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buttercream has chunks!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Got a question - when I make my buttercream, sometimes when it's done there are chunks of Crisco - I guess I don't notice when I don't color the frosting but when I use color, all of a sudden they are there. It's irritating. This happens when I use the brand name Crisco. I thought the problem was with not creaming long enough, but that didn't make a difference. I use a Kitchen Aid mixer, please give me ideas of what I could be doing!!!! Thanks!
post #2 of 10
Sometimes chunks of crisco get caught up in the whisk. I always clean the whisk off with a spatula (after creaming the mixture), then I recream it. I never have chunks. Hope this helps. I let it cream for several minutes the first time.
post #3 of 10
if you are using the wisk...try the paddle attatchment . HTH icon_smile.gif
post #4 of 10
I use the paddle too but I would recommend the same thing as cylstrial. Cream your shortening (& butter if you use it) together well. Scrap the sides and the bottom of the bowl as well as the paddle attachment as needed during the creaming process before adding other ingredients.
KJV - PROVERBS 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
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KJV - PROVERBS 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
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post #5 of 10
I use 2 parts butter and 1 part shortening in my buttercream. I always beat the heck out of them at the outset. They are the only ingredients in the mixer and I mix them at a very high speed, (like maybe 8 or 9), until they are creamy with NO chunks. I used to have the same problem, my buttercream just wouldn't get smooth. And once you've added the other ingredients, you just can't fix the problem because if you try to beat the heck out if after you've added the other ingredients, you'll end up with air bubbles.

My advice? Beat it death before you add anything else to the mixer.
post #6 of 10
Agree with beat the snot out of it in the beginning. Pulverize the fat into teeny tiny particles. After some initial beating, I'll add a cup or so of p.sugar to "bind" it al together. (It's really pretty in the bowl at this point ... looks like silk!)

I can beat my icing for long periods of time .... I'll sometimes turn on the mixer and go do other stuff (like check CC!).
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the ideas. I use the paddle attachment and I thought I had been creaming long enough. I will use these tips with my next batch!
post #8 of 10
Also, when you cream-scrape the bowl well. There can be small chunks clinging to the little inverted "hill" at the bottom of the bowl-always scrape around that part well! And use a paddle only icon_smile.gif
How you think when you lose, determines how long it will be until you win.
Gilbert Keith Chesterton
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How you think when you lose, determines how long it will be until you win.
Gilbert Keith Chesterton
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post #9 of 10
You will know you have reached the right cream state when your shortening/butter mixture have a very smooth shiny silky look to it. Also you will want to make sure that both your shortening and butter are a room temperature. This will help with the creaming. Are you sure that it is shortening and not your butter making the clumps. If you are not letting the butter come up to room temperature it will clump on you. I ditto using the paddle and scraping the bowl. I also sift my powdered sugar, even though it is supposedly already sifted, using a fine mesh metal collinder. I almost always have found clumps of sugar that don't go through the sifter.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
I finally figured out why my buttercream chunked up - it was the powdered sugar. I started sifting the sugar and since then, no chunks! Thanks for all the suggestions, as I think I never creamed my shortening long enough before, and it makes a huge difference in my frosting!
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