Maple Pecan Buttercream Frosting

This all-butter Maple Pecan Buttercream Frosting is great for any fall cake or cupcake. Maple makes for a very sweet frosting, but the pecans balance it out perfectly.

Maple Pecan Frosting from TheFoodCharlatan.comSo I’m making this frosting the other day with Charlotte, and it’s going great. There is a cloud of powdered sugar in the air, spilt maple syrup on the counter, small, buttery fingers, and all the measuring cups are being lined up and realigned just so. Typical bake-with-mom frosting session.

I taste the frosting and ask her, “What does it need Charlotte?” And she says, casually throwing a thumb over her shoulder toward the computer, “I don’t know Mom. Go check your blog.”

Maple Pecan Frosting from

Seriously?? Even my 3-year-old knows that I can’t do anything without consulting a recipe. This might sound weird coming from a food blogger, but what can I say, the internet just knows too many things for me to want to take the time to guess everything. (It needed salt, btw, and yes, I figured it out ALL BY MYSELF.)

My brother Nathan was totally mocking me the other night because I looked up my own recipe for a grilled cheese sandwich. Yes, I looked up a recipe for a freaking sandwich, on my own blog. Now granted, they were these awesome Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, but still. You kinda lose some amount of cooking-cred when you have to look up a sandwich recipe. (Maybe it’s the Charlatan coming out in me?) Honestly though, that’s part of what this blog is about: cataloguing recipes I love so I don’t forget them!

Maple Pecan Frosting from

I am in looooove with this frosting. I’ve been experimenting for a couple weeks now and finally got it to optimal awesomeness. I really love the sophisticated touch the pecans add. The nuts are chopped so small that you don’t really feel like you’re eating nuts. There is no nut-crunching necessary, they just melt into the frosting perfectly and add great flavor. This frosting is very sweet without the nuts, so if pecans aren’t your thing you’re crazy just pair it with cookies or cake that is not overly sweet.

I’ve already got a couple recipes up my sleeve using this frosting, so stay tuned! Hint: Cake. It’s happening. (Update: Here’s the cake! Cinnamon Cardamom Cake with Maple pecan Frosting.)

Do you guys give up? Or are you thirsty for more?
Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | Twitter

Maple Pecan Frosting

Yield: Makes enough to frost 1 double layer cake, or 24 cupcakes


  • 3/4 cup finely chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup real maple syrup (I used Grade A)
  • 1 teaspoon maple extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt, or to taste


  1. Chop up the pecans. You can chop them with a knife or in a food processor. See photos to see what level of choppiness we're talking.
  2. Set a frying pan over medium heat. Add the pecans and stir occasionally until they start to smell delicious, or until they barely start to brown. Set aside to cool.
  3. In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer, cream the butter to within an inch of its life. Just kidding, beat it for a couple minutes until it's high and fluffy.
  4. Add 2 cups of powdered sugar and maple syrup. Beat well.
  5. Add 1 cup powdered sugar, maple extract, and salt. Beat well.
  6. Add the chopped pecans when they are completely cooled and beat it. Try not to eat it all with a spoon.


I've never tried this with fake maple syrup. I'm sure it would work fine! Let me know if you try it out.

Source: The Food Charlatan

Here’s the Cinnamon Cardamom Cake that I made to go with this frosting:

Cinnamon Cardamom Cake with Maple Pecan Frosting from The Food Charlatan


UPDATE: I also used a variation of this frosting to make Carrot Cake. (I added cream cheese!): Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Maple Pecan Frosting.

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Maple Pecan Frosting from The Food Charlatan


Other cakes and frostings to love:

Butterscotch Pumpkin Cake:

Butterscotch Pumpkin Cake |

Blackberry Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:

Some 4th of July Recipes For You! from The Food Charlatan

 Strawberry Truffle Cake:

Strawberry Truffle Cake from The Food Charlatan

 Other frosting ideas from friends:

S’mores Buttercream Frosting by Wine and Glue
Apple Cider Cupcakes with Nutmeg Frosting from Eat Live Run
Honey Buttercream Frosting from The Cupcake Project





  1. says

    Every time I make bake something, my 3yo asks is it’s for my blog. It’s so fun to see how normal it is for them that we blog about food. It still feels so new to me so many times! Also, looking up your own recipes – been there, done that. This frosting sounds crazy good! I would totally eat it with a spoon! LOVE pecans!
    Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet recently posted…Ham and Cheese Biscuits with BasilMy Profile

    • says

      It’s true, recipe overload!! The only thing I can make without looking is butterscotch oatmeal, because I make it for my kiddos every single day and there are only 5 ingredients. I’m impressed you have multiple :)

    • says

      Thanks Julia, I’m so glad I’m not the only one googling my own recipes all the time, haha! And that charlatan is a pretty unique word, haha. Most of my recipes come right up if I add a charlatan in there :)

  2. Kris says

    You’ll be glad to know Karen, that most of the time when I want something particular I check out your blog first! I think I’m making your pumpkin corn chipotle (I think I spelled this wrong)
    soup for my Halloween party on Friday. I might also have to make cake or cupcakes so I can use this frosting. You are awesome! So glad we are related!!

    • says

      I wish YOU had a blog I could check out Kris! It would be amazing! Your food is so good, always. I love that pumpkin soup, I need to make it again! Let me know if you make this frosting, it’s seriously delicious. Thank you for teaching me to love pecans :)

      • Kris says

        If I had a blog Karen, you’d have to take the pictures. I’m hopeless as you are well aware. So that will not be happening!

  3. says

    Haha, I am the same way! I have a HORRIBLE short term/long term memory problem, and I never ever remember what I am supposed to do when it comes to recipes that I have made a gazillion times! I don’t think it’s anything to fret over. I think that when we are constantly surrounded by food 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, it’s hard to keep track ;) This frosting though….uh yum! I just want to smother that stuff on everything!
    Justine@CookingandBeer recently posted…Oven Fried Korean Chicken TacosMy Profile

  4. says

    I do the SAME thing! I’m constantly checking my recipes on my blog to remember all the ingredients I used. That’s the whole reason I started it, to document my recipes so I could remember. I was just looking up an old soup recipe of mine the other day when I was at the grocery store. Good thing I did, or I would have forgotten to get zucchini. This frosting sounds delicious! It would go great on so many things! I’m thinking pumpkin cake or muffins for sure : )

  5. says

    This is such a great fall frosting! I’m sure it would go great on top of a cake or some pumpkin spiced cookies!

    Also, I have definitely been in your place and managed to need to consult my own recipes. It’s silly, but we cook so much we obviously forget a lot too!

  6. says

    I’m about to try this but I’m not gonna add the maple syrup because I’m making a brownie cake so it’ll be too sweet and I don’t want diabetes on a plate lol. I’ll let you know how it turns out :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge