This is my favorite cream cheese frosting. I use it for chocolate cake, spice cake, carrot cake, cinnamon rolls, pumpkin bars and so on. Occasionally, I will sprinkle some pumpkin spice in it for a little something different. My new favorite variation, though, is to add the juice and zest of one lemon plus a couple of drops of lemon essential oil to the recipe. It is delightful on a variety of cupcake flavors. (A bit more powdered sugar might need to be added to create the proper spreading consistency after adding lemon juice.)
1 8-oz. bar cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 c. butter, room temperature
1 t. vanilla
4-5 c. powdered sugar, sifted
Cream the cheese and butter, then stir in vanilla. Add sugar to desired consistency.