Publix Bakery decorator icing cupcakes

What do birthday, wedding and anniversary celebrations all have in common? If you’re lucky, it’s a Publix bakery cake with lots of buttercream icing. Its sweet flavor and fluffy consistency make it hard to resist. I’m here to fill you in and give you all the secrets behind our famous cakes and buttercream icing!

Did you know?

  • Our Publix bakery buttercream icing recipe was originally developed in 1957. However, it went through a change in 2018 to replace partially hydrogenated shortening with palm oil.
  • We use real butter in our buttercream icing.
  • The buttercream icing is mixed in each store location.
  • Buttercream icing is the most popular icing selected for cakes and cupcakes.
  • In 2018, our bakeries produced more than 18.6 million pounds of buttercream icing.
  • 6 million pounds of icing would cover cupcakes in 49.5 million 6-count packages. If you iced and lined up all those cupcakes from end to end, they would reach approximately 11,775 miles — almost halfway around the world! That’s a lot of cupcakes!
  • For all the icing lovers out there, you can purchase our buttercream icing in individual containers in the bakery.

When you order your cake from Publix, you can choose buttercream icing as the icing and filling. Don’t forget to order at least 24 hours in advance.


Do you know how we came to offer such delicious baked goods in our stores? Find out more about our Publix bakery beginnings.


Caroline A.

Written by

Caroline started with Publix as a cashier in 2015 and has developed a passion for writing and social media. She loves being a part of Publix’s culture and enjoys bringing new ideas to The Publix Checkout by writing about topics customers might not know about the company. Pub Subs and Publix Sweet Tea are her favorites, and you’ll always find her with an iced coffee in hand. Outside of work, Caroline enjoys traveling, watching college football and playing with her fur child.

25 Comments on “7 Secrets Behind Our Publix Buttercream Icing

  1. Aubrey

    Is there any way to buy Publix cream cheese frosting? I notice buttercream is sold in containers in the bakery, but I prefer the cream cheese frosting. I’ve tried my best but can’t replicate it!

    1. Austin B.Austin B.

      Hi Aubrey! We suggest reaching out to your local bakery to ask about this. They’re always happy to accommodate special requests when they’re able!

    1. James

      We have been so disappointed the last few times that we had a Publix cake. Now I know why. The frosting recipe has changed. Now I figure that I might as well go buy one at any other store for cheaper. So sad!

      1. Ashley

        Actually, the change they made really does not make a difference. They switched to Palm oil witch is a very unhealthy oil. I love the taste, but not what it does to the body.

  2. Laura

    The old buttercream frosting was my absolute favorite, and I got everyone I know hooked on it. I don’t understand why you had to change the recipe for something so wildly popular with everyone I know, but I don’t know a single person that I converted who still buys cakes from y’all now that the recipe has changed. That includes me. I used to buy packages of just the frosting all the time, when I wasn’t getting random cakes for every possible occasion, but once I tasted the new buttercream, I walked away from your bakery with a great deal of sadness and an as yet unmet goal of finding somewhere else with cakes as good as yours used to be…. PLEASE go back to the old recipe!!!

    1. Caroline A.Caroline A.

      Hi Laura, I am sorry to hear we disappointed you. I am going to share your concerns regarding the buttercream with our bakery teams. We appreciate your feedback!

    2. Tarsha

      I second that Laura! It was the best if the best. I no longer buy their cakes because the taste just doesn’t measure up with the old recipe. I hope they listen to the consumers.

  3. Jahra

    Back in 2016, i asked my local publix if theh used lard in any of their frostings and the answer was their buttercream and cream cheese frostings do. So is lard still used now? I am asking because i dont consume lard in any form.

  4. Violet

    I don’t like the new frosting. I am from Miami and I grew up on the old buttercream frosting that made publix cakes so different then anyone’s else cake. I am sorry to say but wal mart cakes is the next best thing to Publix old frosting.

  5. Tom

    I love the buttercream icing! To be a more environmental friendly company the palm oil should be replaced. The damage done by the cultivation of palm oil is to large to be ignored by Publix.

    1. Kimberly

      The damage to the rainforest and the population of orangutans by utilizing palm oil is well known. I am so disappointed in Publix for using a cheaper ingredient, that is known to cause environmental damage, just to save a buck. Very irresponsible. In addition, it doesn’t taste near as good as the old recipe. Pay attention to your customers Publix or they will go elsewhere.

      1. Kaitlynn R.Kaitlynn R.

        Hi there, Kimberly. Providing our customers with safe, high-quality products has always been our goal and we want to assure you that this continues to be a primary objective at Publix. Based on the requirement from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for all partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) to be removed from consumable items as of June, 2018, we have proactively begun removing shortening from our products. However, palm oil is not the only substitution. Many of our products are made using soy and/or canola oils.

        Palm oil is a preferred ingredient in a number of food offerings due to its baking characteristics, and it supports our initiative to eliminate trans fats. Given the high demand for palm oil, rainforests continue to be cleared for palm plantations and we recognize that sourcing sustainable palm oil is an increasing environmental concern. In an effort to reduce or eliminate deforestation, the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO, has created the Green Palm Program, which certifies and rewards palm oil growers that practice sustainable and responsible farming practices.

        We support sustainable palm oil production by working with suppliers that participate in the Green Palm Program and that purchase palm oil that is grown in a sustainable manner, as being an environmentally responsible company is one of our core values.

  6. Nancy

    I have loved Publix buttercream icing since I was a little girl. I KNEW something changed recently. I personally don’t think the new formula tastes as good as the original. The cakes/cupcakes were consistently delicious until last year. Now sometimes the buttercream icing has almost a greasy texture and reminds me of canned frosting. I have found that the second day, if not refrigerated, the layers actually slide off the cake! I miss the old frosting and wish you could bring it back.

    1. Tom

      I love the buttercream icing! To be a more environmental friendly company the palm oil should be replaced. The damage done by the cultivation of palm oil is to large to be ignored by Publix.

  7. Tom

    The palm oil, not to mention the partially hydrogenated shortening, needs to go. Frosting should be made with 100% unsalted butter. As on who bakes from scratch all the time, your products are loaded with additives and short-cut ingredients that should not be there at all! Your baked should should have NOTHING that a home baker wouldn’t include using a high-quality recipe. I can see, maybe, the need for preservatives–but that’s it!

    1. Kate

      Take your hate out of here Tom! Publix ingredients are made from fairy dust and dreams. At home bakers can’t do that! Publix , don’t listen to this negativity. True fans never need to know secrets; we know your only intention is to fill our lives and bellies with pure love!

      1. Alisha

        I agree. We got a 1st birthday cake and cupcakes today and the icing was falling off the side of the cake. Not sliding down like it was melting but falling off, not sticking to the cake. And the icing consistency on the cupcakes was very thin it seemed. Not to mention the colors were not like the picture off the Publix website. I used to love their cakes and always recommend them, but now I might have to rethink them or maybe give a different store a shot just to make sure it isn’t just that particular store.

        1. Caroline A.Caroline A.

          Hi Alisha, I am sorry to hear this happened. I recommend sharing your concerns regarding your cake with our social media team on Facebook or Twitter through private message. Our team will be able to address this with you!

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