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Pierre Hermé’s French Buttercream


   La version Française se trouve ICI
A delightful and creamy buttercream, white in color and really delicious, a recipe of French pastry master Pierre Hermé 

Don't forget to share your photos once you tried this recipe! HERE 

About this recipe

I tried a lot of buttercream recipes, and I have to say this one from Pierre Hermé is my favorite one, by far.

I use it for my wedding cakes (when the white color is not an option) as well as other recipes (Paris Brest, or Ispahan for instance).

I like the color (stays white, ideal for wedding cakes), its taste and its texture

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream


In fact, I am giving here Pierre Hermé's original recipe, along with a couple tricks I learned

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream


Pierre Hermé's Buttercream

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream

Source of the recipe

This is a recipe I got in Pierre Hermé's book "Best Of Pierre Hermé"

The dog and myself, we just love reading Pierre's books

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream
This book is short and ... sweet.... All recipes are really fabulous. Among them : the famous Ispahan, macarons Mogador and the Vanilla tart

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream
To purchase online, see HERE



Pierre Hermé's Buttercream

880 g (2 lbs 15 oz ): With 4 eggs

4 Eggs. ½ Cup or 200 grams

 Cream base

3 Tablespoons Sugar (45 grams)

½ Cup Milk (90 grams)


2 Cups Butter (450 grams)


⅓ Cup Water (75 grams)

1 Cup Sugar (250 grams)


Any extract or liquor. Rose water, blossom water, almond extract, etc...


600 g (1 lbs 5 oz ): With 3 eggs

3 Eggs. ⅓ Cup or 150 grams

 Cream base

2 Tablespoons Sugar (33.7 grams)

⅓ Cup Milk (67.5 grams)


1 ½ Cup Butter (337.5 grams)


4 Tablespoons Water (56.2 grams)

¾ Cup Sugar (187.5 grams)


Any extract or liquor. Rose water, blossom water, almond extract, etc...


400 g (1 lbs 14 oz ): With 2 eggs

2 Eggs. ¼ Cup or 100 grams

 Cream base

2 Tablespoons Sugar (22.5 grams)

3 Tablespoons Milk (45 grams)


1 Cup Butter (225 grams)


3 Tablespoons Water (37.5 grams)

½ Cup Sugar (125 grams)


Any extract or liquor. Rose water, blossom water, almond extract, etc...


1.2 kg (2 lbs 10 oz ): With 6 eggs

6 Eggs. ¾ Cup or 300 grams

 Cream base

⅓ Cup Sugar (67.5 grams)

½ Cup Milk (135 grams)


3 Cups Butter (675 grams)


½ Cup Water (112.5 grams)

1 ⅔ Cup Sugar (375 grams)


Any extract or liquor. Rose water, blossom water, almond extract, etc...


You will need...


Getting Ready

1. Before you start the recipe, make sure the 4 egg whites are at room temperature (

30 minutes


1 hour


2. The


(2 Cups or 450 g) must be soft : Let the


warm to room temperature (

30 minutes


1 hour


3.  In this picture, the


(2 Cups or 450 g) is too hot and therefore too liquide ! The cream will fail. If your


(2 Cups or 450 g) is too liquid, wait that it cools down to become creamier
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

Cream base

4. For the cream base, beat the 4 Egg Yolks and the


(3 Tablespoons or 45 g)

5.  Bring to a boil the


(½ Cup or 90 g)

6. Pour the


onto the bowl with the Yolks/Sugar mix and stir

7. Transfer the bowl to the saucepan
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

8.  Cook, while whisking fast to avoid the yolks to cook too fast

9.  Boil to 185 °F / 84 °C, and remove from the heat

10. Transfer to another bowl
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream


11. Transfer the cream to a mixing bowl, and whisk
Pierre Hermé's Buttercream

Adding the butter

12. While beating the mixture with the whisk, slowly add the


(2 Cups or 450 g) a couple tablespoons at a time

13. Almost stops your heart seeing the quantity of


(2 Cups or 450 g), but that's what makes buttercream so tasty !
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

14. Just continue to add butter and the cream will smooth out, continue beating to get a light texture

15. The cream holds to the whisk
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream


16. Add in the flavor ( vanilla, rose extract, etc... ) and briefly give it another whisk


The Italian Meringue

17.  Place the


(⅓ Cup or 75 g) in a small saucepan, add the


(1 Cup or 250 g) and bring to a boil

18. Wash down the sides of the pan with a brush dipped in cold water to prevent crystallization

19. While the syrup is cooking, start beating the Egg Whites (4), on medium speed
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

20. After

5 minutes

, increase the speed and wait another

5 minutes

21. Wait until the syrup temperature reaches 225 °F / 110 °C

22. When the syrup temperature reaches 225 °F / 110 °C, beat the egg whites on maximum speed

23. Boil the syrup to 245 °F / 118 °C and remove from the heat
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

24. Pour the syrup in slowly

25. Try to pour between the whisk and the side of the bowl, not on the whisk !

26. Beat until completely cool : touch the bowl to make sure it is not hot anymore before proceeding
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

27. The meringue holds to the whisk, otherwise you must continue beating

5 minutes

28. Here's your Italian meringue !
Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream

How much meringue?

