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This luscious Chocolate Buttercream Frosting makes the perfect topping for cakes, cupcakes, and cookies. Weirdly, it works really well with my Red Velvet Cupcakes. It’s rich and creamy frosting that uses both cocoa powder and melted chocolate which results in a deep chocolate flavor. It’s heaven on my Moist Chocolate Cupcakes!

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - frosting on a cupcake

I have loads of great frosting recipes on this site. This Vanilla Buttercream one is a great vanilla version, I have an ultra-smooth Chocolate Ganache recipe that’s like eating a decadent brownie, but my favorite is this Cream Cheese Frosting recipe.

Get ready for ultra-smooth and creamy frosting!

There are so many things to love about my Chocolate Buttercream Frosting!

  • Creamy – The frosting is fluffy and creamy and that’s because of the softened butter.
  • Silky smooth – the ultra-smooth and silky texture is heavenly. You can feel it when eating it but you can see it’s luscious sheen on cakes and cupcakes.
  • Deep, rich chocolate flavor – that’s because we use two different types of chocolate. Cocoa powder and melted chocolate for an irresistibly rich chocolate flavor.
  • Can be used in so many ways! You can use this to fill and decorate cakes, cupcakes, cookies and even brownies! It takes your desserts to the next level.
  • Can be made in advance! You can make this frosting days in advance and even freeze it!

How Much Frosting Does This Make?

This frosting is enough for 12 cupcakes or enough to fill and cover one 8-inch, three layered cake.

How To Get Perfectly Fluffy And Smooth Frosting

It’s all about the butter! Make sure the butter is nice and soft. If you store your butter in the fridge you can soften it in the microwave for 10 seconds at a time, turning over each time until soft enough that a finger can make a dent with some resistance.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - in a bowl with backlighting

Ingredients To Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Note: the whole recipe, including the ingredient quantities, can be found at the bottom of this page – just scroll down to the bottom, or click the ‘Jump to Recipe’ button at the top of this post.

Jump to Recipe

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - ingredients image

  • Butter – I used unsalted butter. It’s SUPER important to make sure your butter is softened before using otherwise you won’t get creamy, fluffy frosting.
  • Salt – I used fine salt.
  • Vanilla ExtractAlways use good quality vanilla extract when baking, it makes a huge difference. I have a great recipe here for it if you’d like to try your own!
  • Powdered sugar – also known as icing sugar. Make sure you sift this!
  • Cocoa powder – It’s best to use a good quality Dutch process cocoa powder for this frosting. It has a deliciously strong flavor and is less acidic. Make sure you sift your cocoa powder!
  • Dark cooking chocolate – Using good quality chocolate is important in this recipe. I used semi-sweet chocolate with at least 70% cocoa. You can find cooking chocolate in the baking isle of your supermarket. Make sure you let your chocolate cool down before using in the frosting. Warm is ok, not hot.

How to make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting!

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - steps 01

  1. Beat the buttercream until pale and creamy.
  2. Scrape down the bowl.
  3. Sift in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder
  4. Beat on low speed until dry ingredients are mixed

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - steps 02

  1. Mix on high speed until creamy
  2. Add melted chocolate
  3. Mix on high speed until well combined
  4. Perfect frosting!

Pro Tips for making Perfect Chocolate Buttercream!

  • Make sure you scrape down the bowl with every ingredient added to the bowl to make sure everything is mixing properly.
  • Use softened butter to get the fluffiest frosting!
  • Use high quality ingredients – high fat percentage butter, cocoa powder and chocolate will make a huge difference to the texture and flavor of your frosting.
  • Sift your dry ingredients to get an ultra-smooth frosting.

Frequently Asked Questions about Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

How do I store this?

  • Store in an aright container in the fridge for up to two weeks. Thaw to room temperature and re-whip for 5 minutes until fluffy. If you’re in a hurry microwave a 1/2 of it until almost melted and add to the rest of the frosting. Whip until fluffy.
  • Freeze in an airtight container for

What is the best chocolate to use for Chocolate Buttercream?

I would recommend using cooking chocolate which is designed to be melted. I used dark chocolate because it’s not overly sweet giving you a richer chocolate flavor.

Do I need to sift the dry ingredients?

Yes. This is a really important step to getting super smooth frosting.

Can I double this recipe?

Absolutely! Just make sure you have a mixing bowl large enough to get everything to fit. You need to make sure the butter is softened enough so that the butter whips up nice and fluffy.

