almond extract, optional
- Pour freeze-dried strawberries into a blender or small food processor. Pureé until crushed into a fine powder (with some small lumps remaining). Set aside.
- Using an electric hand mixer (or stand mixer with paddle attachment), beat together the butter and the cream cheese. Slowly and gradually blend in the powdered sugar and vanilla, then beat until smooth and well-combined, scraping the bowl as necessary. Slowly blend in the strawberry powder, then beat on high until it's completely incorporated.