Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting is a simple and delicious frosting recipe. The tartness of the cream cheese pairs perfectly with the chocolate in this creamy dessert.
Though I am not a huge sweets fan, I would say that frosting is perhaps the biggest exception to that rule. Well, that and puppy chow. Both of those treats are my absolute weakness. I certainly wouldn’t object to being left alone with a bowl of frosting and a spoon.
This Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting is perfect for my frosting weakness. It takes my delicious cream cheese frosting recipe to new chocolatey heights. You will love this simple recipe, and we have links for several desserts that it would be perfect on at the bottom of the post right above the recipe card.
Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients
Simple ingredients whip together in this fluffy and decadent chocolate cream cheese frosting recipe. Easy to make and super easy to eat, this will become a go-to recipe. For the measurements of each ingredient, see the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.
- Cream cheese: For best results, I suggest you use a brand-name block of cream cheese, like Philadelphia. It is also important to use full-fat cream cheese.
- Butter: Combined with the cream cheese, butter creates the best, most rich frosting. It is absolutely crucial that the butter and cream cheese are at room temperature.
- Powdered sugar: Gives the frosting its sweetness and fluffy texture.
- Cocoa powder: Where the frosting gets its rich chocolatey flavor.
- Vanilla extract: Adds the perfect layer of sweetness to balance the chocolate and prevent the frosting from being too bitter.
- Salt: Adding salt to recipes helps enhance the flavor of all the other ingredients, in desserts as well as savory recipes. We are adding just a pinch here to the frosting and it is the perfect final touch.
How to Make Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
Here is a brief overview of how this chocolate cream cheese frosting comes together. For the full recipe including all measurements, see the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
- Cream the butter and cream cheese. In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip room-temperature butter and cream cheese together. Then add the powdered sugar a little at a time while mixing.
- Add the other ingredients. Add in the cocoa powder and finally, the vanilla extract and salt. Mix until combined.
- Use right away or store for later.
The Key to The Best Cream Cheese Frosting
It is very important that both your cream cheese and butter are at room temperature. If they are too cold, they won’t blend well with the other ingredients and the frosting won’t be as fluffy. If your butter is too soft (or melted), the frosting may not hold its shape or pipe well.
Room-temperature butter is the perfect balance and results in the best cream cheese frosting. Here are a few things to keep in mind with room-temperature butter.
- It will still feel cold to the touch. You should be able to easily dent it with a finger, but not be able to push your finger going all the way through.
- Do not microwave the butter to warm it up. The outside of the butter will melt while the inside of the stick of butter will still be too cold.
- To achieve room temperature butter quickly, cut the stick of butter into one-inch pieces and leave them on the counter for 30 minutes.
The Best Cream Cheese Frosting
Frosting Tips and Tricks
- If the frosting seems too thick, add a little more milk.
- If it seems too thin, add more powdered sugar until it is the consistency you like.
- Once all the ingredients are added to the mixer, whip at high speed for a couple of minutes until the frosting is fluffy.
Frosting Cupcakes and Cakes
This chocolate frosting can be spread on cakes, cupcakes, or cookies. (Or just eaten with a spoon or on a graham cracker if we’re being honest.) If you want your dessert to have a beautiful swirl like in the photos in this post, you will pipe the frosting on using a good piping set like the one below. I would recommend doubling the recipe so you have more for each cupcake.
If you are making a layered cake, I would recommend doubling the recipe so that you have plenty for the layers and to cover the outside of the cake.
Because of the cream cheese, this frosting should be kept in the refrigerator. It can be used right away or made ahead of time. I don’t like cold cupcakes, so I recommend storing the frosting separately from the cupcakes and frosting them right before you want to serve them. It can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week. You may need let it come to room temperature and whip it a bit to fluff it up if it has been sitting in the refrigerator.
This will easily frost 24 cupcakes if you spread on a small amount of frosting (the recipe makes 2 cups, or 32 tablespoons for reference). If you would like to pipe on the frosting to resemble the photos, I recommend doubling the recipe.
Absolutely! Again, I would suggest doubling the recipe to ensure that you have enough frosting for layers and extra piping on top.
If you make this chocolate cream cheese frosting recipe, please let me know what you think by leaving a comment below!
Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
- 8 ounces cream cheese 227 grams (room temperature)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 56.5 grams (room temperature)
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar 170.25 grams
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder 42 grams
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon table salt
- Cream together the cream cheese and the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the powdered sugar a little at a time.8 ounces cream cheese, 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 1/2 cup cocoa powder
- Add in the cocoa powder and finally, the vanilla extract and salt.1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/8 teaspoon table salt
- Use immediately to frost cooled cakes and cupcakes. Or store in the refrigerator for up to one week.