Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

5 from 7 votes

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This easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting recipe is silky and delicious! It comes out perfectly smooth, creamy and fudge-y every time!

A bowl of chocolate buttercream frosting

I have been trying to perfect an easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting for years, and I have finally nailed it. I tried so many recipes and there was always something wrong. Either it was too gritty, too sweet, too runny, or not pipe-able – or sometimes a combination! Then I found some great tips from Veena Azmanov and made some adjustments (she is like the frosting queen and has so many helpful tips). It was PERFECT! So smooth, so creamy, and perfectly chocolate-y and fudge-y. It is the best chocolate buttercream frosting ever. I am never using another recipe again.

a slice of vanilla cake with chocolate buttercream frosting and sprinkles on a plate

Ingredients in Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Most buttercream frostings have the same main ingredients: butter, cocoa powder, milk, vanilla, powdered sugar (also known as confectioners’ sugar), and salt. The problem I encountered most was the frosting being too gritty. I would try to add more liquid to balance it out and then the frosting would be too runny. However, this easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting uses melted chocolate instead of unsweetened cocoa powder. It makes all the difference! Plus, you can use different kinds of melted chocolate for different flavor profiles. I used semi-sweet for this recipe, but you can use dark, milk, or even white chocolate!

A bowl of Chocolate Buttercream Frosting with a spoonful scooped out

Tips on Making Frosting:

  • Use an electric mixer, preferably a stand mixer. This will make your life so much easier and it will help you get the smooth, creamy consistency with little effort.
  • For a smooth, dense creamy frosting that is easier to spread, use the paddle attachment. For a lighter, more airy frosting, use a whisk attachment.
  • Use unsalted butter for the best results. If all you have is salted sweet cream butter, that will work just fine, you may just taste a tiny bit of the saltiness come through. 
  • For a richer, chocolate flavor use dark chocolate instead of semi-sweet. You can also add ½ teaspoon of espresso powder in with the vanilla extract for an even deeper flavor. 

How to Store Chocolate Frosting

If you are planning to use your chocolate buttercream frosting in the next few days, you can keep it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. You can also keep it in the freezer for up to three months. To thaw from the fridge, place the container on the counter until it comes to room temperature. To thaw from the freezer, place the frosting in the fridge overnight and then place on the counter until it comes to room temperature.

A bowl of chocolate buttercream frosting

Frequently Asked Questions About Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Does chocolate buttercream need to be refrigerated?

Yes, since this recipe has heavy cream in it, it needs to be refrigerated.

What is the difference between chocolate icing and chocolate frosting?

Icing is thinner and glossier than frosting, often made with more liquid like milk.

How long will chocolate buttercream keep?

This frosting is best used within 3 days of making.

Read More: 33+ Easy Dessert Ideas (with Pictures + Simple Recipes)

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting on Cakes

Our favorite way to use this easy chocolate buttercream frosting is on cakes (and cupcakes. Use it to spruce up a simple box cake mix or use it on a cake that you have made from scratch. Use it between the layers of a two-layer cake and you won’t be sorry. It also spreads super smoothly so you can use it both as a filling and as the outer layer of your cake. Here are some of our favorite cake recipes where you can use this frosting:

More Easy Frosting Recipes

Looking for more easy and delicious frosting recipes? We have got you covered! We have all sorts of delicious frosting and icing recipes to choose from to help with all your confectionary needs:

How to Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

A bowl of chocolate buttercream frosting

Easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

5 from 7 votes
This easy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting recipe is sinfully delicious! It comes out perfectly smooth, creamy and fudge-y every time!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24


  • stand mixer or hand mixer



  • Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. Whip on high speed for 1-2 minutes, or until the butter is light and fluffy. Then add whipping cream, salt, and vanilla. Mix until combined. Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time. Start at a low speed until the sugar is incorporated and then increase the speed as needed. Mix until fully combined and the mixture forms almost stiff peaks.
    Whipped butter in a silver mixing bowl
  • Melt the chocolate by placing it in a microwave-safe dish and microwaving it in 30 second intervals until it is melted. Stir extremely well between each interval.
    a bowl of melted chocolate
  • Allow the chocolate to cool, but not so much that it hardens again. Add to the frosting mixture and stir until combined.
    Chocolate Buttercream Frosting in a silver mixing bowl


Recipe from
Makes about 4 cups of frosting – enough frosting for 24 cupcakes.
If your frosting is too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it is too thick, add a little milk. 

Nutrition Information

Calories: 173kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 1gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 119mgPotassium: 76mgFiber: 1gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 245IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 14mgIron: 1mg

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About the author

Kelsey Crist

Kelsey lives in Washington with her husband, Alex, and two cats, Diana and Nova. Her happy place is in the kitchen listening to an audiobook and trying new recipes. When she's not in the kitchen you can find her hiking, shopping at Trader Joe's, or playing Animal Crossing. Her favorite food is pasta and Alex loves when she makes Homemade Oreos.

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  1. 5 stars
    Looks amazing. Firm and perfect! I will save your recipe and give it a try. Planing on making cupcakes this weekend.

  2. 5 stars
    Made this frosting to put on top of a birthday cake I made, and it was incredible! Everyone really enjoyed it. Will be using this chocolate buttercream frosting recipe again!

  3. 5 stars
    Ok, I think I could eat this all by itself! It is so good!! Making some cupcakes this weekend & this will definitely be on top!

  4. 5 stars
    This is the creamiest frosting ever! It is the perfect combination of chocolate. So simple to frost with too!