Fluffy White Frosting (Boiled Frosting)

Fluffy Frosting on Angel Food Cake
Fluffy Frosting. Photo: Diana Rattray
  • 25 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: 2 Cups (8 servings)
Ratings

This fluffy boiled frosting — sometimes called White Mountain frosting for its mountainous white peaks — is an easy and somewhat less sweet frosting than the typical butter and powdered sugar icing.

A boiled sugar syrup is gradually beaten into egg whites to make a light and fluffy frosting with no added fat.

I've always loved this frosting on an angel food cake. It would be wonderful on just about any cake or cupcakes. 

Top the frosted cake with coconut or chopped nuts as soon as you finish frosting the cake.

What You'll Need

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar (granulated)
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup (light)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

How to Make It

  1. In a heavy saucepan, combine the water, corn syrup, sugar, and cream of tartar.  Stir to blend.
  2. Place the saucepan over medium heat, cover the pan, and bring the sugar mixture to a full rolling boil.
  3. Remove the lid and continue boiling the syrup (without stirring) to about 242 F on a candy thermometer, or until the syrup spins a thread when a small amount is dropped from a spoon back into the boiling mixture.
  1. Remove the syrup from the heat.
  2. Place egg whites in clean, grease-free bowl. Beat the egg whites and a pinch of salt with an electric mixer until the egg whites begin to hold soft peaks.
  3. Continuing beating the egg whites while gradually adding the hot syrup in a thin, steady stream. Add the vanilla and continue beating for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until the frosting holds stiff peaks.
  4. Frost the cake immediately; the frosting will thicken more as it cools. 
  5. This makes enough to frost a large angel food cake, a 9-by-13-inch cake, or 2-layer cake.

Expert Tips

  • Top the frosted cake with coconut, chopped nuts, or crushed peppermint candies as soon as you finish frosting the cake.

Flavor Variations

  • Fluffy Orange Frosting: Omit the vanilla and substitute 2 to 3 teaspoons of finely grated orange zest and 1/2 teaspoon of orange extract.
  • Fluffy Lemon Frosting: Omit the vanilla and substitute with 2 teaspoons of finely grated lemon zest and 1/2 teaspoon of lemon extract.
  • Fluffy Peppermint Frosting: Omit the vanilla and add 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract. Fold 1/4 cup of crushed peppermint candies into the frosting or sprinkle the candies over the frosted cake.
  • Brown Sugar Boiled Frosting: Substitute packed light brown sugar for the granulated sugar and decrease the vanilla to 1 teaspoon.

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