Looking to brighten up your cakes? Learn how to make Raspberry Cream Cheese Frosting with fresh raspberries! This small batch frosting recipe makes enough to frost a 6-8 inch cake or 6-8 cupcakes.
I have such a weird love/hate relationship with fruit.
As I’m getting older, I’m trying to snack on it more. Clementines, apples, strawberries, even bananas sometimes (but only if they’re *just* turning yellow with a hint of green).
But other fruits I hate eating plain. Mostly berries, including raspberries.
What’s funny about raspberries is I love raspberry flavored desserts.
Every summer I usually buy an ice cream sundae with a homemade raspberry sauce on top from a local berry farm.
But a bowl of raspberries for breakfast? Nah. I’d rather use them up in my Raspberry Cream Cheese Frosting.
If it looks familiar that’s because it’s based on my Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting.
I swapped the strawberries for raspberries so I can pair it with my Lemon Raspberry Cake.
It’s a sweet and tangy cream cheese frosting with a sweet berry finish. It pairs wonderfully with lemon, chocolate, vanilla, and even coconut.
Use it for your cakes, cupcakes, brownies, cookie bars, and more!
What is the difference between buttercream frosting and cream cheese frosting?
When baking a cake, you have to ask yourself – what kind of frosting do I want?
Although both buttercream frosting and cream cheese frosting are made the same way, the difference is how sweet they are.
If your cake is going to be really sweet, especially if it has a jam filling, you’ll want to decorate with a cream cheese frosting because it’s rich and tangy, which will balance the sweetness.
The downside is your cake needs to stay refrigerated when storing as cream cheese is perishable.
If you don’t mind the extra sweetness or if you’re looking to keep your baked goods at room temperature, use a buttercream frosting instead. Check out my Strawberry Buttercream Frosting and substitute raspberries for the strawberries.
Don’t want to use fruit at all? Check out my traditional Small Batch Cream Cheese Frosting.
Ingredients For Raspberry Cream Cheese Frosting
To make this easy raspberry cream cheese frosting, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Raspberries: Can’t have raspberry frosting without the raspberries! Although fresh raspberries make the most sense, you can certainly use frozen raspberries. Let them thaw until soft.
- Sugar: Although raspberries are usually sweet, you still need a little boost to balance it out.
- Butter: The base to every good frosting is butter. Add a pinch of salt if using unsalted.
- Cream cheese: Beating cream cheese with your butter makes the frosting more tangy than sweet. It’s important you use full-fat blocks of cream cheese. Any fat-free or whipped products won’t work.
- Powdered sugar: Not only does it balance the fat, it also helps thicken the frosting so you can easily spread or pipe it onto your dessert.
- Vanilla extract: Much like salt, vanilla brings out the other flavors in dessert.
Adding Fresh Raspberries To Cream Cheese Frosting
The best raspberry cream cheese frosting recipe starts with its namesake – the raspberries.
In order to make raspberry cream cheese frosting with fresh raspberries, you need to puree them first in a blender then cook it down until thickened.
If you were to add the puree without cooking, your frosting would be too runny. That would mean adding more powdered sugar to thicken it, which would make the frosting a little too sweet.
It’s very important to measure your cooked puree because you want 1 1/2 tablespoons (3 tablespoons if you’re doubling my recipe).
Too much and it’ll still be a little runny. Too little and it might be overcooked.
Let the puree cool to room temperature before using. Otherwise, it may curdle your frosting if it’s too warm.
If you’re making the puree the day before, bring it to room temperature. If it’s too cold, it may also split your frosting or leave lumps in the cream cheese.
Don’t have fresh berries and/or time to make the puree? You can make your raspberry frosting with raspberry jam without pectin.
How To Make Raspberry Cream Cheese Frosting
To make this raspberry cream cheese frosting recipe, I highly recommend using an electric mixer to beat together the ingredients rather than beating by hand.
Using a mixer makes it super smooth and adds air, which is key for making a fluffy frosting. I personally use a 5 quart stand mixer. However, you can also use a hand mixer.
First you want to puree and cook your raspberries. It’s important you cook them down enough to equal 1 1/2 tablespoons; otherwise, your frosting will be too runny.
