I am the first to admit that store bought frosting is way to sugary and can taste artificial. BUT sometimes you just have to use it.
I recently did this for my daughter’s birthday cupcakes, and again for my Vanilla Chai Frosting and no one could tell it was semi-homemade.
I learned a few years ago, but admittedly rarely use. This trick is wonderful for those moments where you have run out of time, items, and patience. Empty a container of store bought frosting – we use Betty Crocker, or Pillsbury, because I know it is gluten-free – into a small bowl, or use the container if it is half way empty.
Pour in 1 Tablespoon of cream, we use heavy cream, but any milk on hand should work. Pour in an 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla, and mix. If the frosting is still too thick, add another Tablespoon of cream and stir.
You will slowly start to see the thick store bought frosting turn into something smooth and creamy, reminding you of the stuff you make when you are not stressing and out of time.
Make sure the frosting is cool/cold before piping and remember to put it back into the fridge from time to time. The warms from your hands, like frosting on a warm cupcake, will melt and cause your icing/decoration/design to lay flat.
Store any unused frosting in the piping bags or the original container in the refrigerator.