  • In the original recipe

    Pierre Hermé takes only 175 g ( 6 oz ) of this meringue
  • My choice

    My choice is to use the whole amount of the meringue, the result will be a lighter cream, with a brighter color. Trust me, the result will be just great...



29. Hermé mentions that the cream and the meringue should be mixed using a rubber spatula.
I just combine them in the mixing bowl and whisk them together using the stand mixer

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream

30. Put the batter back to the mixing bowl

31. Beat on high speed, not more than

8 seconds

Pierre Hermé's ButtercreamPierre Hermé's Buttercream


The result is a delightful, light cream, that can be used right away

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream


To use it later, keep refrigerated

Pierre Hermé's Buttercream


The result and the pix

Readers' Photos

Karine M
“Recette techique mais bon challenge. Réussi a chaque coup! (Même en grosse chaleur d'été) Fait plusieurs arômes. Un délice. Merci du partage de recette!“

FX (François-xavier) answers :

Génoise crème au beurre moka
“Recette simple et légère avec sa meringue et ajout d'un arôme café moka quelques gouttes“

FX (François-xavier) answers :
“Très joli !“

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Click HERE 

Comments for This Recipe

  1. On Saturday November 5, 2016
    DeeDee wrote:
    I just took a petits fours class from S Treand . His butter cream is good but a bit yellow for frosting cake. I will try it.
    Like all recipes you posted. Thanks!
    Just wonder if you have a recipe to glaze a cake. I saw some of them in pink or orange and
    very shiny. It looks stunning.
  2. On Saturday November 5, 2016
    There are several recipes for buttercream.
    I think this one is the best, as it stays white, ideal for wedding cakes.

    Most pastry chefs in france use Yolks which makes the buttercream more "yellow", the reason being that the recipe starts with a "Crème Anglaise" which always calls for Egg Yolks, then the butter is added. I think this version is better because you add the remaining whites, whipped, which gives a better cream (white) that is fluffier

    And you are right, Stéphane Tréand's pastries are just exceptional !
  3. On Saturday November 5, 2016
    For the glazing, I have several recipes for those glazings, including one from Christophe Felder and another one from Bachour, that I will post soon online
  4. On Saturday November 5, 2016
    DeeDee wrote:
    Thanks so much Francois.
    Looking forward to your new post for colour glazings

  5. On Friday October 20, 2017
    Marielle wrote:
    Thank you so much for this recipe, Francois! Is this more stable than the Swiss Meringue? I tried making the buttercream with only egg yolks, and while I was mixing it, it looked super stable. But as I piped it, it slowly melted. I hope this recipe will fix the problem as I really love how it tastes!
  6. On Friday October 20, 2017
    Hi Marielle. Depends on what you are trying to do :

    For frosting and decorations, the [k[24478*Swiss Meringue Buttercream]k] (recipe in French [k[k[24478*HERE]k]k]) is better and holds at room temperature

    For a cream used inside desserts (like the [k[15155*Ispahan]k]), this Hermés recipe is great in taste ! However it is too soft to be used at room temperature, It is piped inside desserts, and then placed in the fridge where it will harden.

    Looks like for what you need, the [k[24478*Swiss Meringue Buttercream]k] would be better, I will translate the recipe in English soon.
  7. On Monday October 23, 2017
    Marielle wrote:
    Thank you for replying, Francois! Yes, I actually have been using Swiss Meringue Buttercream, buy when I tried French buttercream, I was hooked! Taste wise, it was much better! Do you think there is a way to make the French buttercream stable? I really think it is possible if we keep experimenting. Coz it’s such a great buttercream just to be used as filling!
  8. On Monday October 23, 2017
    Yes I agree the taste is superior, though not as easy to use as the [k[24478*Swiss Meringue Buttercream]k].

    So if you really want to use it for frosting, it's possible ! My teacher (a MOF) was using it as well. To stabilize it, just place it in the fridge after making it, and stir it every 5 minutes until it is "firm enough". Of course, if you wait too long, it will harden. So check it every 5 minutes in the fridge and take it out of the fridge once it has the right consistency.
  9. On Friday March 30, 2018
    Zak wrote:
    Hi Francois, thanks for the tasty recipe! I tried to fill macarons with this buttercream, and though it was very tasty, it didn't hold much in room temperature. And that's in relatively cold weather... I wonder whether I did something wrong, or is there a better buttercream you recommend to use for macarons in room temperature in cold weather? Thanks!
  10. On Saturday March 31, 2018
    Hey Zak, this buttercream doesn't hold long at room temperature I agree. That's why I almost never use buttercream to fill my macarons.

