Recipes

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

This chocolate buttercream frosting is the perfect accompaniment to craveable chocolate cake. Or a yellow cake, or a white cake, or cupcakes of any kind. It can be a go-to anytime you need a chocolatey buttercream!

As with the chocolate cake, the only fidgety thing about this recipe is the temperature. You want your half and half to be lukewarm, so it doesn’t melt or separate the butter. But most importantly, you don’t want to add your chocolate while it’s too hot! Seriously. If you’re impatient and dump all the hot melted chocolate in all at once it will ruin the light and fluffy texture of the frosting. And if you’ve gone to all the trouble to make a cake and frosting from scratch you don’t want to ruin it at the eleventh hour! So please have a little patience and you will be rewarded with a really yummy chocolate buttercream frosting.

If you have any extra frosting leftover, store it in an airtight container in the fridge. While it will harden when refrigerator cold, just let the frosting come to room temperature and give it a good mix. While not quite as light as freshly made, it still does an admirable job.

For the Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Makes enough to frost two 9-inch round cakes

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup half and half (or cream)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar (confectioners sugar)
2 ounces bittersweet baking chocolate

To prep, heat the half and half until just lukewarm and set aside. Melt the 2 ounces of chocolate very carefully. Set aside as soon as it’s melted. If you’re melting in the microwave, heat in small increments, and take it out to stir in between.

In a large bowl, beat together the softened butter, lukewarm half and half, vanilla extract, and just 2 cups of the powdered sugar. If using the easiest method of hand or stand mixer, make sure to start on low speed. Beat this mixture together until thoroughly combined and smooth.

First mix of vanilla buttercream.

Add the additional 2 cups of powdered sugar and mix until well incorporated and smooth.

Vanilla buttercream, appropriate texture.

Slowly add the not-too-hot chocolate to the buttercream by drizzling some across the top and then beating it in. (I added the chocolate to my buttercream in 3 parts.) Continue until all the chocolate is combined into the smooth frosting.

Adding melted chocolate to vanilla buttercream.

Frost a completely cooled cake or cupcakes and enjoy!

Finished chocolate buttercream frosting.

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Course Dessert
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Julie at Baking and Other Important Matters

Ingredients

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup half and half or cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups powdered (confectioners) sugar
  • 2 ounces bittersweet baking chocolate

Instructions

  1. To prep, heat the half and half until just lukewarm and set aside. Melt the 2 ounces of chocolate very carefully. Set aside as soon as it's melted. If you’re melting in the microwave, heat in small increments, and take it out to stir in between.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together the softened butter, lukewarm half and half, vanilla extract, and just 2 cups of the powdered sugar. If using the easiest method of hand or stand mixer, make sure to start on low speed. Beat this mixture together until thoroughly combined and smooth.

  3. Add the additional 2 cups of powdered sugar and mix until well incorporated and smooth.
  4. Slowly add the not-too-hot chocolate to the buttercream by drizzling some across the top and then beating it in. (I added the chocolate to my buttercream in 3 parts.) Continue until all the chocolate is combined into the smooth frosting.
  5. Frost a completely cooled cake or cupcakes and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Makes enough to frost a two-layer 9-inch cake.

2 thoughts on “Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

  1. This looks delicious! My buttercream chocolate recipe uses powdered chocolate, which gave it a dry texture. I can’t wait to try your with the melted chocolate. I’m sure it is creamier. Great blog Julie!
    Happy Valentine’s Day!

    1. Happy Valentine’s to you, Alicia! Glad you’re enjoying the blog. 🙂 Hope you enjoy this buttercream…It definitely is creamy and I appreciate that it’s fluffy tasting, but still has enough muscle to be sandwiches between the cake (without squishing out the sides).

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