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Best Chocolate Buttercream Recipe

This is my go to Chocolate Buttercream Recipe! It’s soft, fluffy and incredibly decadent, pipes beautifully onto your chocolate cupcakes and is perfectly smooth and luscious to layer with a chocolate cake.

Chocolate buttercream

Fluffy Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Whether you call it chocolate buttercream frosting or chocolate buttercream icing there is only on way to describe it and that is incredible. Soft, fluffy, rich and decadent this fluffy chocolate buttercream is easy to work with and elevates any baked good it touches into something irresistible!

Buttercream is a staple for baking so having a good recipe on hand is so important. I’ve made this Chocolate Buttercream more times than I can count so trust me when I say this is the only recipe you’ll ever need! 

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Why this is the BEST Chocolate Buttercream

  • Easy to make with only 5 ingredients.
  • It’s the softest and fluffiest buttercream you will ever taste thanks to a few important tips and tricks!
  • Made from the best quality cocoa powder for the best chocolate flavour.
  • Lasts for up to 3 months in the freezer!
  • Works perfectly with my chocolate cupcake recipe!
  • No stand mixer required, you can use a hand mixer!
chocolate buttercream recipe

What to use Chocolate Buttercream with?

Glad you asked because the list is almost endless but here are a few of my favourite recipes I love to pair with this buttercream recipe

  • Chocolate Cupcakes – What goes better with chocolate buttercream than chocolate cupcakes? Honestly they are made for each other!
  • Vanilla Cake – If you’re more of a vanilla cake person the chocolate that doesn’t mean you need to miss out on the chocolate buttercream!
  • Banana Cake – I usually serve my banana cake recipe with brown sugar buttercream but if I’m after something a little more indulgent then chocolate is it!
  • Chocolate Cake – Second only to chocolate cupcakes is chocolate cake!
  • Macarons – This buttercream works really well sandwiched between my French Macarons, you have to give it a try!
  • Vanilla Cupcakes – Like chocolate cupcakes but in vanilla form!
Chocolate Buttercream on Chocolate Cupcakes

Chocolate Buttercream with Cocoa Powder

I often get asked why this chocolate buttercream is made without chocolate, only cocoa powder. The answer to that is using actual chocolate doesn’t really have many benefits in this recipe.

Chocolate is usually used for texture from the cocoa butter as well as flavour but because this is buttercream there is already texture from the butter. So save yourself some time and money and just use the best quality cocoa powder because that’s all you need to make the most perfect Chocolate Buttercream.

Chocolate Buttercream Ingredients

Chocolate Buttercream Recipe Ingredients

2 Sticks / 225g Butter – Make sure your butter is at room temperature. Remove it from the fridge at least a few hours before you start making this recipe or use the microwave to soften it. 

5 Cups / 625g Powdered Sugar – Powdered sugar, icing sugar and confectioners sugar are all the same ingredient just different names in different parts of the world. 

1/2 Cup / 50g Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – Use the best quality cocoa powder you can can find.

1/2 Cup / 125ml Milk – Whole milk is best for this recipe but other types of milk or milk alternatives can be used instead. 

1 tsp Vanilla Essence

How to Make Chocolate Buttercream

In the bowl of your stand mixer or a large bowl if you’re using a hand mixer add the room temperature butter.

Beat the butter on medium speed for 4-5 minutes until light, fluffy and almost doubled in volume. Use a spatula to scrape down the bowl a few times so all the butter is evenly incorporated.

Add the sugar in thirds, waiting until it’s fully incorporated before adding the next third.

Add the cocoa powder with the last third of sugar and mix on low speed. The mixture will start to look dry and crumbly.

With the machine running on low add half of the milk along with the vanilla essence. The buttercream will instantly start to come together.

Scrape down the sides of the bowl and with the machine running add the other half of the milk or enough until you get the consistency you are after. If you are piping the buttercream you will want it thicker and may not need all of the milk.

Continue to beat the buttercream for another few minutes until light and fluffy.

It’s now ready to be piped onto cupcakes or spread over a layer cake.

Common Questions about this Chocolate Buttercream Recipe

How many cupcakes will this frosting cover?

This will make enough for about 12-15 cupcakes depending on how high you pipe the buttercream. It will be enough to layer an 8″ or 20cm cake but if you have more than two layers I would recommend doubling the recipe.

How long will this Chocolate Buttercream last?

The chocolate buttercream will keep at room temperature for three days, the fridge for one week or the freezer for three months. If you do store it in the fridge or freezer before you use it let it come up to room temperature and beat it in your stand mixer or with a hand mixer for a few minutes.

What makes Chocolate Buttercream Crust?

The outer layer of buttercream will crust after an hour or two. This makes it great for piping!

Buttercream

Equipment needed for this Recipe

  • Stand Mixer or Hand Mixer – The butter needs to be whipped for this recipe. It will take about 5 minutes on medium to high speed so you wont be able to do this by hand.
  • Measuring Cups or Digital Scale – To measure the ingredients for this recipe measuring cups or a digital scale can be used. I have given the amounts for both as different people have different preferences.
  • Piping Bag and Piping Tip – To use this buttercream on cupcakes it’s easiest to use a piping bag and piping tip. I have used a Wilton 2D piping tip here, it’s my favorite!

More Icing / Frosting Recipes

Best Chocolate Buttercream

Best Chocolate Buttercream

Yield: 3 Cups
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

This is my go to Chocolate Buttercream Recipe! It’s soft, fluffy and incredibly decadent, pipes beautifully onto your chocolate cupcakes and is perfectly smooth and luscious to layer with a chocolate cake.

Ingredients

  • 2 Sticks / 225g Butter
  • 5 Cups / 625g Icing Sugar / Powdered Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup / 50g Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 Cup / 125ml Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Essence

Instructions

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer or a large bowl if you’re using a hand mixer add the room temperature butter.
  2. Beat the butter on medium speed for 4-5 minutes until light, fluffy and almost doubled in volume. Use a spatula to scrape down the bowl a few times so all the butter is evenly incorporated.
  3. Add the sugar in thirds, waiting until it’s fully incorporated before adding the next third.
  4. Add the cocoa powder with the last third of sugar and mix on low speed. The mixture will start to look dry and crumbly.
  5. With the machine running on low add half of the milk along with the vanilla essence. The buttercream will instantly start to come together.
  6. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and with the machine running add the other half of the milk or enough until you get the consistency you are after. If you are piping the buttercream you will want it thicker and may not need all of the milk.
  7. Continue to beat the buttercream for another few minutes until light and fluffy. It’s now ready to be piped onto cupcakes or spread over a layer cake.

Notes

Storing the Buttercream

The Buttercream can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days or the fridge for 1 week. Beat it in your stand mixer or with a hand mixer for a few minutes before using.

Freezing the Buttercream

To freeze the buttercream put it in an airtight container and place into the freezer for up 3 months. When you are ready to use buttercream let it fully defrost at room temperature. Place it back into your stand mixer or beat with a hand mixer for a few minutes. It's now ready to be used.

Buttercream Coverage

This quantity of buttercream will be enough to cover 15-20 cupcakes depending on how high the buttercream is piped and layer one 8" or 20cm cake. If you are covering any more than this the recipe will need to be doubled. It can also easily be halved to make less.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 320Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 49mgSodium: 148mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 1gSugar: 37gProtein: 1g

Nutrition information is estimated and not always correct

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