[I’]m not one for secrets. Especially where chocolate is involved.
I always have a few tricks up my sleeve and I can never keep them secrets for long. Brown sugar baked bacon is one secret. Sweet, salty, crisp, and perfect. Adding that bacon to biscuits, completely over the top good! Brown butter in everything, most especially chocolate chip cookies…. another secret I just couldn’t keep to myself.
Today another secret comes out. We’re talking about the most perfect Chocolate Buttercream Frosting. Soft, glossy, light and spreadable… and the secret ingredients are Rich Chocolate Ovaltine and heavy cream! Malted chocolate milk powder and cream to add extra body, and a light whipped texture to our frosting. It’s unexpected and perfect!
I hope there is cake (and waaaay too much buttercream) in your future.
Here’s what you’ll need:
• Three sticks (1 1/2 cups or 12 ounces) softened, unsalted butter. I think it’s best to leave the butter out overnight to softened to room temperature through and through. Softening butter in the microwave makes the butter more melty than soft and can break our perfect buttercream,
• Unsweetened cocoa powder, and lots of it.
• Salt, to balance the mountain of powdered sugar.
• A mountain of powdered sugar.
• Milk for moisture and softness.
• Rich Chocolate Ovaltine, the chocolate malted milk powder adds a creamy softness to this buttercream and makes it extra rich, glossy, and luscious.
• Heavy cream because, always.
• Extra credit: pure vanilla extract.
Whipping together perfect buttercream frosting isn’t hard, but there are a few tricks to make things go smoothly.
First, room temperature butter is creamed together with unsweetened cocoa powder and salt. No sugar just yet. Incorporating the butter and cocoa powder will ensure that the butter is soft and pliable and the chocolate is evenly distributed throughout the frosting. The mixture will be thick. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl once or twice during mixing.
Next, add the powdered sugar all at once. Just go for it. Mix on low and slowly drizzle in milk and vanilla extract. Get the mixture incorporated, but no need to whip the frosting on high just yet. We’ll get to that soon. The frosting should be relatively smooth and glossy (and it’s only going to get better!).
In a small bowl, stir together Ovaltine and heavy cream.
The mixture will thicken a bit as it sits.
With the mixer on medium, add half of the Ovaltine and cream mixture. Increase the speed and add a bit more. The buttercream will lighten slightly in color as it comes together.
Stop the mixer and scrape along the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure that it’s all mixing evenly. You may not need the entire Ovaltine mixture, but just add enough to create a glossy, smooth, completely spreadable frosting. I find that beating the buttercream on medium for about 1 minute makes a lovely frosting. Try not to overheat the buttercream as that might break the butter.
This buttercream is whipped and soft. Perfect for frosting cakes. It’s so soft and creamy it won’t rip the cakes or cause you undue stress. Plenty of frosting for a three layer cake or a sheet cake with frosting to spare. Any leftover frosting can be stored in the freezer for a cake or chocolate emergency.
This buttercream is also supreme eaten directly from the bowl with a spoon.Print
The Best Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
- Prep Time: 20
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons whole milk
- 2/3 cup heavy cream
- 2/3 cup Rich Chocolate Ovaltine powder
- Cream together butter, cocoa powder and salt. Butter mixture will be very thick. Turn off the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- 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, about 1 minute.
- In a 2 cup measuring glass, stir together heavy cream and Ovaltine. Turn mixer speed to medium and pour half of the cream mixture into frosting in a slow, steady stream. Stop the mister scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add remaining cream mixture or until you’ve reached your desired consistency. Beat until soft and creamy, about 1 minute.
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer. Bring to room temperature before frosting cakes and cupcakes.
Could I make the frosting a day ahead of time, and store in the fridge until the next day?
Hi there! You should be able to make it ahead of time (a day or 2) and store tightly wrapped in the fridge. Just allow it to come to room temp before using it and you can use your mixer to plump it up if need be. Happy Baking!
Hello, I have been making this recipe since 2008 for my daughter’s birthday. It is her absolute favorite and has always called it coffee cake because the cupcake recipe has coffee in it. I make the cupcake recipe that you had in that post with it back in 2008 (I just convert it to a cake instead) I cannot find your original post for this icing that included the “Super Soft Chocolate Cupcake” recipe with it. Do you still have that blog post? Her birthday is coming up and in my move, I misplaced the recipe. Thank you so much!
If I dont have Ovaltine, what else can I use? Can I melt chocolate substitute?
If you don’t have Ovaltine, just skip it and reduce the cream to about 1/4 cup.