Help! My frosting is too thin or thick!

Too thin:

  • it’s either too warm in which case you need to chill your frosting and re-whip it for 5 minutes until fluffy.
  • it’s got too much liquid in it, in which case you need to add more butter and re-whip until fluffy.
  • Chocolate was too warm. Let the frosting set about an hour at room temperature and re-whip until fluffy.

Too thick:

  • It’s cold where you are. Add 1/4 of the frosting to a heat proof bowl and microwave until just starting to melt. Add to the rest of the frosting and whip for 5 minutes until smooth and fluffy.
  • Add a tbsp of milk and whip until fluffy and smooth.

Gave this a go? Don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! Hungry for more? Join me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and TikTok for more great recipes!

Recipes to pair your Chocolate Buttercream with!

Did you make this? Be sure to leave a review below and tag me @thescranline on Facebook and Instagram!

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - pinterest image

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting - thumbnail 01

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

This rich and decadent ChocolateButtercream Frosting is perfect for decorating cakes and cupcakes. It’sluscious, creamy and perfectly smooth.

Serves 3 cups

5 from 2 votes
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 12 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Calories: 1422kcal


Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 1/2 cups (400 g) unsalted butter softened
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1-2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (155 g) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) cocoa powder sieved
  • 1 cup (200 g) dark cooking chocolate melted and cooled to room temperature (see notes)


Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

  • Add your softened butter, salt and vanilla extract to a large bowl. If using a stand mixer fit it with the paddle attachment. Beat on high speed for 5 minutes until pale and fluffy.
  • Scrape down the bowl and add all the sifted powdered sugar and cocoa powder and begin beating on low speed. When no dry ingredients are showing, turn the speed up to high speed and beat for 10 minutes.
  • Scrape down the bowl again and add the melted chocolate. Beat on high speed until everything is well combined, about 5 minutes.


Dark cooking chocolate - you want to use dark cooking chocolate and not regular eating chocolate for this recipe as it’s designed to be melted and used in baking recipes. Make sure you let the melted chocolate cool down before using. Warm is ok. Hot will melt your frosting.
To make a smoother frosting
  • Add half of the frosting into a heatproof bowl and microwave for 10 seconds or until jiggly (not melted) in the center. Add to the rest of the frosting and beat on medium speed for a couple minutes.
  • Right before using or adding to a piping bag, use a spatula to beat the air out of the frosting until smooth. Alternatively, you can leave in the mixer on low speed until ready to use, up to 10 minutes.
Butter for frosting.
Make sure your butter is soft! If you store your butter in the fridge, microwave it for 10 seconds at a time, flipping it over each time until it’s soft. Not melted. You want it to be soft enough that if you press on it with your finger there’s a little resistance, but your finger can make a dent.
Storage - Frosting can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days.
Nutrition - is based on per cup. This frosting makes 3 cups of frosting which is enough for 12 cupcakes.
A note on measurements - all ingredients in this recipe are offered in Australian cup measurements and weight measurements. Weight measurements are created by me, in my kitchen here in Melbourne Australia. The best way to get recipe success is to measure ingredients by weight, using kitchen scales.


Calories : 1422kcal
Carbonhydrates: 87g
Protein: 9g
Fat: 128g
Saturated Fat: 80g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g
Monounsaturated Fat : 35g
Trans Fat : 4g
Cholesterol: 244mg
Sodium: 214mg
Potassium : 248mg
Fiber: 13g
Sugar : 66g
Vitamin A: 2836IU
Calcium: 46mg
Iron: 2mg
Nutrition Disclosure
Gave this recipe a go?Mention @thescranline or tag #thescranline!

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Nick Makrides April 16, 2023 - 11:02 pm

5 stars
So rich and creamy and it only takes 12 minutes to make! N x

Wannette March 17, 2024 - 8:05 am

Hi Nick, I love your recipes and especially because I’m in Australia! With this buttercream, is this stable for wedding style cupcakes because you don’t have a lot of icing sugar in it which is common for american style buttercream?
Thanks Nick


Nick Makrides March 22, 2024 - 11:28 pm

Hi Wannette! Hmm, with any frosting, if it’s a warm day it will melt. No matter what’s in the recipe. So my recommendation, especially with this recipe is to keep your cupcakes chilled if it’s warm. Hope that helps! N x


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