Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe

The Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting recipe is essential when it comes to birthday cakes and other celebrations around my house.

Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe | ©

It compliments so many delicious cakes and cupcakes, but my favorite is when it paired with my favorite chocolate cake recipe, chocolate cupcakes or even my white cake recipe. But seriously, it is pretty delicious on anything it touches. Like a spoon works just fine, too! Ha!

Thankfully, this chocolate buttercream frosting recipe comes together quickly and makes plenty of buttercream frosting to frost a three layer cake or three dozen cupcakes beautifully.

Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe | ©

Here’s my Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe. I can’t wait to hear how you love it.

Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe

Total Time 15 minutes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting is an essential when it comes to birthday cakes and other celebrations. Get this family favorite, perfect chocolate buttercream frosting recipe.
4.84 from 257 votes
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  • cups butter 3 sticks, softened
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 5 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon espresso powder


  1. Add cocoa to a large bowl or bowl of stand mixer. Whisk through to remove any lumps.
  2. Cream together butter and cocoa powder until well-combined.
  3. Add sugar and milk to cocoa mixture by adding 1 cup of sugar followed by about a tablespoon of milk. After each addition has been combined, turn mixer onto a high speed for about a minute. Repeat until all sugar and milk have been added.
  4. Add vanilla extract and espresso powder and combine well.
  5. If frosting appears too dry, add more milk, a tablespoon at a time until it reaches the right consistency. If it appears to wet and does not hold its form, add more confectioner’s sugar, a tablespoon at a time until it reaches the right consistency.

All images and text © Robyn Stone for Add a Pinch

Robyn xo

You may also want to try my White Chocolate Buttercream Frosting recipe as well.

1,175 comments on “Perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe”

  1. Made this today as an 8″ two layer cake and two large cupcakes. The cake layers didn’t rise as much as I’d hoped but I blame where I live, not the recipe. I’m a missionary and live in Kenya at 7,000′ so most things I bake require several tries and a bit of tweaking. I reduced the sugar by 1/2 cup and the b.p. a bit too. I will try this recipe again and keep making high altitude adjustments until I get the perfect cake. The taste is FANTASTICALLY yummy!

    Rating: 4
  2. If you use the espresso can you taste the coffee flavor at all? The person I am making it for hates coffee…..

    • Hi Connie,
      The espresso powder enhances the richness of the chocolate. It doesn’t taste like coffee but you can also omit it if you aren’t certain you want to use it. Enjoy! Thanks!

  3. Do you use salted or unsalted butter for the frosting?

  4. I am serving this tomorrow with your Best Chocolate cake recipe, wondering if i should frost today? Will the icing stay fresh in a sealed cake container? Or best to whip up tomorrow before the party?

  5. Made this cake with Valhrona cocoa powder for an 80th birthday. I used the coconut oil and butter milk. The cake was so moist and deicious. Everyone raved about. This is a keeper.

    Rating: 5
  6. I tried out your recipe together with the perfect chocolate cake and I loved it – so did everyone else! Thank you very much for sharing! I will be baking it again and again <3

    Rating: 5
  7. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Perfect recipe ….thank you very much

    Rating: 5

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