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up close image of chocolate buttercream icing

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 3 cups
Calories: 1230kcal
Ditch the store bought chocolate frosting and whip up a batch of this easy and delicious Chocolate Buttercream Icing! Perfect for a fluffy crowning on cakes and cupcakes.
Print Recipe


  • 1 cup 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Place your butter out to soften at room temperature ahead of time
  • In a large bowl, use your hand mixer to cream butter until smooth, about one minute
  • Add vanilla extract, mix to incorporate
  • Sift in confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder then mix until well combined
  • Slowly add milk a tablespoon at a time to reach desired consistency.
  • Mix on low for about a minute to achieve a light and airy icing
  • Use a piping bag and tip (Ateco # 828 - Open Star Pastry Tip .63'') or other icing tool to decorate your cooled cakes.



  • It takes butter 30-60 minutes to soften at room temperature.
  • I'd avoid using the microwave to melt the butter. Even if you have a turntable, butter softens unevenly.
  • Leave out the cocoa powder for a perfect classic vanilla buttercream icing.
  • Confectioner’s sugar is another term for powdered sugar.


Calories: 1230kcal | Carbohydrates: 173g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 65g | Saturated Fat: 41g | Cholesterol: 165mg | Sodium: 25mg | Potassium: 373mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 158g | Vitamin A: 1924IU | Calcium: 69mg | Iron: 3mg