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This Chocolate Fudge Frosting is one of the best and easiest chocolate frosting recipes EVER. This chocolate buttercream recipe uses melted chocolate to get a rich chocolate flavor and has the most light and airy frosting consistency. It’s a recipe you’ll use time and time again.
A frosting so good that it deserves its own post? You better believe it!
As you can imagine, I spend a LOT of time making buttercream frosting. I have my go-to frosting recipes, but I am always looking for new recipes and ways to change things up a bit.
The first time I made this Chocolate Fudge Frosting was for my Moist Yellow Cake recipe. I needed a chocolate frosting and I wanted something different than my Best Chocolate Frosting.
I hope that’s not confusing for you, because my best chocolate frosting is different from this chocolate fudge frosting, and I am equally loving both.
The difference between these two chocolate frosting recipes is that this Chocolate Fudge Frosting used melted chocolate in combination with cocoa powder to get a rich dark chocolate flavor with the airiest whipped texture.
You can get away with not adding the cocoa powder, but I think it helps to intensify the chocolate flavor.
When it comes to the chocolate, you want to be sure to use a high-quality chocolate like Ghirardelli or Guittard. I prefer dark chocolate, but milk chocolate works as well, if that’s what you’re into.
I also recommend using a chocolate bar instead of chocolate chips because the chocolate chips will have an oilier consistency when melted.
Just be sure you allow enough time for the chocolate to cool before adding it to your frosting, maybe about 10 minutes or so, it shouldn’t be too hot to the touch.
The other big difference between my frosting recipes and most other recipes is that I start with COLD butter. I know this might sound like a strange concept to you, but it actually helps to produce a stiffer texture when the frosting is finished.
Since I start with cold butter, I spend more time mixing and whipping the butter to get a silkier consistency prior to adding the powdered sugar. It makes for the most light and airy frosting that is perfect for piping and decorating cupcakes or cakes. For more question about why I use cold butter, be sure to check out my post about how to make buttercream frosting.
I’ve provided two versions of this chocolate frosting recipe: one that will frost 12-14 cupcakes and one that will frost a 9×13-inch cake.
I hope you’ll find an excuse to make this chocolate fudge frosting. I’ve got plenty of cupcakes and cake recipes for you to start with.
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Chocolate Fudge Frosting
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 15 minutes
- Yield: 2 1/2 cups
This Chocolate Fudge Frosting is one of the best and easiest chocolate frosting recipes EVER. This chocolate buttercream recipe uses melted chocolate to get a rich chocolate flavor and has the most light and airy frosting consistency.
Recipe to frost 12 cupcakes
- 4 ounces dark chocolate, melted
- ¾ cups (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 ¼ cups powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon heavy whipping cream (or milk)
Recipe for a 9×13″ cake
- 6 ounces dark chocolate, melted
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream (or milk)
- In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate in the microwave at 50% power in 30-second increments, stirring each time until the chocolate is melted. Stir until completely smooth. Set aside to cool.
- Cut the butter into pieces. Using the paddle attachment, whip butter for 5-7 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. Beat until butter look light in color. Next, beat the cocoa powder into the butter until well mixed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Alternate adding 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time with the liquid ingredients: vanilla extract & heavy cream. Ensure the powdered sugar is well combined, and whip for 1-2 minutes before adding more powdered sugar.
- Next, pour in the melted chocolate and beat on slow speed until incorporated. Then, increase the speed to medium-high and beat for another 2-3 minutes to whip additional air into the frosting.
- Category: Frosting
- Method: No-Bake
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Chocolate Frosting, Chocolate Buttercream, Easy Chocolate Frosting, Best Chocolate Frosting
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I used Hershey cocoa powder and Ghirardelli dark chocolate. This icing actually got hard, or “crusty” as you said above. As a very seasoned baker, I’ve never encountered a frosting that got hard after refrigeration.
The frosting shouldn’t be hard if left at room temperature. But yes, many American buttercream frosting recipes will have a light crusting due to the sugar to butter ratio, unless too much liquid was used. If you refrigerated this frosting, then yes it will get firm. Any butter based frosting recipe will firm up in the fridge, and should be served at room temperature. With this frosting and the addition of melted chocolate, it is also a contributing factor to firmness if refrigerated. It cannot be served straight from the fridge.
I am super disappointed in this and wish I’d have just stuck with the store bought fudge option. This is not a fudge frosting, it’s a sickening sweet light chocolate buttercream. It smells super chocolaty but that’s about it. It really lacks depth of flavor and there is definitely something lacking in this recipe. Too sweet and not rich in flavor whatsoever.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I personally love this recipe, but everyone has different opinions. It could also have something to do with the type of chocolate or cocoa powder being used.
I love the stability of this frosting. I probably could’ve added a touch more cream to pipe more easily. I was able to make a tall 6” cake, yet it’s melt-in-your-mouth chocolatey goodness. The family that had the cake said it was absolutely perfect. Thank you!
Thanks so much for sharing Camille!
Can you tell me what kind of dark chocolate? Is it semi sweet? Bittersweet? Unsweetened etc. Thank you!!
You can use any type you’d like. I use a Trader Joes Dark Chocolate bar or Ghirardelli 60% cocoa bar usually
Is this more of a fudge frosting? I do not want a light buttercream I am looking for a fudgy tasting frosting
Yes, it’s more dense and rich than my regular chocolate buttercream