Skip the store-bought frosting in favor of this easy recipe for the best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting that takes just 5 minutes to make.

A top-down view of a chocolate cake with buttercream

I have a confession to make. Chocolate buttercream frosting has always been an item on my grocery list rather than a recipe in my baking repertoire.

Who has the time to make buttercream frosting when it takes all of 2 seconds to toss it into your shopping cart and call it a day? But after a reader emailed me asking for a fool-proof chocolate buttercream frosting recipe (to follow up on the vanilla variety), I knew it was time to wave goodbye to the store-bought stuff and finally go the DIY route.

A close up view of swirled chocolate buttercream frosting

Little did I know, 5 minutes into my recipe creation process I’d be licking a spatula slathered in the richest, creamiest, most chocolatey buttercream frosting to ever cross my lips. I repeat, 5 minutes.

cooca powder in a stand mixer with milk being poured in

No fancy preservatives. No seven-syllable ingredients. Simply butter, cocoa powder, sugar, milk, vanilla, and my secret ingredient, a pinch of salt. The salt helps balance out the sweetness and round out the flavors. Toss all of the ingredients into a stand mixer, and you too will be a confectionery convert.

A close-up shot of buttercream on a KitchenAid beater blade

A few tips for whipping up homemade chocolate buttercream frosting:

  • Use good quality cocoa powder. The better the quality, the better the taste of your frosting.
  • This recipe can be easily doubled for all my fellow chocoholics out there.
  • Use the beater blade with your stand mixer (rather than the whisk). It’ll result in creamy frosting that lightens in color the longer it’s mixed.
  • This stuff pipes like a breeze. So get your fancy pants on and check out my simple trick for piping two-tone swirled frosting.

A close-up shot of swirled buttercream frosting with sprinkles

One more trick of the food styling trade? Grab a small spoon and use the back of it to make luscious, deep swirls and create the perfect peaks and valleys for a shower of sprinkles in every color.

A top-down view of chocolate buttercream frosting on a sheet cake

Ready to see this buttercream in action? Tune in to the video below then get ready to buttercream all of your favorite baked goods!


A close-up shot of buttercream and a KitchenAid glass mixer bowl

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5-Minute Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Skip the store-bought frosting in favor of this easy recipe for the best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting that takes just 5 minutes to make.
4.92 from 367 votes
5-Minute Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 2 cups


  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 1/3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until it is smooth, about 1 minute.
  • Add the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa powder to the bowl and beat until combined. With the stand mixer running on low speed, slowly stream in the milk and vanilla extract then add the salt and continue beating until well combined, scraping down the sides as needed, about 2 minutes. 
  • Increase the speed to high and beat the frosting for an additional 2 minutes. Use the frosting immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge. (If you refrigerate the frosting, you may want to re-blend it for a few seconds in the stand mixer before using it.)
  • ★ Did you make this recipe? Don't forget to give it a star rating below!


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Recipe by Kelly Senyei of Just a Taste. Please do not reprint this recipe without my permission. If you'd like to feature this recipe on your site, please rewrite the method of preparation and link to this post as the original source.

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Calories: 955kcal, Carbohydrates: 160g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 39g, Saturated Fat: 24g, Cholesterol: 94mg, Sodium: 322mg, Potassium: 545mg, Fiber: 10g, Sugar: 140g, Vitamin A: 1115IU, Calcium: 97mg, Iron: 4.5mg

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  1. This beautifully presented & written recipe looks perfect, just what I was looking for. But then I saw it was measured in inaccurate spoons and cups! There are official quantities for these : it’s annoying to have to work out how much is meant. Most of us in the UK don’t fill our cupboards with extraneous measuring cups & spoons when only one item is needed:a scale!
    Thanks for great recipe

    1. Hi Alice – Our recipes are written in the Imperial format, so feel free to use an online conversion program for metric. :)

  2. 5 stars
    I needed a quick buttercream frosting recipe for a 9×13 pan of brownies and this one was great! I didn’t have to melt any chocolate, I grated the butter to get it to room temperature fast, and it came together in hardly no time at all. It’s intensely “chocolaty”…I even did the spoon tip to make the swirls on top!! Pretty…….Thanks.

  3. 5 stars
    Perfect. Quick and incredibly delicious. I used milk 1%, that’s all I had, and it still turned out really good. This frosting doesn’t taste like pure sugar or like a hunk of butter, like other homemades I’ve made.

  4. 5 stars
    Today ,baked home made vanilla cup cakes for my daughters Birthday. Looked up chocolate icing recipes using yours. The icing is delicious and ready in minutes.
    Friends and neighbors enjoyed them.
    Thank you for posting.

  5. 5 stars
    Second time making this recipe. It my new favorite and so easy and it doesn’t taste like 5lbs of butter like other recipes I have tried! Thank you!

  6. 5 stars
    Best easiest ever great tasting recipe I have found for chocolate buttercream frosting. My family raves about it. Very fluffy and easy to spread. 5 ⭐️star for sure. Not too expensive and simple ingredients you normally have in your pantry.

  7. 5 stars
    This was so delicious, so creamy. Used it for a chocolate cake I baked for my wife’s birthday. I was hesitant to make the chocolate cake because the frosting recipe was so involved, requiring constant temperature monitoring. A little bit of googling later I landed here…your recipe was such a lifesaver! Incredibly simple but compromises nothing in taste and texture. Bookmarked and saved. Thank you and great work Kelly!

    1. Hi there! This recipe yields 2 cups of frosting or about enough to frost 1 1/2 – 2 dozen cupcakes.

    2. 5 stars
      Loved it! I agree with them all. it is simple, great tasting, and extremely versatile with a little imagination. I made a vanilla bean cake with chocolate frosting. I had made a double batch just to make sure I had enough. It went on extremely smooth. I decided to decorate with a shell border and it held its shape just fine. The problem is, I can’t stay out of the leftover icing in the refrigerator. It goes great with a spoon too! Thanks again

      1. You are so welcome, Jamie! I’m thrilled you enjoyed the recipe! And I totally agree with you, it tastes great with just a spoon :)

    1. Hi Izzy! I’m not sure what could have happened with your frosting. You can add additional powdered sugar 1/4 cup at a time until the frosting reaches your desired consistency. :)

  8. 5 stars
    This is such an amazing recipe! I did add more cocoa powder to have more of a dark chocolate feel & now is going to be my top go to recipe! So in love with the taste and texture. Crazy delicious!

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