Cool Whip cream cheese frosting is creamy yet fluffy frosting made with cream cheese, salted butter, powdered sugar, and whipped topping.
Cream cheese frosting is thick and decadent. Adding Cool Whip lightens up both the consistency and the sweetness, giving you a slightly lighter alternative. Adding Cool Whip is also a great way to stretch your recipe so the frosting goes further.
The key to making a creamy frosting is ensuring the cream cheese and butter are softened to room temperature for the best results. And don't forget to thaw your whipped topping.
Cream cheese Cool Whip frosting is one of my favorite frostings for red velvet cupcakes, but you can also use this for sheet cakes.
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For a thicker frosting for a layer cake, try a stiff cream cheese frosting instead. Thicker frostings are the best frosting when you want a consistency that holds its shape.
If you like this homemade frosting, try my Cool Whip frosting with vanilla pudding.
- Easy recipe: This easy Cool Whip frosting is easy to remember and easy to make.
- Simple ingredients: Only 5 ingredients!
- Cream cheese: Use a block of cream cheese for a creamy base, softened
- Salted butter: Adds richness and a little bit of salt, softened
- Pure vanilla extract: Adds a light vanilla flavor
- Powdered sugar: Sweetens and thickens the frosting
- Cool Whip Original: Light and fluffy whipped cream topping found in the freezer aisle, thawed for perfect texture
See the recipe card for quantities.
Add the softened cream cheese, softened butter, and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer.
With a hand mixer or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar to the cream cheese mixture. You can increase the speed as the powdered sugar is incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and beat again.
Add the thawed Cool Whip and mix on medium speed until you get soft peaks.
You will have a light and fluffy consistency.
Transfer to a piping bag if desired.
- Cream cheese: Reduced fat cream cheese, fat-free cream cheese, and neufchatel cheese are great alternatives.
- Salted butter: Use unsalted butter and add a pinch of salt to control the saltiness.
- Pure vanilla extract: Vanilla bean paste and imitation vanilla extract also work.
- Cool Whip Original: Any tub of Cool Whip (lite, zero sugar, reduced fat, fat free, extra creamy, and vegan whipped topping) will all work in this recipe. If the frosting is too soft and droopy, add another cup to two cups of powdered sugar.
- Hand mixer - An electric hand mixer is great, or use a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.
- Silicone spatula - To scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
- Piping bag - Disposable piping bags are easy and convenient. In a pinch, use a plastic storage bag instead.
- 1A piping tip - I use a Wilton 1A piping tip for this recipe.
Transfer leftover frosting into an airtight container. Refrigerate the container immediately after use. Use within one week or freeze for up to 2 to 3 months.
- This is a very soft frosting that isn't as stiff as buttercream frosting. It's perfect for a round Wilton 1A piping tip.
- For a thicker and sweeter frosting, add another one to two cups of powdered sugar.
- This will generously frost 2 dozen cupcakes (with some to spare) or lightly frost 3 dozen cupcakes.
On it's own, Cool Whip is too soft for frosting, but you can add a stabilizing agent like instant pudding mix and powdered sugar to stiffen it.
Yes, cream cheese will spoil if it is not refrigerated.
Cool Whip Cream Cheese Frosting
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- ½ cup salted butter softened
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 8 ounces Cool Whip Original Whipped Cream Topping thawed
- With a hand mixer or a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the softened cream cheese, softened butter, and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
- Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar to the cream cheese mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and beat again.
- Add the thawed Cool Whip and mix on medium speed until you get soft peaks. You will have a light and fluffy consistency. Transfer to a piping bag if desired.
Do not leave cream cheese frosting out for more than two hours (or one hour if the temperature is above 90ºF).