Favorite Chocolate Buttercream

Chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate buttercream and chocolate sprinkles

Here we go! This is my favorite chocolate buttercream recipe. I’m tempted to call it a “basic” chocolate buttercream, but it’s anything but– it’s incredibly CREAMY, silky, smooth, and rich. Like a decadent brownie in frosting form. Melts in your mouth and is unbelievable on chocolate cupcakes.

Chocolate buttercream in a bowl

Even though it’s a wonderfully creamy chocolate buttercream, it holds its shape beautifully– just as Swiss meringue buttercream does. This is simply perfect for piping even the most intricate and fancy designs.

What Tastes Best with Chocolate Buttercream?

I’ve made this chocolate buttercream more times than I can count, but I love it with:

  1. Cookies and Cream Cupcakes
  2. Yellow Cupcakes
  3. Coconut Cupcakes
  4. Pumpkin Cupcakes
  5. Banana Cupcakes
  6. Chocolate Cupcakes
  7. If you scale it up, you can use it to frost a layered cake, like I do with my chocolate cake and yellow cake

Dive into this chocolate decadence!

chocolate cupcakes in a cupcake pan topped with chocolate buttercream and chocolate sprinkles

Print
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Chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate buttercream and chocolate sprinkles

Favorite Chocolate Buttercream

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2.5 cups
  • Category: Frosting
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This is my favorite chocolate buttercream recipe. It’s incredibly rich, creamy, silky, smooth, and easy to work with for decorating cakes and cupcakes!


Ingredients

  • 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3 and 1/2 cups (420g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 cup (41g) unsweetened natural or dutch-process cocoa powder
  • 3 Tablespoons (45ml) heavy cream or milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy – about 2 minutes. Add confectioners’ sugar, cocoa powder, heavy cream, salt, and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase to high speed and beat for 1 full minute. Add 1/4 cup more confectioners’ sugar or cocoa powder if frosting is too thin or another Tablespoon of cream if frosting is too thick. Taste. Beat in another pinch of salt if desired.
  2. Use immediately or cover tightly and store for up to 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer. After freezing, thaw in the refrigerator then beat the frosting on medium speed for a few seconds so it’s creamy again. After thawing or refrigerating, beating in a splash of heavy cream or milk will help thin the frosting out again, if needed.

Notes

  1. Quantity: This recipe is enough to frost 12-16 cupcakes or a thin layer on a 9×13 inch quarter sheet cake. Follow these ratios for a 2 layer cake and these ratios for a 3 or 4 layer cake.

And here is my favorite vanilla buttercream recipe!

vanilla buttercream in a glass bowl with wooden spoon

296 Comments

  1. Whoa! This is the best buttercream chocolate frosting hands town! My kids love Nuttela so I added about 2T. It turned out really good!

  2. Best chocolate frosting ever! So good. Highley recommend. turned out so well on my cupcakes!

  3. Tastes so good!
    Does the cake need to be refrigerated because of the cream? It tastes very good but I am a home baker and wasn’t sure. Thank you.

  4. My new favorite frosting recipe – it is SOOOOO good!

  5. Made this to go with the chocolate cupcakes on this site and the result was simply delicious. Better than the cupcakes we buy at the specialty shops. Very easy to make as well. Thank you!

  6. thank You SO much. We all loved it.

  7. LeeAnn Siegmann says:

    Yet ANOTHER amazing recipe, girl!!! My husband has reached the point where he asks “Sally?!” on anything great that I make!! 🙂

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Thank you so much for making and trusting our recipes, LeeAnn!

  8. Is this a crusting buttercream?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Connie, the buttercream will start to get hard after some time in the refrigerator, but for a more traditional crusting buttercream you can replace some of the butter with shortening.

  9. Easy, but not good at all. Sorry.

  10. Hi Sally, what brand of Dutch cocoa do you like to use? I usually have the Hershey’s in the can on hand. Thank you.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kris, we love Hershey’s too — not sponsored, just genuine fans!

  11. Just made this buttercream (which I don’t typically opt for) for my son’s birthday cupcakes and I am basically sitting here eating it by the spoonful. SO smooth and flavorful. Not overly sweet. My new favorite frosting!

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