The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

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Chocolate Buttercream Frosting is one of those things that everyone needs to know how to make. So put this recipe in your arsenal! This chocolate frosting is great on cupcakes, cakes both large and small, sheet cakes, and let’s be honest, it’s even great just right out of the bowl with a spoon!

A bowl of chocolate frosting with mixer beaters in it. Text overlay says"The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting". Similar photos of the recipe from various angles are used throughout but with different text overlays unless otherwise described.

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Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions; to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required, and to understand the steps and timings involved.

If you are looking for a chocolate buttercream frosting to have on hand, this 5-ingredient recipe is the one to have!

Buttercream frosting is made with unsalted butter and powdered (icing) sugar, a little milk (or cream if you want a frosting that is a bit richer) and some vanilla extract.

To turn it into chocolate buttercream, simply add cocoa powder.

It’s an easy recipe that I can make blindfolded and goes well on all types of cakes – cupcakes, sheet cakes, layered cakes, heck, even smeared onto brownies!

So save this post to Pinterest, print off the recipe and add it your your home recipe book the next time you need a chocolate frosting recipe!

Whipped butter and cocoa powder in a bowl

Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe

While most ingredients can be bought in grocery stores, for your convenience, any specialized or notable ingredients (and equipment) needed for this recipe have been listed below and linked to Amazon or other stores if available online. The complete list of ingredients with measurements is found in the recipe card.

Dairy ProduceUnsalted Butter and Whole (Full-fat) Milk or Heavy (Double) Cream – depends on how rich you want your buttercream to be.
Cocoa Powder
Powdered Sugar – also known as Icing Sugar or Confectioners Sugar.
Vanilla Extract

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Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog use both cup measurements and/or weighted measurements. American cups and kitchen food scales are handy pieces of equipment to have in your kitchen as it means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog. I try to give American, imperial, and metric measurements in my recipes. You can mix cup measurements with weighted measurements, but never mix imperial (pounds, ounces, pints, etc.,) with metric (kilograms, grams, litres, etc.,).

powdered sugar added to the bowl
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting for Cupcakes

More Recipes Using Chocolate

One of the hero ingredients in this dish is chocolate, so here are some more recipes using the same:

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5-Ingredients Chocolate Frosting Buttercream

How Do I Make Chocolate Buttercream Frosting?

Just check out the printable recipe card below with full ingredients and instructions. Any demonstration photos do not print out to save your ink.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Everyone needs to know how to make a good chocolate buttercream frosting, and this recipe is it!


  • 1 cup (8oz/225g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup (4oz/100g) cocoa powder
  • 3½ cups (16oz/450g) powdered sugar
  • 1-2 Tbsp whole milk or heavy cream
  • 1 tsp real vanilla extract


  1. Using an electric mixer, mix the butter and cocoa powder in a large bowl until well blended.
  2. Add the powdered sugar to the bowl and mix on low speed until all of the sugar is combined.
  3. Stir in milk and vanilla extract, if using, to reach desired consistency.
  4. Use in recipes as required.


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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 2082Total Fat: 189gSaturated Fat: 115gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 60gCholesterol: 491mgSodium: 39mgCarbohydrates: 93gFiber: 8gSugar: 69gProtein: 11g

This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.

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Make It A Meal!

You’ve made the frosting to go on a batch of cupcakes for dessert, but what about the rest of the courses?

Here are additional recipes to make a full meal!

There are 500+ Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog for you to enjoy – please feel free to check them out too!

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