    I am still behind translating my macarons recipes in English, but you can have a look HERE at the fillings and creams that I use, they hold at room temperature longer
  11. On Saturday March 31, 2018
    Zak wrote:
    Thank you for your quick response! Thanks to good Google Translate I was able to read the macarons recipes, and found out that the ganache recipes are different between flavours. What I like in the buttercream recipe is that it is a good base and I can easily change its flavour to whatever I want. Do you have any idea what good base I can use with macarons that is very flexible in terms of flavours? Thanks again..
  12. On Sunday April 1, 2018
    Depends on the ganache used. For fruit, we used a pectin based ganache called confit'. In a nutshell, a sugar/pectin mix is added to boiling fruit puree, brought to a boil, and then cooled down.

    For other ganaches, we use a cream/white or black chocolate mix

    There are other ways to come up with a thick paste (pistachio paste, gelatin, butter, etc... ”.

    Each are different and depend on the flavor. Browse them all
  13. On Tuesday May 29, 2018
    Sofia wrote:
    Hello, I want to make a opera cake with this recipe of butter cream, It is posble to frizzed the cake? for how long??
  14. On Tuesday May 29, 2018
    Yes, I've seen professionals freezing their cakes.

    Not more than 2 weeks probably ?
  15. On Tuesday June 12, 2018
    David wrote:
    Hi and thank you for this recipe! I made and it tastes amazing, but I think it seems it may have curdled a little bit and looked a bit more on the yellow side, did I make a mistake somewhere?
  16. On Thursday June 14, 2018
    Never had this issue, honestly.

    Unless anything a bit acid was in your saucepan or ingredients. It's also possible that you beat your cream too long. The cream must be whipped but not too long, otherwise it will curdle and will become butter-y.

    You just want to whip them lightly, not stiff !
  17. On Wednesday October 31, 2018
    Daria (http://Cooktocelebrate%20on%20Instagram) wrote:
    HI! I was wondering whether you would be so kind as to give me a piece of advice?

    I am looking for a recipe for a buttercream (lemon preferably) that I can use for macarons that can be frozen and when defrosted would still hold shape. Many thanks for your help!
  18. On Wednesday October 31, 2018
    This one should work as Hermé uses it for his Vanilla buttercream macarons
  19. On Saturday April 6, 2019
    Bee wrote:
    Helllo Francois, thank you so much for sharing your baking talent and knowledge. In your second recipe for Italian meringue, Im a bit confused. At the very end you state to but the batter back and whip it with the meringue? I see there are two different mixtures in the bowl, but no additional recipe of ingredients. I’m assuming it is a pastry cream? Can you please clarify. Thank you, Bee.
  20. On Saturday April 6, 2019
    Yes, there are 2 different mixtures to be folded together.

    We start with the "cream" (a 'crème anglaise" with the soft butter)

    Then we make an "italian meringue" separately

    and then we fold them together, which becomes the buttercream

    makes sense ?
  21. On Tuesday April 16, 2019
    Shane wrote:
    Hi -i see the Swiss meringue buttercream recommended for room temp-i am making a naked wedding cake for niece-but how do i get recipe in English please -thanks so much
  22. On Thursday May 16, 2019
    Melinda Ann Valencia wrote:
    I’d like to make a not too sweet icing including pistachio paste that will hold and last well outside of the fridge. Can you help???!!
  23. On Friday May 17, 2019
    I have a recipe, HERE.

    Basically you add the pistachio paste at the end, folding it into the buttercream
  24. On Thursday August 15, 2019
    Jane wrote:
    Hi Francois,

    Thanks for the recipe! I am thinking making a wedding cake with raspberry butter cream cake filling and covering with white color butter cream. Can you give me some advice which butter cream I should use and how long can they stay at room temperature regarding to the safety issue. I have been searching on internet but little is found. Do you have any book you can recommend for me to go to? Thanks a lot!!!
  25. On Thursday August 15, 2019
    At room temperature, this buttercream may not hold too long... Its main quality is the solidity in the cake, but not at room temperature.

    I recommended instead a Whipped Ganache, please consider these recipes : HERE
  26. On Saturday June 20, 2020
    Génesis wrote:
    Hi Francois! thank you so much for this recipe, i’m trying to make a coffee filling cake, seminaked cake, is this cream gonna work on room temperature? thank you!
  27. On Sunday June 21, 2020
    Well you can use it to pipe at room temperature, but it needs to be stored in the fridge for safety reasons

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4 Eggs

3 Tablespoons Sugar (45 g)

½ Cup Milk (90 g)

2 Cups Butter (450 g)

⅓ Cup Water (75 g)

1 Cup Sugar (250 g)

Any extract or liquor