Chocolate Frosting (Icing) for Cake

Take your chocolate cake, vanilla cake or marble cake to the next level with this smooth and rich chocolate frosting (icing) recipe. A few ingredients and a few minutes will leave you wondering why you’ve been using store-bought frosting.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes + few hours cooling time
Makes enough frosting for a 9″x13″ cake or 9″ double-layered round cake


Heavy Whipping Cream – 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp
Sour Cream – 2 Tbsp
Instant Coffee – 1/2 tsp
Unsalted Butter – 4 Tbsp (1/2 stick)
Sugar – 3/4 cup
Salt – pinch
Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp
Vanilla Extract – 1 tsp


1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together Heavy Whipping Cream, Sour Cream, and Instant Coffee. Keep aside.
2. In a saucepan, melt Butter on medium heat.
3. While continuously stirring, add Sugar, Salt and Cocoa Powder. The mixture should be thick and crumbly.
4. Slowly add Whipping Cream mixture and keep stirring until smooth and sugar has dissolved. Do not boil.
5. Turn off the stove and add Vanilla Extract. Mix well.
6. Remove frosting into a different bowl and allow to cool completely. It may be kept in the fridge for faster cooling.
7. Frost completely cooled cakes with completely cooled frosting.
8. Any remaining frosting can be stored in the fridge in a tightly sealed container for up to 1 week.

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48 thoughts on “Chocolate Frosting (Icing) for Cake

  1. The chocolate icing gives the cake the perfect finishing touch as the flavor is intense yet smooth. The texture is creamy and melts in the mouth, which makes the experience even more pleasant. It’s a great option for anyone who wants to make a special cake!

  2. Hi Ladies:)
    Love all ur recipes…..just a small question…..can I prepare the frosting a day before I bake the bake?
    Thank you.

  3. That’s mouth watering,tempting,scrumptious, mouth boggling, and what not. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us. This goes straight to the must try list. And if you’re looking for cakes online in delhi, give us a visit sometime.
    Happy Baking:)

  4. Hi!
    Just wondering that if I leave the cocoa out, will it be a vanilla icing or will other modifications need to be done?

  5. hi…i havent tried this particular frosting recipe yet(it looks yum btw) but i have seen your whipped cream recipe for cake ince on youtube.i tried making it.i have used nondairy whipped cream.1st tym i whipped the cream,Ñdded sugar,vanilla extract nd for extra stiffness 1tsp gelatine(heated,diluted,then brought back to room temperature) but it didnt’t evn form medium stiff peak.even aftr beating for 30mins it barely formed soft peaks.thoguh after freezing allnight it was of spreadable consistency nd my purpose was served(i made a three tiered chocolate,whipped cream covered cake for a frnd’s bday..yeeeppp..:-) ..) but cldnt do any piping with the soft cream..i searched many a sites but couldnt get where i went wrong.i am a novice nd really in love wid baking can u plz help?

  6. Hi, this frosting is too delicious… But for today’s marble cake I have decided to put chill frosting on it because I will be decorating my cake as it is my daughters birthday today.

    My query is if I omit the cocoa and instant coffee and follow the rest if the procedure will I get vanill frosting. Please answer as soon as possible. Thanks a ton girls. My cake is in the oven baking hitch needs a frosting :).

    1. Oh god, so many errors on my message… Damn iPad and auto correction.

      My query again, can I get vanilla frosting by following the same procedure and omitting the cocoa and instant coffee.


    2. Hi Aarti,

      Sorry for the late reply…spring break!

      We have not tried it…wondering if you did. It is quite a bit of cocoa powder so omitting it would alter the texture elsewhere.

      1. I did try making it omitting the cocoa powder and it was a disaster :). But is OK, I had a back up plan (Betty crocker) :). Never wanted to use betty crocker because I am not a big fan of her frostings..

        Followed your marble cake receipe and it came out very good.


