Chocolate Frosting: 4 Ways

July 2, 2013

One of my goals here at the blog is to help you become confident in your abilities to prepare things from scratch, without always having to look at a recipe. So, while this post does contain the recipes you need to prepare your own chocolate frosting, I’ve included the methods by which I came up with the recipes so you can start creating recipes of your own. Anyhow, feel free to skip all that nonsense and just use the recipes if that’s how you roll. It is a long post, after all!

I have two methods for making chocolate frosting: adding cocoa powder to a basic cream cheese or buttercream frosting, and incorporating melted chocolate into a recipe. This post will detail both methods.

METHOD #1: ADD COCOA POWDER

Simply add a few spoonfuls of cocoa powder to a basic cream cheese or buttercream frosting. I prefer not to have measurements for the cocoa powder because then you can just add as much cocoa powder as you like until you achieve your desired taste. Thus, you’ll end up with a recipe like this…

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting (With Cocoa Powder)

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 4–8 oz. neufchâtel or cream cheese
  • 2–3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a pinch of salt (optional
  • a few spoonfuls of cocoa powder


Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
(With Cocoa Powder)

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 1/2–3 cups powdered sugar
  • 2–4 TB milk or cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a pinch of salt (optional)
  • a few spoonfuls of cocoa powder

The preparation of each type of frosting is the same as their basic counterparts. For the cream cheese, beat together the butter and cream cheese, gradually add in the sugar, and finish by incorporating the rest of the ingredients. For the buttercream, beat the butter, add some powdered sugar, then milk, then the rest of the sugar, followed by the remaining ingredients.

METHOD #2: ADD MELTED CHOCOLATE

Incorporate melted chocolate into a basic frosting recipe. This method follows the same principle as the first method–you’re simply altering a basic cream cheese or buttercream frosting recipe. There are, however, two things to be aware of when using this method. First, you should use butter and/or cream cheese that’s a bit on the chilled side since you’ll be working with warm chocolate. (The temperatures will kind of balance each other out this way.) Second, you can use less powdered sugar because once the chocolate reaches room temperature, it will stiffen your frosting. (Yay for not being wasteful with powdered sugar!)

You’ll end up with a recipe like this…

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting (With Melted Chocolate)

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 4 oz. neufchâtel or cream cheese
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a pinch of salt (optional
  • 1 16-oz. bag chocolate chips


Chocolate Buttercream Frosting (With Melted Chocolate)

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2–4 TB milk or cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • a pinch of salt (optional)
  • 1 16-oz. bag chocolate chips

Again, the preparation for each type of frosting closely resembles the basic recipes. Prepare your cream cheese or buttercream frosting as usual, making sure to use still-cold butter and/or cream cheese and a little less powdered sugar. Stir in the melted chocolate chips at the end so you can gauge how chocolately to make it. (So you may very well end up not using the whole bag!)

Yeesh, that was a long post, wasn’t it? Hopefully you’ve learned a thing or two about preparing chocolate frosting from scratch. Now wouldn’t it be neat to try making frosting with butterscotch or colored candy melts?

Love, Maurine

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