Vegan Buttercream Frosting

This is a thick frosting that pipes out and keeps it’s shape nicely. I poached this recipe from Jacquelyn – The Gourmet Housewife because it’s better than any other one that I’ve found and because she’s really great.

3.0 from 2 reviews
Vegan Buttercream Frosting
  • 2½ cups icing sugar
  • ¼ cup vegan margarine
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons full-fat coconut milk
  1. Cream icing sugar and margarine.
  2. Beat in coconut milk and vanilla.
  3. Add small amounts of hot water or coconut milk until desired consistency is reached.
  4. To make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting add 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder while creaming icing sugar and margarine. You can also use hot coffee to thin out to desired consistency instead of hot water or additional coconut milk.



  1. Jen says

    I’m so excited that I found your blog. I’m now vegan/gluten free for my 4 month old son who has terrible eczema. Thank you for your wonderful recipes :)

    • Megan says

      I’m glad you found my site and it’s useful for you too Jen! I hope a gluten-free/vegan diet helps improve your son’s eczema. Poor guy! Take care and stop by often. ~Megan

  2. Rhea says

    I just stumbled upon your site while searching for vegan/glutenfree, and happy that I did. My daughter has food allergies. Question about the coconut milk in the frosting…..what can I substitute for it?


    • Megan says

      Hi Rhea! You could use any non-dairy milk or creamer. I’m not sure if all nuts are out of the question but you could try the nut-based creamers from Mimic Creme instead. There are also soy-based creamers that might do the trick. The coconut milk does give this frosting a bit of extra richness but I think you’ll still be happy with the results even if you just used regular non-dairy milk (not even a cream substitute).

      Good luck! Let me know what you try as a substitute and how it turns out. :)

  3. Jen says

    Just wondering if this can be made the night before? should it be kept in the fridge and does it need to be rewhipped before icing cupcakes?? thanks!!

    • Megan says

      I’m sure you could make it the night before. You should definitely keep it in the fridge. I don’t think the frosting would separate but it wouldn’t hurt to give it a quick mix before frosting your cupcakes to make sure it hasn’t hardened too much and that the consistency is still correct. Good luck with it! :)

  4. Heather says

    Hi! I’m making a vegan cupcake pull-apart cake (in the shape of a puppy) for a friend’s daughter’s birthday. Will the frosting be okay if I ice the cupcakes the night before & leave them out? The cake will be too big to fit in the fridge.

    • Megan says

      Hi Heather, I personally wouldn’t recommend frosting the night before and leaving them at room temp. I’ve never tried it with this frosting but I’d worry that the frosting may weep or soften too much. You should be able to get away with frosting the cupcakes a few hours in advance without any issues though. Hope that helps! :)

  5. Margesella says

    Interesting you used coconut milk, because today I attempted to make frosting with confectioners xylitol, vanilla extract, non hydrogenated shortening, and full fat coconut cream. It was so gross, it was all grainy and looked clumpy. I was blaming the coconut milk. Maybe it was the combo of the milk and xylitol? I’m not sure, but I dumped it. It tasted great, but I couldn’t look at it! LOL

  6. Margesella says

    Oops I didn’t mean to rate it with one star. Sorry! I didn’t try it with sugar so delete it if you want!

    • Megan says

      Hey Margesella, That’s too bad it didn’t turn out for you. :( Obviously when there’s so many variables that you adjusted I honestly have no way to pinpoint exactly what went wrong. That’s unfortunate, and such a waste. Sorry to hear it.

  7. Miko says

    This turns out wonderfully when using confectioner’s sugar and using soy-free earth balance. Easily made it with a hand whisk. It’s almost exactly like frosting from a can, probably because it’s very similar ingredients.

    • says

      I have used Earth Balance and Becel Vegan. I am also starting to use pure virgin coconut oil in a lot of my recipes now. I haven’t tried it in this frosting recipe but I bet it would be awesome.

  8. Sujata says

    Hi Megan,

    This sounds delicious! Is there a particular brand of coconut milk that you would recommend? I am guessing the coconut milk from a can and not the ones that you get in cartons – is that right?

    • says

      Yes, I always use the coconut milk in the cans. I find the stuff in the cartons doesn’t always have the right texture or consistency. As for brand, I tend to just buy what’s on sale. In Canada, I buy the Rooster Brand stuff in the red can or Arroy-D. I have also used Thai Kitchen brand too. I know some people have a specific preference on brand but I find them all basically the same.

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