Chocolate Buttercream Frosting: a delicious recipe every home baker should know

Total time: 5 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 8 people
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By Cookist

When you're whipping up a batch of chocolate cupcakes or a cake, there's nothing like homemade chocolate buttercream to decorate your baked treats. With its silky-smooth texture and incredibly rich chocolate flavor, adding fluffy yet thick chocolate buttercream as a dessert decoration will take your baking to the next level.

It's a simple, basic recipe that every home baker should have in their back pocket. Chocolate buttercream only takes a few minutes to make, and you can store it in your fridge ahead of time and break it out whenever it's time to decorate your desserts. You can even customize it depending on how you'd like to use it!

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Ingredients

To make the best chocolate buttercream at home, you'll need butter, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, heavy whipping cream, and a pinch of salt.

The cocoa powder will give the buttercream its chocolate flavor while whipping cream will give it a light, fluffy texture.

The salt balances out the sweetness.

You can even use salted butter to that same end, however, no matter whether you use salted or unsalted butter, make sure it has been softened to room temperature.

How to Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

To make homemade chocolate buttercream, start by creaming the butter with a handheld electric mixer until it becomes fluffy. Whisk in the remaining ingredients. Continue beating on a low setting until the sugar dissolves.

Beat on high for 2 to 3 minutes, so everything is completely blended. Store it in the fridge in an airtight container until it's time to use it.


How to Serve Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

When you're ready to start decorating your cakes or cupcakes, transfer the buttercream to a piping bag and start piping it onto your baked treats. This recipe yields enough buttercream to decorate 12 full-sized cupcakes, 24 mini cupcakes, or one average-sized cake.

Can You Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Ahead of Time?

Absolutely! Chocolate buttercream can be made up to a week in advance.

Tips for the Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

You can use dark or milk chocolate to make your buttercream.

Melt the chocolate down and add it in, using it as a replacement for cocoa powder.

For a richer chocolate flavor, add some instant espresso or coffee powder to your buttercream.

Swap out the vanilla for another flavor. Orange, lemon, almond, and mint are all fantastic choices.

How to Store Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Transfer the buttercream to an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

unsalted butter, softened
1 cup
Powdered sugar
3 cups
unsweetened natural cocoa powder
1/2 cup
heavy whipping cream
3 to 4 tbsp
pure vanilla extract
2 tsp
1/4 tsp


Cream the butter with a handheld electric mixer until light and fluffy.

Beat in powdered sugar, cocoa powder, heavy cream, vanilla extract, and salt.

Continue beating on a low setting until the sugar dissolves.

Beat on high for 2 to 3 minutes, so everything is completely blended. Scrape down as needed.


Make sure your butter is softened to room temperature before making the buttercream.

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