Root Beer Float Cupcakes with Ice Cream Frosting

These Root Beer Float Cupcakes with Ice Cream Frosting are all summer! Using ice cream inthe frosting is a perfect wayto get the ice cream flavor but not worry about the melting!!

These are a two-fer.

They are Root Beer Float cupcakes, they are also “early-birthday” cupcakes…hence the straw AND the sprinkles.

Got it?

So yeah…my kid has a summer birthday, so he doesn’t get a special day designated to him at school…no goody bags to pass out to classmates, no friends making handmade cards to give him, no birthday crown…

The effect of parents letting their guard down in October as opposed to April.

Apparently, though…in the world we live in, where everything is always fair, everyone gets a trophy and there is no last place, my kiddo gets to celebrate his summer birthday during the school year…with a “Summer Birthday Celebration”.

The sweet teachers at the school didn’t factor in, however, that my child also expected presents on his early birthday, deciding that everyone ELSE in the WHOLE school got “Summer Birthday Celebration Presents”.

I let him pick his cupcake flavor instead.  Life is a compromise.

The choice du jour was Root Beer Float Cupcakes.  Cheaper than a new iPod.

PhotobucketThese are an easy Root Beer Float Cupcake with Vanilla Ice Cream Frosting.

Look what I added in there…All Spice and Cinnamon.  Not enough to make it a spice cake, but enough to bump up the Root Beer flavor a bit.

PhotobucketAnd I also added enough Root Beer to make them completely kid-friendly.

PhotobucketWith the batter mixed, I baked them up…

PhotobucketAnd started on the frosting.

It began with some vanilla ice cream.

PhotobucketHonestly, the ice cream doesn’t make a HUGE taste difference, since I used vanilla, but the idea of throwing ice cream into the frosting made me happy.

You need to let the ice cream sit out for a bit so it isn’t frozen…if you make that mistake the frosting will seem perfect until the ice cream melts, and then you will have a melty frosting cupcake.

I know this because, well, I didn’t factor that in the first time.

Yes, melty cupcakes everywhere.

Learn from my mistakes.

After I got the frosting just right, I drizzled it with a little Root Beer syrup, but you could easily use chocolate.

PhotobucketAnd since we couldn’t forget that they were for a “Summer Birthday Celebration” I added some sprinkles…to amp up the birthday-ness of it all.

PhotobucketNo presents, just cupcakes.

Feel sorry for my child.



Root Beer Float Cupcakes with Ice Cream Frosting

  • Author: Cookies & Cups


makes 24 cupcakes



  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp root beer extract
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp all spice
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cups root beer

Ice Cream Frosting:

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1/2 cup vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 8 cups powdered sugar



  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Line muffin tins with cupcake liners
  3. Beat butter and sugar together for 2 minutes on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  4. Add eggs and extracts and continue mixing for 1 more minute, scraping down sides as necessary.
  5. In a separate bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, all spice and cinnamon.
  6. Turn mixer to low and add half the dry mixture and half the root beer, stirring until combined, repeat with remaining dry mixture and root beer until combined.
  7. Fill lined muffin tins about 2/3 full (approx 1/4 cup batter) and bake 15-17 minutes until centers are set.
  8. Cool on wire rack completely before frosting.


  1. In stand mixture cream butter and shortening together until smooth. Add in 1/2 cup softened ice cream and mix until combined. Slowly add in powdered sugar.
  2. When all powdered sugar is incorporated turn mixer up to medium and beat for 30 seconds.
  3. If necessary, add more ice cream 1 Tablespoon at a time until desired consistency is reached. But remember not to add too much ice cream, as when it comes up to room temperature it could make your frosting too soft.
  4. *optional ~ drizzle cupcakes with root beer or chocolate syrup, if desired and decorate with a straw cut in half.

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Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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57 Responses
  1. debbie

    I love the idea of ice cream in the frosting but how does it hold up after they are frosted. Do they have to stay refrigerated after frosting the cakes?

    1. shelly

      NO, the ice cream works a lot like milk or cream would in regular frosting…You certainly could refrigerate them, but if your house is air conditioned they will be fine on the counter 🙂

  2. oh lordy. We’ve been downing root beer floats during this whole vacay we’re on! I’m gonna have to take it a step further and make these now!

    (My boy has a December birthday, so I’ll have to figure out how to make sure I separate Christmas and his birthday…when he’s old enough to care. I think I’d rather he have a summer (not-in-school) birthday! lol!)

  3. Note to self…be wary of summer birthday doom when conceiving future children lest you feel compelled to celebrate your child’s birthday twice in one year.

    Although…getting to eat these twice doesn’t seem so bad to me!

  4. Kat

    Woow looks super tasteful! If only I could pull off cupcakes like this ones. And the ice cream icing? Bah, impossible with my baking skills, hahah, but I’m gonna try over the weekend. I’m sure I will be freezing and defrosting the ice cream for the whole day and my fiance will drink all the beer in the meanwhile 😀

    Have a beautiful day!

  5. This is a blog robbery!!! Obey my rules and no one will get hurt:

    Pack these up & mail them to me so I can eat them all in one sitting.

    Do as I say and no one will get hurt!!!


  6. Rootbeer and vanilla ice cream = two of my favorites!
    How adorable are these Shelley!
    Love the straws!
    LOVE the idea of ice cream in the frosting!
    That =s MAGIC!!!

  7. True story: we just took our 5 year old on a special overnight vacation…no baby brother. We seriously could have just bought him a root beer and he would have been just as excited. We let him have it for the first time and that was his best memory of the whole darn weekend. Yay for root beer.

  8. Jennifer

    I love the idea of root beer cupcakes! It’s so clever. I also think the idea that the school has summer birthday celebrations. Being a summer birthday kid, I always missed the parties that we had for everyone else during the regular school season. Cool idea for the summer babies!

  9. Courtney

    Dying to bake these. . . but cannot bake them without the cute little staw accesorization! Where did you get those darling little things!?

  10. Well at least they acknowledge summer birthdays at your son’s school. My daughter and I both have Aug birthdays. They never did anything at my school, nor at the school my daughter goes to. It really stinks. Plus having a late summer birthday meant everyone was on their last minute vacations before school started. STinky! Somehow, with an early start to the school year, my daughter gets to have her birthday on the second day of school! How sad is it that I’m jealous? Wah!

    Maybe it would make things all better if someone magically came over and made these cupcakes for me…and cleaned up after themselves…and cleaned the toilet while they were at it. yup. That’d do it.

  11. Root bear screams summer to me! Now, I’m craving these cupcakes. Plus I love a good two-fer. Thanks for sharing. I’m hosting a kiddie playdate next week and I think I’ll serve these 🙂

  12. Yum. I have an obsession with root beer concentrate, and just purchased two more bottles. I think I’ll be giving these beauties a try this summer! Thanks for the tip on the ice cream! Totally something I would have done!

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Shelly Hi! I’m Shelly and I’m an addict. Of the buttercream sort. I started this site a few years ago as a way to justify my sugary, buttery obsession with desserts. It has worked out well for me so far, because as it turns out you guys all love sugary, buttery desserts too! It feels good to know you're not alone, doesn’t it?

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