  7. Hi Hetal and Anuja

    Can i add thick yogurd or yugard without water instead of sour cream also called latka dahi.
    Please let me know.My marble cake is already in the oven and your frosting receipe is so tempting as i don’t have sour cream right now:))



    1. Hi Bhavana,

      I’m so sorry for the late response. Wondering if you tried the yogurt or not… Honestly, we have never tried yogurt in place of the sour cream. One of the characteristics of sour cream is that it does not curdle like yogurt does. Not really sure if it will or not in this recipe. If you tried it, we’d love to get your feedback.

  8. Hi Hetal and Anuja,
    I have tried many recipes in your site before…but this is the first time ,I got disappointed a little…only a little.
    Coz the cake turned to be dry and the frosting was too strong…the amount of chocolate powder was little too much for our taste buds.

    What can I do to turn cake moist next time?

    1. Hi Renu,

      Sorry to hear that…not sure what happened with the cake but the strong flavor in the frosting is most likely due to the coffee. People who enjoy coffee love the extra kick it provides but if you are not a coffee fan, you can certainly omit it. Also, we used Nescafe coffee powder. I have tried other brands of coffee powder but was not that satisfied with the results.

  9. Hello Hetal and Anuja..

    Thanku for the recipe..just wondering if heavy whipping cream and thickened cream are the same things or different..thanks….

    1. Hi Jyoti,

      I am not sure what thickened cream is. We only get the liquid type of heavy cream. Sometimes, its known as double cream.

    1. Hi Pinal,

      We have not tried it but the frosting does harden up enough to create a design…don’t know how the designs will hold up though.

  10. Can u please tell me what is sour cream wat can v use with out that please reply im a huge fan of yours i hav almost tried recipe s.thanks

    1. Hi Ajeeeeee,

      Sour cream is cultured cream. We add it in this recipe because it gives a little bit of tanginess which balances the sweetness. It also improves the final texture of the frosting. We have not tried any substitute but you can try and leave it out. Be sure to try on a small batch first.

  11. Hi Hetal and Anuja! I am a HUGE fan of this site and have tried many recipes and all turned out delicious! I am just wondering why now the recipes are so few and far in between? I remember until recently you guys used to post a lot more frequently..just wondering. Hope you guys had a great new year! and hope to see more of you in 2013 πŸ˜€

  12. U both are really wonderful
    Ur recipes are fabulous I am regular viewer .
    Anuja nad hetal if u can plz post some recipes for cakes and bakes (eggless) and some whipped cream frosting

  13. Hi Hetal and Anuja,

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and your family I baked a vanilla cake yesterday and it came out good. But, it became crisp in the corners. Is it because i kept it in fridge after the first coating of the frosting or i used baking powder instead of baking soda? is the baking powder and soda are the same?

    Just wanted to know what cup do you use for oil? Is it the same spoon on the video you are using? I am little confused with the measurement of oil….

    The receipe was simple to do..I am a first time baker..and it was pretty simple.
    Please clarify.
    Good job…keep posting new receipes.


  14. Hai Heetal and Anuja,
    I have been following your website for almost 3 years, the quality of the pictures were far better in the beginning, but the quality is no more the same, please try to maintain the same quality of the pictures as they were before, this is my gentle suggestion, please don’t take it otherwise.

  15. Hi…This looks really good but my problem is that where I live (India) sour cream is not easily available. Can you suggest an alternative or will it matter a whole lot if I skip that??


  16. Wow, that looks so sweet it makes my teeth hurt just thinking about it! I think the coffee and chocolate is a great combination, a dash of Amaretto would take it to the next level (for grown-ups).

    Will definitely try it in the New Year!

  17. Finally the frosting recipe is here! I can’t believe how easy it is to make frosting…Can’t wait to make the marble cake with frosting. And that trick with the parchment paper totally works. I did it last time I frosted(ready made)a cake and there was no mess.

    One question: Would this be called milk chocolate frosting or dark chocolate frosting?


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