Whipped chocolate buttercream frosting is a fluffy and sweet no-cook frosting that's perfect for topping your next baked treat. Ready in less than ten minutes, this chocolatey frosting pipes easily onto cupcakes, brownies, and more.
Readers have been raving about my whipped buttercream frosting for years and asking for a chocolate version. I'm pleased to tell you that it's finally here!
Whipped chocolate buttercream is light, fluffy, rich, and sweet - the perfect frosting for your next vanilla sheet cake, brownies, or chocolate cupcakes. While this frosting is sweet, it is slightly less sweet than a traditional bakery buttercream frosting.
Buttercream frosting is made with butter and confectioner's sugar, and there's no cooking involved. It's a quick and easy option for topping your next batch of cupcakes or birthday cake.
This frosting, with the addition of heavy whipping cream and extra whipping time, turns out light, fluffy, and perfectly sweetened.
Ingredients and substitutions
Make sure your unsalted butter is room temperature before beginning. Cold butter or melted butter will not work for this recipe. You'll be whipping your butter and other ingredients together - this requires room temperature butter for a creamy, smooth consistency.
To speed up the process of warming cold butter, Slice your butter into smaller pieces and set out on the kitchen counter. Sliced butter will warm up faster than a whole stick of butter.
Cocoa powder can be natural or dutch process. Keep in mind that natural cocoa powder will give your frosting a brown color (like in the photos shown) and dutch process frosting will look more grey.
Confectioner's sugar may also be labeled as powdered sugar, 10x sugar, or icing sugar. It cannot be substituted with granulated sugar.
Vanilla extract and salt are included to add flavor. The small amount of salt helps to cut through the sweetness of the frosting.
Heavy whipping cream, or heavy cream, is needed to whip your frosting to a light and fluffy consistency. Regular whipping cream will also work. If you only have milk on hand, reduce the amount to ¼ cup. Your frosting will not be quite as fluffy when using regular milk.
Can I pipe decorations with this frosting?
Yes, this frosting pipes beautifully and can be used for rosettes, borders, and topping cupcakes. However, it is slightly more delicate and will not crust as much as a traditional buttercream.
How to store frosted baked goods
Baked goods can be frosted the day before an event and left at room temperature in a sealed container.
Keep in mind, butter melts around 90 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
If your location is nearing this temperature, I'd recommend refrigerating your baked goods until an hour before you're ready to serve them. Refrigerating your frosted baked goods for a short amount of time will not hurt them. But, you will want to give them some time to come to room temperature before serving.
Here's a fantastic article about how frosting holds up to heat: The Best Cake Frosting For Hot Weather
How much frosting do I need?
This recipe makes enough frosting to frost the following cupcake quantities and cake sizes:
- 6-inch three layer cake
- 18 cupcakes with piped frosting
- 24 cupcakes spread with a knife
- 9x13 sheet cake
- 13x18 sheet cake
- 8-inch or 9-inch two layer cake (for the filling and top of the cake, leaving the sides bare). To cover the sides of your layer cake, make an additional half batch of frosting.
In the recipe card below, hover over the serving size. Use the sliding bar to change the serving size and measurements.
Whipped Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 3 cups confectioner's sugar
- ½ cup natural cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup heavy cream cold
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, add room temperature butter and beat with a hand mixer (or stand mixer) until creamy, about 1 minute.
- Add confectioner's sugar and cocoa powder, half at a time, and slowly mix until ingredients are fully combined. Then, whip at high speed for 1-2 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
- Add heavy cream, salt, and vanilla extract and whip for an additional 1-2 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Add additional heavy cream as needed to reach desired consistency.
- Pipe or spread frosting with a knife onto cupcakes and serve.
- Frosting will keep for 1 week in a sealed container in the refrigerator, or up to 3 months in the freezer. Bring to room temperature before spreading onto baked goods.
- Recipe will make enough to frost up to 18 cupcakes with piped frosting, 24 cupcakes spread with a knife, a 9x13 sheet cake, a 13x18 sheet cake, or the top and middle of a round 8 or 9 inch 2-layer cake (leaving the sides bare). To frost the sides of a 2-layer cake, make an additional half batch of frosting.
- Baked goods can be frosted the day before an event and left at room temperature in a sealed container.
- Butter melts around 90 to 95 degrees, and so will your frosting. If your location is nearing this temperature, I'd recommend refrigerating your baked goods until an hour before you're ready to serve them. Refrigerating your frosted baked goods will not hurt them, but you will want to give them some time to come to room temperature before serving.