Best Chocolate Frosting Recipe

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Hints for the creamiest, best chocolate frosting recipe around. There’s just 6 ingredients in this fudgy frosting that pairs with any cake.


Best Chocolate Frosting Recipe

We’ve featured this mouthwatering buttercream, known as “the best chocolate frosting around”, several times on Tastes of Lizzy T in the past. You’ve seen it on mint cakes, peanut butter cakes and chocolate shortbread.

The time has come, however, to showcase this smooth, creamy, easy chocolate buttercream frosting with an article all of its own. Because it’s that good. And we use this recipe all the time.


Homemade Chocolate Buttercream

There was a day when I didn’t think making my own buttercream frosting was worth the trouble. I’d just buy a tub of ready-to-spread frosting and call it good. Those were the good ‘ol days when Maddie didn’t like frosting. Turns out she didn’t necessarily not like frosting…she just needed to taste the amazingness called “homemade chocolate icing” recipe.

This simple recipe has butter, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt, vanilla and heavy cream. The butter makes the fudge frosting literally melt in your mouth.

The salt? It balances the sweetness just perfectly.

And the heavy cream makes this whip up into a beautifully creamy, easy-to-spread chocolate frosting.


How to Make Chocolate Frosting

Homemade buttercream is easiest when you have a stand mixer. You’ll whip the butter for about 1 ½ minutes until it is creamy and whitish in color. Then you’ll add the salt and vanilla. And then comes the powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Add this in slowly and be sure the mixer is on low speed so the powdered sugar doesn’t go flying all over your kitchen.

As for the heavy cream, simple add a tablespoon at a time until the frosting is the consistency that you’d like it. Some like thicker frosting and some want it fluffier and lighter. A little more heavy cream will give you a fluffier texture.  Be sure not to beat the frosting too much. It will whip more air into your frosting. Unless what you want is an airier frosting, of course. I find that beating my frosting for about 1 minute gets it to the consistency I like.

Just look at this…..


Q: What are your chocolate frosting hints?


Best Chocolate Frosting Recipe

4.88 from 25 votes
Hints for the creamiest, best chocolate frosting recipe around. There's just 6 ingredients in this fudgy frosting that pairs with any cake.
Servings 10 servings
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream


  • In a stand mixer with the beater blade, beat the butter for 1-2 minutes until it is smooth, creamy and nearly white in appearance. 
  • Add in the salt and vanilla. Mix until incorporated.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder.
  • Add the heavy cream, a tablespoon at a time, mixing slowly until it is the consistency that you'd like. 
  • Beat for 1 minute on medium speed until smooth and creamy.



We like to use the beater blade attachment. If you'd like an airier frosting, you can use the whisk and beat the frosting for an additional 1-2 minutes. This will whip more air into the frosting, which makes it delicious, but it will also not spread on as smoothly.
We used regular cocoa powder, but if you'd like deeper, darker flavor, use special dark cocoa powder


Serving: 76g | Calories: 359kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 21g
Author Julie Clark
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 359
Keyword chocolate buttercream, chocolate cake, frosting recipes, how to make buttercream


About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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Julie Crawford
5 years ago

Thank You!!!!

5 years ago

When do you add in the salt. I put a pinch of salt in my icing. I wonder is 1/2 a teaspoon would be too much.

Celina Nunez
5 years ago

Can this piped? For cupcakes? Beater blade or whisk.

5 years ago

5 stars
I love butter cream so much! xo Loren

5 years ago

Thanks, Julie– This is my new favorite frosting! I made it today to go on golden Valentine’s cake donuts… I know, kinda weird, but I was given donut pans for Christmas and wanted to use them. 🙂 I frosted and stacked three donuts on top of each other to make a mini ‘cake’ for my Valentine! Had some extra batter so made some cupcakes, too… DE-licious! My husband loves chocolate peanut-butter cups, so instead of 1 C butter, I used 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup peanut butter. OMG… I don’t know why I never made this sooner. Soooo good.… Read more »

wendi witt
5 years ago

Is this a sweet frosting? I normally make cream cheese frosting, could i add cream cheese to this??

5 years ago

What are your thoughts on this sitting at room temperature?

5 years ago

What could you change in this recipe to make plain vanilla frosting?

Becca Taylor
5 years ago

Would it be possible to make this a day ahead and pipe on cupcakes the next day? I’m on a time crunch tomorrow, but want them to be as fresh and delicious as possible!

5 years ago

Hi Julie, I’m trying to determine how much frosting I need to make. I’m making a piano cake. It is a 13×9 base, with frosting on top, then topped with a 9×9. I will carve a corner in a curved fashion to make the look of a grand piano. I wanted to do a crumb coat the day before, and then a full coat the day of. Being that I’m doing 2 separate coats, rather than making seperate batches I wanted to make one and refrigerate the remainder until needed. Do you think I should double or triple the recipe?… Read more »

4 years ago

5 stars
It was so easy to make and very delicious. I had to substitute low-fat milk for the heavy cream, but I used only three tablespoons instead. I too thought a half of a teaspoon of salt was too much, but the flavor definitely compliments this recipe. I’ll definitely keep this as my new favorite. Thanks!

Kt H
4 years ago

5 stars
This buttercream is so darn good! I made it to put on peanut butter cupcakes, and it was better than the cake! The best thing about this frosting is that it is not super sweet. Most of the buttercreams that I have tried have been far too sweet, and this was a refreshing change. The salt definitely helps with the sweet factor! The next thing I’m going to try with this is a chocolate cake with raspberry mousse as the filling and this buttercream on the top!

4 years ago

Did you use this recipe with dark chocolate on your turtle cupcakes?

Marilyn Rees
4 years ago

5 stars
Hi Julie! I was just curious, would this buttercream hold up well if I put fondant over it? Thanks!

4 years ago

How many cupcakes does this ice … if I’m piping ?

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