Next, beat your room temperature cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar until smooth, roughly 1-2 minutes depending on how powerful your mixer is. You may also want to scrape down the bowl if needed.
It’s important both fats, especially the cream cheese, are at room temperature. Too cold and it’ll result in a lumpy frosting. Too warm and it’ll become too soft to set up.
After the frosting is light and fluffy, scrape down your bowl and add your raspberry puree and vanilla.
How much frosting does a small batch make?
Because I made this raspberry frosting for my small cakes, here are some guidelines about how much it makes:
- If you’re piping Small Batch Lemon Cupcakes, you can frost between 6-8 cupcakes, depending on how tall you make the swirls.
- If you’re frosting Small Batch Vanilla Cupcakes with an offset spatula, you can frost 1 dozen cupcakes because you typically don’t use as much as you would piping.
- If you’re frosting a 6 Inch Lemon Cake recipe, you can frost the top and edges with about a spoonful or two left over, depending on how thick you like it.
- If you’re frosting an 8 inch cake, you can still frost the top and edges. Depending on how thick you like your frosting, you may or may not have some leftover.
- If you’re frosting a two layer Small Vanilla Cake recipe, you can frost the middle and top like a naked cake OR top and edges.
How do you make cream cheese frosting firmer?
Is your raspberry frosting too soft? There are two ways to make your cream cheese frosting firmer.
First, you can add a little more powdered sugar to thicken it up.
However, if your kitchen is super warm (especially during the summer), sometimes all you need to do is refrigerate it for 15-30 minutes so it’s not as loose.
How do you store a cake with cream cheese frosting?
Your cake with raspberry cream cheese frosting can sit out at room temperature for up to 2 hours.
However, because cream cheese frosting is perishable you will need to refrigerate it after that.
First, put your cake in the fridge uncovered for about 15 minutes. This will harden the frosting just enough so it won’t smear if accidentally touched.
Next, cover the cake so it doesn’t dry out in the refrigerator. You can either loosely wrap with plastic wrap (you can use toothpicks if you don’t want it touching the frosting) or store in an airtight cake container (affiliate link).
I highly recommend using a cake container because it won’t touch your cake and you can store other items on top in the fridge.
Before serving, let the cake sit at room temperature for 15-30 minutes. This allows the cake to lose its chill and have a better texture when eating.
What To Pair With Cream Cheese Frosting
Now that your frosting is ready, time for cake!
More Small Batch Frosting Recipes
If you enjoyed this raspberry cream cheese frosting recipe, chances are you’re looking for more. Here are my other small batch frosting recipes for you to make:
- 1 cup fresh raspberries (or thawed if frozen)
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup (2 ounces or 4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
- 4 ounces (4 tablespoons) full-fat block cream cheese, softened (do not substitute fat-free or whipped)
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a blender, add the the raspberries and granulated sugar. Process until smooth. If your berries aren't quite juicy, you may need to add a splash of water to help blend it.
- Pour through a fine mesh strainer, discarding any solids left behind. You should have 1/4 cup puree (if you're doubling the recipe, it'll be 1/2 cup).
- Add the puree to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn down to simmer and cook for 3-5 minutes or until the puree thickens and cooks down to 1 1/2 tablespoons (please measure as anything more will make the frosting runny). Cool to room temperature.
If you're doubling the recipe, cook it down to 3 tablespoons, about 10-15 minutes
- In a large mixing bowl (with paddle attachment if using a stand mixer), beat together the butter and cream cheese for 30 seconds or until combined. Scrape down the bowl then add the powdered sugar and salt. Beat until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes.
- Scrape down the bowl then beat in the cooled raspberry mixture and vanilla for 1-2 minutes.
If the frosting is too soft to pipe right away, refrigerate 15 minutes or until it firms up. If it's still too runny, add more powdered sugar to thicken it.
If the frosting is too thick, add a few drops of milk to thin it out.
- Use immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Don't want to use cream cheese? Check out my Strawberry Buttercream and substitute raspberries.
- Need a cake recipe? Check out my Small Cake Recipes and Small Batch Cupcake Recipes for ideas, including chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and lemon.
- Enjoyed this recipe? Check out my other Frosting Recipes For Small Cakes, including cream cheese, chocolate buttercream, and vanilla buttercream.