Joy the Baker

The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

June 17, 2008

Please allow me this last party post. You won’t have to hear a word about it after this. Promise. But what’s a party without cupcakes? And what’s a chocolate cupcake without The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting? Tragedy, I suppose.

It should go without saying that these super soft chocolate cupcakes were a hit at the party. But there is one mystery. Around about 2 in the morning, as I was somehow making my way around the room collecting dirty plates, I ran across a plate with a discarded cupcake on it. The cupcake had one bite taken out of it, and then the remainder of the cupcake was smashed upside down onto the dirty paper plate. WHAT!? Who would do that!? Seriously… not cool.

Super Soft Chocolate Cupcakes

Print this Recipe!

makes about 4 dozen cupcakes… maybe more.. lots of cupcakes!

3 cups sugar

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup cocoa powder

1 Tablespoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/3 cups sour cream

1  cup strong coffee, cooled

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cupcake pan with cupcake papers. Set aside.

Using a stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating for 1 minute in between each addition. Scrape down bowl after each addition. Beat in vanilla.

Sift together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Add the dry mixture to the creamed butter and sugar alternately with the sour cream. Begin and end with the flour mixture. Beat to incorporate.

With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the cooled strong coffee to the batter. Add in a slow steady stream to prevent splashing. The batter will become fairly thing and smooth. Scrape down bowl and beat for 1 minute to ensure the batter is completely mixed.

Pour into cupcake papers and bake on middle rack for 15 minutes, or until a pick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.

Remove from oven and set on wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Remove cupcakes from pan and let cool to room temperature on wire racks.

Now, as promised- The best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting, with a secret ingredient- Ovaltine. Yes, rich chocolate Ovaltine. When combined with heavy cream, it gives the frosting the most luscious flavor and spreadable consistency. So yum!

I didn’t invent Chocolate Buttercream.  The inspiration comes from a Los Angeles bakery I worked in.

The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

adapted from Delilah Bakery

1 1/2 cup (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup cocoa powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

4 cups powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/4 cup milk

1 cup heavy cream

2/3 cup Ovaltine

Cream together butter, cocoa powder and salt. Butter mixture will be very thick. Turn off the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl and add powdered sugar. Turn mixer on low and mix in powdered sugar while adding milk and vanilla extract. As the sugar incorporates, raise the speed of the mixer to beat the frosting. Beat until smooth. In a 2 cup measuring glass, stir together heavy cream and Ovaltine. Turn mixer speed to medium and pour cream mixture into frosting in a slow, steady stream, until you’ve reached your desired consistency.  You may not need the full amount of Ovaltine and cream.

Remember how I was lamenting about my sometimes insane Martha Stewart tendencies? Well the craft gene, handed down to me from my mother, came out in full force with these drink umbrellas. The instructions are from Martha Stewart- which pretty much makes her the instigator. Should I shake my fist in the air with displeasure? No, I have to admit, these umbrellas might have been worth the 5 hours it took to make them. They’re pretty cute.

And yes, there were people at this party. But I can’t be sure they all want to be immortalized on this blog. I’ll spare them that pain, if you’ll allow it.


31 Comments Add A Comment

  • joy – i just made these cupcakes and frosting for my office and they were literally devoured in three minutes flat. several took extras home. thanks for sharing your recipes, techniques and love for baking with the rest of us!

  • I used this icing on a chocolate layer cake the other day — you’re right, it is the best chocolate buttercream!

  • Your cupcakes were phenomenal! I halved the batch and made the for a party (I already had a dozen strawberry cupcakes with coconut lemon frosting going so I didn’t want to go overboard) I didn’t use the buttercream frosting though, I was baking all day and it was hot already but my 400 degree kitchen would’ve killed it, I made a dark chocolate ganache instead for the top and it was a perfect combo. Thanks for the recipe and glad the party went well!

  • Can’t wait to try this buttercream, now to get my hand’s on some Ovaltine! Btw, your I totally understand your Martha tendencies, I have them too. ;-)

  • What? You gave away the secret? The secret I said I would take to the grave? Good for you! The ovaltine is the perfect addition and works so well on my choc cakes. Thanks!

  • You know I have never followed a blog on a regular basis but once I discovered yours a few weeks ago I was hooked! The food, the photography, your writing…it all just appealed to me the way no other has. Thanks! Now, these cupcakes look scrumptious and bring back the joy of childhood to me. My mom would on occasion make cupcakes for us (always a box mix but they tasted good none the less because mom made them just for us!) and we would devour them like nothing else. Every once and a while she would splurge on sprinkles or jimmies and they always made the cupcakes even more magical. I have to make these for my mom :-)

  • Loving the photography! Is this with your new camera?
    xo,
    JK

  • I’ve been looking for a solid choco buttercream recipe. I’ll definitely have to try this!

  • i love the drink brollies! and if you want to send the discarded cupcake my way, i’ll happily finish it off!

  • Awesome! That frosting sounds amazing!

  • These look amazing. Love the sprinkles too!

  • I haven’t thought about ovaltine in years. I guess it’s time to reinvestigate this old childhood memory! :)

  • I have been searching for a perfect chocolate frosting. This looks divine…I will be making it very soon! And a tragedy about the one-bite-cupcake…

  • ooohhhh the “best” chocolate buttercream you say? Now I totally have to try it! Love the Martha umbrellas. Too cute!
    /Clara

  • It’s hard to imagine anyone so stupid to refuse a chocolate cupcake! I’d love to have one right now…sigh…

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