Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing {Pat’s Recipes}

This amazing Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing is a vintage recipe! It's light and fluffy and tastes like a caramel marshmallow!

In this small quaint town, there are few people that you don’t run into on a daily basis. It’s been a culture shock, a climate shock, and definitely a culinary shock since moving to this northern Canadian burg. And while there are moments where I long for my urban desert home, there are also moments of sweet and utter bliss. One of those moments happened when I met Pat.

Pat is a sweet old lady who lives just a few houses down from me. She’s a fun witted grandma with a few stories to tell. She belongs to the same Church as I do, and when you have less than 30 members in your area, you get to know them really well. Pat’s husband passed away last July, and all of her children and grandchildren have long since moved away. She’s been having trouble getting around on her own these days, so she’s moving closer to her family. We have been assisting Pat in packing up her house and finding little treasures along the way.

Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing {Pat's Recipes}


We stumbled across an old trunk that was filled with love letters, hand-made baby blankets and booties, knick-knacks, and a plethora of hand written recipes. My heart began to beat faster as I ran my fingers through them, and I could see Pat become excited when I asked her about them. She hasn’t cooked much since her husband passed, and it was something she loved to do. She graciously gave me a stack of intriguing recipes and I couldn’t wait to dig in.

The first one that really caught my eye was this Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing.

Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing

What I love about old recipes is the way they are written.

Pat wrote: “drops like a hair from spoon” as to know when the brown sugar mixture is ready. It was interesting, and I had to see what she meant.

Plus… hello… FLUFFY BROWN SUGAR ICING!! How could you not want to know what that tastes like?!

Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing

Sure enough, the mixture of brown sugar, water and corn syrup becomes thick like a rich caramel and when dropped from a spoon makes tiny (even smaller than pictured) strands that resemble hair.

Then you: “Pour hot syrup in a thin stream into egg whites, beating constantly.”

I thought for sure this wouldn’t work. Maybe I am just really novice when it comes to egg whites, but I assumed pouring a hot liquid into them would almost immediately deflate them.

But no, it didn’t.

Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing

In fact, it held it’s shape and gained a glossy shine.

It was amazing, and the taste is stellar. It’s like a fluffy caramel marshmallow frosting.

Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing

I dipped many things into that Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing. Chocolate covered graham crackers, pretzels, and peaches. The peaches won in my book. My husband just rolled his eyes said, “Oh, now peaches need frosting?!”

But seriously, this icing would be amazing when paired with just about anything… even a spoon.

Thanks for letting me introduce you to Pat. I have several more recipes that I can’t wait to share with you!

{UPDATE: Here are some more of Pat’s Recipes: Cherry Nut Bread and Very Nice Chocolate Frosting}

NEW!! Watch this short video to see how the Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing is made!

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Fluffy Brown Sugar Icing {Pat’s Recipes}

Fluffy frosting that tastes like brown sugar caramel heaven.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 cups


  • 1 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup
  • 4 egg whites*
  • 2 tsp vanilla


  1. Mix brown sugar, water and corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil. (Be careful, as it will rise, so make sure the sides of your pan are taller). Let it boil at medium to medium high until the syrup drops like a hair from spoon (approximately 10 minutes). Remove from burner and set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, beat egg whites until stiff.
  3. SLOWLY pour the hot syrup in a THIN stream into egg whites, beating constantly. Beat until icing holds peaks, then blend in vanilla.
  4. Let cool to room temp, then store covered in the fridge until ready to use.
  5. Enjoy!


*The egg whites are cooked when the hot sugar syrup is slowly streamed into them. So no worries about raw egg whites! 🙂

About the author

Shawn is the Owner and Creator of I Wash You Dry. She loves to create and share simple, family-friendly recipes with a bit of life sprinkled in. Mom to 4 adorable children and dwells in the desert of Southern Utah.
478 Responses
  1. Vicky

    Hi Shawn,
    I saw this recipe posted on Pinterest and saved it immediately. My Mom made a scrumptious cake and this is the frosting she used. I’ve never known the recipe but when I read this one had brown sugar in it I knew this was the one I was looking for. I’m wondering if Pat put this on a specific cake? Are you able to ask her? I would sure appreciate it. I was a child when we had it.
    Thank you very much.

    1. Hi Vicky, I’m so glad you found the recipe! Pat has passed away, but when she was alive, she did tell me that she would put this icing on a chocolate or spice cake. I hope you enjoy it!

  2. Yna Mendoza

    Hey there! How much frosting does this recipe yield? And is there an exact temperature I need to boil my sugar mixture to? Thanks a lot!

  3. Hi Shawn,

    I had this recipe pinned on Pinterest for years and I finally got the courage to do it! It came out great. It tastes like brown sugar Fluff. I used it to frost a yellow cake and it was a great combination. Kids loved it! Thank you.

  4. Sierra

    Ok So what did I do wrong ….I was doing the steady pour and the sugar sauce hardened around my mixer and left giant chunks on the bottom! I was mixing vigorously…. Help

  5. Cheryl

    This is made,similar to a Swiss buttercream that I make using white sugar. Curious if I could turn this into a brown sugar buttercream icing. Has any tried it yet?

      1. All I had was maple syrup- not the real stuff, but the kind that’s mostly corn syrup anyways 🙂 , and it turned out great! I cut back the water a little, don’t know if I had too, but it worked!

  6. Carolyn

    Hello, I was wondering if you’ve tried this recipe with muscovado sugar and would it work as well? I wanted to try it with muscovado sugar to get more of a butterscotch flavor. Thanks!

  7. Wioletta Henningsen

    Its fantastic! A little too sweet, I’ll use a little less sugar next time. Thank you for this amazing recipe

  8. Jessica

    Just tried this recipe and it worked out great. I just loved your story about Pat as well. My grandmother was a baker and cake decorator but passed when I was a baby. How I wish I had her to teach me and share her stories! Thank you so much for sharing this 🙂

  9. Laurie A Ryan

    Amazing!! This was by far one of the easiest icings to make and the silky texture is beautiful. My new favorite recipe for an old baking staple.

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Shawn Syphus Hi, I'm Shawn and I'm a busy mom of four; pretending to live on a budget. I love to cook, and explore new recipes, but they have to be quick and easy with as few dishes as possible.

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